Can I personalize my subject line?

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I want my readers to have their name in the subject line. What are the steps for that?
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Kelley Kirker

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Posted 5 years ago

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Katie Lewis, Official Rep

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Hey, Kelley! You can put a recipient's name in the subject line by following these steps:

1. Click inside a text box in your mailing. Click Insert in the formatting toolbar that appears, and choose Personalization.



2. That will add a personalization tag to the text box. You'll want to change it to, it sounds like, the first name field for the purpose of grabbing that tag.



3. In the placeholder field, type what you would want to appear in the event that the recipient's first name isn't saved in your Emma audience. You'll notice the inserted personalization tag updates when you do that.



4. Highlight and copy that tag -- in this case, [% member:name_first default="friend" %] -- to use in your subject line. You can access the subject line by clicking Send Test or Review & Send. In the screenshot below, I've clicked Review & Send, where I added the tag to my subject line.



And that's it! I hope this helps, Kelley, but give me a shout with any other questions.
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Reynolds Journalism Institute

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I've tried this several times now, but it won't work for me. I've tried sending the message to different email clients, but it will only show the default.
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Katie Lewis, Official Rep

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Hi there! Looks like you’re simply missing step #3, where you add the placeholder text. Here’s the personalization tag you’re using:

 [% member:name_first default="" %]

Instead, you’ll want something like this:

 [% member:name_first default="friend" %]

or this:

 [% member:name_first default="colleague" %]

Hope that helps!
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Katie Lewis, Official Rep

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Upon closer inspection, I see another issue: The personalization tag in your account should be first_name, not name_first. If you click to insert a first name personalization tag in your mailing and grab the personalization code from there, you should be golden. Not all accounts have the same personalization tag formats, so it’s safer to first insert the tag in your mailing and then use that code.
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Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia

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Can I suggest that the documentation be updated to acknowledge this potential discrepancy? Users who take the documentation at face value and use name_first and are then stymied by the template not working as advertised would be better served in the knowledge that an alternate tag exists right out of the gate.
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Katie Lewis, Official Rep

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Definitely! I've updated the Resource Center to be a little clearer. Mind taking a look and letting me know if that's clear enough? I'm open to suggestions. :)