Monthly Archives: May 2015

Mapping the email ecosystem

There are more areas and players in the email marketing space than you might expect. Think for example of agile email specialists, append and validation services, blacklist operators, certification bodies, agencies, competitive intelligence and customer intelligence suites, deliverability services, design, testing and rendering tools etc.

Here’s just a overview to give you a quick idea. As the world has alone hundreds of email service providers, it’s without any claim to completeness:

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How animated symbols in Gmail subject lines increased my open rate

As announced in the “Email Gurus” board on LinkedIn, I put Gmail’s animated emoji symbols to the subject line test last Friday:

Here’s how I did it and what the results were. So much is revealed, they’re like…
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Placing animated Emojis in Gmail Subject Lines? [Cheat Sheet]

The emoji subject line cheat sheet and the maps of combined emoji usage from the previous posts are not enough? Well, then how about animating your subject lines like shown in this example:


Here’s another table of 703 copy-and-pastable unicode characters with the corresponding images. The best thing about those: they are rendered already in the inbox overview, not just in the single email view. Therefore it should be “ok” that they are excluded in the preheader. I highlighted the animated emojis with a yellow background (Note: German visitors might want to read my posting on

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Popular Emoji combinations in email subject lines

Did you download the Email Emoji Cheat Sheet? If so, then you might also remember @dataNeel’s research on combined Emoji usage in subject lines. His map is cool on its own, but even cooler now that he also published a Gephi export of the network in the comments section, so that everyone can play with the data.

Gephi is a popular free network visualization tool. I used it for example to create this and this plot of email experts on Twitter. It’s rather intuitive and comparably fast, so give it a try. Want something more programmatic? Then you should go on to Python and/or R. Followers of this blog already know R and its superb visualization and data shaping capabilities.

Here’s one example of how you can use R to explore @dataNeel’s Emoji network. Continue reading

822 Emoji for your Newsletter Subject Lines: Gmail & Cheat Sheet

Emoji created lots of buzz lately. For example, Google now shows emoji characters on its search engine result pages, and Instagram and MailChimp did some interesting research:
Instagram Emoji Research MailChimp Emoji Research
But what emoji could you use in your subject lines, and how do you use them? Continue reading