DOUBLE DOG DARE: Add an Unsubscribe Link to the Top of Your Emails

Sometimes people need a nudge to try something new, edgy or against the conventional wisdom. So here you go, we dare you—NO, we Double Dog Dare you—to consider this challenge from DJ Waldow of Bronto Software:

Add an unsubscribe link to the top of your emails where it’s more easily seen. Why is it that the vast, vast majority of unsubscribe links reside (hide?) at the bottom of the email message? Is it because as consumers, we’ve been trained to scroll to the bottom of the email to unsubscribe? Or is it that as marketers we don’t want to do anything to suggest that subscribers should opt-out? Consider the likely positive benefits of adding another unsubscribe option to the top of your emails: Would this give more people faith that the unsubscribe link would work and therefore reduce the number of spam complaints? While it would surely increase the number of unsubscribes, would you lose active subscribers? Your inactive subscriber are most likely to act on the new, more visible opt-out link, which would give you a more engaged subscriber base that’s cheaper to mail and administer.

You may have a more specific business reason to make the unsubscribe link more prominent as well. For example, you may want to add the additional unsubscribe link if your spam complaints are too high, particularly if you have lots of younger subscribers (which tend use the “report spam” button to opt-out). Also, if you see your spam complaints rise after sweepstakes acquisition campaigns or during the holidays when you increase frequency, adding a more prominent opt-out link will likely reduce those complaints. I dare you to test this on a small portion of your list (and share your results).

If you take up this dare, let us know how it went by commenting below. And if you have a Double Dog Dare for the eec community, let us know about that too.

–>See more Double Dog Dares.

5 thoughts on “DOUBLE DOG DARE: Add an Unsubscribe Link to the Top of Your Emails

  1. sure.. i will give it a shot and give you results.

    PS– what is the spam threshold that should be maintain?


  2. Constant Contact gives you that option to put it right at the top pretty much. We do that at the beginning of campaigns for clients just in case… then on subsequent emails we don’t. Seems to work out pretty well in terms of spam complaints.

  3. During my presentation on rendering and preheaders at Listrak’s Email Marketing Days last week, one attendee said that he adds an unsubscribe link to the top of his emails when sending to addresses gained through e-append services to decrease the likelihood of recipients will hit the ??report spam? button. That’s a smart situational use of a prominent unsub link. That same tactic would probably also be useful on your inactive segment.

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