Membership Marketing Strategy

This Email Subject Line and Template is a Gift

People don’t just like getting gifts for the holidays, they like them all year round. Maybe that’s why our “You’ve Been Gifted” email subject line and template works so well.

The concept is that your subject line includes the words “You’ve Been Gifted” and it’s paired with an email that frames the features and the entry price of a subscription as “gifts” to the subscriber!

For example, Food Gardening Network offers premium Guides that offer planting, growing, harvesting, and cooking advice for a variety of fruits and vegetables. In their “You’ve Been Gifted” email, the subject line is, “You’ve Been Gifted 48 Gardening Guides” and the Guides are positioned as the “gift” that users get when they subscribe.

The copy gets down to business quickly, though. This is the copy used to explain the offer after the reader scrolls past all the Guide covers:

Thank you for being a FREE Food Gardening Network Bronze Member.

And congratulations! You’ve been gifted the entire library of the Food Gardening Network—your premier source of information and inspiration for home food gardening, when you upgrade your membership with today’s special introductory offer for new Charter Gold Members only, Just $10 for an entire year—an 80% discount off the regular price!

See the full email here. The subject line gets people to open, and the vast amount of resources listed in the email gets them to subscribe.


The “You’ve Been Gifted” strategy can also be used for free products as well. For example, the Program on Negotiation at Harvard Law School has an email that offers a collection of their free special reports. The email subject line is “You’ve Been Gifted: 15 Free Negotiation Guides.” Of course, three of those guides are brochures for their executive events, which makes this a circ-building email with a small dose of monetization effort.

The copy used to explain the “free gift” says, “You deserve to benefit from these FREE reports, courtesy of The Program on Negotiation at Harvard Law School, providing you quality content on negotiating, leadership, crisis management, team-building, mediating, and conflict resolution. Please download any or all of these valuable FREE reports for your own purposes, and we encourage you to share this valuable advice and information with colleagues by forwarding this email to help almost any business professional, government official, or academic. Please benefit from all this free advice and share it.”

Another example hails from Recipe Lion, and it’s pretty hard to say no to, for all the reasons below:

  • The headline tells readers “You’ve Been Gifted…”—reinforcing the “You’ve Been Gifted” message in the Email Subject Line
  • The headline tells readers just what they can expect—lots and lots of recipes!
  • The headline lists the number of gifts by type awaiting them—cookbooks, videos, magazines, oh my!
  • The headline is a hyperlink to the corresponding order page back at the website. While it’s not a Call to Action (CTA), it’s definitely enticing.
  • It’s already in blue and underlined to make it super-easy for the reader to click through to claim their gifts.

Not to mention, the sub-headline brings in the CTA, underscores the quality of the library, and promises instant access—it doesn’t get much better than that!

Additionally, the images they use give the recipient a sense of the magnitude of recipe sources available to them, with the RecipeLion name prominently featured in the graphics. Tie it all up with a bow, and it certainly feels like a gift!

Here’s the bottom line on the You’ve Been Gifted email strategy: If you want to boost revenue, profits, and retention, test your own version of this email. And if you want a comprehensive tutorial for building the “You’ve Been Gifted” Spotlight Framework, become a Mequoda Pro member today and start gaining more paying customers, clinching more sales, and boosting your brand affinity, too!

By Don Nicholas

Founder & Executive Publisher

Don Nicholas serves as Executive Publisher for Food Gardening Network and GreenPrints. He is responsible for all creative, technical, and financial aspects of these multiplatform brands. As senior member of the editorial team, he provides structural guidance, sets standards, and coordinates activities with the technology and business teams. Don is an active gardener whose favorite crops include tomatoes, basil, blueberries, and corn. He and his wife Gail live and work in southern Massachusetts surrounded by forests, family farms, cranberry bogs, and nearby beaches. Don is also the Founder of Mequoda Systems, LLC, which operates and supports numerous online communities including I Like Crochet, I Like Knitting, and We Like Sewing.

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