Abercrombie & Fitch has built a youth-oriented brand around racy images of shirtless men and scantily clad women, often photographed in provocative poses. Subscribers to the clothier's email campaigns are more likely to see well-toned bodies than actual product shots. But this attitude-driven approach can create some problems. For instance, notes Chad White in a post at the Retail Email blog, four Abercrombie & Fitch messages—sent over a two-month period—all had something in common. These were their four different subject lines:

  • Life of the party
  • The highest quality, casual, All-American lifestyle
  • Cool classic looks
  • Have you met Colden and Wakely?

Unfortunately, each used the same black-and-white image of a man and a woman in a passionate embrace. "Considering that that's four of the 14 emails sent by A&F this year," he says, "that's a lot of image redundancy—and they reused other images as well."

According to White, it's one thing to reuse images in secondary slots, or as a way to maintain continuity in a message announcing, say, the final hours of a sale. But the practice will, in most cases, cause nothing but confusion. "It gives subscribers the impression that you're sending the same message over and over," says White, "and why would I bother to open your emails if they're probably the same?"

The Po!nt: Be original. Reusing too many creative images in your email messages could cause confusion—and lower your open rates.

Source: Retail Email. Read the full post here.

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