A subject line is the first (and sometimes only) part of your email subscribers see in their inboxes, which is why crafting them is one of the most important steps in putting together an email marketing campaign. The power of a great email subject line is undeniable; when you harness that power, your campaigns and your open rates soar. The difficulty with subject lines, however, is real estate: You only have a few words to say something meaningful. And that’s especially true of mobile campaigns.
On most mobile devices, email subject lines truncate at five or six words So how do you write subject lines that catch subscribers’ attention and convince them to open…in just six words?! Brian Clark author of How To Write Magnetic Headlines suggests you use the Four U’s:
- Be useful to the reader
- Provide a sense of urgency
- Show your main product is unique
- And do all of the above in an ultra-specific way
Utilizing the Four U’s is all about understanding how important the subject line actually is. This is your chance to grab the reader by the hand and lead him into your message and, therefore, your call-to-action. Without a strong subject line, it doesn’t matter how great the rest of your message is.
Here are a few more subject line tips to get your creative juices flowing:
- Don’t be cheesy or splashy-be meaningful
- Include benefits. Let readers know what you can do for them.
- Include relevant keywords, but don’t force them in
- Don’t be afraid to borrow the structure of a fantastic headline written by someone else
- When in doubt, use a numbered list (3 Ways to Get Your Child to Eat Vegetables), reveal a “secret” (The Secret of Successful Lending) or ask a question (Having Trouble Finding a Lawyer?)
Yes, subject lines seem like a small part of the email marketing process but getting them right can make a big difference in the success of your next campaign.
There’s no point in crafting the perfect email subject line if you have no one to send it to. Learn a few best practices for building your email database in our free guide “20 Great Ways to Grow Your Email List.”
Photo Credit: Ed Yourdon