Writing an effective subject line is one of the most important parts of email marketing, but it is also one of the hardest to master. The average business professional receives more than 85 emails each day, according to an email statistics report by marketing firm The Radicati Group. With such an overwhelming influx of messages, it’s no wonder that many emails are sent straight into the delete box before the recipient even opens them. The only thing that can save your email from fast deletion is a killer subject line.
Given the importance of subject lines, learning how to create the best email subject lines is an essential skill that no marketer can afford to overlook. To aid you in this task, Blue Interactive Agency has assembled a quick, easy to use guide to writing subject lines. We’ve even included links to some free resources that can help make your subject lines more effective. Get ready to watch your opening and click-through rates improve!
Email Subject Line Writing Guidelines
#1: Be direct and relevant
Your subject lines should be directly relevant to the contents of your email. The bait and switch tactic of writing a provocative but unrelated subject line just to get recipients to open it generally backfires. Once customers see that the subject line is does not pertain to the actual content of your email, they’re going to feel tricked, not intrigued, and they’ll send your message straight to their spam folder. Trust in your product or services, and create email subject lines that accurately convey what you have to offer.
#2: Tell, don’t sell
People are wary of overtly promotional emails. If you have an offer that your subscribers will be interested in, just state the offer clearly in your subject line without using sales terms or other obviously promotional gimmicks. Sending out emails with subject lines that sound like sales pitches is a recipe for failure – your messages will either be caught by spam filters or tossed out by recipients annoyed by your selling tactics. Just directly state your offer in your subject line, and don’t be tempted to use any of the following:
- ALL CAPS
- Exclamation marks
- Symbols and special characters
- Pleas for assistance or help
- Sales words such as “Free,” and “Open Now”
- “Re:” or “Fwd:” to pretend your email is a response
- First name of recipient
#3: Keep it short
Length definitely does matter when it comes to email subject lines. MailChimp’s examination of email opening rates found that subject lines that had more than 50 characters had the worst click and opening rates. The highest click rates belonged to emails that had subject lines that contained 28-39 characters. Character Count Online provides a free handy character counter you can use to make sure your subject lines are the optimum length.
#4: Include a call to action or question
People respond favorably to calls to action that direct them to a specific action. Curiosity can also be a powerful motivator when used in moderation – try framing your subject line as a question. Employing this tactic in your email marketing strategies can gain readers’ attention and interest, especially when you address a problem or issue your customers face.
#5: Leverage localization
Geo-location information helps recipients to view your emails as having personal relevance to their situation. By including the name of your recipients’ city or neighborhood in your subject line, you can target your recipients more accurately and increase your open rates.
#6: Test for success
Set up A/B testing campaigns to find out which subject lines get the best response. Send out emails with 2 or 3 different subject lines to part of your subscriber list. Once you find the most effective subject line, send it out to the rest of your contacts. It’s important to remember that opening rates are only part of the picture – you should keep a close eye on conversion rates to make sure you’re not sacrificing long-term customer engagement for short-term gains in opening rates.
CoScheduler’s Headline Analyzer is a fabulous free tool you can use to give your email subject lines an extra boost. Originally intended for use with blog headlines, the analyzing tool is just as effective at improving email subject lines. It assesses the overall structure, grammar, and readability of your subject line and gives tips on how to improve them so they generate the best response.
Once you become an expert at writing subject lines, you’ll find email is one of the most effective marketing strategies your company has ever tried. As the leader in internet marketing in Fort Lauderdale, Blue Interactive Agency can help you with every step of developing your email marketing strategy, from building buyer personas, to segmenting your email marketing list, creating content to build subscriber lists, customized landing pages, and more.
Contact us at Blue Interactive Agency today at 954-779-2801 for more tips on creating effective email marketing strategies along with expert support services to help your opening and click-through rates soar!