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7 Subject Line Formulas That Will Get Your Email Marketing Noticed

Creative email marketing to get your brand noticed


The subject line of your email marketing is the first experience your customer has of you – so you need to engage them, and fast! In a world where there are distractions at every turn, if you don’t make your emails captivating and engaging, you may as well not bother.

To help improve the success rate of your emails we’ve put together our top 7 subject line formula’s that you can use to engage your audiences and drive results!


1. The question subject line

Questions are great because they prompt the reader to question themselves, and any time you get them thinking about something means you’ve got their attention.

The best types of questions to ask will connect with the customer and their experiences, as well as get them to want to know more.

Examples of this might be:

Do you need coffee to function?
Are you unable to start the day without checking your notifications too?


2. The ‘How to’ subject line

Copywriters will know you can’t have a bad headline which starts with how-to, and this also applies to emails.

The how-to method works so well because you’re forced to describe the email marketing content clearly and concisely. For example:

How to get your emails read by more people
How to improve your Instagram account with three changes

What’s important with this method is to focus on the result and benefit, not the method. Show people what they will get, not what they’ll have to do to get it.


3. The shortage subject line

People are always more prompted to act if they feel pressured, and this is where this type of email headline comes in.

For example:

Get in quick! 20% off ends tomorrow
The six-hour sale is ON NOW

Highlighting how important the event/sale is the key here, because if the customer has no intention of shopping with you they aren’t going to care about how long the sale is. The offer needs to be important to them, and this is done through good tracking and using targeted email marketing segments.


4. The announcement subject line

Highlighting your new releases in your emails shows your customers you are bringing new things to the table, and that content is not going to be stale. Just by using words like ‘new’ and ‘introducing’ you can increase your open rates by up to 10 per cent!


5. The number subject line

Breaking your content down to a numbered list is one way to show people you’ve simplified content for them, as well as gives good structure to your email.


For example, email marketing headings like:

7 ways you can save money in Sydney
9 steps to get you fit this winter

One thing to remember with this type of email headline is remembering what you’re selling. If you want someone to go through a step process, a lower number is going to keep them from thinking it’s too much work. Alternatively, if you have an offer a bigger number shows more value.


6. The surprise subject line

Using surprise in your subject line is a good way to get the attention of a customer, especially when you know they already have so many things fighting for their consideration. Studies have even shown when there are unexpected surprises they light up the pleasure centers of the brain.

You could use some headings like:

Beware: Items left in online shopping cart soon to be devoured by piranhas
How The Beatles can help your social media marketing

It’s important to remember to keep surprising the customers, so don’t resort to the same formula each time.


7. The personalised subject line

Adding the personal touch to your email marketing subjects is a good way to get the attention of your customer, and helps make them feel like you’re connecting with them individually.

Not only that, but you can combine this tactic with others. For example:

Get in quick, Sam! 20% off ends tomorrow
Mark, here’s 7 ways you can save money in Sydney 



Whether you want to get better ROI on email marketing campaigns, or support help building automated emails to regularly engage your customers our email marketing services, delivered by an experienced, local team can help.

GDR has worked with businesses across Australia, and can deliver a tailored email marketing strategy for you.


We’d love to help!

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