How adding a brand name in the sender line affects clickthrough rate

Experiment ID: #3334


Experiment Summary

Timeframe: 03/01/2016 - 03/07/2016

NextAfter sent an email promoting their new eBook “Turning Likes Into Donors” to a rented email list of nonprofit development professionals. The email was sent from Tim Kachuriak, and meant to look like a personal email. However, we wondered — if one of the recipients of the email wasn’t familiar with Tim, would they be likely to open and click the email? We developed a test that added “NextAfter” to the sender line to give the recipient better clarity in regards to the sender and launched an A/B test.

Research Question

Will adding a brand name to the sender line increase clickthrough rate?


C: Just Name
T1: Name and Organization


 Treatment NameClick RateRelative DifferenceConfidence
C: Just Name 1.3%
T1: Name and Organization 0.99%-20.7% 92.4%

This experiment has a required sample size of 12,627 in order to be valid. Since the experiment had a total sample size of 20,696, and the level of confidence is not above 95% the experiment results are not valid.

Key Learnings

The added brand name reduced clickthrough rate by 20.7%. This shows that the presence of a brand name actually decreases the likelihood that the user will engage. This may be because the brand is as unknown as the name. This experiment also may suggest that people are more willing to engage with a name they don’t know, but not if it’s evident that they are being marketed to.

Experiment Documented by Jeff Giddens
Jeff Giddens is President of NextAfter.

Question about experiment #3334

If you have any questions about this experiment or would like additional details not discussed above, please feel free to contact them directly.