Sick of spammy subject lines? Be weirdly emotional instead.

Welcome to my first post. Coincidentally it is about the very first thing you will write in any email marketing campaign – an intriguing subject line.

I found this nifty free subject line generator at the Active Campaign website. The article that accompanied it was even more useful than the tool itself outlining the techniques for writing attention-grabbing lines. Below is the list of the main methods and templates, and if this is something you need to do often in your business, I encourage you to dive deeper and read the full article here. 

Five ways to make people curious enough to open the email:

  1. Ask a curiosity-inducing question
  2. Start a sequence of events, but don’t finish (e.g. an unfinished story)
  3. Violate expectations
  4. Imply that you have information they don’t
  5. Imply that they used to know something that they’ve since forgotten

Use weird words to capture attention

and brick-and-mortar words  to make it easier for the reader to picture an idea in their mind.
Last but not least, amplify emotion as much as possible.
All of the discussed methods together create a simple three step process  for writing great subject lines:
  1. Decide on the topic of your email. What are you talking about? What are you promising? What problem do you solve?
  2. Take that idea and run it through the “curiosity filter” (the 5 methods). Go through and ask how you can use each curiosity lever to make a more mouthwatering subject line.
  3. With your new subject line, amp up the emotion. Replace normal words with arresting, emotional words.


And if moulding your subject line step by step is too hard (or it is way too late at night to think clearly) simply use these…

11 plug-n-play templates:

1. The [famous person] of [category]
2. [Thing] = [Thing that it shouldn’t equal]?
3. The [weird name] technique to get [benefit]
4. [Challenge / Provocative Question]
5. Why [good thing] is [not good]
6. Why I turned down [thing everyone wants]
7. [One word.]
8. Well, that [Meeting / Event] went well. (It did not.)
9. Don’t [Action]. Trust me.
10. You are [comparative] than you think
11. [Say what’s in the email]


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