Email Address Guardianship: Whose Responsibility Is It Anyway?
Last week’s headlines about the massive theft of 53 million email addresses from Home Depot seems the straw that broke the camel’s back when it comes to 2014’s barrage of data breaches. The year has seen a veritable flood of hacks and breaches at retailers (Target, Best Buy, eBay) restaurants (PF Chang’s, Subway) and even financial institutions (JP Morgan Chase, Bank of America). The verdict is clear: no data protection system is foolproof, and when it comes to data theft there is no sacred ground – hackers will take all the personally identifiable consumer information (PII) they can get.
In the pecking order of consumer data, credit card numbers and account passwords trump email addresses due to the immediate financial gain and fraud possible. Besides, when it comes to your email address, how many companies already have it from you voluntarily? If you’re the average consumer, easily tens if not hundreds to the point, I fear, that consumers have become blasé about email address theft.
At best, a stolen consumer email address generates a temporary barrage of spam easily blocked by filters or manual feedback (just tell Gmail “this is spam” and it quickly adjusts deliverability). At worst, [click to continue…]
One of the best ways to engage email subscribers is to connect with them emotionally, although this is often easier said than done.
I have spoken and written many times about the importance of creating emotional resonance – either positive or negative – between your message and your audience. It’s essential because without some sort of feeling connection to you, at least occasionally, subscribers will become bored by the purely practical often repetitive litany of subject lines cropping up in their inboxes (i.e. 20% savings this week!) and easily tune out.
It’s fine to engage your audience intellectually, but if you want your email to create a lasting impact, it needs to pack an emotional punch too!
The subject line is an obvious, immediate and powerful way for email to connect emotionally with subscribers – but how many of us routinely think about writing subject lines from an emotional vs. informative frame of mind? While not all need to be emotional stunners, I thought it would be fun to comb through my email swipe file to showcase examples of subject lines that evoke, provoke, and otherwise succeed in causing a visceral emotional reaction.
Without further ado, let’s take a look at ten email subject lines that pack an emotional punch and explore why: (click on images to view larger)
1. Carnival Cruise Lines
Subject Line: Deleting this email is like deleting $200
This example from Carnival Cruise Lines is a refreshing departure from their standard “$200 cash back” offer and typical promotional fare. It demonstrates empathy on a few levels: first, they’re one step ahead of subscribers by realizing that most email gets deleted without being opened, so they’re attempting to pre-empt that. The subject line then taps into our basic fear of scarcity – who would throw away money? (Hopefully now you, smart Carnival subscriber). [click to continue…]