First 12 Words Are Critical to Email Success

If any of your clients utilize email in their marketing campaigns, they deletemay have less time than even you realize to grab their readers’ attention. In an article on Mediapost​.com, Jess Nelson shares results from an email marketing study completed by Movable Ink. And the results? All it takes is 1…2…3 seconds before POOF! and the reader has moved on.

Perhaps it’s a result of newsfeeds, but consumers are perfecting the art of scanning overwhelming amounts of information and quickly deciding which are relevant and worth their time. Email has not escaped this method of data consumption, which makes it even more crucial that your clients optimize the first 12 words of their emails.

The survey revealed that email read lengths varied by device. However, less than 3 seconds was the majority winner across the following devices:

  • Kindle Fire – 64.5%
  • iPhone – 53.9%
  • iPad – 42.4%
  • Desktop – 48.9%
  • Android Tablet – 48.8%
  • Android Phones – 50.2%

Results also showed that the larger the screen, the more likely the reading time of emails will increase. In fact, desktop computers rank first with 24.6% of email reads clocking in at MORE than 15 SECONDS! Following suit are iPads (22.6%) and Android tablets (21.9%), while Android phones take last place with only 15.5% of users spending more than 15 second per email.

So how can you help your clients? First, realize the read length of any email can be affected before it is ever opened. Yes, your clients’ success hinge on subject lines. Nelson advises creating subject lines that contextualize the content. And, think carefully about the word choice used here. Something as simple as changing one word can drastically affect engagement rates.

She points to a different study performed by Persado that showed “Black Friday” had the greatest impact on open rates than other holiday promotion subject lines. Additionally, the greatest open rates came when a "Black Friday" subject line played upon consumer emotion to create a sense of urgency, excitement or anxiety.

Make sure your email clients are creating engaging emails. Even though some devices give a greater chance of longer read lengths, remember that you cannot predict which device(s) consumers will be using when they read the email. So anticipate a 3 second read length. Make the most out of the subject line and first 12 words of your clients’ email to prove the relevance of their message.

Amanda Levin

Amanda Levin

Amanda is the Director of Operations at SalesFuel. She previously specialized in major accounts research and digital marketing trends for SalesFuel Today. She holds a Bachelors in Media Studies from Ohio University.