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Strategies for Increasing Your Open Rates

The three most important elements to consider for increasing your open rates are the “From” name, Subject and time in which the email is sent. Today, our inboxes are filled with spam on a daily basis. Without clearly communicating who the message is from and what the message is about, your subscribers will simply delete your email mistaking it as spam. The final key element to consider is the timing of your messages. We have found that sending on certain days of the week and at certain times will increase the chances of your recipients opening your email.

“From” name: When setting up your email marketing campaign, be sure to use a “From” name that your subscribers will immediately recognize. I recommend using your company or product name, but choose one and stick with it. If you ever change the “From” name this could cause many subscribers to mistake your email for spam.

Subject Line: When writing the subject of your email use the name of your newsletter. This will be recognizable to the reader and increase the chances that it will be opened. It is also a good idea to include the recipient’s first name within the subject as well. So the subject of your email should look something like:

Susan’s January Edition of Graphic Design Monthly

Also, be sure to avoid using all caps, dollar signs and multiple exclamation points. This is a pre-emptive approach as these elements will trigger many spam filters. A final point on the subject of your emails is to keep them under 50 characters. This will ensure that most email clients display the Subject in its entirety.

Best Times to Send: The third element to consider is the time that the email is sent. We have found that if you are marketing to businesses it is best to send Tuesday through Thursday between 9:30 am and 3 pm. If you are marketing to consumers, we recommend sending Friday through Sunday between 5 pm and 8 pm. By following these guidelines your subscribers will be receiving your emails at the optimal time, thus increasing your open rates.

This Email Marketing article was written by Brandon Milford on 4/3/2006

Brandon Milford is the Executive Director of Marketing for Broadwick Corporation, makers of IntelliContact ( IntelliContact is an industry leading email marketing and surveying application. Brandon is considered a thought leader in web marketing and through Brandon’s Blog (, he shares his insight on marketing, design, and entrepreneurship.