Email marketing is far from dead. It is still growing rapidly and a major vehicle for generating revenue. Sending regular emails out to your database of loyal subscribers and potential customers can be profitable. It can also be a waste of time if your subscribers do not bother to open the emails you put so much time and effort into producing. If you do not have an irresistible, attention-grabbing subject line, your prospects will never read your email content no matter how amazing it is.
Writing the perfect subject does not have to be that daunting. Here are 6 of the simplest but most effective tips for creating compelling email subject lines.
Not every browser, email service, and device offer the same character count. Consider all platforms your audience is on, especially if they are on mobile. The subject lines of most emails are between 20-40 characters long. We all know that subject lines need to capture attention, but the question is – where should they capture attention?
If you place your hook at the end of the subject line, then your audience will not even see the hook, thus rendering your subject line useless. But if you correctly front load your content, your message will arouse intrigue, and your reader will want to read your content.
Front-loading is a phrasing technique discovered by copywriters where the bulk of the enticement lays in the front-half of the subject line. The goal is to arouse enough interest for the audience to open the email and continue reading, regardless if the rest of the subject line is cut off.
In short, make sure to understand what platform your audience is receiving your message on and what the character count for that platform is. Then frontload your hook.
2. Preheader Text
Along with the subject line, you readers get a glimpse of the first line or two of the email. The preheader is another opportunity to grab their attention as they quickly skim through those few lines. The same principles apply as with the subject line: front load the intrigue, the emotions, and the hook.
Consider all your users, the platforms they are on and the different devices they use. Different devices and platforms have unique character counts for each pre-header.
3. Be Conversational and Have Personality
Most people are bombarded with impersonal, “salesy” emails every day. Spicing up your emails with a sense of personality can make your subject lines stand out and invite your reader to want to get to know you. Use humor and fun such as cultural references your target audience appreciates to hook them into reading more.
Using cultural references will help your audience connect with you on a personal level because it will not feel like a robot on the other end of that e-mail. Instead, it will feel you know what they like, and the email will feel personal. It also shows that you are down to earth and aware of what is going in your audiences’ lives.
Just make sure that your tone is in line with your brand and audience. Do not try to be something you are not. Overall, emails are more conversational in tone, so it should read the way you speak.
4. Speak the Same Language as Your Audience
This tip you are going to read is not even fair. It is pretty much a fool-proof hack to crafting expert subject lines.
Initially, Dallas SEO agencies discovered this technique by combining SEO with email marketing, and it dramatically improved e-mail open rates. Just like your audience might know specific cultural references (tip 3), the chances are that your audience is looking up particular keywords. Find out what those keywords are and use those specific words.
For example, if your audience is Googling “Best tire brands for SUVs” and your email subject line contains “best tire brands for SUVs,” the chances are that your audience is definitely going to open that e-mail because it is curated just for them.
There are certain words that each niche is more receptive to. By researching your audience and incorporating their specific language into your subject line, you are almost guaranteeing above average success.
5. Let Them Know What They Missing By Not Opening the Email
Time is precious. And before committing to reading your email, your prospect will have one main question – “Why should I read this? What is the purpose of this email?” It is just like when you read the blurb on the back of a book or watch a movie trailer. Your subject line should summarize what the entire email is about in a single line. If you want, you can use various means to interest them – but stay away from clickbait or misleading headlines. The fastest way to melt trust with your audience is to have them open an email under a false pretense.
6. Craft Email Subject Lines Based on Audience Segments
Buyers go through different buying phases. Some of them have a pain but are not aware of the problem. Some of them are aware of the problem but not aware of the solution. Some are aware of the solution but not aware of your product. Your job is to be aware for them.
Subject lines should be crafted based on how far your prospect is in their “buying journey.” Providing your audience with content that is relevant to their needs builds your trust with them. However, if they see your email subject lines as irrelevant to them, they will be less likely to open the content as it will give the perception that you are just running a mass marketing campaign versus sending them relevant information. Most content marketing platform these days offer audience segmentation solutions.
So before writing a subject line, ask yourself if you have segmented your list based on your audience’s buying temperature and then craft subject lines specifically curated for each segment.