Testing an email is a waste of time.

I am sick of the words “test it” in email marketing. 

For the last 15 years, it seems that you cannot go a week without reading an article about the value of testing in email. Thought leaders, content marketers, vendors, and agencies have all banged the drum of just how testing can work and produce results. Unfortunately, in most cases, marketers haul off and test maybe one or two emails, see little if any change, and move on. Perhaps they get discouraged around how testing is supposed to be set up, or maybe they thought it would be easy and find that it takes patience and a properly laid out plan to see any significant result. No matter how you look at it, we have failed, so I am calling it; testing an email is a waste of time.

There are so many conflicting studies about how the percentage of email marketers who test; it’s hard to tell the difference and significance of these studies. 

  • Do these studies or reports consider how often testing occurs or what types of testing are done? 
  • Are the reports taking into account the size of the email team or financial resources that support the email program?

Questions linger, and the answers are thin.

An vs. In.

Testing an email is a waste of time, but testing in email is not. You will not get anywhere in your program by testing an email every once in a while, but you will never regret it if you commit your organization to testing IN your program. Testing IN your program requires things like a nimbleness mentality, a calendar that is shared and updated with things like a hypothesis, classifications, types, and the level of effort inside it. You need to have things like dates, metrics to track, and it needs to be updated regularly for everyone to see.  

There are no shortcuts to testing IN your program, but then again, there are no shortcuts to much of anything worth doing in marketing today.  You don’t need to be perfect, but you need to have the support and the willingness to change.   

Final thoughts.

Either you commit to testing IN your email program, or you don’t. You can either continue to test onesie/twosies in your program, or you can go out on a limb and do something different. The choice is yours and yours alone.  iPost is here to support you in any way we can.

Email has and will continue to change in the coming years, so it’s time for you to follow along.