How to Increase Your Open Rates on Valentine’s Day

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Article written by Gabriel
Community manager at PadiCode
Google+ profile

Everyone wants a piece of the pie that it’s called Valentine’s Day.

With men expected to spend more than $130 on average and women to spend on average at least $50, online marketers are dying to get a share of a period that topped 18.6 billion dollars in 2013.

But wait, there’s more…

In 2011 the online sales reached 2.65 billion dollars. So yeah, we have the premises to achieve incredible results, and because email it’s still the best channel to drive sales, we need to take email marketing seriously.

But for that we need to come up with some smart email subject lines to get our emails opened.

7 Email Subject Lines Ideas

Sean Platt in an article for Copyblogger says this subject line is the most effective he ever met. He saw open rates of over 90%, and in some tests of over 100%, that means some users opened the email more than once.

He didn’t use it for Valentine’s Day, but I’m sure if you can target a specific segment, e.g. the single segment of your list, you can achieve the same results as Sean Platt did.

You will never guess what subject line he is talking about: “You are not alone”.

Retail Email Blog does a very good job of documenting the most interesting subject lines that are used on Valentine’s Day email marketing campaigns. Our favorite selection from their Season Finale Post Series are:

What’s better than flowers or candy for Valentine’s Day?
Used by Fredericks of Hollywood in their 2011 Valentine’s Day campaign.

Cupid made us do it – 14% OFF EVERYTHING! Just today
Used by Norm Thompson also in 2011.

Love at First Sight, Plus Complimentary Shipping‏
Used by Tiffani in 2010.

20% Off + Tips to Create a Mood in the Bedroom
Used by Art.com in 2007

Pizza Restaurant, via Inbox Vision, teaches us a great lesson on copywriting with 2 excellent subject lines:

You had me at hello.
Clever use of the famous catchphrase from Jerry Maguire.

The greatest love lines of all times and pizza to share this weekend.
Nothing more cheesy, yet effective, than great love lines from the movies and a pizza :).

Achieve High Open Rates: Mailchimp Style

The guys from Mailchimp have a great habit on creating really inspiring posts.

In a particular one, they’ve talked about the best and the worst email subject lines that were delivered through their platform.

The secret to getting stellar open rates is very simple, some people may consider it almost stupid simple: “Describe the subject of your email”.

The best email subject lines that described the subject of the email achieved open rates of over 60%, up to over 87%.

The worst email subject lines, achieved between 1 and 14%.

If you are a Mailchimp user you can capitalize on their Subject Line Researcher that helps you find great ideas for your headline by referencing to how the words you chose performed in other campaigns. Cool, right?

Creating your own formula

If you are trying to create a stellar subject line based on what you read in this article, then you should check out this small guideline I’ve assembled for your:

1. Make me curious

If you want me to open your email, appeal to my curiosity, nothing makes me more curious than a good question, an inciting copy or a great offer that waits to be unveiled.

2. Incentivize me

One great method to get me to click on your email is to incentivize me by offering me a discount, tips & tricks, or something that I can talk about with my friends.

3. Talk about love

It’s Valentine’s Day so you got to talk to me about love, why it matters and yes, you can also say that you love me (even though you probably love me more for my money :P ).

4. Don’t get me confused

You already read Mailchimp’s formula for achieving stellar open rates, so it’s imperative that I understand that your email is about Valentine’s Day. I understand that you probably are a fancy copywriter, but nothing makes you happier than me reading your email and eventually buying something from you. That’s what I call copywriting and a love connection.

Final thoughts

There’s not really much to do with this email subject line thing. Create something relevant and incredibly attractive for your prospects. You already know this, but you probably only needed a few ideas to get ideas flowing through your head.

I hope you got some insights from this article and I’m sure if you planned your campaign correctly and tailored a great email subject line, you can get the most from this Valentine’s Day.

Your email content must also be  great in order to get conversions, but your first obstacle it will always be, to get the email opened and viewed by your list.

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