Optimizing the From Line for Your Email Marketing Messages

It is well known that the subject line is a critical part of email marketing. A good subject line helps to determine the success of your email campaigns. But it has also been proven that the From line can be even more critical.  In short, the From line identifies your email by letting the recipient see who it is coming from. You need to spend just as much time crafting and fine tuning the From line as you do crafting the perfect subject line.

Actually the From line does much more than just identify the sender: it can help to build your brand, cement your reputation and make recipients eager to see what you have to say.

Why is the From Line so Important?
The From line is important for a number of reasons. This critical part of the email should clearly define the sender of the message. That definition makes recipients more likely to open and respond to the message; few people like to open emails from unknown senders. The From line can also help you build trust and brand awareness. Using the same From line consistently helps create a feeling of trust in your recipients. Those recipients have come to appreciate your emails, and they look forward to receiving the next one.

The From line may seem like a minor thing, but it serves as the foundation for the relationship between you and your audience. That simple line serves to establish trust – in your brand, in your products and in your company.

The From line can also distinguish your message from the dozens of others those on your email list see every day. A good From line will make your email, and your message, stand out among all the noise.

Avoiding Common Mistakes
The From line might seem like a straightforward part of your email message, but many marketers make mistakes when crafting it. Learning to avoid these common mistakes can improve deliverability rates, give your company and your brand better visibility and increase response rates.

Take a close look at your email marketing strategy to see if you are making these common From line mistakes:

  • Leaving the From line blank. This can erode trust among your readers and reduce open rates.
  • Getting too creative with the From line. Trying to be too creative can backfire – and even get your message flagged as spam.
  • Making the From line too long. The inboxes on many mobile devices limit From lines to just 35 characters.
  • Avoid using a person’s name as the From line, unless that name is already well known to your readers or if it is an integral part of your brand.

How to Use the From Line Properly
Knowing what to avoid is important when deciding what to put in your From line, but knowing what you should do is just as important. These factors can help you create a winning From line for your email campaigns.

  • Keep the From line as short as possible. This will ensure that it can be seen clearly on every type of device.
  • Feel free to use different From names to differentiate among brands and email segments.
  • Choose a From line that will make sense to your readers and reflect your brand.
  • Test a few different From lines to gauge readership response.
  • Make your From lines as consistent as possible.

Consistency is the Key
Consistency is the key when it comes to the From line. Changing the From line with every message just confuses recipients. Keeping a consistent From line from campaign to campaign is a much better approach. Whether you decide to use your brand name, product name, publication or simply an email address, keep that From line consistent.

Also keep in mind that some people sort their email by recipient name. Making your From line consistent makes it easier for customers to find, and respond to, your messages.

As with so much in the email marketing arena, finding the perfect From line will take some work and some research. It is important to keep your From line relevant to the nature of your business. That relevancy helps build trust and improve response rates.

It is also a good idea to use your brand name or product name in the From line. Doing so helps recipients see what the message is all about in just a few seconds. Keep in mind that many viewers spend only a second or two viewing an email before deciding whether to open it or send it to the trash folder.

Do not underestimate the importance of the From line, especially these days – when such a large percentage of users are reading their mail on mobile devices. Those mobile users see the name and subject in the foreground, making the From line even more critical. Being too creative with your From line could cause big damage in terms of deliverability, since fantasy names are a red flag for spam filters. It is much better to tell the truth to your readers with a straightforward From line.

Being transparent and consistent is the best solution when crafting your From line.

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