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Should you use spintax for cold email?

People debate whether spintax works or not. I have some internal research data from Smartlead and spoiler alert... It looks like it does.

Note: Spintax is a combination of 'spin' and 'syntax'. It involves rotating alternative phrases within an email to create subtle variations. E.g. starting three different emails with 'Hey', 'Hi', or 'Hello'.

Smartlead ran a test on 600 different campaigns, both with and without Spintax—controlling for other variables. Let's review the results together. We'll talk about reply rate, spam score, and campaign ROI.

Watch more below.


[00:00:00] The Data and What is Spintax

[00:00:00] I want to share some data that I honestly cannot believe that I have access to. But for some reason, the team at Smartlead was willing to share some internal research that they've been doing on something called spintax.

[00:00:10] It's like a combined word between spin and syntax, where you're basically rotating between synonyms and, uh, alternative phrases within an email.

[00:00:20] Hey, hi or hello world. And then for three different emails, they would have three different first words.

[00:00:27] It's a feature that's not supported, frankly, in most sales engagement and most CRM software, but it is supported by some of the more niche, cold outreach tools that are used more by folks who are running agencies and doing this stuff at scale and kind of looking for an edge, right? And is one of them.

[00:00:45] We've also been developing a tool called draft studio that helps you generate spintax.

[00:00:49] And that's why I was really pushing them on it because I was getting questions back from people being like, "Hey, does this matter? Does it spend time to do anything or does it just seem like it would be helpful?"

[00:00:58] They did a test of 600 different campaigns that were run, with and without spintax. They had similar bounce rates, which means that they had similar data quality. They were all sending plain text emails.

[00:01:11] In other words, controlling for these different variables that can affect whether your emails deliver or not.

[00:01:15] How Spintax Affects Reply Rate

[00:01:15] This is the metric that I think a lot of people focus on, which is reply rate, uh, campaigns with spintax had a higher reply rate of anywhere from 17 to 28%.

[00:01:25] Why? Not sure could be that maybe the people who are using spintax are more sophisticated or might be they're writing better emails. Could be that they're landing in the inbox more.

[00:01:34] I think as you start to look at some of these others numbers starts to make the case for the fact that they're probably landing in the inbox more. And that being the reason why you're getting better results.

[00:01:43] How Spintax Affects Spam Score

[00:01:43] Second one that really jumped out is that. When they, uh, Smartlead. Ran, uh, monitoring on their own domains and their own DMARC reports and their own spam scores, spintax uh, campaigns and accounts had 0.1% spam reported rate spam score versus 3% for non spintax.

[00:02:09] If you think about, if you were to send a thousand identical emails, it would be easier for an email service provider, like a Google or a Microsoft to say,

[00:02:16] "Hey, these are obviously spam. They're all the same. And you're sending them over and over and over again, right?"

[00:02:21] How Spintax Affects Campaign ROI

[00:02:21] And then the third metric, this one is a little bit more complicated, um, but I think it's interesting. Campaigns with spintax had a positive ROI longer than campaigns that didn't, by an average of 43%.

[00:02:34] So in other words, after 430 leads, people would see a drop-off in replies for non spintax copy. This drop was based on the frequency of replies captured over time.

[00:02:45] Does Spintax Work?

[00:02:45] When you look at these three measures, I think it's safe to say that I do think spintax matters. I also just like the fact that in my opinion, the best dedicated cold outreach platforms support this or, and are investing in it, those are the people who are closest to this problem.

[00:03:03] I don't know exactly what data they all have, but the fact that they're prioritizing it in their roadmap and spending engineering time on it suggests to me that there's something there.

[00:03:10] I've heard the other side of the argument. I've heard people say, "Look, it doesn't matter. I've run great campaigns without it. You don't need it."

[00:03:17] So I'm not going to sit here and say, you have to do it. I am, with DraftStudio, I'm trying to make it easier. We basically take the email and rewrite it for you and generate the spintax for you. But you can do it yourself. You can hire somebody to do it.

[00:03:27] I think this is interesting new data. I appreciate Smartlead team sharing it with me.

[00:03:31] If you're not using spintax, I would encourage you to try it out. Tell me if you see any difference in results. I'd be really curious, because this is something that is the subject of debate, but I definitely lean towards using it. And with it taking less time, it's kind of like, why not?