You know how people always say that you should learn from your mistakes? I made a mistake this week that taught me a big lesson in a completely unexpected way.
On Wednesday I started a contest on Sunshine Rewards and sent out a paid email with the subject line “New Survey Contest! Win up to $50.” I thought it was a pretty persuasive subject line to get people to read the email and click on the link at the bottom to visit the site and earn a penny. Unfortunately, we had a system glitch that resulted in people not getting their penny when they clicked on the link. Woops.
We started getting a lot of questions/complaints in the forum about why people didn’t get their penny. We never did figure out the glitch in the system that caused it, but we decided to send out the exact same email the next day with a new subject line and a little line about how we messed up the day before.
The only thing I changed the second day was the subject of the new email line with an apology that we owed them the penny. The rest of the email was the exact same and they had to scroll to the bottom of it to get their penny. Check out my site traffic for the month, with the day I sent the second email circled:
Two interesting things about this chart:
- There was no real increase in traffic the day that I sent the first email announcing the contest. Apparently that subject line (which I thought was good) meant nothing to my members.
- My site traffic DOUBLED with the second email. The best day of the month for me. Looking back at my stats, it was the best day traffic that I have had in over a year.
I would not have even thought about the possible increase in traffic if I had not received an email from Todd Farmer after the second email went out telling me that he thought the subject line was great. But when I looked at my stats, I was amazed.
As affiliate marketers, we often feel like we live and die by our Google search results. But this just goes to show that email is still effective when done properly. I have a lot of thinking to do now about my mailing lists and how to better use them. No, my revenue was not double for that day, but part of my goal is just getting people to the site to remind them what we are about so that when they do shop and take surveys, they remember to use us. I’m confident the exposure we got on that day did the trick.
Next steps? Figuring out what other subject lines would work for all of my lists, where I want them to land when they click through those emails, and how I am going to convert those views to money.
Do you experiment with subject lines? Have you been surprised at the ones that have and have not worked?