Subject line testing is that one email best practice that all B2B marketers know is a good idea, and yet very few of us do it consistently. The common excuse is time: when you’re under the gun to get that Webinar invitation out by next week, the last thing you need is one more complexity added to the process.
Consistent subject line testing, however, executed correctly, can be a main driver for achieving steady improvement in open rates and overall email performance. One of the key factors to effective testing is specificity: a subject line pair should isolate one, single element – a word, a phrase – as the testing variable. Testing two entirely different subject lines may provide you a winner and loser, but you’ll have no idea why one version performed better than the other. Knowing why one subject line generated a higher response is a learning you can then continue to leverage going forward.
To make the process of choosing testing pairs easier, here’s a handy list of test ideas to use as a reference for your next campaign:
1. Specific vs. General
Attend Our March 25 Webinar on Personalized Content
Attend Our Webinar on Personalized Content
2. Personalization (e.g. Name, Location, Industry)
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Here’s your free guide on lead nurturing success
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Only 3 days Until Our Email Best Practices Webinar
4. Company Name/Branding
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Spear’s Guide to Top B2B Email Mistakes
5. Positive vs. Negative
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6. Copy Length
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7. Statement vs. Question
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8. Numbers as Digits vs. Words
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9. Offer vs. No Offer
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10. Topic vs. Benefit
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For more ideas on how to improve email results, check out our infographic: 29 Tips to Improve Email Campaign Performance.
Thanks to Hannah Scott, Associate Copywriter at Spear, for her contributions to this post.