Preview to Win: How Email Preview Text Drives Open Rates
- Tie the copy almost directly to the subject line. Think of the subject line as the first sentence, and the preheader as the second.
- Follow the same style, voice, and guidelines you usually do for email copy.
- Include as much detail about the email as you can within the restraints of the copy.
- Limited quantity
- Time is running out
- X hours left!
This type of language can increase the likelihood that your buyers will click to open your email. However, don’t be afraid of getting creative with it. You should try out all types of different copy that will intrigue your readers and up the open rate. Some marketers have had good luck with emojis, exclamation marks, and more. Don’t be afraid to try something a little different.
Always Optimize It
Though urgency-driven language in preview text often drives opens, you won’t know if it really works for your brand until you test it. As we mentioned at the start, marketers are already running A/B tests on nearly every part of emails — and preview text should be no exception. You should always A/B the types of messaging and voice you use in the preheader text to see whether you’re driving real results.
Simply send out two emails with the same subject line, but different preview text. Then, measure the open rate of the two email and see which is more successful. Ideally, you’ll find out the type of copy your audience responds to quickly. With this data, you can optimize and improve every last aspect of your emails — including the preview text.
If you’ve never considered optimizing your preview text, you’re not alone. It’s an afterthought for many B2C marketers. But once you start using preview text as part of your marketing strategy, you’ll never go back.
Eric Keating is the Vice President of Marketing at Zaius, a B2C CRM marketing platform. A go-to-market business leader, Eric is focused on helping top consumer brands grow by improving their understanding of customer behavior. Prior to joining Zaius, he was the vice president of the software-as-a-service division at Millward Brown Digital.