Ecommerce consultancy Timberline Interactive did an A/B email test for client Wine of the Month Club this past fall to see if a clever subject line and body would work better than a more assertive approach.
Speaking Tuesday at the Internet Retailer Web Design & Usability Conference in Orlando, FL, Tom Funk confirmed what many marketers already know: Confident email marketing always wins.
“You always have to be careful about asserting negativity,” said Funk, who conducted the Wine of the Month Club test when he was vice president-client services at Timberline. (Funk is now senior ecommerce manager for Green Mountain Coffee Roasters.)
Wine of the Month’s subject line for email A was “Read only if you like easy drinking wine.” Email B’s subject line read “It will be gone by Sunday. Pure Zinfandel for $4.99.”
The message for email A was “I am not going to tell you this is a buxom big wine. I am not going to tell you that this wine is going to rival the best $25.00 wines… because it isn’t and it won’t. But it is a good wine at a very good price.”
Email B’s message: “I took this wine home last night and opened it with friends. Wine friends. They sipped, looked at the bottle, sipped again. They looked at me confused; I told them that it was our email feature that day at $4.99/bottle. You should have seen their faces (these are $30/bottle types), as they reached to pour more.”
How did email A stack up against email B for Wine of the Month Club? Funk said the click-through rate for email B was 53% higher than email A, and the conversion rate was up 34%. Better still, email B’s revenue lift was 82% greater, he said.