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First impressions count

March 24, 2010

They say you never get a second chance to make a first impression and so no pressure with my first blog then. And same rules apply when it comes to writing the subject line for your email, as this really is your chance to create a first impression with a customer. If you get it wrong, you can damage a relationship forever.

The shorter the better – ten words max is good. Here are a few of my favourite adjectives to mull over when you have writer’s block trying to come up with that perfect subject line. Be specific, memorable, relevant, intriguing, interesting, attention-grabbing, compelling, entertaining. You may think I’m stating the obvious, but be different, try not to sound generic or that you’re copying someone else as you need to show some personality. And avoid words like free, limited time and exclamation marks, all of which can get caught in spam filters. As marketers we all know that people love to hear “what’s in it for me?” and same applies here- state any benefits in your subject line, it works.

And “it’s all about you”, as the song says. A recent study by eMarketer says that subject lines containing “you” and “your” are the most popular with email marketers and have increased in popularity over the last year. So they must be working. However, personalising subject lines by using the recipient’s name may decrease open rates, according to Email Marketing Reports – you have been warned.
First impressions count? Yes they do, hope to see you back here again for my thoughts on all things marketing, social media and business networking.

Posted by Paul Latham
Writing copy

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