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Exposing a few myths about email subject lines

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Its been well over three months since we’ve done a blog, been mad busy with new and exciting projects that we will soon be sharing with you. As we aren’t blogging as frequently as we used to, we want to make sure that we are hitting the right topics especially for startup businesses. Please DM us regarding any topics you would like us to focus on when blogging (saves you research time). Some new clients that have recently came on board with us have been asking about emails, wanting to know about the subject lines. I can understand why it would be somewhat intriguing to know what subject to use when sending across an email to a potential client of yours. After all, the subject is the first thing that the prospect will read before opening the email. If it is not something interesting or straight to the point, then it is highly likely you will get spammed.

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There a few common myths regarding subject lines and I wanted to squash them for you, take a read below..

Myth 1: Don’t use CAPITALS in subject lines

This stems from the idea that using capitals is like shouting, and its rude to shout. In addition it’s also thought that capitals are much harder to read.

Using capital letters does help subject lines to stand out over those that are not capitalised. Around once a month Miss Selfridge uses a subject line that begins “PETITES EXCLUSIVE”.

The rest of the subject line depends on their offers that month. The regular use of capitalisation enables your readers to recognise and expect your emails.

Myth 2: Personalisation makes emails look like spam 

No! not necessarily ‘she says in a deep voice with scary looking eyes’.  There is nothing wrong with personalising your emails, if everyone wrote the same, dressed the same and spoke the same this world would be so boring… Whats wrong with originality nowadays. There may be times when your email doesn’t always work with particular readers (and you might just get spammed). You have to remember I loathe Marmite, but Pauline down the road from me absolutely lurves it! Not everyone will like the same things, and it’s just trial and error sometimes so we can know what works.


Myth 3: Don’t use spam trigger words like “Free” in the subject line

The received wisdom is that the word “free” gets you moved swiftly to the trash can. Many years ago there was actually some truth in this, as at that time email was largely filtered based on content.  Now the most filtering factor is reputation, lack of  positive reputation usually results in a trash can movement.

So I advise you to go ahead and use your trigger words as you wish. Keep an eye on the inbox placement, and of course if it isn’t working maybe change things around slightly.

Myth 4: Don’t be too pushy

Hmmm… well do as you please I would advise. I feel that as there is now so much competition being pushy is somewhat attractive to the reader. It makes them understand that you would like their custom and you are willing to do what it takes to get their attention. Speaking from experience, I like the pushy ones. I’ve received phone calls with people trying to sell me things .. as we all do, and I tell them to call back at a different time. I do this as I genuinely am interested, and I never hear from them again.

I say you should find the best strategy for you, and do as you please. There are too many rules put in place. Try out different things and get your strategies in place. I advise that you take note of the things that work and don’t work, so you know for the future.


Good luck, and let us know how you get on..

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CSW Marketing Team


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