Tip of the Week: Dynamic and Personalized Subject Lines

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Email marketers can all agree on at least a few key facts. "Batch and Blast" should be left in the past, we must embrace mobile, and Outlook is not our friend. So, we might not be able to completely break up with Outlook, but one thing we can control is our strategy behind the "batch and blast" -- sending the same email content to everyone on your subscriber list.

If you're using templates, the Marketing Cloud makes it easy to add one or more dynamic content areas to your email. This lets you provide more targeted information to your audience based on subscriber data. Did you know you could also do this with the email's subject line? This can be used on template or paste HTML emails.

First, create a new email and type in a default/fallback subject line (in the standard Email Subject field). Like a Content Area in an email, there must be a default piece defined -- even if you plan to have all of your subscribers fit your defined criteria.

Next, click the button to define your dynamic rules. It's the lightning bolt button to the right of the Email Subject field. Your default subject line will prepopulate the "standard" field in the Rule box. At the top of this box, use the dropdown to pick either Attribute List or one of your sendable Data Extensions in order to build your rules.

Adding rules here will be similar to defining them for Dynamic Content Areas. The logic is the same, but you will type in the subject line for each rule instead of choosing an item from your library.

In each of the subject line fields (dynamic or standard), you can also include a personalization string using a profile attribute or field from the sendable data extension.

Examples may include:

  • name [Becky, your favorite jeans are on sale!]
  • location [It's cooling down in Indiana -- stock up on jeans with our sale]
  • numeric value [Thank you for being a loyal customer for 5 years]

With personalization strings and the option for dynamic subject lines, you can add another layer of customization to your messages, which may lead to increases in your open rates!

What creative tactics do you use in subject lines? Tweet us your ideas @BalanceDigital.

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