Emails. We all get them. Some of us 100s a day. #AintNobodyGotTimeForThat

Some we love to get – exclusive sales from favorite stores, news from old friends, invitations to stellar events, insightful emails from industries or associations that provide insights to enhance our health, careers, productivity, perspective, etc.

Some we just plain delete – they take up prized space in our inbox, we don’t know or trust the sender and/or the subject line just isn’t compelling enough to make us bother to open.

As marketers we want our emails to consumers to be opened. And as consumers ourselves, we want less junk and more valuable, relevant messages in our inboxes. With that soapbox in mind, stay tuned for a series on creating and executing effective, compelling email campaigns.

63% of people say they either read the subject line and delete or read the subject line and ignore an email1, so the first hurdle to overcome is creating killer subject lines. After all, if less than 40% of your recipients never view the email itself, all that time, energy and creative work from writing the content to finding the best image to executing on the email is lost.

9 Tips to BE your best in Email Subject Lines:

  1. Be short & sweet. Keep it under 49 characters.
    • Almost half of people read email on a mobile device, so the fewer characters the better.2
    • To keep it short, remove obvious words like “update,” “newsletter” and “seminar.” Sell the benefits of those without specifically stating the type of content or event in the subject line.
      • 18.7% emails including “newsletter” in subject lines saw decrease in open rates.3
  2. Be location specific. Increase use or raise awareness for a specific facility, physician office or surgery center by referencing the location in your subject line.
  3. Be personal. Know your recipient’s name, preferences, interests and demographics. Add in personalization when possible & appropriate.
  4. Be urgent. Add words such as “today only,” “by midnight,” etc. to help light a fire for readers to not only open the email quickly but also to act on the CTA in the email.
  5. Be a tease. Include teaser words such as “video” or “exclusive” to boost your open and click-through-rate (CTR) dramatically.3
  6. Be one with the numbers. Incorporate numbers or stats ─ just like in articles or blog titles, numbers get attention.
  7. Be actionable. Begin your line with an actionable verb, i.e. “Join,” “Dine” or “Run.” Give them a clear call to action of why they should open the email.
  8. Be inquisitive. Pose a question. Subject lines phrased as questions performed better than similar subject lines that were phrased as statements.4
  9. Be a tester. A/B test your email subject lines. Analyze the results. Not all demographics will respond the same, so see what works for your target market and adjust your subject lines accordingly.

Want to learn more about optimizing your digital marketing efforts? Request a demo or read more.

1. Direct Marketing Association Email Tracking Report, November 2015.

2. MailerMailer study.

3. Aedestra study.

4. The Science of Email.