If you’re like me, you receive a multitude of emails everyday, and large part of what determines if you open those emails is the the subject line. An important part of a successful email campaign is developing a subject line that will influence recipients to open your email. Subject lines are more than just a random string of words, and MailChimp did a study to understand what makes subject lines more effective.
1. Time Sensitivity: A common method when developing a subject line is expressing urgency. MailChimp discovered that when subject lines include words such as “urgent” or “important” they were more likely to be opened.
2. Optimistic Solicitations: MailChimp’s study found that email recipients are more likely to open an email that encompass positive solicitations rather than negative ones. Language like “announcement” and “invitation” result in a higher response rate than words like “reminder” and “cancelled.”
3. Individually Tailored Communication: A common tactic of email marketing is to use personalization in an email campaign. The study found that using personal communication did result in higher open rates, but the numbers were not as high as expected. Combining the user’s name with time sensitivity elements resulted in much higher rates.
4. The Use of “Free:” This word is one of controversy in email marketing, however it is more often associated with bad email marketing practices than good ones. This word is highly overused in subject lines and did not account for an improvement in open rates.
An emerging practice to watch for is the use of symbols within in a subject line (hearts, smiley faces, etc.) Their use is still in question, but could be beneficial depending upon the message. Creating an email subject line is not a task that should be taken lightly, because it can determine whether or not your email will be opened. Spending some time deciding on a compelling subject line could lead to a more successful email marketing campaign, so make it count.
Please post below with questions or comments regarding email marketing campaigns or subject lines. What subject lines have led you to a successful email marketing campaign?