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The Name Game

Get friendly with your prospects by including their names--and personalized content--in your marketing e-mails.

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This story appears in the May 2005 issue of Entrepreneur. Subscribe »

According to a November 2004 Jupitermedia Corp. executive survey, 42 percent of marketers who did not personalize their e-mail messages achieved a conversion rate of less than 1 percent, while 42 percent of marketers who used some form of personalization received a conversion rate of more than 3 percent. Most likely, you could improve your conversion rate just by getting personal with your mailing list.

Your first step in e-mail personalization should be addressing prospects by their first names. You already collect this information when customers place orders. What about when prospects or customers sign up for your newsletter? If you only ask for an e-mail address, you're missing out. In a comparison of about 59 million e-mails, CoolerEmail, a web-based, HTML e-mail marketing solution provider, noted that subject-line personalization spiked open rates by more than 30 percent and click-through rates by more than 120 percent.

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