The subject line of your email marketing campaign might appear to be a minor detail, but that’s certainly a misconception. While a subject line is a small component of a campaign, it’s without a doubt a very important one. Another common misconception is that it doesn’t matter what goes into the subject line—just pick a handful of words and let it rip. However, the toughest part about writing a subject line is that it should be original and catchy—but it feels like it’s all been done before, right?
Here are some ideas to consider, inspire you and get you on the right track.
1. Think about newspaper headlines
The big and bold headlines of a newspaper are there specifically to grab one’s attention—how is a subject line any different? Both of them have the sole purpose of enticing a reader. What makes newspaper headlines an idea generator is that they’re generally written in a concise manner and are very descriptive. For example, you can take a headline from a business-related column and simply tweak it to make it about marketing.
2. Pack a punch at the beginning
If you don’t grab their attention at the beginning, what are the odds that they’re going to be enticed at the end? With a subject line, you have a matter of a few seconds to convince your reader to open that email to see what you have to say. More so, many email clients only display the first 50 characters anyway, which is why it’s so vital to make them count. Here’s a tip: try to think of some adjectives that are impactful and appealing to start your subject line.
3. Throw out the old rules on “free”
Everyone is so against the word “free” in a subject line—at least they used to be. Unless your subject line starts with “free” or you have the word completely capitalized, you really don’t have anything to worry about. The reason we point this out is that this a word we were told to stay away from for years, but it’s also a word that people still react to. At Knowledge Marketing, we say it’s ok to use the word “free” in a subject line as long as you’re not being misleading.
4. Remember that a sense of urgency is compelling
With many marketing efforts, it’s good practice to instill a sense of urgency with any special deal or offer you’re making to your customer or prospect. Few tactics will compel someone to subscribe or purchase more than urgency. Knowledge Marketing suggests the use of urgency and deadlines as part of a planned campaign or series of email messages. For example, use the timeframes of “one week left” in your subject line and then “2 days remain” in your subject line to coerce readers into taking action.
5. Time for a test
Like with everything else in marketing, it’s imperative that you test, test test. How else can you be sure of what your prospects and clients are responding to? Knowledge Marketing’s ECN makes it really simple to test two different subject lines with the same message. With the simple push of a radio button, the A/B campaign feature drops down and to allow you to select you message, assign how many recipients to each message and then a “Message A Subject” and a “Message B Subject” field appear. It’s that simple to do some testing on your subject lines.
In addition to our marketing expertise, KM has an amazing suite of email marketing tools and features built right into our platform. Feel free to contact us to find out more about them and how to hit that inbox!