Author: Vishal Yagnik

Increase Email Open Rates with Engaging Subject Lines

Increase Email Open Rates with Engaging Subject Lines

How many times have you deleted an email just because of its vague, purposeless, and boring subject line?

Your subject line can determine whether your email gets opened with intrigue or hits the trash bin in a flash. In fact:

email subject lines

So, let’s discuss some best practices for writing subject lines that can ensure more opens, better engagement, and more successful email marketing campaigns.

1. Keep an eye on the number of characters

There’s no “right” subject line length, but the safest bet is to keep it as short and concise as possible. This is particularly important to keep in mind for your mobile email viewers where subject line truncation comes into effect.

Try to cut down on characters without changing the meaning. For example, instead of “Half Price,” you can write “50% off.”

Pro Tip: Utilize your preheader text to convey more information and add more “oomph” to your main CTA.

2. Take a descriptive approach (that matches your brand personality)

Sometimes, a descriptive subject line that clearly conveys the purpose of the email brings better results than a fancy one. Just make sure it matches your brand personality.

I recently received an email from Terrain with the subject line

“An all-weather sofa for outdoor rooms.”

Simple, yet engaging.

Chubbies sends out emails with “funny” or “unorthodox” subject lines every once in a while. Check out this subject line:

“Me to me: Open one more”

The From Name on this email jumped out at me as well:

Me: You opened enough emails today (

This would certainly pop out of the cacophony that is my inbox. You can see if a similar approach works for your brand!

Pro Tip: It was disclosed at Email Evolution Conference (1-3 May 2017) at New Orleans that there is no such things as trigger words anymore.

3. Personalize your subject line

“Hey *YourName*! Exclusive 50% off for you”

Seeing your name in a subject line is a great way for marketers to grab your attention. It always feels good to be addressed by your name rather than a simple “Hey”.

Subject lines personalized with a recipient’s first name can lift open rates by 20%. Using personalization as part of automated email programs is also a great way to get your exclusive birthday discounts or cart abandonment emails to stand out.

Pro Tip: You can even use the recipient’s location in the subject line to add a more “local” feel.

4. Make wise use of emojis

When done strategically, emojis can add a visual appeal to your email and subject line.

Use emojis that are relevant to your offer. Avoid over-emoji-ing your subject line and email content. Moreover, make sure that the emojis you do use render correctly across the email clients used by your subscribers.

Pro Tip: Employ A/B testing with one subject line with an emoji and one without.

5. Add “emotion” to your subject line

Humans often get carried away by emotions, don’t we? Use emotional appeal to get your subscribers to open your email. Don’t sound too desperate or pushy but subtly convey a sense of urgency through the subject line.

Create the “Fear Of Missing Out” by choosing the right words. Have a look at this subject line by Travelocity:

“Rooms are booking up fast! Find great hotel deals now >>”

Pro Tip: Don’t use too many exclamation marks or CAPS LOCK in the subject line as it turns the subscribers off.

Final Thoughts:

Keep your subject lines long enough to bring your offer or necessary information to the table, but short enough to arouse interest and curiosity with your subscribers. When in doubt, test your subject lines and determine what types of subject lines work with your mailing list, and what types simply don’t.

Need help with your email marketing subject line strategy? InboxArmy can offer you email marketing strategy packages within your budget that can help boost ROI. Learn more now >>

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top 9 email rendering challenges

Top 9 Tips to Overcome Email Rendering Challenges

Every email client renders your email template design and code differently. This presents a major challenge for email marketers who obviously desire to deliver flawlessly designed and rendered email marketing campaigns.

Subscribers simply don’t have patience for poor design and rendering. Let’s take a quick look at how to overcome common rendering challenges so that you can deliver perfect email marketing campaigns to your subscribers.

Here are our top 9 quick tips:

  1. Don’t place calls to action in background images.
  2. Avoid using “float” and “clear” coding – use hard line breaks instead.
  3. Standard bullets are better than custom bullets.
  4. Use alt tags on all images and rely on HTML text for CTAs.
  5. Use HTML tables rather than div tags for message layouts.
  6. Use Inline CSS instead of CSS stylesheets.
  7. Use web-safe fonts like Arial, Tahoma, and Courier.
  8. Specify widths and heights in pixels, not percentages.
  9. Don’t use JavaScript.

Want a deeper dive into this topic? Download our “Foundations of Effective Email Creative” eBook (part of our Foundations of Email Marketing series) and get those details as well as testing ideas and a review of how subscribers encounter your email.

Download Ebook Now

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The Foundations of Email Marketing - Email Creative

The Foundations of Effective Email Creative

One email can make or break you when it comes to your customers and subscribers. That’s why it’s so critical for your email designs and code to not only match your brand (the look of your website, etc.), but also be built on proper foundations for the inbox experience in terms of rendering and use.

As part of our continuing series on The Foundations of Email Marketing, we’ve put together this eBook on the Foundations of Effective Email Creative. In this eBook, you’ll learn:

  1. How Subscribers Encounter Your Email
  2. 9 Tips to Overcome Common Email Rendering Challenges
  3. Email Testing Ideas You Can Implement Now

Grab a copy of the eBook now so your email creative and strategy can continue to enhance your customer experience and drive more conversions.

Download Ebook Now

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email marketing list

Building Your Email Marketing Mailing List

One of the prime purposes of any good digital marketing campaign is to get subscribers and customers to join your email marketing list. The key here is to BUILD an email marketing list organically—we never recommend buying an email list. Your list should only have contacts who have granted you permission to email them and therefore expect to hear from you.

So, what can you do to build your email marketing list organically?

  • Produce content that your target audience wants to read and engage with.
  • Make sure your email signup box is easy to find and consistently designed.
  • Ask for the email address from your customers every chance you get, whether it’s customer service calls, tradeshows, conferences, or contests and campaigns run on social networking sites.
  • Leverage partner websites and have a co-marketing offer with them. You can find new target audiences by doing so.
  • Incentivize your best subscribers and customers to help you spread the word about your company to their near and dear ones. Word of mouth is the best marketing channel to build up your email list.
  • Optimize your landing pages to drive conversions.

Your email list is priority #1 when it comes to driving higher revenue from your email marketing strategy.

Learn more about how you can build your mailing list, optimize your landing pages, and dive into your list sources in the first eBook in our “Foundations of Email Marketing” series:

Foundations of Email Marketing - Download Ebook

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Separate Your Marketing and Transactional Emails

Separate Your Marketing And Transactional Emails for Better Email Deliverability

Every email you send affects your deliverability either in a positive or negative way.

There are two general types of emails: Marketing Emails and Transactional Emails:

1. Marketing emails include “mass” message with the purpose of promoting a product or service. (This is also an important distinction in terms of anti-spam laws.)

2. Transactional emails include purchase confirmation emails, sign-up registration emails with activation links, invoices, password reset emails, shipping confirmation emails, and other notifications.

Your transactional emails should be considered “urgent” and priority #1 in terms of getting into the inbox. The quantity of these messages is generally low (at least on a day-by-day basis), and yet need to be delivered as soon as possible after the transaction is complete.

It doesn’t seem like a big deal, but your marketing emails can seriously affect the possibility of your transactional emails being delivered. Why?

  • Your marketing emails will generally be sent out to a large(r) number of subscribers.
  • Your email server may require a significant amount of time to process and deploy all messages.
  • Marketing messages receive a much higher percentage of spam complaints, blocks, and unsubscribes.

Why would this matter to your transactional messages?

  • Your transactional emails may get delayed by getting stuck behind large marketing message sends.
  • Your transactional emails may get flagged as spam because your marketing messages have received large numbers of complaints.
  • Your marketing message mailing list may be filled with bad email addresses and un-engaged subscribers.

Why do we bring all of this up? Because if you can maintain the infrastructure, you should keep your marketing and transactional emails separate.

How can you separate your marketing emails from key transactional emails?

  1. Use separate IP addresses for your marketing and transactional emails.
  2. Use different domain or subdomain names in the “From” and “Reply-to” email addresses.
  3. Send your emails from different servers to prevent blacklisting and throughput issues.


Separating commercial and transactional email streams is crucial to ensuring timely delivery of all your important email messages. Achieve this through separate sender and delivery profiles created to manage commercial and mission-critical emails.

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