How To
8 min read

How To Write Effective Newsletter Subject Lines That Make Readers Open Emails

Reem Abouemera

July 26, 2022

Introduction

If you regularly send out newsletters, you know the struggle is real when it comes to thinking up new and interesting subject lines. You want something that will stand out in a crowded inbox, but you also don't want to be too gimmicky or come across as spammy.

The good news is that there are a few tried and true strategies you can use to write newsletter subject lines that will pique your readers' interest and get them to open your emails.

In this post, we'll share tips for writing irresistible newsletter subject lines, mistakes to avoid, types of newsletter subject lines, and some examples to get you inspired.

Tips to write a newsletter subject line

Let's begin with some tips for writing great newsletter subject lines!

Keep it short and to the point

The best newsletter subject lines are short, sweet, and to the point. You want to be clear about what your email is about so that readers know what to expect when they open it.

Aim for 60 characters or less (~7-9 words), and avoid using unnecessary words or fillers. For example, instead of writing "A quick update on the latest news from our company," you could say, "Company update: What's new?"

Include your organization’s name

Your recipients are more likely to open an email from an organization they're already familiar with. So, make sure to include your company name in the subject line.

This is especially important if you're sending emails to customers who may not be subscribed to your newsletter yet or have just subscribed. For example, you could use "Introducing: {Company Name}'s Newsletter."

Even after you've established a relationship with your subscribers, it can still be helpful to include your company name in the subject line from time to time. This way, they'll know right away who the email is from, and be more likely to open it.

Consider incorporating the month or date

If you send out newsletters regularly, your readers may start to become familiar with the format and know what to expect. To keep things fresh, try incorporating the month or date into your subject line.

This is a great way to make your email feel more timely and relevant. For example, you could use "March Newsletter: What's new at {Company Name}?" or "April Update: {Company Name}'s latest news."

The same applies to the date, where you can use "Monday, 09/06 Update: {Company Name}'s latest news." That way, your recipients will know that the email is new and relevant and will be more likely to open it since it's not something they've seen before.

Try to feature the topic of the newsletter

Another way to make your newsletter subject line more appealing is to feature the newsletter's topic. This way, readers will know exactly what they can expect when they open the email.

For example, if you're featuring a new product in your newsletter, you could use a subject line like "Introducing: {Company Name}'s Newest Product." Or, if you're sharing tips on saving energy, you could use "5 Tips to Save Energy This Spring."

Including the topic of your newsletter in the subject line is a great way to give readers a taste of what they can expect from the email, and the more compelling the topic, the more likely they are to open it.

Use action words

Action words are key in any marketing content, including newsletter subject lines. These types of words can help make your subject line more compelling and encourage readers to take action.

Some examples of action words include Introducing, announcing, launching, revealing, unveiling, and sharing. These words help create a sense of urgency and excitement around your email, encouraging readers to open it.

For example, if you've just launched a new hairstyler, the subject line "Introducing: The New Hair Straightener from {Company Name}" would be more likely to encourage readers to open the email than "The new hair straightener from {Company Name} is now available."

Including action words in your subject line is a great way to make it more appealing and encourage readers to take the next step.

Tell the time limits

If your offer is time-sensitive, include that information in the subject line. This way, readers will know they need to act fast to take advantage of it.

For example, you could use a subject line like "Only 3 Days Left: Save 20% on Your Energy Bill." This way, readers will know that they need to act quickly to get the discount.

Including time-sensitive information in your subject line is a great way to create a sense of urgency and encourage readers to take action. FOMO (fear of missing out) is a real thing, and by telling readers they need to act fast, you can tap into that fear and encourage them to open your email.

Ask a question

Asking a question in your subject line is a great way to pique readers' curiosity and get them to open your email. This is because people are naturally curious and want to know the answer to your question.

For example, you could use a subject line like "Are You Paying Too Much for Electricity?" or "Could You Be Saving Money on Your Energy Bill?" These types of questions are likely to get people's attention and encourage them to open the email to find out the answer.

They know that you have the answer to their question, and they want to know what it is. By asking a question in your subject line, you can tap into that curiosity and get people to open your email.

Types of newsletter subject lines

So those are some tips on how to write a great newsletter subject line. But what about the actual types of subject lines? Here are the most common ones.

Weekly newsletter

A weekly newsletter is a great way to keep your subscribers up-to-date on what's going on with your company. It's also a great way to share new offers and discounts.

To make sure your weekly newsletter stands out, try using a subject line specific to the week it's being sent out. For example, "This Week's Favs: Our Top 5 Products of the Week." 

This type of subject line is more likely to get people's attention than a generic one like "Our Weekly Newsletter."

Here are some example subject lines:

  • This Week's Favs: Our Top 5 Products of the Week
  • New this week: Exclusive discounts for subscribers
  • Weekly update: What's new at {Company Name}

As you can see, these subject lines are specific and tell readers what they can expect from the email. This is a great way to get people to open your weekly newsletter.

Seasonal newsletter

As its name implies, a seasonal newsletter is sent out during a specific season. This could be anything from summertime to the holiday season.

Seasonal newsletters are a great way to share new products, offers, and discounts relevant to the season. For example, if you're a clothing company, you could send out a summer newsletter with your latest swimwear collection.

To make sure your seasonal newsletter stands out, try using a subject line specific to the season. For example, "Summertime Favorites: Our Top 10 Products of the Season." This type of subject line is more likely to get people's attention than a generic one like "Our Seasonal Newsletter."

Here are some example subject lines:

  • Summertime Favorites: Our Top 10 Products of the Season
  • Seasonal update: What's new at {Company Name}
  • Winter wonderland: Our top 5 products of the season

Seasonal newsletters may not be sent as often as weekly ones, but that doesn't mean they can't be as effective. By using a season-specific subject line, you can make sure your newsletter stands out and gets opened.

B2B newsletter

B2B newsletters are different from other types of newsletters in that they're sent to businesses rather than individuals. As such, they tend to focus more on business-related topics, such as new products, industry news, and company updates.

To make sure your B2B newsletter stands out, try using a subject line specific to the type of business you're in and the topic of the email. 

For example, if you're announcing a new partnership with another company, you could use a subject line like "New Partnership Announcement: {Company Name} and {Your Company Name}."

Here are some example subject lines:

  • New Partnership Announcement: {Company Name} and {Your Company Name}
  • Industry Update: New Regulations for {Industry Name}
  • Company Update: {Your Company Name} Launches New Product Line

By using a specific and targeted subject line, B2B newsletters can be a great way to keep your business contacts up-to-date on what's going on with your company and industry at large.

Holiday newsletter

Holiday newsletters are some of the most opened and read emails. After all, who doesn't love getting holiday wishes from their favorite companies?

These newsletters are less about selling and more about spreading holiday cheer (and even if they involve a little selling, it's usually in the form of a holiday discount or sale).

To make sure your holiday newsletter stands out, try using a subject line that's specific to the holiday. For example, "Happy Thanksgiving from {Your Company Name}!" 

People are more likely to open an email with a holiday-specific subject line than a generic one.

Here are some example subject lines:

  • Merry Christmas from {Your Company Name}!
  • Happy New Year from {Your Company Name}!
  • Happy Easter from {Your Company Name}!

By being present and sending holiday greetings, you can show your customers and clients that you're thinking of them during these special times of the year!

Internal newsletter

Internal newsletters are sent to company employees rather than customers or clients. They can be used for various purposes, such as sharing company news, announcements, and updates. They can also be used to promote upcoming events or share employee recognition.

To best engage your employees, try using a subject line specific to the type of email you're sending. 

For example, if you're sharing about an employee recognition program, you could use a subject line like "Employee Recognition: {Name} is our Employee of the Month!"

Here are some example subject lines:

  • Company News: {Your Company Name} is expanding!
  • Announcement: Changes to the {Department Name} department
  • Promotion: {Name} is our new {Position Title}!
  • Event: Save the date for the {Your Company Name} holiday party!

Internal newsletters are a great way to keep your employees informed and engaged. By making your subject line relevant and specific, you can ensure that your newsletters are opened and read and that your company's news is disseminated in a timely manner.

Mistakes to avoid when writing a newsletter subject line

As with anything, there are a few mistakes to avoid when writing newsletter subject lines to prevent you from sounding spammy or unprofessional. Here's what you need to know.

Too promotional

A newsletter is a great way to promote your products or services, but you don't want to make your subject line too promotional. Not only will this turn people off, but it could also get your email marked as spam.

Instead, focus on providing value to your readers. For example, if you're promoting a new product, you could use a subject line like "Introducing the new {Product Name}: {Benefit}" instead of "Buy our new product now!"

That way, you're telling your readers what's in it for them, rather than just trying to sell them something.

Too click-baity

Click-baity subject lines are designed to get people to click on the email without actually giving them the information you promise to deliver.

Not only is this misleading, but it's also a surefire way to get people to unsubscribe from your newsletter. So, avoid subject lines that are vague or make promises that the email can't deliver on.

For example, a subject line like "You won't believe what happened next!" is likely to disappoint and frustrate your readers when they click to find out more and discover that it has nothing to do with what they were expecting.

While these types of subject lines may seem tempting because they lead to more clicks, they're more likely to irritate your readers than get them to open and read your email.

Using words that scream “SPAM”

Spam trigger words are those that are often associated with spam emails, such as free, win, and sale. While these words may seem harmless, they can trigger spam filters and cause your email to be marked as spam. So, it's best to avoid using them in your subject line.

Instead, focus on using words that will resonate with your readers and get them to open your email. Also, aim to be unique with your word choices to help your email stand out in a crowded inbox.

WRITTEN USING CAPS

While using all caps may seem like a good way to get people's attention, it can actually come across as shouting. You probably felt it as you were reading that, didn't you? So, avoid using all caps in your subject line.

Not only is it jarring to read, but it can also trigger spam filters. So, stick to using sentence case or title case in your subject lines. There's no need to shout to get people's attention.

Not optimized for mobile users

What–subject lines aren't optimized for mobile users? That's right. With more and more people reading emails on their smartphones, it's important to make sure that your subject line is optimized for mobile devices.

This means keeping your subject line short–preferably between 6 and 9 words–so it can be easily read on a small screen. Otherwise, you risk your email being truncated, which could lead to people not reading it at all.

Not original

Last but not least, you want to make sure your subject line is original. With so many emails being sent daily, making yours stand out from the rest is essential.

This means avoiding generic and overused phrases like newsletter or monthly update. Instead, get creative and come up with a subject line that will pique people's interests and make them want to open your email.

Conclusion

Newsletter subject lines are important–they're what get people to open and actually read your email. So, it's important to take the time to craft a subject line that will grab people's attention and get them to click.

If newsletters are a recurring part of your email marketing strategy, consider using a tool like Copy.ai to help you create catchy and engaging subject lines that will get people to open your emails–every time. (There’s also an email newsletter template to help you out!)

With its AI-powered subject line generator, all you need to do is enter a few keywords, and Copy.ai will come up with dozens of potential subject lines for you to choose from. So, you can spend less time worrying about what to write and more time focusing on creating great content for your readers.

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