Question: What’s persuasive, attention grabbing and short?
You’d be forgiven if you thought the answer’s Tyrion, given my recent obsession with Game of Thrones.
Forgiven, but not correct.
The correct answer, folks, is: an email subject line.
And it’s the secret to getting emails opened.
There are 3 reasons why someone opens an email:
- They just bought/downloaded something and want the goods
- They know the sender
- The subject line persuades them
So, if you haven’t just sold something and you’re not well-known to the audience, the only thing standing between your audience and them reading the email is whether the subject line compels them enough to clickety-click (I have a set of 20 subject line formulas coming up for you – stay tuned).
A persuasive subject line is like a good headline … but better
Better because it has to be short, has to grab attention, and has to compel the recipient to click.
And there are 2 ways to do this.
Way number 1 is to talk benefits.
What’s in it for them? What result will they get when they’ve read the email?
When I emailed this article to the awesome folks who subscribed to receive updates from me, I used this subject line:
How to increase your email open rate by 30%
It clearly communicates a benefit – to an audience who wants to use copy to achieve a result in their business.
Way number 2 is to create curiosity
The brain is wired to close the loop on any story. We can’t help but want to know the answer.
It’s why movie trailers work so well, and why the victim of an affair goes on a painful hunt for the details of every email, text or Facebook message exchange.
We just want to know the answer.
So using words like secret, hidden and little known in the subject line will create curiosity.
If it’s a secret or I can’t easily get to it, then I want to know the answer on how to do those things – so I’ll open the email.
Also try: asking a question. Our brains naturally want to know the answer, like, now.
See the headline for this article – it asks a question you want to know the answer to. It could just have easily been used for the subject line in an email.
So there you have it.
2 ways to write a subject line that gets emails opened.
The thing to do now is … start practicing:
Write the email subject line saying exactly what the email’s saying (I’ll show you two ways to write a persuasive email subject line). You won’t be using this as a subject line – it just focuses your thoughts.
Rewrite it to make it benefit driven (How to guarantee every email you send is opened)
Rewrite it to create curiosity (The secret to writing email subject lines that most people don’t know)
Remember to keep it short (65 characters or less) because … size matters.
Just ask Tyrion.
As a bonus, I’ve compiled 20 subject lines you can use right now to increase your email open rate. Enter your email address below and grab em: