Experiment and the results

August 8, 2009 by  
Filed under Newsletters


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Wendi's Pulse
The Results of the experiment

Yesterday’s email was a simple experiment to see if people really do click more on a PS or on a PPSS in a newsletter.

I am sure you have seen this a lot in emails and marketers seem to think that you will click on the link in the PS more than you will click on the link in the body of an email.

Here are the results.

The Body of the email had two links.

Link 1- about the experiment
Link 2- about the upcoming event.

The PS had two links

Link 1- PS about the experiment
Link 2- PPSS about the upcoming event.

Here is how the click came out-

Link 1- in the body of the email 51%
Link 2- in the body of the email 18%

Link 3- the PS with same subject as link 1, 22%
Link 4- the PPSS with same subject as link 2, 8%

If you are writing copy it is important to include a PS and get the reminder to the reader to click.
When a person is reading the body of the email, the mind is focusing on what they are continuing to read, while wanting to click a link, their mind may go to another thought and get distracted.

Creating a PS gives them a quick reminder and summary to emphasize the reason they should go to that link.

Of course, this is not the definitive test, there was no split test to compare the emails without a PS. A few days ago, a marketing friend of mine said something about people skipping the entire email to only read the PS. Do you do that?
Do you feel that it is simpler to use the PS as a summary?
Does your mind feel the PS is more important than the body of the email?

I wonder if this is age related as well. For those of us who are from the old days that remember getting letters in the mail, the PS was always something personal and special. I am not sure that younger people, some of whom have probably never sent or received a letter in the mail, would have the same affection for the PS.

Your thoughts?
Put your comments, questions, or other research about the PS in email marketing on the blog post.


I do love to experiment on you.
This one was rather painless.

Have a remarkable weekend. I am off to the ocean to see Blue Whales again. Yesterday I saw 5 of them, just one mile off the coast.

whale 1

 And another! The blue whales are plentiful around here and so close to shore!
whale 2

Have a fantastic weekend!
Get outside and have some fun,

Love and light,

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Love and kisses, and big fun to come!

Wendi Friesen, CHT
Clinical Hypnotherapist
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16 Responses to “Experiment and the results”
  1. I love that PS idea! I grew up with PS’s, and they always meant some special or fun comment was being added, perhaps something the friend forgot or meant to be sure they told you.
    I can see this as being a great tool as well, since so often you blow through the meat of the email with its links, and having those links in the PS will get you to click on them, instead of just giving up and not scrolling past because somehow you’re maybe not SO interested while reading the main email. But by the time you see the PS’s your mind is more interested.

    Just my two cents worth! :-)

  2. John Bird says:

    i am from old old school and what really irritates me is not having an upfront price
    eg JOHN HOPKINS HEALTH ALERT*I READ 7 PAGES and found i could save $46
    i had to click a button saying i wanted to buy it to get the price also the 2 buttons were within 3 inches of each other.. i also want to have printed version to show off line

    yet i may be irritated but i still do it altho have to make a syndicate to afford it
    [*keep your mind sharper, stronger and healthier … too important not t o read on }

  3. Wendi,
    I think some split testing is in order here. I am relatively new online (2006) and I do what I have been taught instead of what I have tested. I also believed the P.S. and P.P.S. would receive many more clicks. You have great insight into this and I enjoy learnng from you.

    • wendi says:

      Yup, definitely need some split testing. I will do that in the next few newsletters and start posting the results. I am going to be teaching a hypnotic copywriting course online and we can talk about what kind of tests you would like to see. Also, hope to brainstorm new ways to approach email and communication with your audience.

  4. Rene says:

    Hola Wendi :)
    Si I am from the old :) and the older I get the more impacient I get,so if you not come to the point very kwik :) one PS is OK,I can handel that :) .
    Wiht more PS´s, I start thinking that they need to sell desperatly…
    And with so many “reminders”,I think “that they think” that I have Alsheimer…well not yet :) :) I think it is a annoying bad habit…

  5. Sue says:

    Hi Wendi,
    I know you, and trust what you are emailing is worhwhile and interesting. I would click on just about anything in an email from you. When it comes to other people, when I get to the PS part, I just get irritated and annoyed. I know that once I click on that PS I will usually get some kind of hard sell, or insulting things telling me that I am one of a select few (yea right!) to be offered whatever it is they are trying to get me to buy. I\’ve also quit reading the emails I get from people who send them to be every day – really LONG ones. Do they really think I have time to read their drivel every single day? I\’ve recently begun blocking emails from people that seem to have some new book or email every day – always with some new breakthru kind of thinking. Hard for me to believe they come up with something new EVERY day – so I\’ve decided it\’s all garbage and just block their emails. Some of these are from some pretty famous people – who claim to care so much about us and want to make us wealthy. I think they only care about themselves and making themselves wealthy. I have replyed to some of their emails with what I thought were fairly thoughtful questions – never once have I received a reply – just more emails asking for more money to purchase more of their products. Customer service is totally lacking from them – unlike you who have responded to every email I have ever written to you.

    Sorry this is long winded – one of my pet peeves are all of the annoying emails I\’ve been getting lately. Thanks for keeping yours interesting, informative and no hard sell!

  6. Clayton says:

    Very interesting. A fact I learned when going through an internet marketing program if you can’t be the first or second site found in a search, be the one at the bottom of the page. People cut to the finish and choose that one. Why? Who knows, it seems people get tired of the number one or two and want to try something different.
    The trust factor here, I think plays a role, you are not a stranger to most of us who follow you, Wendi, and we trust you more than we would the random e-mail that slips through our spam filters. Like one comment I read; I’d let you play with any part of my body!

  7. Rick says:

    The experiment was kind of skewed? You must remember that we all trust you and as such will click without concern. Also your security code is really tough for us color-blind folks.

  8. Mike Buley says:

    re ‘The results of the experiment’ . . . The perpetual study of humans as ‘marketing subjects’ and target markets and consumers — and how can I best control their reaction, and manipulate them into certain behaviors? — is tiring, and doesn’t seem best suited to moving toward the world I think we would like to see, which is one based on love more than money. Hoping not to come across as idealistic or holier than thou; I have been working in advertising for 15 years, so am familiar with much research and thinking on advertising and direct marketing. Is a P.S. effective? Perhaps if we focused more on talking to our prospective audience as men and women, more like ourselves than not, intead of as targets, we might not care so much. If it’s true that we must be the change we wish to see … what is it that we see here? Is that how we wish things to be? Are we being the change we wish to see, or only perpetuating a world that doesn’t lift us to more of what we are capable of? No easy questions or tasks, I know. Very personal, for sure. Perhaps things worthwhile to ask ourselves.

  9. Dave says:

    I’ve been selling on eBay for the past 11 years or so, and I’ve been procrastinating for various reasons (some of which I’m about to find out) about adding a couple of web sites. (Hence, I ordered your Money Magnet and Financial Abundance sets. I’ll finish Money Magnet tonight and start Financial Abuncance tomorrow.)

    As you probably know, whenever you buy something from an Internet marketer, you’re likely to end up on a mailing list. In fact, more often than not, you have to “opt in” for someone’s emails just to read their sales pitch page. So I get 100-150 emails a day, the majority of which are from various opt ins. Many people seem to be less diligent when it comes to removing you from the list than adding you to it in the first place.

    There are 4-5 people whose emails I always read (including yours) because the person doesn’t try to overwhelm me with emails and always has something interesting to say. (It’s not uncommon for me to receive three copies of the same email from the same person, nor is it uncommon for me to receive the same email from half a dozen people.)

    Most of the others, I either delete (without opening them) or move to an email folder called “Read and Refile 4″ without reading them. This is my fourth “read and refile” folder, and each of them has well over 5,000 emails in it. So I have well over 20,000 unread marketing emails. I’m sure I’ll catch up on them some day (fat chance).

    Maybe this is a mental crutch for me. Maybe the person has sent something worth reading in the past, but the odds are against it. So I don’t have to skim each email and decide whether to delete it (with the finality that goes with that decision).

    As for the rest, if the email keeps me reading to the end, and I decide to click on a link, I generally scroll back and open the first one in the email. I’ve found that the first link is least likely to be a broken link (seems like many people check the first one only before sending out the email), and in some cases, the PS emails take you to an entirely different page.

    Hope this helps.


  10. Krotus says:

    One other factor in your experiment you might consider is familiarity with source. Most emails that I receive from a source I do not recognize are usually quickly deleted or very briefly scanned and deleted. In this instance I might be more likely to click the PS link. In the case of your email, since I recognized the source, already had some level of interest in what the subject matter might be (evidenced by subscribing to newsletter), and developed an increased level of interest as I read the newsletter, I eventually clicked on all four links as I did not want to chance missing any of the information that the links potentially provided.

  11. Allan says:

    One reason this experiment may not give true results is because we trust you. In my opinion it skews the results. Those writing copy are talking to an audience that likely doesn’t know them. I clicked on the first link but may not have if you were someone else. The truth is that I don’t know.

  12. Odette Green says:

    Wendi, i agree with your comment about the age. However, marketers tend to put the conditions of the offer in the PS or PPS, so people who are careful will read the body of the letter and then the PS or PPS for the ‘catch’. I dont expect that from you so if you have an offer in the body of your email i will click on it without checking for a PS or PPS – I just trust you like that.

  13. Don Pelles says:

    I think I clicked on everything in sight. :-) My age is 65.
    – Donald Pelles

  14. george pappas says:

    That was very interesting info ,and I am of the older generation and your right on the mark with that. Also I love Dolphins and whales, sounds like a lot of fun! I miss the ocean in California also Coronado is most beautiful too.Keep up the good work! George

  15. lexx says:

    I don’t know if I’m considered old at 33 but I’d defenitely read a PS, maybe it’s just that a lot of people end up not reading all their emails ?

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