How to Make Your Unsubscribe Survey More ActionableSubscribers opt out for a variety of reasons and you don’t know which reason drove a particular person to unsubscribe unless you ask. That’s why some brands conclude their opt-out process with an unsubscribe survey that asks in one form or another: Why did you unsubscribe?

Understanding why your subscribers opt out can give you valuable insights to drive improvements in your email marketing program—but only if you ask the right questions.

Most of the unsubscribe surveys we’ve seen haven’t kept up with the growing number of reasons that consumers unsubscribe, as we revealed in our Adapting to Consumers’ New Definition of Spam ebook. That means that unsubscribe surveys have become increasingly less actionable over time.

However, these surveys can be easily fixed by reviewing the questions you’re asking and how you intend to act if you get a critical mass of a particular response. Here’s how…

>> Read the entire post on the Litmus blog

Email Attention Spans IncreasingMobile phones, Twitter, texting, video games, and other digital era trappings have been blamed for shortening our attention spans to less than that of goldfish. You might be tempted to throw email in that bucket…but you’d be wrong. According to an analysis of billions of emails using Litmus Email Analytics

The average time spent reading an email increased by nearly 7% to 11.1 seconds between 2011 and 2016.

Honestly, we were more than a little surprised by this. We expected to find that email attention spans were shrinking. Instead, we found that the percentage of emails read for more than 18 seconds grew to 44.4% in 2016 from 38.4% in 2011.

For all the details and for advice on how to optimize your emails for short attention spans…

>> Read the full post on the Litmus blog

The Last Word on February 2017

The Last WordA roundup of email marketing articles, posts, and tweets you might have missed last month…

Must-read articles, posts & reports

Should we stop inlining styles in emails? (Medium)

Gmail promotions tab inbox delivery stats (Zettasphere)

America Loves Email (Relevancy Group)

Email, LinkedIn and white papers remain key strategies in lead gen for B2B marketers, study suggests (The Drum)

Is there a replacement for email? (The Guardian)

Insightful & entertaining tweets

Noteworthy subject lines

J.Crew, 2/2 — Groundhog, schmoundhog. 20% off & free shipping starts now.
Brooks Brothers, 2/2 — Too late Phil, spring is already here
Brooks Brothers, 2/6 — Spring cleaning starts in your closet.
FansEdge, 2/6 — 5-Time Champs – Get the Latest Pats Championship Gear Now!
Under Armour, 2/6 — M-V-P: Brady Does It Again
Jetsetter, 2/5 — The Most Affordable Hotels in the Caribbean – Because We ALL Need a Vacay Right Now
Pier 1 Imports, 2/17 — We cannot tell a lie.
West Elm, 2/19 — A sale to trump them all 😉 (ends tomorrow!)
Victoria’s Secret, 2/13 — “Get your girls, break some hearts…” XOXO, VICTORIA
Banana Republic, 2/14 — You have a secret admirer (hint: it’s us)!
Lululemon athletica, 2/14 — Sweaty Staples
Neiman Marcus, 2/27 — Red-carpet recap: Shop winning looks now, 2/6 — you deserve a promotion: up to 60% OFF home office!
West Elm, 2/2 — Up to 30% off “Oooh, where’d-ya-get-that?!” style
Sears, 2/13 — (1) new message: You’ve scored up to 40% off appliances
katespade, 2/6 — meet the babe bag. (and a french bulldog, too.)
ToysRUs, 2/13 — This Promo Coe Wil Self Destruct TODAY!
Sakes Fifth Avenue, 2/20 — Be the 1st: shop Burberry straight off the runway.
eBags, 2/13 — Flight Delayed? This Sales is Right on Time!
ASPCA, 2/17 — Spay/Neuter Myths BUSTED: Think You Know the Truth?
ModCloth, 2/20 — Which print?! The struggle is real…
Vera Bradley, 2/17 — Everybody’s talking about Vivian …
The Home Depot, 2/20 — • O • V • E • R • S • T • O • C • K •
Anthropologie, 2/20 — The best reason to turn on your OOO today.
Clinique, 2/25 — How-To: An easy cat eye with major wow factor.
Dell, 2/5 — Quality Bose sound without wires. Find it all on
Chipotle, 2/15 — Chipotle Online Ordering: Instant Gratification

New posts on

#AlternativeEmailFacts and the Truth

Join Me in Kansas City on Mar. 14: KCDMA luncheon, Litmus Live workshop, and Networking reception

The Last Word on January 2017

The Email Professional: A Snapshot

A Snapshot of the Email ProfessionalMore than 3,500 marketers completed our State of Email Survey, which closed at the end of January and explores how brands plan, build, approve, send, and ensure the deliverability of their email campaigns.

We’ll be releasing the findings of that survey in the weeks and months ahead, but in the meantime we’d like to give you a snapshot of the email professional, based on those responses.

Here are a few details from the full snapshot that’s available on the Litmus blog:

  • While more of them are men (52.7%), women (47.3%) are well represented, especially compared to other technology, advertising, and marketing fields.
  • The vast majority (72.4%) of them have three or more years of email marketing experience.
  • On average, they do 4.4 of the 10 tasks we asked about.
  • The vast majority (78.4%) of them work full-time on email marketing, but a significant portion are part-time (21.6%).
  • A strong majority (68.6%) of them work at a company with fewer than 500 employees.

> See the full snapshot on the Litmus blog

#AlternativeEmailFacts and the Truth

Read all of Chad's Marketing Land columnsAs a former journalist and long-time researcher, I’m profoundly troubled by our national struggles with the value of science, the need for evidence, and the meaning of the word “fact.” With the US government currently imposing gag orders on research, making executive decisions without proof and then disparaging judges who demand proof, and coining new terms like “alternative facts” to try to justify their rejection of the truth, it’s dark times.

My colleague Kevin Mandeville lightened things up a little by poking some fun at Kellyanne Conway counselor to the president, by creating the #AlternativeEmailFacts hashtag. He used the hashtag on some dubious statements about email marketing, and encouraged others to join in. And join in they did, with nearly 100 alternative email facts served up over the course of a few days.

In my column for Marketing Land, I shine some light on the truth hiding in these “alternative facts”…

>> Read my full column on

Litmus WorkshopsI’m going to be in Kansas City, Mo., on Mar. 14 for the following events. For those of you in the area, I hope you can join me.

Kansas City DMA Luncheon, Mar. 14, 11:45am-1:00pm, BRIO Tuscan Grille
I’ll be speaking to members of the KCDMA about “Adapting to Consumers’ New Definition of Spam.” Learn more >>

Fundamentals of Email Marketing Strategy Workshop, Mar. 14, 2pm-6pm, Hotel Sorella Country Club Plaza
Previously only available at our annual conferences in Boston, London, and San Francisco, our Litmus Live workshops are now offered as standalone events. In this workshop, I’ll provide a crash course in email marketing strategy, explaining how to build an effective email program and create emails that are respectful, functional, valuable, and remarkable. Space is limited. Learn more >>

Networking Reception, Mar. 14, 6pm-7:30pm, Hotel Sorella Country Club Plaza
Immediately following the workshop, we are hosting an informal networking reception with the KCDMA. It will have an open bar, snacks, and a chance to connect with the community! Feel free to stop by even if you are unable to join us for the luncheon or the workshop.

I’m really excited to be visiting Kansas City! I hope to see you there.

The Last Word on January 2017

The Last WordA roundup of email marketing articles, posts, and tweets you might have missed last month…

Must-read articles, posts & reports

Animated GIFs in emails, message word count, and reply-to addresses: benchmark data findings (IBM THINK Marketing)

Preheader Text: 6 Models and a Case Study with a 96% Lift in Revenue-per-Email (Jeanne Jennings)

The most unforgivable email mistake if you want a response (Quartz)

Worst ePrivacy B2B fears averted (DMA UK)

In a Cookie-less World, Will Email Become the New Ad ID? (Chief Marketer)

Insightful & entertaining tweets

Noteworthy subject lines

St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, 1/1 — Chad, you’ve helped make the impossible possible in 2016
ModCloth, 1/1 — Congrats to the top 20 styles of 2016!, 1/1 — Look Back At ART in 2016
Walgreens, 1/1 — Happy New Year! Make small changes, see BIG results + 25% OFF Contacts
Lands’ End, 1/1 — Resolution-ready activewear + take an extra 20% off sale prices
Katespade, 1/9 — activewear for working out or hardly working
The Container Store, 1/1 — Great Solutions for Healthy Resolutions
Etsy, 1/1 — 2016 is *so* yesterday
Blue Nile, 1/4 — Top Engagement Ring Trends For 2017
MAC Cosmetics, 1/15 — Chinese New Year’s Most Decadent Shades, 1/9 — 30% Off Valentine’s Day Sale Starts Now
Victoria’s Secret, 1/15 — Red-hot gifts… XOXO, VICTORIA, 1/14 — Patriots Advance to the AFC Championship Game!
Target, 1/25 — Save on a new TV and be ready for the big kickoff.
Miracle-Gro, 1/20 — Winter Garden Care
Carnival Cruise Line, 1/24 — Our newest ship Carnival Horizon is on sale now!
Vera Bradley, 1/15 — The prettiest postcard ever!
Sony, 1/4 — Ready? Watch Sony live at CES
Clinique, 1/8 — Gina Rodriguez’s #1 must for the red carpet.
ModCloth, 1/4 —Your syllabus for Graphic Design(s) 101.
GapKids, 1/26 — L + O + V + E these looks
Sony, 1/19 — Cutting-Edge Headphones Could Be Yours—It Only Takes One Click
ToysRUs, 1/4 — Open an “R”Us Credit Card & Get 10% OFF on Thursdays!
ASPCA, 1/23 — VOTE NOW: Best Photo of the Year
Neiman Marcus, 1/12 — Best of Beauty! #NMBeauty Bestsellers: Who made the list?

New posts on

Litmus’ Email Design Podcast #47: View Online Links, Image-Based Emails, and “Above the Fold” Buttons

Top 10 Email Marketing Predictions for 2017

7 Easy Wins to Add to Your Email Marketing To-Do List

The Last Word on December 2016

Email Design Podcast 47I was a guest on the Email Design Podcast, which is hosted by Kevin Mandeville and Jason Rodriguez. During the half-hour show, we discussed a number of questions asked by Litmus Community members, including:

For our discussion of those issues…

>>Listen to the podcast on the Litmus Blog

Or listen via…
> SoundCloud
> iTunes
> YouTube

Top 10 Email Marketing Predictions for 2017

Top 10 Email Marketing Predictions for 2017My Litmus teammates and I see a lot of change on the horizon this year. Here are our top email marketing predictions for 2017:

  1. At least 30% of marketers will have tried embedded video in email by the end of 2017. (Chad White)
  2. Email marketers will break down silos and work cross-functionally to take their program to the next level. (Kayla Lewkowicz)
  3. The adoption of responsive email design will accelerate. (Chad White)
  4. Despite Gmail supporting embedded CSS (for most of their account types), the overwhelming majority of emails will continue to use inline CSS. (Kevin Mandeville)
  5. At least one of the major inbox providers will follow Gmail’s lead in drawing attention to whether emails are encrypted or not. (Chad White)
  6. Verizon will try to actively migrate Yahoo Mail users to Alto Mail. (Chad White)
  7. The types of jobs in the email marketing industry will become fragmented with an increasing number of specializations (deliverability, email copywriting, email design) becoming more widely adopted. (Jaina Mistry)
  8. Accessibility in email will become a more important aspect of the email design and development process. (Jaina Mistry)
  9. Accessibility will continue to be ignored by most of the email world. (Jason Rodriguez)

For all the details on those email marketing predictions, plus a review of how our 2016 predictions fared,…

>>Read the full post on the Litmus blog

Read all of Chad's Marketing Land columnsEmail is always changing, so marketers’ email marketing programs must always be changing as well to make sure they’re still relevant to consumers and creating great experiences for their subscribers. With that in mind, here are seven relatively easy-wins to consider adding to your email marketing to-do list this year:

  1. Use more retina-optimized images.
  2. Use more ALT text, especially styled ALT text.
  3. Use animated GIFs more often.
  4. A/B test your preview text more often.
  5. Adopt responsive email design.
  6. Create an extensive pre-send email checklist.
  7. Plan your email content farther in advance.

For a full discussion of each of these, plus research on current usage,…

>>Read the full column on


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