How to Write an Impactful Email Subject Line


August 12, 2013 by Jennifer Ghidinelli

Subject LinesIn our last blog post, we highlighted the 10 email marketing tips every event organizer should know. And if you read it, you learned that the single most impactful thing in your email campaign is the subject line. So let’s take a deeper dive into subject lines, shall we? According to our friends at MailChimp, the best email subject lines are short, descriptive, and provide the reader with a reason to explore your message further. Last year, MailChimp did a study in which they analyzed the open rates for over 200 million emails. Here’s a snippet of what they learned:

Three Words to Avoid

You may (or may not) know that using the word “free” in your emails should generally be avoided since they tend to trigger spam filters. But the words Help, Percent Off, and Reminder also negatively affect your open rates.

Subject Line Length

Subject lines should be short and to the point. MailChimp’s rule of thumb is 50 characters or less. The exception is for highly-targeted audiences where the audience appreciated additional information in the subject line.

Promotional Emails

Keep the message straightforward and avoid using splashy promotional phrases, CAPS, or exclamation points in your subject lines. Subject lines frames as questions can often perform better.

Reduce Opens with Repeating/Reminder Subject Lines

Sending the same emails over and over again (such as event reminders) with the same subject line will decrease the open rate of each subsequent email.


When it comes to subject lines, tell what’s inside, don’t sell what’s inside. 


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