Subject Lines In Email Marketing – How To Get It Right

Email marketing is one of the most important yet misunderstood tools for marketers today. It’s a fast-paced world and many people struggle to keep a schedule, stay in the know and achieve all they need to get done in a single day. So, if it’s news, updates, tips and tricks, special offers, or even wind-down activities your audience wants and needs, this information and the most efficient way to get it to them, is in their inbox. When they sign up for this service, you know from the get-go exactly what they are interested in.  After that, it’s all about getting them to engage and the way to do that is to craft the perfect subject line. Here are some dos and don’ts.

Don’t Apologise
Remember they asked for this information. And, yes, it is part of your marketing strategy, making sure you keep in touch, so that your brand is top of mind whenever they need to reach out for a product or service that you provide; but you promised them value.  They willingly signed up for this regular communication, so approach your subject line with confidence. They do want what’s in the email – you just have to tell them that.  As long as you don’t repeat yourself, overwhelm them with irrelevant information or over communicate, you’ll keep your subscribers!

Don’t Deceive
This one should go without saying, but if times become desperate, some marketers need to be reminded: Don’t make promises you can’t keep.  Even suggesting that something might be up for grabs that you can’t deliver, will create bad faith between you and your client. Remember – trust is paramount. They gave you their contact details and they are giving you precious time from their busy day – don’t waste it being fake or disingenuous.

Don’t Guess
Don’t guess, TEST! There are certain words that SPAM filters pick up on that can have your emails sent straight to junk. As scammers and spammers get more and more advanced, these words will change.  To ensure that your email is not caught up in this net, use a tool such as to find out if your email contains spam and how to fix it.

Some subject line words to avoid:

Boost sales

What are you waiting for?



While supplies last





And now, some dos!

Do Include Video
Who doesn’t love a quick video?  Something you can watch and listen to while you have a snack or a cup of tea, that also provides value, entertainment or important information. When your audience signs up for your newsletter, they are expecting all of this, so don’t hide it away as a “surprise” at the end – lead with the fact that you have some great content for them. They might be more likely to open up that email.

Do Be Quirky
We never want to alienate our audience, so using terms they don’t understand or jargon they might not be familiar with, will put them off.  Confusing them in a way that is friendly and light-hearted is a great tactic to get them to click on your email. Asking a fun question that they definitely want to know the answer to or telling them what they are about to see is wild and interesting, is the perfect type of information to go in a subject line. Also -don’t be afraid to use emoji’s – a meaningful little icon to really pique the interest of your audience.

Do Create FOMO
Fear Of Missing Out is real. No matter who you are, no matter what your industry or interests – no one wants to say that an opportunity has passed them by. Let your audience know that you have something special and because you know that so many people will want in on the action, you need them to act now. Be assertive and use words that will compel them to connect with your brand and make use of your products or services. Tell them what they need and then show them that you can provide it for them.

Here are a few more tips:

Jill Konrath

Tips for effective subject lines Keap

Nucleus Vision Digital and Design Legends
A full-service Marketing and Design Agency