Growth Devil Conversion

Written on Justin Scott’s behalf (because he couldn’t take the ego bashing).

Recently we conducted a few experiments with our email newsletter. The goal: increase click-through-rates (CTR) from the newsletter to our blog. After running a few experiments and analysing the results, one clear insight came to light.

“Oh what’s in a face?!” Our first experiment started with a simple A/B test…

Variation 1: Justin’s face at the top.



CTR: 9.52%

Variation 2: Justin’s face at the end of the email

CTR: 13.33%

Variation 2 achieved a 40% higher CTR.

We had a bit of a chuckle about the comparative results, so we decided to see test a new variation: not including Justin’s face.

Variation 3: Face excluded from the email

Much to Justin’s dismay the results were not exactly to his liking: CTR of 19.15%

Variation 3 achieved 44% higher CTR than Variation 2, and 101% higher CTR than Variation 1.

Conclusion: Justin’s face is bad for click-through-rates.


We know there are many factors that influence conversion, but this particular factor became increasingly intriguing. So, we decided to see if there was any other data out that gave us a deeper insight into our jovial theory.

After finally adding his profile picture to his Google search results, imagine Cyrus Shepard’s disappointment when his traffic stayed flat. After a little obsession in optimising his pic, the results paid off with 35% increase in traffic.

TheLadders (recruitment consultants) analysed Heat Map data of LinkedIn and concluded recruiters spent 19% of their time looking at profile pictures, instead of examining other vital candidate information.

Elizabeth Yin at LaunchBit, is on the fence. Believing faces on your banner advertising neither help nor hinder your campaign.

“Nothing draws a crowd, like a crowd”, Gregory Ciotti discusses that the power of adding photos to testimonials increases trust.

Susan Adams from Forbes, interviews industry leaders on the pros and cons of having your photo on your business card. Concluding with Don Crowther’s No. 1 piece of advice, that you share your photograph.


What experiments have you run in email to increase CTR? Tweet us your tips