Who Should Your Email Marketing Campaigns Be “From”?

It’s probably on the top 5 most asked and most discussed questions in email marketing: “Who should our marketing emails be ‘from’?” What email address should send offers to our subscribers? What about email newsletters? What should the “friendly from” name be? What about if it’s for a sales email for a business-to-business (B2B) service?

The best “from” varies based on a lot of factors: B2B vs. B2C, profit vs. nonprofit, Sales emails vs. Marketing emails vs. News and Information. Each email type or topic is likely to be sent from your Email Service Provider and you can decide who the email comes from.

So what is the best “Email From” for your email marketing campaigns?

From Names in the Inbox

From: [Brand Name <welisten@brandname.com>]

For most email marketing, send from your brand or company name. This gives you a consistent name and email address for all your emails, and takes the most advantage of your white list status if subscribers add you to their address book. Plus, if your staff changes periodically, changing your From Email address will lose you all that great familiarity you’ve built up. Your subscribers won’t know who to look for in the inbox and you’re bound to see a lower open rate.

Marketing emails, monthly newsletters, product announcements and more should always come from these branded email addresses.

Except for in these cases (read on)…

From: [Joe President <jsmith@brandname.com>]

It’s not usually best practice to send your marketing emails from a specific person in the company, except if you’re a nonprofit organization with a well-known or highly visible President/CEO. You may see increased response rates by sending email “from” the Head Honcho him-/herself. Several of emfluence’s nonprofit clients use the head of a department or fundraising circle to contact each interest group. They see higher than average open rates because the subscribers in each group know that leader well and are likely to open emails.

From: [Sally Salesperson <sally@brandname.com>]

In the for-profit world, when you’re sending a personalized, one-to-one sales email, it’s ok to use your sales person’s name and email address, especially if there is a relationship and the subscriber will recognize the name easily. This is especially true for business-to-business sales people, who often build their sales by building relationships. The sales person’s name is sometimes even more recognizable than the company they work for.

From: [<no-reply@brandname.com>]

When is it appropriate to use a no-reply email address to send email? Never. It’s important that your from email address is a real address, monitored by a real person. If you send out email but don’t receive it, you could be perceived as a big megaphone with no ears. In the age of engagement, customers and prospects want to know you’ll be there to talk with them, not just at them.

If you’re not sure which format will work best for you, the magic is always in testing. If you’ve been sending from a specific person, split off a test segment of your next email marketing campaign and try sending from your brand instead. Remember, this may be a change for some of your subscribers, so rather than only testing once, send to that same segment 3 or 4 times from the branded email address to see how it affects open rates.

BIG SIDE NOTE: Always be sure you’re sending from an authenticated email address and domain. Next month’s emsights will talk about what authentication is and what it means for your campaigns.

Who do your email marketing campaigns come from? Do you send from the same email address for all types of marketing communication or do you assign different branded inboxes for different outbound newsletters?


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