Email Marketing Subject Lines: 3 keys to increased open rates

Are your emails failing at the subject line? Here are some email marketing subject line examples to help you create great ones!

We love email marketing - it’s the best, most effective way to get all the necessary information to your current and potential clients, and tracking open and click-through rates is a breeze. You can fit as much, or as little, information in an email as needed, plus there are so many ways to make sure you have a hot email list that’s guaranteed to get responses, it’s staggering.


Honestly, if we had to choose just one digital marketing method to use for the foreseeable future, it would probably be email marketing above all others.


So what’s going wrong with your email marketing campaign? You’ve made sure it’s deliverable, followed all the best practices, and made sure there’s nothing spammy about your content. So why aren’t people opening them? Int might have something to do with the way you’re getting their attention.


Good email subject lines are absolutely critical to getting people to open your email in the first place. If you use an eye catching subject line, people are much less likely to hit “delete” and take a chance on seeing what you have to say. Of course, the opposite is also true - there are many ways to fail on subject lines and see all your hard work on content creation go unnoticed.


That’s why we’re taking a look at email marketing subject line examples and giving you a few tips on best practices.


1 - Clarity

Do: Be clear about what the email is about. You don’t need to give away all the detail in the subject line, of course, but you need to convey a clear message. For example: “Boost your SEO performance with Blabberjax” tells potential customers exactly what it’s about. If you’ve paid attention to your email list, you’re reaching out to people who want this service, so they will open it.

Don’t: Sacrifice clarity for cleverness or urgency. Catchy email subject lines won’t do you any good if people ignore them because they have more important, clearer, things to deal with.


Top tip: Prioritize your messaging. Clarity should always be the first thing on your checklist, as it’s the one thing you can’t do without.


2 - Urgency or scarcity

Do: Create a sense of urgency or scarcity to get people to act right away. You can achieve this by mentioning detailed specifics, such as “Cart closes tonight at 9pm EST” or “Only five spots left for the webinar”.

Don’t: Create fake urgency or deceive readers about scarcity. If you say there are only five spots left, then there had better only be five spots open. Exaggerated or false urgency might get people to open this one email, but it will also annoy them and possibly get you consigned to spam.


Top tip: Avoid over-used and now meaningless words and phrases like “URGENT!” or “Don’t scroll past!”. They’re likely to elicit little more than an eye-roll and a quick delete.


3 - Benefits, benefits, benefits

Do: Mention specific benefits your audience will enjoy if they open the email. If you’re offering a freebie, a discount or something that will add value to their lives or business, give them a taste of it. This is especially good for product launch email subject lines, e.g. “Get better sleep with our brand-new app” - it’s clear and speaks to something just about everyone wants and needs.

Don’t: Falsify or exaggerate benefits - that goes completely against all email subject line etiquette and will get you relegated to spam at lightning speed.


Top tip: Benefits are a great teaser, but don’t put all of them in the subject. A quick attention-grabber is enough - after all, you have a whole email to tell them the myriad of benefits they’ll receive; you just need them to open the email first.


There are many more ways to really create the perfect email subject line, but these three are the most important and effective tools you can use. That said, here are a few other quick tips to help you entice people to open your email:

  • Check your spelling and grammar - bad spelling and language use immediately screams “spam”.
  • Don’t abuse punctuation - multiple exclamation points or question marks make you look like a teenager who’s let their excitement get away with them, and it looks unprofessional.
  • Unlock your caps - It should go without saying, but the only letters that should be capitalized are the first letter of the sentence, and people’s, products’ or companies’ names.
  • Ask a question to grab attention - It’s human nature; we want to answer a direct question that’s posed to us or, if we don’t know the answer, our curiosity is piqued and we want to find out. What kind of reaction do you expect from a well-phrased question?


What email subject lines have grabbed your attention recently? Let us know in the comments.


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