5 Tips for Writing an Eye-Catching Email Subject Line

How many times did your mother tell you, “You never get a second chance to make a first impression?”  

Mother really does know best: first impressions count. While she may not have been referring to email marketing, this advice can have timely implications for your marketing strategy.

The “first impression” we’re referring to is actually a single line that often gets overlooked in email marketing strategy: the subject line.  And this little one-liner can make a BIG impact on your email marketing effectiveness.

When written well, a good email subject line can ensure the recipient gives your email the attention it deserves.  When written poorly, your email can end up in the trash, or worse—- in the spam folder, where it stands little chance at being seen. Here are some tips that can help make sure that your emails won’t get deleted in the first crucial moments of being received:

  1. Keep it Short and Sweet: For some, it may be very tempting to write more than necessary. Try to limit your email subject line to no more than 45 characters to ensure that most of your readers will be able to view your full subject line.
  2. Avoid SPAM: Certain keywords will steer your emails away from the eyes of your customer and straight into the dreaded SPAM folder.  Words like “free,” “act now,” “credit,” and “offer” are usually red flags to spam filters. And whatever you do, DON’T WRITE AN EMAIL SUBJECT LINE IN ALL CAPS.
  3. Be Clear: Have you ever purchased a giant bag of chips and been disappointed when you found the bag had more air than chips?  That’s how your readers will feel if you use an email subject line full of promises and expectations that your content doesn’t deliver.  

Make sure your content is worth its weight.

  1. Make your Subject Active: Bring your email subject line to life with an action line. Beginning your email subject line with verbs like “Learn,” Download,” or “Sign Up” convey a sense of urgency and invite necessary interaction with your email.
  2. Practice Headline Writing:  News writers probably make great email writers, because they already know a key skill in subject-line writing: Always present the most important fact in the headline. Don’t bury it in the copy. Your email recipients don’t have much time, so you want to give them the most clear and to-the-point summary as possible in the subject line.

There is no magic formula for writing a perfect email subject line. But when they are done well, they can turn recipients into loyal email subscribers. Need help crafting content that engages with readers, educates your audience and establishes your credibility? Be sure to check out our free webinars for training at your fingertips.