How Your Subject Line is Killing Your Email Campaign [INFOGRAPHIC]

When it comes to your email marketing campaign, do you know the one thing that could make or break it?

Here’s a hint: It’s not the offer you make.

That certainly is important when it comes to email marketing best practices.

However, 69% of your audience might mark the email as spam without opening it to even see the incentive.

email subject line - spam GIF


It’s simple – you didn’t spend enough time working on the email subject line.

If someone catches a whiff of spam in the subject line, at best that email is deleted immediately.

At worst, your email is reported as spam.

In the infographic below by 99firms, you will learn email marketing tips that can improve your open rates by working on your subject line.

The good news is that abiding by email subject line best practices means you probably just need to make a few tweaks.

Let’s have a look at the adjustments in more detail and check out a few email subject line examples.

email subject line - subject line animation
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Personalized Email Subject Lines

It is hard for your recipients to feel special when it is clear that they are one of a few thousand on a list.

Just as there’s a psychology to SEO, so too does tapping into customers’ minds matter for your email marketing.

Don’t make the mistake of sending out emails with generic subject lines.

Instead, use a marketing email subject line that’s tailored to your audience.

There are a lot of software out there that allow you to personalize them more easily.

email subject line - Campaign Monitor

For example, Campaign Monitor includes an email marketing subject line personalization feature that easily allows you to insert tags.

Whether that’s their first name or generic fallback terms (e.g. “tech-head”), these tags automatically fill in the relevant data in your email subject lines.

email subject line - personalization tags

When recipients see their name or other personalized detail in your emails, they’ll more inclined to open them.

Even if you are not going to use the person’s name, mention something that is relevant to them.

For example, you could use dates that matter to them, like their birthday or anniversary.

email subject line - birthday and anniversary emails

Among the top-performing birthday messages, subject line examples include:

  • “A special gift for your Birthday”
  • “Happy Birthday from [Company]”
  • “Your special Birthday Bonus”

Email Best Practices Indicate Keep It Really Short

This should be basic common sense – people’s time is valuable to them.

If you waste it by creating a long email subject line, they are going to assume that the email is just as much of a waste of time.

Then it will go in the trash.

email subject line - character count
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According to CoSchedule, the ideal length of a marketing email subject line is just 17-24 characters.

Often, this means using only 3-5 words.

email subject line - word count
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There’s no one-size-fits-all solution here, though.

A/B test your email subject line length to determine which yields the best open rates.

Here’s A Tip: Try Using An Emoji in Your Email Marketing Subject Lines

This is one to use with caution.

Are your subscribers likely to use emojis or are they more serious?

If the former, add one or two emojis (maximum) to the email subject line.

email subject line - emoji GIF

Do remember that while you are going for a more informal email style, this is a business email.

Too many emojis in your marketing email subject line can create the wrong picture.

Best practices for email marketing with emojis include keeping it relevant and A/B testing with email subject lines that don’t use an emoji.

Through testing, you can determine if the use of emojis actually boosts open rate.

email subject line - top emojis
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You can also test which emojis in your email subject lines are the most effective.

Consider these email subject line examples that use emojis for your next campaign:

email subject line - emoji examples
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Just keep in mind that emojis appear differently across platforms.

Make sure whichever ones you choose not only show up, but also look the way that you’d want in your email subject lines.

Our main email marketing tip when it comes to your subject line?

Think about what your recipient will respond to and work around that.

Ready for more email optimization hacks?

Check out the infographic below.

email subject line - infographic

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