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  • January 3, 2007

Subject Line Hall of Fame: 2006 Inductions

Welcome to RetailEmail.Blogspot’s first annual inductions into the Subject Line Hall of Fame. A great subject line can mean the difference between an opened email and a deleted one, so the Subject Line Hall of Fame honors retailers whose subject lines standout in the inbox because of their creativity and originality. Needless to say, if a retailer mentions a fantastic deal in a subject line, they can generate great open rates as well — but creativity is free, which is why today we’re honoring the most outstanding subject lines of 2006.

5. Abercrombie & Fitch, 11/2 — Get it on. Our warmest, softest fleece... Abercrombie.com
This email promoted Abercrombie’s classic fleece pullovers. The “get it on” pun is a perfect match with the retailer’s sexy image.

4. Harry & David, 12/5 — We've got the Pears ... who really wants the partridge or tree?
This email promoted Harry & David’s Royal Riviera Pears. This holiday time email refers nicely to the “partridge in a pear tree” line in the Twelve Days of Christmas song.

3. Banana Republic, 7/20, 11 pm — Drop Your Pants for charity, get 15% off...
This email promoted a clothing donation event. The “drop your pants” line is a lot cheekier than Banana Republic typically is, which is perhaps why it works so well. It’s a little jarring, but not in a negative way. The charity event allowed you to drop off a pair of used pants and get a discount on some new ones from Banana.

2. RedEnvelope, 10/3 — Vhat vould Dracula vear?
This email promoted Halloween costumes. It was by far the cleverest and smile-inducing subject line of the Halloween season.

1. FTD, 10/10 — Tell your boss what you really think
And our top inductee… This email promoted gifts for National Bosses’ Day. The tongue-in-creek double-meaning had me giggling all morning long. Now if only FTD sold gag gifts that you could send a boss you didn’t like — perhaps a corpse flower, which is a giant flower that smells (surprise, surprise) like a horrid, rotting corpse. I’ve been blessed with only great bosses, but I’m sure some of you out there have had a boss deserving of a great, big, blossoming corpse flower.


Sharper Image, 10/13 — Oops! Texas isn’t THAT big! Save $20 anywhere.
This email was a mea culpa for sending an email for a $20-off offer for a store in San Antonio to everyone on their mailing list.

Bluefly, 12/23 — Baby it's Cold Outside...Extra 20% off Coats & Jackets
This email promoted coats and jackets with the Bing Crosby song title.

Avon, 12/7 — FREE Shipping with ANY Order, plus Holiday SAVINGS on Kisses
This email promoted lip gloss.

RedEnvelope, 11/29 — Make them go gaga.
This email promoted baby products as Christmas gifts.

REI, 10/27 — Coming Soon: SNOW! See REI's new winter gear now.
This email promoted winter gear.

MLB, 10/5 — In all Series-ness, the fun has begun
This email promoted the start of the playoffs.

If you feel that I’ve unfairly left out a deserving subject line, please comment on this post and include the subject line and the retailer. RetailEmail.Blogspot only covers the top online retailers, but feel free to include subject lines from other retailers in your comments. Also, this year’s awards only cover the second half of 2006, so if you know of great subject lines from the first half of the year, please include those in a comment as well. Thanks, and congrats again to this year’s inductees.

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