Tips for Writing Effective Email Marketing Subject Lines

Email Marketing: The Subject Matters

Email marketing is a highly effective tactic to gain attention to your brand. But without an engaging subject line, your email marketing campaign won’t get your very far. Proforma offers these tips to help you craft a subject line that will capture an audience and hopefully increase your open rates.

5 Tips for Email Marketing Subject Line

1.) Keep it short! CoSchedule studied a variety of email campaigns and found that more than 50% of emails are opened on mobile devices, limiting the number of characters that will be shown. Galaxy phones show about 33 characters and iPhones show 35-38 characters. The best practice is to ensure your entire subject will show up no matter what device your reader is using. For best results, keep your subject line to 3-5 words with a maximum of 25 characters.

2.) Give it some authority. By that, we mean write it in title case. Capitalize Each Word In Your Subject Line For Best Results. To the reader, this captures the eye and projects a sense of authority. It’s proven true with more than a 4% better open rate than sentence-structured subject lines according to the CoSchedule study.

3.) Add a number or an emoji. The reason for this is simple. It catches the eye. If your inbox is full of hundreds of unread emails, a number, picture or even a punctuation mark can capture your eye. It just takes that simple visual component to stand out from the crowd.

4.) Ask a question. Not only will the question mark help get your email noticed as mentioned above, but it will entice the reader, especially if it’s a question they want to know the answer to. And knowing your audience is a key aspect in any marketing campaign! But don’t ask the question if you are not prepared to share the answer in the opening paragraph of your email. The question will entice the reader to open it; the answer will inspire the click-through.

Posing a question, can also encourage the reader to stop and think – increasing the chance of an open and making your brand top of mind.

5.) Use a tactic like scarcity, surprise, mystery or humor. Anything that causes a reader to react with urgency, intrigue or laughter is a good thing, as long as it correlates well to the message of your email. Phrases to use for these types of subject lines include: Don’t Miss Out!, Last Chance, Surprise!, Just For You, You Fell For It, Your Marketing Sucks, No One Will Read This, etc. Know your audience, but for the most part, it is OK to be a little edgy and have fun with your email marketing.

Are You Ready to Increase Your Open Rates?

While all of these tips are great, the biggest thing to keep in mind when crafting your email subject line is to make sure it matches the information contained in the email. You don’t want to mislead your reader just to get a click-through. But if you are preparing an engaging marketing campaign, then the email subject line will just be the cherry on top. And if you are unsure of your subject line, test it out. You can always A/B test different subject lines to a portion of your recipients or you can use an online tool such as this free rating tool from

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