Creating Effective Email Subject Lines

One of the most attention-grabbing elements of any email marketing effort is the subject line of the emails that the company is sending to its subscribers.

In fact, over 30% of all email recipients tend to open the email they received solely based on the subject lines they see.

Having a great and attention-grabbing subject line can mean the difference between an email that immediately gets deleted and an email that immediately gets opened.

On the other hand, with a bad subject line companies won’t be able to stand out from a crowded email inbox folder, no matter how good the content of the email itself is.


Most consumers don’t want to feel like they’re a statistic to the businesses they purchase from.

One of the ways that they can tell that they’re simply a number on a list is when they receive a generic email that addresses the customer as “dear customer”, which is generally not going to be interesting to them.

According to research, emails that have personalized subject lines tend to improve their open rates by over 20%, and companies that include the name of the recipient inside the subject line can increase their open rates by about 15%.

That means companies should be addressing their email recipients by their name or even their role inside of the business.

They can also include interesting details that are going to grab the attention of the recipient by including special events, their purchase history or interests, or even their location.

Short and Concise

Most of the popular email clients have a specific limit on the number of characters they can display inside an email subject line.

That means if a company creates a subject line that’s too long, it’s going to get cut off at some point and the recipients won’t be able to see the entire message.

The best way to avoid that is to keep the email subject lines to 50 characters or less so that even if the subject line gets cut off at some point, the recipients will still understand the point of the email they’re receiving.


According to studies, using a question in the email subject line tends to increase open rates by over 10% for companies.

This is mainly because questions tend to tap into the natural curiosity of people, and when a subscriber sees a question in an email subject line, it makes them want to know the answer to that question.

Using questions is also a great way for companies to add more personalization's to their email campaigns, and make it seem like they are speaking directly to their subscribers.

Ronn Torossian is the Founder & Chairman of 5W Public Relations, one of the largest independently-owned PR firms in the United States.

With over 20 years of experience crafting and executing powerful narratives, Torossian is one of America’s most prolific and well-respected Public Relations professionals.




Ronn Torossian is Chairman & Founder of 5WPR & one of America’s most notable PR executives. He is the Author of best-selling PR book, “For Immediate Release.“

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Ronn Torossian

Ronn Torossian

Ronn Torossian is Chairman & Founder of 5WPR & one of America’s most notable PR executives. He is the Author of best-selling PR book, “For Immediate Release.“

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