As you probably know it is becoming harder and harder to get people to open emails thanks to all that pesky spam that still makes it through the filters.
That is why when sending out email marketing campaigns, your subject line needs to stand out in the inbox.
The content of a subject line is the key determinant, which decides whether a recipient will open an email, delete it, ignore it, mark it for future access, report it and/or filter it as spam.
A typical subject line does not have space for more than fifty characters. Many email applications and Internet Service Providers will truncate anything longer than fifty characters. If this were to happen, your subject line will fail to deliver its full impact.
With so much riding on the subject line, it makes it all the more important that it is written with a very high standard of care.
You might be thinking this is common sense but you would be amazed at the number of organizations that fail to fully leverage the subject line to get their emails opened.
The art of creating a powerful email subject line is just as important as writing the email itself. In fact you could argue it is more important because without it, people may never even read the body of the email.
There are no set rules or formula to write a good subject line.
We can however share some guidelines, which would make your goal of a profitable subject line less daunting.
Set the right expectation: The subject should clearly state what readers can expect from the email. An email would normally go unread if the subject line fails to connect with the reader. Imagine your own inbox and how many emails you delete without reading. They probably did not have a subject line that told you what it was about.
Lead without misleading: Do not stretch the truth in the subject line or promise more than the email can deliver. Readers will distrust you if your subject line does not reflect the email content. After all that is why we have the CAN-SPAM Act. It is the law for you to ensure that your email content and subject line are not misleading.
Avoid generic subject lines: Broad and generic subject lines are used by many email marketers who are trying to appeal to a wider audience. Instead you should make your subject lines more focused and target a particular market segment.
Experiment: Don't be afraid to try subject lines that are more aggressive, creative or specific than you are currently using. The key is to find out what does not work and remove it from your list of choices.
Continuous testing: Subject lines should be continuously tested to study styles and trends that generate high response rates. A particular subject line could work for some while it may not work for others.
Don't forget spam filters: Once you have finalized a few subject lines, make sure you check for words that may get flagged by a spam filter.
Next time you type in your subject line, remember it is your big chance to make a first impression with potential customers and to keep current customers coming back for more.
Now you can see why the subject line of your email is so important.