I click on plenty of Buy Me emails, so I focused on a Read Me (newsletter-style) email from everyone's favorite GIF-maker, BuzzFeed.
Why did I miss this? The answer is dead simple: send time.
This email came at 9am on a Sunday. I was asleep, zoned out to the world. By the time I woke up, many emails had come in. This was buried.
So, my first test: 9am probably works great for a weekday, but could BuzzFeed increase their email open rates by sending later on a weekend?
Another thought: This subject line competes with a ton of email during a time I don't want to think about email (Sunday morning). It needs to stand out, but its ambiguity actually turns me away. "BuzzReads: Pipe Dreams" could mean anything!
As it turns out, I love this email: the new must-read Atlantic cover story from Ta-Nehisi Coates, a thinkpiece from The Washingon Post. I don't read The Post often, so I appreciate the tip. I'm exactly the person they want to hook.
I'm more likely to open an email when I know what's inside of it. Could they leverage the subject line better, with this in mind? What about "BuzzReads: Sunday's In-Depth Feature Stories"?
So, my second test: Could BuzzFeed increase their open rates with a more specific subject line?
Two quick optimizations given the lessons in John's class. Of course, now that I know I like this newsletter, I may open it more often anyway. Here's to next Sunday!