Guest post by Christelle Macri.
In email marketing, the subject line is of paramount importance. It is, after all, the primary element the recipient will refer to when deciding on whether or not to open the mail in the first place. Yet, despite this, many companies sending email marketing messages fail to give subject lines the attention they deserve.
The primary purpose of a subject line is to entice recipients to open the email message. However, a truly great subject line can achieve so much more by telling them something about your brand and driving sales—without sounding like spam. Here are three useful tips to help you achieve far greater results.
1. Make Your Subject Lines Less Generic
Research carried out by Phrasee, an email subject line optimisation company, found that 63 percent of all emails sent by retailers fall under the category of “generic,” meaning they could have been sent by any company and say nothing about the brand itself. An example of a generic email subject would be: “This Weekend – 4 T-Shirts For £50!”
As any search marketing agency will tell you, keywords used in promotional messages are paramount. While the subject above might drive sales in the short term, because it is loaded with urgency, it is not brand-specific at all. In the long term, many of the people who open it and buy from you will only do so again when you have a similar sale.
2. Consider Personalising Your Subject Lines
In addition to sounding generic, the vast majority of email marketing strategies are impersonal and treat recipients as a collective. However, when done appropriately, sending an email which addresses the recipient in the subject line makes it seem warmer, more considerate and like you have formed a strong bond with them already.
“Let’s face it, everyone loves the sound of their own name,” says Olivia Allen, an inbound marketing consultant at Bluleadz. “Adding recipient names adds a feeling of rapport.”
She suggests using subject lines like: “Jane Doe, we really wanted to share our new ___ with you”
3. Don’t Be Afraid of Calculated Risks
From time to time, it is important to take a gamble with your subject line in order to stand out from the crowd. While the world of email marketing is filled with risk aversion, it pays to take the occasional calculated risk and come up with an email subject that is both very unusual, but presents an on-brand message. If you are unsure about which type of phrases your audiences respond well to, speak to your marketing department or your search engine consultants.
“The key to continued, on-brand success is to continuously and progressively explore the semantic variant space that exists within subject line language,” explains Parry Malm, the CEO of Phrasee, writing for Econsultancy. “There’s no such thing as boring brands – but there is such a thing as a boring subject line.”
About the Author
Christelle Macri is the founder of Ebizpromotion, a leading SEO company in Berkshire, with a no-nonsense and ethical approach to digital marketing. She is also at a search marketing agency with over 17 years of experience in the internet advertising industry. Having worked for a major search engine and pioneering pay for performance advertising networks, she is an expert at turning her clients’ websites into consistent revenue streams, using a variety of digital channels.