Dream Day Cakes co–owner and baker Fred Posner first discovered merge tags from a MailChimp blog post earlier this year.
As he was browsing the options, something clicked on a personal level. "I get a ton of email and notice that subjects really matter to me," Posner says. "If it’s too spammy, I just delete the email. But subjects with personal attention or my name definitely get a double take." So he ran some tests on Day Dream Cakes’ mailing list, using MailChimp’s first name merge tag. "We started putting people’s names in various places of the subject line. Our open rate increased dramatically, and feedback was amazingly positive." Posner was happy to elaborate on how merge tags have affected his business.
Our main focus remains unique, custom cakes. With that, our core business needs to focus on the individual, and it’s all about the details. The smallest details can sometimes be the most important. We approach this with our customers in all ways. We try to engage with them and work very hard to personalize everything about their orders. When customers realize how much they mean to you, they definitely appreciate it. It works both ways, of course. If customers realize they don’t mean anything to you, they’ll quickly take their business elsewhere. We try to mention their name and keep very conversational in our writing.
Absolutely! Lately, we’re using the subject line "Dream Day Cakes Newsbites (The <<First Name>> Edition)." The first thing I noticed was people would say, "I got MY newsletter" instead of, "I received your email." They immediately knew our intent. We also included content in the email such as, "Ok, <<First Name>>, here are your specials."
You can add those tags to a link, and then really personalize your web content as well. Right now, we’re mostly focusing on just making the email seem personal, but we can keep that same personalization in web content as well—something we can’t do with any other tool.