Jack "Straight Talk" Sarlo

"10 Powerful Ways To Write Subject Lines That Get Opened Every Time!"

Apply these 10 ideas when you’re writing email subject lines to write them faster, easier and better.

Let’s get straight to the point with the first idea.

Keep it short and to the point

It’s important that your subject line is short, approximately 50 characters or less. If it’s too long email clients like for example Gmail will cut it off and display it with ellipsis “….” like this:

  • A Simple And Powerful Technique To Remove Weed From ….

If it fits completely it will be displayed in full like this:

  • Simple Technique To Remove Weed From Your Garden!

You can test an email after you write it. Send a test email to yourself, and make sure the entire subject line is visible in your inbox. If it’s too long try rewriting the subject line a bit.

Consider Personalization

People like to be addressed by their first name. It’s the sweetest thing they can hear. You can use their name in the subject line.

Do not use their first name in all emails you send. Do it occasionally, perhaps once in every 6 emails you send.

For example:

  • Danielle, I was so embarrassed when this happened.
  • Elaine, a mistake I can’t believe I made.

Also keep in mind that the subject line will get longer if you add their first name.

Therefore use it in email subject lines that aren’t too long, to keep it at about 50 characters or less.

Subject line should match email content

This may sound obvious but it’s worth mentioning. Try to write a subject line that’s related to the content of your email as much as possible.

Don’t try to use false promises or misleading subject lines to get them to open your email.

For example, if you use this subject line:

  • Open Immediately, Urgent!

Make sure your email is really providing important information that requires their urgent attention. If the email is not relevant wit the subject line over time they’ll start to ignore your emails.

Numbers work well

You may want to insert a number in your subject line.

For example:

  • 10 Items you should not put in your compost pile
  • 3 Supplements to help your plants grow stronger

These emails are also the easiest to write. It’s basically a list of 3, 5, 7 (whatever number you choose) different things.

[Brackets] and (Parentheses) also work really well. They make your subject lines stand out in your subscriber’s inboxes and draw their attention.

For example:

  • [3 Weeks Free Coaching] Are you missing these 3 things?
  • [Pic Inside] Create High-Converting Graphics Fast!
  • [ARE YOU IN?] Find joy and success as a Dog Trainer
  • VIDEO (FREE) – This Could Save Your Dog’s Life
Once again remember to not overuse this technique or it will lose its effectiveness. Use a bracket, parentheses or number once in a while, maybe once in every 4 or 5 emails.

Use sentence or title case

Ideally, you want to use sentence case for your subject lines, especially if your subject line looks like a sentence.

This means you capitalize just the first letter of the first word as if you’re writing a sentence.

For example:

  • How to remove weed from your garden

Use title case if your subject line looks more like a headline.

For example:

  • Presentations: 8 Mistakes Everyone Makes
  • Tough Economy: 8 Marketing Truisms

Build an email subject line swipe file.

You probably subscribed to a lot of different lists and receive emails from different marketers.

Take a look at your inbox each day and if you notice any interesting subject lines copy and save them somewhere, perhaps in a notepad file.

Start building a collection of interesting subject lines. When you need to write your own you can “copy” or model one of these subject lines!

In my complete email marketing strategy guide you can find 39 fill in the blank email subject line templates.

Here are some subject line templates:

A newsworthy subject line!

Most people check their emails to see what’s NEW. Newsworthy emails that reveal something new are opened quickly!

So this is one type of email you can write, for example:

  • New studies show indoor plants need more water

The “how to…” subject line.

This is the most common subject line. It’s simple but it’s very powerful. This subject line is easy to write.

People want to learn a lot of things, a ‘How To’ subject line appeals to almost everybody.

For example:

  • Jim, how to get the advantage in your next interview.
  • Russell, how to write quality content in half the time.
  • Tim, how to play the guitar like a pro in 30 days.

The “myth” subject line.

People love to know the real truth. They love to know what the majority of people don’t know. That’s why “myth” subject lines work well – they arouse their curiosity and interest, they want to know these “myths”.

For example:

  • Paul, 5 myths about great guitar players.
  • Dave, common myths about growing rose bushes.
  • Sandra, 3 costly myths about choosing laser printers.

The “social proof” subject line.

Social proof is a very powerful tool because it builds trust.

People trust and believe what others say about your product way more than what you say about it.

You can write an email subject line like these:

  • Sophie, see what 1,239 regular folks have to say about this…
  • Amelia, the reviews are in… I’m stunned.
  • Todd, can all these people be wrong about this?

You can use testimonials just about anywhere, even in your emails.

Finally, remember that in most cases you should write the subject line after you write the email (not before). 

It will be way more easy to write the subject line when you have the entire email written.

Writing a subject line should take a lot of your time. 

Just write a good one, as best as you possible can and don’t worry about it anymore. Don’t spend days to write a subject line.

It should take you about 10-20 minutes, and after your skill improves (with practice) you’ll be able to do it in 5 minutes or less.

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About Jack
Jack Sarlo

More than 7 years ago Jack made his first few sales online as an affiliate marketer. His site ranked on Google for dozens of keywords, so later on, he built courses and software to teach his SEO "secrets". He also won a Flip Camera in an affiliate contest.

Now he reveals all the insights he's discovered throughout the years about Internet marketing, in his free guides and products!

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