Speak Customer! Email Expert Advice for Subject Lines and Headlines

Both your subject line and headline play critical roles in getting people to open your emails. Once you’ve mastered the From line and got their attention that way, next up is your subject line. If that peaks their interest, your Preview Pane and headline are next in line for keeping them moving right along into your email.

That makes the words in your subject line and headline critical. So why use words your customers don’t use?

It sounds silly, doesn’t it? To use words that not only don’t appeal to the target audience but confuse that audience? Companies do, however. They are used to their internal speak, so a cubicle becomes a panel system, or an enterprise software is known by some obscure verbiage meaningful to the development team but meaningless to the customer. It’s an easy mistake to make. We are only human, even when we are an email expert. Using the words most familiar to us is normal.

But not necessarily profitable.

Compare using the right words to using the right photo. If you’re selling weight loss pills yet you use an image of someone needing to lose weight—rather than someone who has lost weight—your image won’t appeal to your audience.

You don’t have to be an email expert to know the words that work. Just dig a little. If you’re not sure which words appeal most to your audience, ask your sales team. They usually have great insight into customer lingo and the words that most appeal. Consider surveying your customers, or read through the comments they write on your Facebook page or in their comments.

And of course, test, test and test again!

Published On: May 28th, 2012Categories: Email marketing best practicesTags:

About the Author: Sharon

Sharon Ernst from BetterFasterWriter.com is on a mission to improve the business and marketing writing skills of today’s workforce with her blog, newsletter and online classes. Her newest class on intermediate email copywriting covers 19 tips and techniques non-copywriters can put to use right away for better results. The class has real-life examples and before/after comparisons to make the lessons stick. Find her class at www.betterfasterwriter.com/intermediate-email-copywriting-class. When she’s not busy helping employees, managers and marketers master their writing skills, she and her husband are busy raising pigs, cows, chickens and vegetables on their 20-acre farm.

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