BLOG 6 Hacks to Improve Email Subject Lines for Sales

Published: Oct 11, 2022 8 min read
email subject lines
Reading Time: 8 minutes

Is your business struggling to capture leads and close deals? Are your email blasts not performing up to par? Well, it may come down to one thing: poor email subject lines.

You have less than three seconds to convince someone to open your email, which makes writing those dreaded subject lines quite tricky. 

It’s a concept some marketers may gloss over when covering the effectiveness of email marketing — but crafting the perfect email subject line can be the difference between a closed sale or junk mail. Don’t get left in the trash — use these six hacks to supercharge your email subject lines and watch your business grow.

Touch a Pain Point

A pain point is a problem that you can solve for your customer. Diagnosing and addressing said pain points in the email subject lines can, in fact, make or break your email success rate.

Pain points are important because they’re what make people want to buy from you in the first place. Your job as a marketer is to figure out what those pain points are — and then use them as inspiration for your email subject lines!

For example, you’re the owner of a business who is running paid ads but are struggling to close the leads you receive. Most business owners would just toss more money at a digital marketing agency hoping that it would somehow solve those problems — but it doesn’t work that way. If said business owner is a part of your email list, you can try a line like “5 Reasons Why You Aren’t Converting Leads to Sales.”

It doesn’t have to be complicated or overthought, but it should address the problems that business owners have.

KISS (Keep It Simple, Stupid!)

email subject lines

This leads into the next point. The same rule applies to your email subject lines — keep it short and simple.

A good subject line should be a sentence fragment. According to MailChimp, ideal email subject lines should be “no more than 9 words and 60 characters.” The more you cram into your email’s title, the less likely it is that someone will open it up and read everything else. Of course, you can’t always make this super-short if you’re trying to include important keywords, but do your best!

More importantly, don’t try to be clever: just keep things simple and honest. This avoids being clickbaity, and in today’s social media age, the quickest way to lose trust from your database is by baiting users into opening your No one likes feeling like they’ve been tricked into clicking on something by some obscure reference or inside joke — unless you’ve already built that relationship and rapport. 

Create Urgency

In the fast-moving world of social media, so many intangibles can change at the drop of a dime. Cultures, products, and services have all become hyper-dynamic and keeping ahead of the curve can be quite the challenge. 

If you’re trying to grab someone’s attention and/or sell a product through email in said hyper-dynamic world, it’s of utmost importance to create urgency. You can do so by highlighting limited-time offers in email subject lines, while also emphasizing terms like “TODAY ONLY” and thoughts of that nature. To that point, the all-caps also helps to drive the point home — but as previously mentioned, be aware that you’re being honest and not misleading the reader.

Use Numbers Effectively

Another effective strategy to improve email subject lines is to use numbers effectively.

Let’s face it: nobody wants to read bodies of text. Not now, and not ever, especially since the world’s pace has switched up. Readers now prefer listicles and bite-sized information, and what better way to deliver said information than through numbered lists? With bolded headers and short blocks of text, readers can now peruse emails and blogs and pick out what’s most important to them! (And in case you missed it, this blog is a numbered list!)

Numbers can also be used to highlight statistics (“Did you know that 15% of people…?”) that can pique a reader’s curiosity. Moreover, it can also create time pressure for readers to act (“2 days left to apply!”).

Personalize It

Nobody likes to be seen as a number or a statistic on an email list. Get rid of the “To Whom It May Concern’s” and the “Hey You’s” and go for a more personalized approach! Start each email off with their name (“[NAME], did you know that…”). It’s simply polite and one of the most respectful ways to garner someone’s attention without it being disingenuous.

To give you perspective on the power of names, Dale Carnegie — author of the New York Times bestseller “How to Win Friends and Influence People” — once said, “A person’s name is to him or her the sweetest and most important sound in any language.”

People don’t want to feel like they’re getting automated emails from a robot, either. As business owners, consider using your own name in email subject lines (“Hey, AJ from ONE18MEDIA here…”) or at the top of the email.

Use Actionable Verbs for Effective Email Subject Lines

Tying back to creating urgency, using actionable verbs in your email subject lines can get readers to act immediately. Think words like “act now,” “enroll,” “sign up,” “meet up,” “improve,” and more. Make sure to tailor these specific verbs to your reader base and their needs.

Ultimately, these actionable verbs should also be short and easy to read because they are attention-grabbing words that help draw readers in immediately — and who wants to waste time trying out different subjects when they could just open up another email and move on with their day?

Optimizing Your Email Subject Lines with ONE18MEDIA

At ONE18MEDIA, we provide a plethora of digital marketing services that take your business to the next level. Whether it’s lead generation and/or developing your business’s web presence, our talented team of professionals are here to help.

Say goodbye to underperformance and poor email subject lines with the services of ONE18MEDIA. To learn more about how we can help your business grow, please visit our website and get a FREE marketing audit from us today!