How to create and test successful subject lines

Every email marketer will know that stressful feeling of trying to create the perfect email marketing subject line for an impressive email campaign. Not only is it a struggle because it has to be interesting and current as well as relevant to the content of your email but it also needs to be eye-catching, to ensure that it encourages the reader to open it.

There is also the added pressure of the existing economical climate as well as the stress of trying to maximize your open rates, managing a positive campaign response and ROI which become much more important.

Below you will find some of our most useful tips, hints and golden advice which have been accumulated after years of email marketing experience. We hope that these will be a great aid for you to achieve creative and successful subject line composition, high open and response rates.

You are not limited by rules

The main thing you need to consider when composing a subject line is your target audience. Consider their lifestyles, motivations, stress levels, age and how often you are emailing them, as all of these elements will affect their reactions.

Test one, twice and test again

The best way to see how your subject lines are received is to test them. This will allow you to make any necessary amendments, keep things that seem to work and when it is most appropriate to send your emails.

The 1st 50 characters are the most important

Heaps of research has been conducted into the length of subject lines and what is the most effective. The simple conclusion is that the shorter and blunter they are the better, so aim to get the most essential elements of your email into the first 50 characters. However, the shorter you can make it, the better.

Do not be too vague

If you think that being mysterious with your subject line will entice your target audience to open you email, you’re wrong. Higher click through and open rates are best achieved if your are open and honest about what your email is about.

Be specific

Your subject lines needs to be composed around the key message of your email, whether this is an offer, news up date or a proposition. Make sure your are specific, relevant and to the point.

Do not try to sell

Your subject lines needs to contain factual information and avoid ‘danger’ words like ‘free’, ‘special offer’ etc. However, if the main point of your email is an offer or promotion this can be included but chose your words carefully.

Also, ensure to avoid any excessive adjectives. If you have a 20% offer, include this, but do not add word such as ‘amazing’ or ‘incredible’.

Compose your subject line last

It seems silly but the best subject lines come once the email content has already been written. This will enable you to be truly focused on the message of your email and you’ll know exactly what you wish to highlight in the subject line.

Utilize a spam checker

Be sure to test your subject line through a spam checker as this will point out any potential problems with the subject line and the content which could then cause your email to be banished to the realm of junk folders.

Some useful tips are to avoid the use of capital characters as well as exclamation marks.

Think about your audience

Just like when you are writing your email copy, think about your audience when composing your subject line. Think about their lifestyles such as their

Use your inbox as inspiration

Subscribe to some of your competitor’s emailing lists and other similar businesses to see what they do. Do you think it works? Would it work for you? Although we suggest you use a different email account, make sure you check it on a regular basis for subject lines which catch your attention and succeed in making you open the email.

Why not keep a list saved of all ones you like to refer to when you suffering a dreaded bout of writer’s block.

By Lee Callender
Friday, 24 August 2012 08:01
Catagory: Delivery
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