Things worth testing in your email campaigns

Testing subject lines in your email campaigns is one of the smartest ways to improve response. Here are a bunch of testing ideas from The Emma Blog: 12 subject line split testing ideas. See how these might work in your emails:


  1. Length
  2. Special characters (those little icons of hearts, smiley faces and other shapes)
  3. Specificity
  4. Personalization
  5. Sender name
  6. Exclamation points (
  7. Discount-speak
  8. A Question
  9. Relevancy (you might do well with a subject line that’s not relevant!)
  10. Urgency
  11. Capitalization
  12. Gratitude

Some of these things may be techniques you’ve heard you should never use. The thing about online fundraising is this: the rules change. What might have been true a few years (or months) ago might be promising test hypotheses now.


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The future of fundraising is not about social media, online video, or SEM. It’s not about any technology, medium, or technique. It’s about donors. If you need to raise funds from donors, you need to study them, respect them, and build everything you do around them. And the future? It’s already here. More.

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Jeff BrooksJeff Brooks has been serving the nonprofit community for more than 35 years and blogging about it since 2005. He considers fundraising the most noble of pursuits and hopes you’ll join him in that opinion. You can reach him at jeff [at] jeff-brooks [dot] com. More.


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The future of fundraising is not about social media, online video, or SEM. It’s not about any technology, medium, or technique. It’s about donors. If you need to raise funds from donors, you need to study them, respect them, and build everything you do around them. And the future? It’s already here. More.

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About the blogger

Jeff Brooks has been serving the nonprofit community for more than 30 years and blogging about it since 2005. He considers fundraising the most noble of pursuits and hopes you’ll join him in that opinion. You can reach him at jeff [at] jeff-brooks [dot] com.

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