How to Write a Good Subject Line that Boosts Open Rates?

Everyone’s a Shakespear whenever we go through our email inbox.

“To open, or not to open, that’s the question”

Writing emails can be easy; setting up an automated email campaign & sending them out can be a piece of cake too. But writing an effective Subject Line that attracts people to click it is difficult. 

Do you know that, according to Optinmonster, close to 50% of recipients open their emails based on the subject lines alone?

Basically, your subject line has the power to make or break your email marketing campaign. However, fret not! Here are some insights and tips for you to write a good subject line that boosts open rates.

How to write a clickable subject line?

1. Keep it short and sweet

An ideal email subject line should have a maximum of 3 to 5 words. Long subject lines tend to get cut off by the email provider, especially on mobile phones. Therefore, we recommend an average length of 5 words or 41 characters so that your recipients would be able to read each word on desktops, tablets and mobile phones.

2. Communicate the main idea of your email

Click-bait is a big no-no in email marketing. As the main objective of email marketing is for the recipients to click, read and contact you, you should communicate clearly the main idea of your email in the subject line. 

Here are some examples for you if you’re sharing insightful industry news with your recipients:

  • Here’s something for you
  • Do you know about [Industry News]?
  • Check this out!

3. Make it feel personal

People like to receive emails from their friends rather than companies. So, inserting recipients’ names in the subject line adds a human touch to your email marketing campaign and makes it feel personal. 

Of course, when you’re sending bulk emails, it’ll be tedious to insert your recipients’ names one by one. Many email marketing tools have the feature of adding a personalization touch to your email marketing campaigns. You’ll have the option to automatically insert either the recipients’ first name, last name, company name or more in your email drip campaign.

4. Add in emotions

Your recipients, like you and me, are humans. Thus, they are driven by human emotions and feelings. Making good use of psychological tactics could improve your email marketing campaign and boost open rates.

Some of the best emotional subject lines are:

i) Urgency & Scarcity

Urgency, Scarcity and Fear of Missing Out (FOMO) are not new terms in the advertising and marketing industry. In fact, there are many proven cases that show just how effective these strategies are for human psychology nature. 

Some examples are:

  • Your deals are expiring soon
  • This week’s only offers
  • Everyone is talking about…

ii) Curiosity

While Curiosity kills the cat, in this case, it helps you obtain higher open rates. Humans have the natural desire for knowledge and information, and you should use this to your benefit.

Try these subject lines:

  • [First Name], just curious……
  • Just a quick request
  • Don’t open this email
  • Here’s a surprise gift

5. Add value

No one likes a salesperson who hard sells, so emails that only talk about their own products or services are definitely unlikeable. Instead, write about your insights or tips that could help your prospect and add value to your email campaigns. Think about what could benefit them, and the contents that they would like to consume.

Some examples are:

  • Ideas about [insert value]
  • Solutions for [insert problem]

6. Use A/B Testing

Albeit you can write a subject line as good as you think, it’s not useful if you didn’t test it out on your audience. Hence, doing A/B Testing is crucial for you to know just how effective your subject line is.

Start by collecting a pile of contacts, favourably around 50 to 100 email contacts to obtain a more accurate statistic. Next, divide them into 2 groups and send them the same email content with different subject lines. Conclude which group has the highest open rate and that’s which subject line you’ll be using. 

Now you’ve learned how to write an effective subject line. Here are some of the things you want to avoid. 

Avoid using spam trigger words in your email subject lines. Spam filters are designed to refine your inbox and separate spam emails from valuable ones. 

If you accidentally use spam words, not only that one particular email gets swept away into the spam box, you’ll risk getting flagged as spam. This means that all the other emails in the campaign may not be able to arrive at your recipients’ primary tab.

Avoid these Spam Words:

  1. Manipulative Action Words
  • Act Now
  • Buy Now
  • Call Now
  • Book Now
  • Click here
  • Get it now
  1. Needy Words
  • Final
  • Reminder
  • Sale
  • Free
  • Discount
  • Specials
  1. Bombastic Words
  • State of the Art
  • Unique
  • Exciting
  • Amazing
  • Billion Dollars

In short, a good and effective subject line is 

  • Short and sweet
  • Communicative
  • Personal
  • Emotional
  • Valuable 

Don’t forget to conduct A/B testing and avoid spam words. This way you’re good to go set up your email marketing campaign now!

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