Write better headlines for email

Last time, we wrote about how helpful it is to have a good design for your email newsletters, as it’s the first thing the recipient notices when they open your email. But what if the reader decides not to open your email at all?

It’s not unusual for most people like your customers or prospects to have an overflowing inbox — which is why you’d want to pay more attention to your email subject lines. What your subject line says can either give them a reason to open your email or lead your message straight to the spam folder. So here we’ll share with you some ideas to write better email headlines for your next batch of e-blasts.

1. Personalize (or localize)

The common advice is to address your reader directly: try to include the reader’s name in the subject line, or use pronouns like you or your, to give a personal touch. Case in point: Your order is now being processed sounds better than Order #2187 is being processed. Just remember not to use all caps.

If adding the name is not likely, consider other details like a place that your email talks about, birthdays, a specific audience, their profession or interest, or even the month — i.e. Your website stats for April, Where to find the best of Bacolod cakes, Calling all artists: Join us for Art and Soul.

2. Skip most of the pitchy words

It’s a bad day for your marketing when your email goes straight to the recipient’s spam folder — even worse so if they marked your email as spam. Many studies show that certain words, like free, x percent offers, buy, reminder, limited time, among others, tend to trigger the spam alert so avoid using them as much as possible.

3. Ask a question

Add a little intrigue or mystery to your subject lines by posing a question — e.g. Are you boring your students? and John, how does your team compare to others?

4. Add some numbers

Countless research has shown that our brains (allegedly the left side) are attracted to numbered lists. It may be because numbers take less time to process than words do, but whatever the exact reasons are, inserting a number in your subject line can draw interest — e.g. 5 ideas to recruit more volunteers, The only 3 things you need in a meeting.

5. Make it clear

A line like “Check out our offers!” or “You’ll enjoy this new product” does little to entice your reader. Keep your titles blunt and clear as much as possible. If you’re going for a teaser subject line, don’t make it too ambiguous or vague. Always give your reader an idea about what the email is about.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *