Email Subject Lines–How to Do Them Well

December 7th 2010       Sally Ormond       copywriter, copywriting tips, Email marketing, freelance copywriter

If you engage in email marketing you’ll know how difficult it can be to get someone to read your email.

For your email to survive it has to have a strong, clear and concise subject line to make the recipient curious enough to open it.

So all you have to do is come up subject lines that won’t get junked or deleted—simple!

Winning subject lines

To make sure email subject line draws the recipient’s attention and gets your email opened make sure you:

  • Keep it short (no more than 60 characters, including spaces)
  • Personalise it
  • Identify your company
  • Tell them what your email is about
  • Give them a benefit as an enticement

Salesy is bad

If you make your subject line too salesy you will turn your recipient off immediately. No one likes being sold to so if you make it obvious that’s what you’re up to the barriers will go up.

The other hurdle you have to get over is the spam filter. Certain words will trip spam filters and there are certain words you’d often use in headlines that should be avoided in email subject lines. Such as:

  • You—indicated the email is from a stranger and unsolicited
  • Exclamation marks
  • Capital letters—all capitals will not work, so don’t do it
  • Buzz words—things like free, sale, only, urgent, information, limited-time, opportunity (use them in the email body but steer clear of them in the subject line)

This advice should help your email marketing go a bit smoother.

Sally Ormond – freelance copywriter

Tags: copywriter, copywriting tips, Email marketing, freelance copywriter
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