Make the Most of the “Open Rate”

By August 8, 2008 No Comments

The open rate of a campaign is a large indicator of its success. It’s of utmost importance to understand how this opening rate is measured, in order to be able to best use the information to your advantage.

Email marketing software, such as CakeMail, inserts a tiny, invisible image into the body of the HTML email. The idea is that when the email is opened by the recipient, this image is downloaded, and the email software counts the opening.

This method of measurement is not as precise as it could be, for one simple reason: not every email software automatically displays images. If this is the case, and a recipient decides to read the email without displaying images, the open is not detected.

Here are a few helpful habits you can start using to increase the precision of your data collection:

  • Be sure to create an HTML email. It’s not possible to add image into a text email;
  • Use compelling graphics, great and useful photographs, or illustrations- anything to stimulate the subscribers to display images in the email;
  • Add a note at the top of your email saying something like: “We recommend you display images in order to fully benefit from the offers in this email.”;
  • Click on “Always display images from…” in your reader.

If the open rate value are not precise, why bother using them? Mainly because this open rate information is very important, and yet, the above-mentioned method of measurement is the only automatic one currently available. Another way you can help increase accuracy in measuring campaign success is by comparing emails sent to the same subscribers. To gage if one mailing has better performed than another, try using different subject lines to see which one works better with your target. Paired with the click rate, email forwards, referrals, visits to your website and the actual actions taken by your clients: sales, registrations, etc… these email opening stats are actually the most precise way of giving you information about how effective your communications really are.

Author Francois Lane

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