American Cornerstone Institute

How adding language that conveys the value of joining a monthly newsletter near the form affects email acquisition rates

Experiment ID: #112716

American Cornerstone Institute

Experiment Summary

Timeframe: 10/31/2022 - 11/17/2022

In an effort to improve email acquisition rates of website visitors on the homepage, we wanted to know if conveying the value of joining, and what visitors can expect to receive when signing up, would increase the rate at which people were willing to sign up.

Previously there was very little supporting copy near the signup form, with only the phrase “Subscribe to receive updates and event invitations.” presented in small font beneath the form.

For this test, we split traffic 50/50 and ran the experiment for just over two weeks before validating our results.

Research Question

We believe that conveying the value of joining a monthly newsletter will increase email acquisition by giving visitors a tangible reason to sign up.

Design

C: Control
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T1: Additional Copy
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[ab-block-post-grid-landscape-width] => 600 [ab-block-post-grid-landscape-height] => 400 [ab-block-post-grid-square] => https://nextafter-1a91a.kxcdn.com/wp-content/uploads/Additional_Copy-10-600x539.png [ab-block-post-grid-square-width] => 600 [ab-block-post-grid-square-height] => 539 [tp-image-grid] => https://nextafter-1a91a.kxcdn.com/wp-content/uploads/Additional_Copy-10.png [tp-image-grid-width] => 700 [tp-image-grid-height] => 261 [post-thumbnail] => https://nextafter-1a91a.kxcdn.com/wp-content/uploads/Additional_Copy-10-150x150.png [post-thumbnail-width] => 150 [post-thumbnail-height] => 150 [admin] => https://nextafter-1a91a.kxcdn.com/wp-content/uploads/Additional_Copy-10-50x19.png [admin-width] => 50 [admin-height] => 19 [full] => https://nextafter-1a91a.kxcdn.com/wp-content/uploads/Additional_Copy-10.png [full-width] => 1446 [full-height] => 539 [thumb_372] => https://nextafter-1a91a.kxcdn.com/wp-content/uploads/Additional_Copy-10-372x139.png [thumb_372-width] => 372 [thumb_372-height] => 139 [single_post_thumbnail] => https://nextafter-1a91a.kxcdn.com/wp-content/uploads/Additional_Copy-10-980x365.png [single_post_thumbnail-width] => 980 [single_post_thumbnail-height] => 365 [thumb_32_32] => https://nextafter-1a91a.kxcdn.com/wp-content/uploads/Additional_Copy-10-32x12.png [thumb_32_32-width] => 32 [thumb_32_32-height] => 12 [thumb_48_48] => https://nextafter-1a91a.kxcdn.com/wp-content/uploads/Additional_Copy-10-48x18.png [thumb_48_48-width] => 48 [thumb_48_48-height] => 18 [thumb_64_64] => https://nextafter-1a91a.kxcdn.com/wp-content/uploads/Additional_Copy-10-64x24.png [thumb_64_64-width] => 64 [thumb_64_64-height] => 24 [thumb_128_128] => https://nextafter-1a91a.kxcdn.com/wp-content/uploads/Additional_Copy-10-128x48.png [thumb_128_128-width] => 128 [thumb_128_128-height] => 48 [thumb_122_67] => https://nextafter-1a91a.kxcdn.com/wp-content/uploads/Additional_Copy-10-122x45.png [thumb_122_67-width] => 122 [thumb_122_67-height] => 45 [thumb_153_153] => https://nextafter-1a91a.kxcdn.com/wp-content/uploads/Additional_Copy-10-153x57.png [thumb_153_153-width] => 153 [thumb_153_153-height] => 57 [thumb_130_163] => https://nextafter-1a91a.kxcdn.com/wp-content/uploads/Additional_Copy-10-130x48.png [thumb_130_163-width] => 130 [thumb_130_163-height] => 48 [thumb_232_177] => https://nextafter-1a91a.kxcdn.com/wp-content/uploads/Additional_Copy-10-232x86.png [thumb_232_177-width] => 232 [thumb_232_177-height] => 86 [thumb_272_325] => https://nextafter-1a91a.kxcdn.com/wp-content/uploads/Additional_Copy-10-544x203.png [thumb_272_325-width] => 544 [thumb_272_325-height] => 203 [thumb_271_346] => https://nextafter-1a91a.kxcdn.com/wp-content/uploads/Additional_Copy-10-271x101.png [thumb_271_346-width] => 271 [thumb_271_346-height] => 101 [thumb_271_271] => https://nextafter-1a91a.kxcdn.com/wp-content/uploads/Additional_Copy-10-271x101.png [thumb_271_271-width] => 271 [thumb_271_271-height] => 101 [thumb_272_172] => https://nextafter-1a91a.kxcdn.com/wp-content/uploads/Additional_Copy-10-272x101.png [thumb_272_172-width] => 272 [thumb_272_172-height] => 101 [thumb_372_461] => https://nextafter-1a91a.kxcdn.com/wp-content/uploads/Additional_Copy-10-372x139.png [thumb_372_461-width] => 372 [thumb_372_461-height] => 139 [thumb_372_500] => https://nextafter-1a91a.kxcdn.com/wp-content/uploads/Additional_Copy-10-372x139.png [thumb_372_500-width] => 372 [thumb_372_500-height] => 139 [thumb_385_270] => https://nextafter-1a91a.kxcdn.com/wp-content/uploads/Additional_Copy-10-385x144.png [thumb_385_270-width] => 385 [thumb_385_270-height] => 144 [thumb_416_241] => https://nextafter-1a91a.kxcdn.com/wp-content/uploads/Additional_Copy-10-416x155.png [thumb_416_241-width] => 416 [thumb_416_241-height] => 155 [thumb_448_410] => https://nextafter-1a91a.kxcdn.com/wp-content/uploads/Additional_Copy-10-448x167.png [thumb_448_410-width] => 448 [thumb_448_410-height] => 167 [thumb_448_410_retina] => https://nextafter-1a91a.kxcdn.com/wp-content/uploads/Additional_Copy-10-896x334.png [thumb_448_410_retina-width] => 896 [thumb_448_410_retina-height] => 334 [thumb_574_382] => https://nextafter-1a91a.kxcdn.com/wp-content/uploads/Additional_Copy-10-574x214.png [thumb_574_382-width] => 574 [thumb_574_382-height] => 214 [thumb_776_395] => https://nextafter-1a91a.kxcdn.com/wp-content/uploads/Additional_Copy-10-776x289.png [thumb_776_395-width] => 776 [thumb_776_395-height] => 289 ) ) )

Results

 Treatment NameConv. RateRelative DifferenceConfidenceAverage Gift
C: Control 6.3%$0.00
T1: Additional Copy 10.8%71.2% 99.4%$0.00

This experiment has a required sample size of 298 in order to be valid. Since the experiment had a total sample size of 1,180, and the level of confidence is above 95% the experiment results are valid.

Flux Metrics Affected

The Flux Metrics analyze the three primary metrics that affect revenue (traffic, conversion rate, and average gift). This experiment produced the following results:

    0% increase in traffic
× 71.2% increase in conversion rate
× 0% increase in average gift

Key Learnings

After running this experiment for 17 days, we were able to validate a 71.2% lift in email acquisitions from visitors who saw the treatment page.

For the treatment, we wanted to convey enough value, social proof, and exclusivity to give visitors an enticing reason to submit their email addresses and agree to receive email updates from this public policy organization.

  • To add social proof: we leveraged the considerable size of the organization’s housefile (146,000+) to express to the visitor that many other people with the same concerns, values, and interests have already signed up
  • To add exclusivity: we made it clear that they would be receiving emails from Dr. Ben Carson, a well-known and admired public figure, when they signed up. We also used the verbal cue, “exclusive, subscriber-only content” to reinforce this exclusivity
  • To add value: we clarified what subscribers receive when they sign up … updates, educational content that teaches America’s founding principles and delivers expert explanations, key insights, and critical analysis on the toughest challenges facing our nation today.

This experiment validated our hypothesis that simply asking someone to give you their email address with a generic sign-up prompt is not enough to earn their trust, pique their interest, and motivate them to join. Instead, organizations should consider what value subscribers receive when they join (what’s in it for them), and communicate exactly WHY someone should subscribe and WHAT sets your email updates apart from other organizations.

Email marketing remains one of the most cost-effective, powerful tools an organization has to grow their housefile, build advocacy, and convert them into generous donors … but as people become more and more selective about what messages (and from whom) they want landing in their inbox, communicating “what’s in it for them” is no longer an option.

By setting yourself apart and conveying clearly the value people can expect to receive when they sign up, your organization has a huge opportunity to significantly improve your email acquisition rates today!


Experiment Documented by NextAfter

Question about experiment #112716

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