‘Hey’ Email Greetings See a 64% Response Rate
Hey, email marketers. How’s it going?
Would you respond to an email marketer greeting you like that? Well, 64 percent of consumers did so, finds research highlighted yesterday in Inc. One caution: Referring to the original source of the findings shows this is definitely not a B2B marketing situation.
So your parents were right, “hay” may be for horses — although B2B marketers do use the greeting once they talk to prospects. So perhaps the key to remember here is the research shows “hey” greetings see the best email response rates — 64 percent — after there’s an accepted informal situation.
Jeff Haden writes in Inc.:
While you might think that a five to eight-point swing in response rate between "Dear" and the combo of "Hey" and "Hi" isn't significant, think again. If changing your greeting results in nearly one more out of 10 people responding to your emails — whether you're cold emailing, trying to connect or simply asking a friend for a favor — it's definitely worth it.
Haden and the original research point out that it’s far better for emailers to include a greeting than not:
- Hey: 64 percent
- Hello: 63.6 percent
- Hi: 62.7 percent
- Greetings: 57.2 percent
- Dear: 56.5 percent
- All emails: 47.5 percent
A quick perusal of all of the branded email marketing I received yesterday (and it’s a lot — I write about marketing) showed every single one with a call to action to purchase goods and services simply greeted me with the brand logo rather than “hey,” “hello” or “dear” in the message.
But it’s important to note that in the original research Haden is citing, the author says the source is more informal than the average email exchange.
Brendan Greenley writes in a Boomerang post on Dec. 14 that of the more than 300,000 email messages he reviewed, all came from “a few hundred thousand threads from online communities that make their message archives public.” (Now imagine a B2B setting in which email exchanges would be public. Can’t? Exactly.)
Bonus Email Marketing Knowledge
- In January 2017, Greenley used that same source to find that email recipients are more likely to respond to messages with closings: “thanks in advance” sees 65.7 percent response rates; “thanks,” 63 percent; “thank you,” 57.9 percent; and baseline, which includes no closing, 47.5 percent.
- In a controversial post I wrote in 2014, in which marketers thought the top-performing subject line listed in the research would easily get marked as spam if it came from brands, “And the Best Subject Line Is …” showed that email recipients responded best to: “Re:” at 92 percent; “Re: Follow Up,” 90 percent; and “Re: update,” 89 percent.
A representative of the Canadian company presenting the research, ContactMonkey, responded to Target Marketing readers. He wrote, in part:
Emailing is very different between a salesperson and a marketer. A salesperson is sending individual, personal emails to their prospects throughout the day. They rarely dabble in the mass email space. That might be why the email open rates seem high and that the subject lines themselves aren't necessarily suitable for mass e campaigns. However, I think the biggest lesson for marketers here is to test out very short and direct email subject lines. Of course while taking CAN Spam/CASL into account.
What do you think, marketers?
Please respond in the comments section below.
Related story: And the Best Subject Line Is …