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Email Marketing Is More Important Than Ever - Part 2

Post by Holly Mortimer
July 22, 2020

Email Marketing 4 Part Series- Part 2 - Subject Lines

You can have the best email marketing content on the inside, but if no one is opening your emails, it doesn’t matter. Subject lines need to stop the scroll, catch your customer’s eye and present them with an opportunity to gain something from taking the time to open them.

I’ve compiled my Top Ten subject line tips for you to try the next time you send our your newsletter.

1. Personalization     - insert your reader’s name into the subject line and on the inside of the email as well. Most service providers have this feature integrated right into their subject line software. If you don’t have a first name, substitute the name field with Reader or Friend.

Super secret tip: Here’s the code to make that happen in my current favourite email service provider, Mailerlite: {$name|default:"Friends"}

Example: Holly! I totally thought of you when I wrote this.


Holly, do you love the first chapter or the last chapter in a book?


Seriously, Holly. Who does this?

Or...basically almost any email can get personalized.

2. Emojis - One of your biggest goals with subject lines is to stop the scroll and nothing     works better than emojis. Pop an emoji in at the top of your subject line     every once in a while and watch your open rate climb.

Example: 🥳We’re celebrating!

3. Numbers - Numbers also have the ability to stop the eye as it scans the inbox. I like to insert a number after the first word or somewhere in the middle of the subject line.

Example: 10 Bizarrebooks I read this year!

4. Capitalization - Mixing up the font by using capitals where it makes sense, again gives your reader something to focus on during the monotony of checking their     inbox.

Example: {FREE} gift with every purchase this week only!

5. Free - The word free comes with some controversy. I like to use it for re-engagement emails or if I have a promo that doesn’t come along every day. Some feel the algorithms don’t like free, but I know your customers do, so give it a try.

Example: Repeat of the last one-ish: Did you get our FREE sangria recipe this week?

6. Single words - It’s not very often you find an email in your inbox that’s just one, short word. That’s why this is incredibly effective. It stops the scroll once again.

Example: ICYMI


Hey  - (This one comes straight from the email service of Barack Obama if you can believe it)

7. Lists - Top 10 lists, Top 5 etc etc. You can combine the effectiveness of that number with something that’s quick and fun for your readers to consume. Who doesn’t love a Top 10 list?

Example: My Top 5 Summer Dresses

8. Questions and punctuation - Asking a question does two things. It adds a question mark, which is visually attractive AND it gets the reader to move forward to see what the answer is. Other punctuations work just as well.

Example: Are you sure she was the murderer?


Do you want to know a secret?

9. Scarcity - This one is pretty standard. Only one more day statements can lead the consumer to jump on the offer. Just don’t use this one in excess. It has the opposite effect then.

Example: Last day to get 50% off!

10. Leading statements - Leading statements can be incredibly effective. I don’t mean them in the click-baity way, but as urgent calls to action, backed up by great value. Create a subject line that encourages the consumer to want to know the answer or your thoughts and the only way to get there is to open the email. Just make sure your opening paragraph runs off of that statement and you’re giving them exactly what you promised.

Example: **Whatever you do, don’t open this email** - then your lead line in the email is something like: You opened it? I knew you were the kind of person who lived dangerously.


Are these the hottest wings we’ve ever eaten? - then your lead inside better be a review of the new hot wings on your menu.

Or this commonly used line:

A surprise gift for you inside!

Or finally, something humourous - Pairs nicely with a rainy day and piles of laundry.

Okay, that should get you started on some fantastic subject lines. You’ll see most of these combine elements of other Top 10subject line suggestions. Just keep mixing it up and if you’re like me and love a good spreadsheet, I suggest keeping track of your subject lines and their effectiveness

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