weather forecasting is like predicting email metrics

For days, I’ve been painstakingly checking the forecast like a stalker.

Because it’s been raining for weeks…

And I want to do the laundry with the first sun.

I even come up with an attack plan:

– I’ll first take out my quilt and electric blanket to catch some rays 

– This will allow me to claim two sets of clothesline 

(hey, it’s super popular 😛)

– Then, I’ll wash my sheets in two batches (8:30 and 11:30)

– I’ll have everything dry and fluffy by 5:00 p.m., before sunset…

Great plan, right? 

Except…

“Everyone has a plan until they get punched in the mouth.” – Mike Tyson

I wake up.

Grab my quilt.

Head to the rooftop.

Open the safety gate.

Step outside…

And it was drizzling!!

“Wait, the weather forecast told me there is a minus 10% chance of rain today!” I yelled with frustration.

And this is a lot like the performance of any individual email campaign.

You can do everything right.

Follow the best practices.

Hire a top copywriter.

Consult with a fractional CMO.

Use AI to examine your emails.

But…

It can still bomb.

Because no one can guarantee any individual campaign will become a winner. There are too many factors.

(There are a bunch of experts behind the weather forecast, yet…)

A serial entrepreneur once told me: 

“I did my first big launch in the morning of September 11, 2001… yeah, THE day. And I almost lost my business because nobody was paying attention… you can’t blame them. 🤷”

This is also the reason why…

I’m against over-relying on A/B testing.

A/B testing gives you the illusion that you have an immediate winner… but ignores any long-term effects, often damaging your relationship with the list.

Let me give you an example:

  • A “50% off” subject line will outpull anything without a big discount

But if you include a yuge discount in every email…

You train your subscribers to NEVER buy at full price.

(and you look like a needy marketer who’s desperate) 

Look, email marketing is a long-term game.

The result is accumulated through entertaining, encouraging, and educating with every email. The only meaningful metric you should be looking at:

“Is my earning per subscriber consistently above $10 per month?”

If it drops, you’re doing something wrong.

If it maintains… or increases up to $30/mo/subscriber… then you’re great.

Don’t over-complicate things.

Cheering for you,
Wuyen