A few days ago i've launched my first cold email campaign for my website.
I've sent 359 cold emails to a group of community garden clubs across America. Of these, 9 had bounced and 136 were opened after 5 days. I've received 4 replies in total, so the reply rate was a bit more than 1%.
I had hoped that the reply rate would be higher because the emails were highly targeted and most of them were also personalized. But i got no more than 4 replies. Before I send more emails to other community garden clubs I need to know how i can improve on both the email subject as well as the email message itself. I've done research on this before sending those 359 emails but the information that's available on the web contradicts a bit with my own findings.
In the campaign i've used five different subject lines and personalized the subject line with the first name of the contact person if it was available. I've posted the results of my email campaign below: The first table shows the subject lines with personalization the second one with no personalization.
A total of 80 emails with personalized subject lines were sent. Here are the open rates for each email subject line.
|Subject line||Count||Percentage (%)|
|[Name], Want to take your community garden to the next level?||9||11.3|
|[Name], Can I have your feedback on my community garden website?||9||11.3|
|[Name], Your community garden can benefit from this latest gardening website.||8||10|
|[Name], You're invited to try out the latest community gardening platform.||5||6.3|
|[Name], Here's an invitation to discover the newest community gardening platform.||2||2.5|
A total of 270 emails with unpersonalized subject lines were sent. Here are the open rates for each email subject line.
|Subject line||Count||Percentage (%)|
|Want to take your community garden to the next level?||19||7|
|Can I have your feedback on my community garden website?||20||7.4|
|Your community garden can benefit from this latest gardening website.||16||5.9|
|You're invited to try out the latest community gardening platform.||26||9.6|
|Here's an invitation to discover the newest community gardening platform.||21||7.8|
From these findings I've concluded that in general adding the first name to the subject line can help increase the email open rate.
But the fourth and fifth listed subject lines are two exceptions to this assumption. Notably the fifth subject line
Here's an invitation to discover the newest community gardening platform. is performing very badly when the first name is included as a personalization. The open rate in that case was only
2.5% but the open rate was
7.8% for the emails that used the same subject line but without the first name added to it.
Can anyone tell me what could be causing this from a user experience perspective? Is it because the subject line becomes too long when I add the first name to it? Or is it because I use the words 'invitation' and 'invited' in the subject lines?
I also have a question about the cold email itself. I've determined that the total open rate of the email is about 38% which is near the industry average. But the click-through rate is rather low. Here's the email:
As a fellow gardening enthusiast, I wanted to reach out to you and share an exciting new resource that I believe could greatly benefit your community garden. Have you heard of XXXXXXX.com?
XXXXX.com is a community-driven website where gardeners like yourself can come together to share planting information, exchange tips, and collaborate on building planting calendars tailored to your specific location. It's a platform designed by gardeners, for gardeners, and we believe it could be a valuable tool for your community garden.
We would be thrilled to have you and others of your community garden participate in this brand new online community. We would also value your feedback and suggestions, particularly on how XXXXXXX.com could improve on serving the needs of your community garden.
Joining is easy. Just visit www.XXXXXX.com, create an account, and start connecting with other local gardeners. You can also take a quick website tour via the website’s landing page to learn more about what XXXXXX.com has to offer.
Thank you for your consideration, and we look forward to your participation in the XXXXX.com community! Feel free to reach out to us if you have any questions or want to give feedback.
Best regards, Maurice
PS: If you're not interested and want to stop getting my emails then please follow this link to opt-out of them.
Greetings is replaced with
Dear Name if the first or full name is available. I also reference the name of the community garden club if that's available. Is their anything i could add to this email message that could increase the click-through rate or even the reply rate?