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How To Get More Clicks: The Secret Revealed

Email Marketers are always trying to find ways to get openers to click their emails.
  • Does a 20% off coupon parlay more clicks than Free Shipping?
  • What day of week generates the best results?
  • What about time of day?
In a recent email Urban Outfitters took the direct route – they asked for the click.  The email below is giving their subscribers an “Exclusive First Look” at their new styles.  To seal the deal they make it clear that items are only available by clicking the main image from the email.

Giving email subscriber an exclusive look is a great way to reward them for being part of the Urban Outfitters email list.  UO makes their subscribers feel special.  This will hopefully convert non-clickers into clickers and then purchasers.

Well done.

Here is the creative.
The subject line is simply Exclusive First Look
P.S. Is it just me or do the Urban Outfitter models make you depressed?  I love the brand but whenever I see their gaunt models I wish I were able to tell them a joke to make them smile and then feed them something hearty.

How To 'Undo' A Gmail Message

The ability to "undo" an e-mail has been a little known feature of Google's e-mail service since last year. But in the past few days, it appears to have been improved.

Google Operating System, an unofficial blog that shares Google news and tips, noted this weekend that a user now has up to 30 seconds to take back an unfortunate message.

In reality, the feature doesn't actually pull back an e-mail that's already gone, it simply holds your message for 30 seconds before sending it out -- just in case you change your mind.

A Google spokeswoman confirmed Monday that the 30-second option was added early this month.

When the feature first rolled out in March 2009, you had to be super-quick to use it. It only allowed five seconds to take a message back.

Enabling the feature is a bit complicated if you're not familiar with Google Labs, the place where the company lets users test out experiments with Gmail and other Google projects.

And it's worth noting that, because it is a testing space, anything in Labs is subject to change.

But, at least for now, here's how to avoid instant e-mail remorse.

To enable 'Undo Send':

1. Log in to Gmail and go to Google Labs. If you've never gone to Labs before, click the word "more" in the very top left corner, then scroll down and click "even more."

2. In the column on the right, click "Labs." It's next to the icon of a beaker filled with green stuff.

3. Click "Gmail Labs" in the column on the right.

4. Scroll down almost all the way to the bottom until you see "Undo Send." Click "enable" and the feature is now on. Then scroll the rest of the way down and look in the bottom left corner for the "Save Changes" box. Click it.

5. Now, go back to the main Gmail page and click "Settings" in the top right. You should also see your green Labs beaker icon there now -- this will let you go straight to Labs from now on.

6. Scroll down to "Undo Send" -- it should be right above "My Picture." Your default should be set to 10 seconds. But you can use the drop-down bar to stretch that to 30 seconds.

7. Scroll down and hit "Save Changes."

8. To undo an email, just look for the box at the top of the screen that will have the words "Your message has been sent." After that, you should see the "Undo" option. Click that and you'll be sent back to the e-mail's draft form, where you'll have 30 seconds to edit or delete it before it goes out.

This is from:

Point of Sale Email Capture: A True Story

I recently decided to revisit the idea of working out.  In all honesty I have run out of excuses not to start working out.  Today's task was to purchase running shoes.  I went to my neighborhood Big-5 (Big-5 is a sporting goods store located in the Western US) and bought shoes.  During the transaction the sales person on the floor also managed to obtain my email address.

The conversation went like this:
Salesperson: Here is the size 11 you had asked for.
Me: Thanks.
Salesperson: Do you use email?
Me: Yes.
Salesperson: Would you like to sign-up for our email program and get 10% off?
Me: Sure.
He hands me a pen and a sign-up form and continues talking.
Salesperson: Email is great because we save money by sending less mailers and we can pass those savings onto our customers.  You will receive your welcome email and 10% off coupon in about 24 hours.
Me: Great.
I scribbled my email address on the form and handed it back to the salesperson.

Here is the three inch by two inch sign-up form.

Big-5 did a great job.
  • The sales person asked the right questions and provided just enough information to seal the deal.
  • He was not overbearing or annoying.
  • He had the form and a working pen at the ready.
  • He verified the email address once I gave it to him.
  • The form was clear and easy to understand.If I did not provide an email address in the store but kept the form, I could always sign-up at a later date online.
Well done!

Here is the welcome I received as promised in about 24 hours.  The Subject Line, which could be better, is Subscription Notification

Do you have any POS (Point of Sale) real-life stories?  Please share them with us!

RE: at the start of the subject line? Good idea? Bad Idea?

I recently received this question in my inbox from an reader.

"I read somewhere that the use of 'RE:' at the start of an email subject line gives the message a better chance of not being thrown in a spam filter. Is this true?"

What do you think about adding RE: to the beginning of a subject line? Is it deceptive? A good idea? Does it work?  Share your thoughts with us!

Quality Check – It's a Dirty Job But Someone's Got To Do It

As any serious marketer knows, quality checking your products is imperative.  This could be an email, a billboard, a catalog, an online advertisement or anything else that is public facing.  Quality checks are not glamorous but they are necessary.  Don’t neglect this important step!

Here is an example a friend of mine sent me.  Cutting off the tags from a recent gift from the Disney Store displayed a missed text addition.  Oops.

Here is the front of the tag – Nothing wrong here.

Here is the back – the manufacturer (or someone along the production process) neglected to add logical text to this valuable product space.

Do you have any other examples of marketing mistakes? If so, please share them with us!

Give Your Emails Some Personality

For many email marketers the number one goal of an email is to generate revenue.  If an email does not perform, an opportunity can be lost.  This is great – but can also lead to stagnant emails.  Once in a while it is nice to mix things up.  

Send an email that is not about generating sales but about building relationships, passing along a funny story, or telling your subscribers more about who you are as a company, as an email marketer, and as a person.

Your subscribers might be interested in hearing more about your employees, the city your business is in, about the models you use in your emails etc.  Give them something to talk about.

Here are two great examples.  

The first is from Eddie Bauer.  They introduce their company dog, Eddie, and talk all about him on their Facebook page.

The second is from  This email is all about the company and includes pictures.
The Subject Line of this email is simply Photos of us.

Do you have any examples of emails that take a break from marketing and send a new message?  What are your thoughts on emails like this?

Ready, Set...Reactivate!

It is no secret that email marketing lists can get stagnant.  Your subscribers are not responding to your  emails at the rate you would like and you are not sure what to do. 

The answer is run a reactivation campaign. You can reactivate your inactive subscribers!

Here are some interesting reactivation related stats, tips and tricks:

1. More than 80% of email marketers send the same content to all subscribers.
HINT: Use creative segmentation to send your subscribers what they like at the cadence they like.

2. 30-60% of most subscriber lists are inactive.
HINT: Be sure to identify your inactives and reactivate them.

3. Nearly 30% of most subscriber lists re-engage during the holiday season.

4. Not all marketers define inactivity based on the same criteria. 
HINT: Create an inactive definition for your email list and test it frequently.

5. We Miss You campaigns have proven to be effective in reactivating recently lapsed buyers.  Messaging Tactics for inactives also include Aggressive/Unconventional Subject Lines, Aggressive Offers & Creative Treatments, Reactivation Series, Polls or Surveys and Changes in Frequency.

6. Include click data into your strategy to incorporate recommended items based on click inference into the content.

7. Define and analyze your Inactive subscribers to gain an understanding of their past behavior with your program (especially for any seasonal purchase behavior).

8. Re-Integrate reactivated subscribers back into the email message stream.

9. Don't let subscribers become inactive in the first place– create lifecycle messaging.

10. Be relevant – keep subscribers engaged from the start of the customer journey.

Here are some reactivation creative examples:

Share your reactivation stories with us!  What has and has not worked in your reactivation campaigns?

Email Marketing: There Is Some Good Right?

Email Marketing is typically not a glamorous or an overly useful endeavor in the larger scheme of world events. It's not like email marketers are saving lives, curing diseases, or solving world problems. The Nobel Prize or a Hollywood Star on the Walk of Fame will never be given out for the best email marketing campaign. However, there is some good that email marketing does on a local and global level. The next time you are at a social event and someone asks you what you do, you can stand proud and announce “I am an email marketer!”

Five good things about email marketing:
  1. Emails bridge the world. You send an email to your friend in Prague or to the guy down the street about the latest Nordstrom sale without having to worry about your phone call waking him up or having an uncomfortable silence. You can share your thoughts with anyone anywhere without having to actually talk to them. Brilliant!
  2. Email raises awareness and support for worthwhile events and organization. Many not-for-profits and other do-gooders utilize email to get their message out in force.
  3. Email saves trees. Please, don’t print emails unless you need to.
  4. Email is supportive and complimentary to social media and helps advance new technology. Many pundits feel that social media will destroy email. I disagree. Email and Social Media works well together much like peanut butter and jelly, bagels and cream cheese, and Bert and Ernie.
  5. Email is everywhere! Try to name one person who you know that does not have an email address. Off the top of my head I can only name one – but she is only eighteen months young!  (By the way, I can name three adults who are not on Facebook.  Facebook, and other social media sites, will not be the end of email.  Hey, you need an email address to log in to Facebook right?)