Using the recipient’s name in a subject line isn’t a bad idea, but there are more effective ways to personalize your subject lines.
As long as it’s true, including “referred by” or referencing a mutual connection, can help improve your open rate:
“Referred by Katie McCormick”
“Eric Klein recommended that I contact you”
You can also try creating different subject lines for audiences in different locations.
For example, if your company sells hoodies, and it’s August, you can target and appeal to a San Francisco audience with a subject line that reads:
“Beat the summer fog. Warm up with a fleece hoodie.”
If you’re targeting an audience in Chicago, your subject line could read:
“Cooler weather is coming! Get ready for fall with a fleece hoodie.”
2. Tell Them What You Want Them To Do
“Your call-to-action represents the tipping point between bounce and conversion. When you ask someone to do something online, they have to go through your call-to-action in order to do it – regardless of whether you’re asking them to download a PDF, fill out a form, buy a product, or even just click through to another page.”
“It would appear that while creativity and clever writing are very good things in general (and I still cling to the fact that they’re good in the body of a post), they have no place in post titles and subject lines. People want to be told directly what they can expect to find inside, and they don’t have time to puzzle out what an overly creative subject line could mean.”
And she can prove it.
The marketing team at AWeber divided a list of their subject lines into two categories.
The first list was made up of clear subject lines.
The second list had subject lines that were more creative and catchy.
Then, they tested subject lines from both lists.
For example, they tested:
“Grow Your Email List 99% Faster: How One Site Did It”
“E-mail remains a significantly more effective way to acquire customers than social media—nearly 40 times that of Facebook and Twitter combined (exhibit). That’s because 91 percent of all US consumers still use e-mail daily,1 and the rate at which e-mails prompt purchases is not only estimated to be at least three times that of social media, but the average order value is also 17 percent higher.”
But email marketing only works if your messages are read.
So give your subject lines the attention and time they deserve.
Keep learning, keep testing, and keep adapting. Before long, your subject lines will become harder and harder, or even impossible to resist.
Don’t forget that the emails you send show that you have something great to offer.
With the perfect, supercharged subject line, your email recipients will share your excitement.
What are your tips for writing effective subject lines? What type of subject lines do you find most effective?
Written by Melissa Fragiadaki
Melissa is WiseStamp’s blog administrator and loves delving into topics of interest to small businesses. She’s an audiobook fiend, podcast connoisseur, and adventurous traveler who enjoys writing lines of code as much as she enjoys writing pages of fiction.