Email Marketing

How To Write Unforgettable Email Marketing Subject Lines | 10 Tried-Strategies


If you think that email marketing is dying and social media marketing has totally taken over the modern world of advertising, think again.

Companies still continue investing in email marketing, as they clearly consider it to be a rather effective way to reach their audience. According to Statista, last year 40% of the companies increased their email marketing budgets and over 45% decided to maintain them.

Email marketing still has great potential, and our experts at SeedX often get asked for email marketing tips that increase sales. One of the easiest ways to increase your sales it to make sure your email open rates are above average. The best way to increase your open rate is to write amazing email subject lines. 

The right subject line can make or break your email. Reportedly, 35% of email recipients open emails based on the subject line alone and if you include the first name of the recipient into the subject line, it gives you almost 100% guarantee that your email will be opened.

But what makes a good subject line good? How can you enhance your subject lines to boost your marketing campaign?

Let’s take a look at 10 best email subject lines and analyze them for a better understanding of how they work.

#1 Subject lines that generate a feeling of urgency

One time I was shopping online at the King Arthur Flour website, but something distracted me and I forgot to confirm the purchase. In a few hours, I got an email with a subject line “The timer on your cart is almost off!”

That’s the best call-to-action subject line I’ve seen over the past several months. What makes it so great? It provokes the feeling of urgency.

How can you apply this to the needs of your own business?

1 – Use time-sensitive phrases: make your recipients feel pressure (a mild one) to act (that is to click on your email). Write a time-sensitive subject line to create a sense of urgency:

“Hurry up! 24 hours left to register!”

“Act fast and save 30% off your favorite products.”

“Limited time only: 50% off your first-time purchase”

2 – Create a sense of scarcity: exploit your customers’ fear of missing out. Let them know that there’s a limited time offer on certain products or services by putting the following into your subject line:

“We know you love our planners. But there are few left in stock.”

“Special offer: limited time collection”

“Get it before it’s gone!”

3 – Capitalize: it’s acceptable to use capital letters in the subject lines. But capitalization should be used only when your subject line is longer than 5 words. Short subject lines in capital letters are often perceived as spam. Here are some examples of how to use it right:

“LAST CHANCE: 30% off your first purchase”

“SALE EXTENDED: get the items from the last collection!”

“ARE YOU SERIOUS: 50% off the first item in your cart!”

#2 Subject lines that contain free offers

Who doesn’t like free stuff, right? Subject lines that contain free offers will keep your subscribers happy and engaged. The level of customer engagement will rise, which will also contribute to higher click-through rates.

Sometimes businesses hesitate to use the word “free” in the subject line, fearing that this may be a sign of spam. However, according to MailUp, messages that contain a subject line with the word “free” still have good click-through rates.

Image credit: MailUp

A subject line that contains the word “free” in it also has other benefits. Email marketing is relatively inexpensive, but it’s still a pretty good way to generate a higher return on investment. The median email marketing ROI is 122%, but you can generate an even higher ROI with free email offers.

Here are some examples of email subject lines containing free offers:

#3 Subject lines based personalization

Using personalization is the biggest trend in the modern-day marketing, as it greatly contributes to the customer journey.

So why not use personalization in email marketing as well?

Personalized email messages improve click-through rates by 14% on average and increase customer engagement. When subscribers see their names in the subject line, this creates a sense of belonging and a trustworthy relationship between a company and a subscriber.

You can use either just a first name of your subscriber or a full name, based on your company’s corporate culture and approach to the clients. Here are some examples:

#4 Subject lines that contain punctuation marks

Line capitalization, punctuation marks are also a great way to increase click-through rates. Including them in the subject line can also bring you more subscribers, as punctuation marks in the subject lines help your emails stand out.

Although punctuation marks are a great addition to email subject lines. They can be easily overused and will make your emails look like spam. There’s no need to overfill your email subject lines with punctuation marks – put them only if they can make your email subject line more engaging.

Want to see some examples of good email subject lines with punctuation marks? Here you go:

#5 Subject lines that contain emoji

People, who work with a lot of entrepreneurs, aren’t used to put emoji in the email subject lines, because it’s not just how business communication works. And I completely support this idea, but when it comes to marketing and advertising through email, things look a little bit different.

Email boxes get a little bit overcrowded, which makes your email vanish among similar promotions and advertisements. By using emojis, you create a new way to attract the attention of your customers and engage them. Nevertheless, like with punctuation marks, emoji isn’t something that you can use without limits. Too many emoji in your email subject line turn your message into spam.

When used right, emoji in email subject lines bring a lot of benefits, like:

– Improving click-through rates;

– Improving brand awareness and brand visibility;

– Engaging smartphone users;

– Making your email subject lines more expressive.

Here are some examples:

#6 Subject lines that contain news and recent topics

People want to read emails that contain valuable information. If they follow your business for a while and are your loyal customers, email subject lines with the latest news from your company will be of a great interest to them.

Let’s say you own an online coffee shop. An update about any price changes, new products, and services is what your subscribers are here for. You can also include breaking news in the subject line, notifying your subscribers about the most important updates. It’s also nice to include some promotions as a way to thank your customers for reading your updates.

#7 Subject lines that give practical advice

Once I was looking for information about the WordPress comments section, but there was no relevant information on the Internet. And to my surprise, I found the article from WordPress in my email box on the topic that I needed exactly! Here it is:

Sending your subscribers emails with a subject line that offers practical advice brings benefits both to them and to you. They get what they want to learn about, and you get higher click-through rates! These emails aren’t promotional, they are just a great way to communicate with your subscribers about the things you are interested in. It’s a positive contribution to customer engagement that will bring you more loyal subscribers.

Here are a couple more examples:

#8 Storytelling subject lines

The importance of storytelling in the modern-day marketing is undeniable: if you want to ensure brand relevance, storytelling format should be throughout all your content. The same is with email subject lines: storytelling format allows you to make them more appealing.

Storytelling is a great way to engage your subscribers: from the very first glimpse at your email subject line they will want to open your message to fulfill their thirst for more knowledge.

Also, a great tip to include some mystery or understatement into your subject line, like here:

#9 Subject lines that contain announcements

If you’re opening a new shop nearby, send an email about it to your subscribers, and you’ll get incredible click-through rate! Subscribers love to find out about the upcoming events, and emails with subject lines describing various announcements are always a big win!

No matter what it is, whether it’s a new shop opening or a new collection dropping, a subject line that has an event announcement in it will definitely get opened.

#10 Humorous subject lines

And to top our list of 10 best email subject lines, it’s necessary to mention that humorous subject lines are always immensely successful! Why are they so popular?

– they are catchy;

– these emails are engaging;

– they provoke positive thinking;

– thus, they contribute to the positive customer experience.

Just look at this email I got from KFC:

This kind of humorous greeting will definitely benefit your business, as you express positive feelings about inviting new members to your club. By all means, make your subject lines less serious, when it’s applicable. You subscribers will only benefit from that.

Is your email subject line a game-changer?

You need to be more creative with your subject lines, that’s for sure. As a user, I can tell you that there’s nothing more boring than a dull subject line that flies straight to the “Spam” folder. Hopefully, our selection of 10 best email subject lines will get you inspired to improve your email marketing to get you more new subscribers and turn your existing ones into loyal customers. Be helpful to your subscribers and bring them some value!