The sheer number of emails sent and received nowadays means that inboxes are constantly filling up with little time to read all the mail. With so much activity in our inboxes, the only way to get your email read and acted upon is by making sure it stands out. Your email must grab the recipient’s attention as soon as their eyes alight on it. And the only way you can get the reader’s attention is by writing a perfect subject line.
Basically, your subject line is the most important part of your email. It is what determines whether the recipient will read or discard your mail.
When writing a subject line, ask yourself if what you are writing would drive you to open the email if you were the recipient? If you realize that the subject line is not exciting enough to whet your appetite, rest assured the recipient will not bother too.
Nowadays, phishing and spamming has become a common occurrence. As a result, the average person is wary of suspicious-looking emails with ambiguous subject lines. Writing a subject line that walks or smells anything close to a scam will get your mail trashed immediately.
So, how do you create a subject line that will nudge the reader to read your mail?
Start by realizing that you are writing to an actual person who will receive the email. Now, put yourself in their shoes. Assume the recipient is a busy person with little time to spare, so, why would they open and read your email?
Most people who write and send emails tend to add the subject line as an afterthought. If this is how you write your emails, chances are high that they get trashed as soon as they show up in the recipient’s inbox and you keep wondering why your efforts go unnoticed.
According to Amanda Augustine, a career expert at TopResume, the subject line should come first. Starting with the subject sets the tone for the rest of the email.
In addition, you need to keep the subject line short, sweet, and descriptive. Why? Because normally an inbox displays about 60 characters of the subject line. A mobile device shows less, probably half of the characters. In order to get it right, consider limiting your subject line to six or eight words.
Since an increasing number of people are reading their mail from mobile devices, limiting yourself to about six words would be ideal as you do not know how much of the subject line will be displayed on their devices.
Apart from keeping it short and sweet, your subject line should be direct and descriptive such as the following for seasonal offers “Sizzling summer giveaways”. The subject line describes the benefits the reader will derive from reading the email without sounding spammy. It will hook the recipient and whet their curiosity, leading them to open the email to know more about the giveaways.
Now that you know how to write great subject lines and why they are the most important part of your email, get down to drafting killer emails.