Killer headlines make your emails stand out amongst inbox clutter and entice recipients to open them. Good headlines generate interest and drive purchases, signups, digital downloads, video views, and a slew of desired actions. So how do you write email headlines that don’t suck? I’m glad you asked…
Use Action-Oriented Language
Action-oriented language gets people moving, which really shouldn’t come as a surprise to anyone. To break through the apathy, use strong exciting language to garner more opens and get people to engage with your email contents.
Bad headline: “Personalized Soccer Jerseys”
Good headline: “Get ready for Soccer Season in Style”
You’ve heard about the cat, right? Well, it turns out people and cats have something in common, which is why people can’t help but open headlines that make them curious. Pique the interest of your subscribers by making them curious with your headlines.
Bad headline: “Patterned Sun Dresses on Sale”
Good headline: “Does Your Closet Have this Summer Staple?”
Accurately Describe Email Contents
Nothing is worse than getting an email, reading the subject line, being interested in what it’s offering, and then opening an email only to discover that the contents fall short of your expectations. In these cases it’s easy to feel lied to or at least misled. Don’t break promises to your subscribers! Instead, make sure that your subject lines match the email content and don’t set expectations that you can’t meet. Translation – don’t over exaggerate the content inside an email.
Bad headline: “This is Definitely the Best Purchase You’ll Ever Make!”
Good headline: “Irresistible Deals – All Under $40”
Letting subscribers know that the contents of an email are time sensitive can get you an open even when recipients don’t have much time to spend checking their email. (But beware! Creating a false sense of urgency is like having a subject line that doesn’t match the email contents, which means that recipients can get annoyed and start distrusting your communications.) You don’t want to get too carried away with this strategy, but creating some urgency can improve email engagement metrics across the board.
Bad headline: “We Mean It This Time! Just 1 More Hour to Shop Sale Prices!”
Good headline: “Only 1 Day Left – Register Now for Early Bird Pricing”
Don’t Use Emojis
Emojis have no place in email subjects; and yet, I still see companies using them. Stop using them! Seriously, stop.
Bad headline: “✎ Write This Down! Save Big Bucks 💵 Every Saturday!❤”
Good headline: … any other headline
Kate Pierce is the owner of LionShark Digital Marketing LLC, a West Michigan internet marketing company. Her areas of expertise include Paid Search, Search Engine Optimization, Business Blogging and Web Copywriting. She lives in the Grand Rapids area with her husband and son and enjoys cooking, watching sports, and spending time together as a family. Like a true digital marketing expert (i.e. geek), she loves talking about current marketing trends… so don’t say you weren’t warned!