A  happy marketing analyst, arms raised, who successfully beat her email marketing open rate goal
PHOTO: Adobe

Subject lines are the first thing recipients will see in their inbox. According to Invesp, 47% of email recipients open an email based on the subject line. If the subject line doesn't do its job, your recipients won't ever see the message. The subject line is an important aspect of email marketing because it needs to grab the recipient's attention and compel them to open your message, leading to a sale or conversion.

Not only does your subject line need to be compelling it also needs to align with the content of the message you are sending. A good subject line should grab attention and make the reader want more. Shorter is better for emails because you want your message to come across quickly. 

While there is no one-size-fits-all strategy for crafting the perfect email subject line that will work every time, there are some guidelines and tricks that can help you get started and improve your chances of getting through to recipients' inboxes. We asked the experts to understand subject lines better, and they shared these 6 tips with us.  

Personalize Your Subject Line 

This goes beyond adding the recipient's first name to the subject line but actually segment your email lists and personalize your emails — and the subject lines — to that person's interests.

If someone, for example, is interested in a service that you sell, and you're emailing them a resource with multiple services, call out the service that they're interested in in the subject line to catch their eye.

Use Emojis When Relevant

While whether or not using emojis depends on your industry and brand personality, sending an emoji here and there will definitely add some spice your recipients' inboxes. In an ocean of bland emails, a clever emoji will immediately catch your recipient's attention. "Emojis add some variety to subject lines and stand out nicely on mobile. If your brand has a conversational tone of voice, adding emojis can help you," shared Adam Fingerman, CXO at San Francisco, CA.-based ArcTouch. He also mentioned that his company had seen an increase in click and open rates since they started using them.

Don't Make It About Yourself

If one thing is true, emails should always add value to the relationship you have with the recipient. "You need to strike a common ground early so you can start generating value. Whether the goal is to get them to book an appointment or just to touch base for a later call, you don't want to be caught up in self-advertising," shares Reuben Yonatan, CEO at Manhasset, NY.-based GetVoIP. A good email should give something to the reader. If you start selling straight from the subject line, you risk damaging the relationship you have with that person.

A/B Test Your Subject Lines

A/B testing is always a no-brainer, as it removes the guesswork from your email marketing strategy. You can always try a few subject lines to find the one that resonates the most. "A/B testing is one of the best ways of getting data about information about things you have never tried before. This creates a better marketing experience for your users and also delivers quality results," said Jamil Aziz, Lead Digital Marketer at Hong Kong, Hong Kong-based PureVPN. Data-driven email marketing will give your business the best results and give you new insights and perspectives regarding your users. 

Be Transparent

We shouldn't have to say this, but don't promise something in a subject line that the recipient won't receive. Deceptive subject lines might boost your open rates and give you a few more clicks but will damage your reputation in the long run. Don't lie to your recipients about what's inside your email. Keep your subject line short and sweet, and the interested recipients will open it and be glad they did. 

Keep The Subject Lines Short

According to research from AWeber, most subject lines are 44 characters long on average, which makes sense considering most desktop email clients only display approximately 60 characters before a subject line gets cut off. Keep the subject line short but actionable. There's a fine line between making subject lines short and keeping your audience guessing about what is actually inside the email. While there's not a precise number of words you have to use, if it's too short, it may not have enough information for people to care about it, but if it's too long, they won't even bother reading it.

If you want to maximize your email marketing efforts, you must have a subject line that will interest the reader and compel them to open your message. The best way to craft a subject line is by testing different variations and seeing what works the best for your audience. 

Once you've found something that gets opened more often, try tweaking it just slightly with color or adding an emoji to see if you can get even better results. Try the tips above and implement them to grab your recipient's attention. 

Consider Your Experience

And of course, use your own experience. Think about your own inbox and the messages that grab your attention and the ones you skip, and then use those insights to write more effective subject lines.