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When is the best time to send email?

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I was recently prompted for my view on the best time to send a marketing email and I have to admit it’s a tough one. On every course or seminar I’ve attended ‘experts’ have insisted there’s no specific or optimal time to send. But as a user I have to disagree.

B2B
When I was using email marketing for B2B I was almost fanatical about sending at 11am on a Tuesday.

Why? Because as a receiver of email in the workplace I found that to be the best time, although Wednesday and Thursday also follow hot on its heels for me. 

So why not send on a Monday or Friday? Well, I always worry that in amongst the mass of emails people receive my message will just get bypassed if I send it first thing on a Monday. And I think the same is true for Friday, as people tend to take Fridays off whenever possible, or use it as a day to cram in everything prior to the weekend.

On reflection, statistically the highest viewing time always occurred over lunchtime [admittedly that could partially be attributed to my mostly sending email in the morning, so it would arrive late morning… in time for a lunchtime read (though that was not my tactic)].

B2C
Well, this is a different kettle of fish altogether and as such has to be tailored to the specific offering and the consumer, taking into consideration dates such as pay day.

For example, a colleague recently mentioned a job site that seemed to be targeting its weekly email to deliver on a Sunday – what a great idea, very timely, and perfect for those who choose to reserve job-hunting for the weekend.

I advocate looking at your email schedule and considering the impact national holidays and seasonal occasions will have when planning your sends. In some cases this will be a pro, and in others, very much a con.

Overall, as with most things, it’s about putting yourself in the position of the recipient and working out when would be the best time for them to receive the specific content you’re sending.

And most important is that prized Subject Line, Sender Address and Content – get these wrong and it won’t matter what time you send your email.

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