Ever find yourself staring at your inbox, wondering which emails to open first? We’ve all been there. It’s no secret that a compelling subject line can make all the difference in grabbing our attention and inspiring us to click.

So, what makes a good email subject line? Well, think about those moments when you couldn’t resist opening an email—was it the curiosity it sparked or the promise of something valuable?

In this article, we’re going to unravel the secrets of crafting subject lines that stand out from the crowd, without using confusing buzzwords.

We’ll explore practical tips and real-life examples that will help you master the art of captivating your recipients and leaving them eager to explore what’s inside. Let’s dive in and make your emails unmissable!

The Power of Email Subject Lines: An Introduction

The subject line is your email’s first impression. It is the gatekeeper that determines if your email gets opened or ignored. Let’s examine the role and significance of the subject line in your email marketing campaign.

Understanding the Importance of Subject Lines

Think about your own inbox. How do you decide which emails to open? For most, the subject line plays a crucial role in this decision.

In fact, 47% of email recipients decide whether to open an email based on the subject line alone. Good email subject lines are the ones that capture the email recipient’s attention and provide a clear idea of the email content.

It’s no exaggeration to say that the email subject line is one of the most important elements of your email marketing strategy. It can be the difference between your email being read or being sent to the recipient’s spam folder.

The Art and Science of Email Subject Lines

Creating good email subject lines is both an art and a science. It involves creativity, marketing savvy, a clear understanding of your audience’s pain points, and a keen insight into email marketing best practices.

Keys to a Good Email Subject Line

There are several elements that contribute to good email subject lines:

  1. Relevance: The subject line should be relevant to the recipient. Personalized email subject lines can significantly increase open rates.
  2. Brevity: Keeping the subject line concise yet informative is crucial. Considering that 46% of emails are opened on mobile devices, it’s essential to keep subject lines short to avoid being cut off.
  3. Clarity: Subject lines should provide a clear idea of what the email contains. Ambiguity can cause confusion and lead to lower open rates.
  4. Urgency: Creating a sense of urgency can encourage the recipient to open the email immediately.
  5. Curiosity: Catchy email subject lines often provoke curiosity, encouraging the recipient to open the email to learn more.
  6. Value Proposition: Highlighting the value or benefit the recipient will gain from reading the email can be an effective strategy.

By incorporating these elements, you can create subject lines that grab the attention of your recipients and encourage them to engage with your marketing emails further.

In the following sections, we’ll explore each of these elements in detail, provide subject line examples, and discuss common mistakes to avoid. All these toys will help you craft subject lines that increase open rates and contribute positively to your email marketing campaign.

If you want a tool that helps you manage and optimize your email outreach, sign up for Mailarrow, our cold email outreach software. It’s designed to make your sales process more efficient and effective.

Remember, writing subject lines is a skill that can be learned and improved over time. And by understanding the importance of this skill, you are already on the path to becoming an email marketing expert.

How to Write Good Email Subject Lines: Key Elements

Now that we understand the importance of good subject lines let’s delve deeper into each of the key elements that contribute to good email subject lines.

Relevance: Personalized Email Subject Lines

Personalization is not just about including the recipient’s name in the subject line (although that can be effective). It’s about making the subject line relevant to the recipient’s interests, needs, or recent activities.

For instance, “John, your favorite author’s new book is out!” or “Jane, price dropped on the shoes you liked!” are examples of personalized email subject lines that are likely to grab the recipient’s attention.

Personalization can significantly improve your email open rates. According to a study by Campaign Monitor, emails with personalized subject lines are 26% more likely to be opened. By using personalization, you’re showing the recipient that the email is intended specifically for them, making it more likely they will open it.

If you want to see some personalized cold email examples, we have a separate article for that here.

If you need a hand managing your email campaigns, don’t forget to sign up for Mailarrow, our cold email outreach software. It’s designed with features that support personalized outreach for better email engagement.

Brevity: The Shorter, The Better

When it comes to email subject lines, less is often more. Remember, a large portion of your recipients will be viewing your email on a mobile device. If your subject line is too long, it may get cut off, which could impact your message and open rates.

In general, it’s best to keep your subject lines under 50 characters. This ensures that the subject line is fully visible on most mobile devices and email clients. Consider the below email subject line example “Uh oh, your subscription is about to expire!” It’s short, urgent, and clear.

However, there’s no one-size-fits-all rule here. The optimal length for your email subject lines depends on your audience, the context of your email, and the message you’re conveying. Testing different subject lines lengths could be a great way to discover what works best for your specific situation.

Clarity: Being Direct and Clear with Your Email Subject Lines

Clarity is one of the most important elements of a good email subject line. Your recipients should be able to grasp the content of your email by just reading the subject line. For example, “50% Off All Items: Summer Sale Ends Today!” is clear, direct, and likely to get a high open rate.

Avoid making false promises or using clickbait techniques in your email marketing subject lines. Not only will these strategies annoy your recipients and harm your brand’s reputation, but they can also trigger spam filters, sending your email straight to the recipient’s spam folder.

The rule of thumb is to be as transparent as possible. Your email subject should match the content of your email. If your email is about a sales offer, make that clear in the subject line. If it’s a newsletter, let your recipients know.

Urgency and Scarcity: The Fear of Missing Out

Creating a sense of urgency or scarcity in your subject lines can encourage your recipients to open your emails sooner rather than later.

For instance, “Last Chance: Your Exclusive Offer Expires at Midnight” leverages the fear of missing out and prompts immediate action.

Bear in mind, though, that this strategy should be used sparingly and honestly. Too many “urgent” emails can desensitize your recipients and diminish the effectiveness of this tactic over time.

Curiosity: Pique Their Interest

Catchy email subject lines often provoke curiosity, encouraging the recipient to open the email to learn more. Consider this example when cold emailing a CEO: “Unlock the Secrets to a Successful Business.” This subject line promises valuable information, igniting the recipient’s curiosity and incentivizing them to read the email.

Again, this strategy should be used wisely. If your email does not deliver on the promise made in the subject line, you risk disappointing your recipients and damaging their trust in your brand.

By now, you should have a pretty solid idea of what constitutes a good email subject line. But before you start crafting your next subject line, why not give Mailarrow a try?

It’s our powerful cold email outreach software designed to help you streamline your email marketing processes.

Avoiding the Spam Folder: Tips and Techniques

While crafting a catchy email subject line or lines is crucial, ensuring that your email doesn’t end up in the recipient’s spam folder is equally important. Here’s what you need to know:

Avoid Spam Trigger Words

Certain words and phrases in email subject lines can trigger spam filters, causing your email to be flagged as spam.

These spam trigger words include phrases like “make money,” “collect your prize,” and “increase your sales.” Use such words sparingly, if at all.

Beware of Excessive Punctuation and Capitalization

Excessive punctuation and capitalization can trigger spam filters. Multiple exclamation points, question marks, or ALL CAPS text can make your email subject line seem unprofessional and spam-like. A simple subject line without these elements is less likely to end up in the spam folder.

Test Your Email Subject Lines

Before you send your email to your entire list, consider sending a test to yourself or a few colleagues. Check if it lands in the inbox or the spam folder. This simple step can help you avoid issues before it’s too late.

Remember, creating a good email subject line that doesn’t trigger spam filters is both an art and a science. By understanding and applying these principles, you can increase your email open rates and ensure your message reaches your intended audience.

If you’re looking for a tool to help manage your email campaigns, remember to sign up for Mailarrow, our cold email outreach software designed to make your email outreach simple and effective.

Subject Line Examples: Learn from the Best

Now that we’ve covered some general rules for writing great email subject line and lines, let’s take a look at a few examples of great email subject lines. Use these as inspiration for your own emails.

  1. “Uh oh, your prescription is expiring” – This subject line from Warby Parker uses urgency and personalization to grab the reader’s attention.
  2. “Price dropped on the item you liked” – E-commerce websites like Etsy often use this subject line to notify users of a price drop on a product they had shown interest in. It’s personalized and piques the recipient’s curiosity.
  3. “Guest blogging class: Last chance to join!” – This subject line creates a sense of urgency and scarcity, encouraging potential attendees to act quickly.
  4. “Happy Birthday [Name] – Surprise Inside!” – Birthday emails with personalized subject lines grab attention and evoke positive emotions.
  5. “As a token of our appreciation” – This line from e-commerce websites offers an exclusive offer to recipients, generating interest and boosting open rates.
  6. “Your opinion matters: Please review your recent purchase” – Inviting users to review their purchase is a great way to interact and keep them engaged.

Funny Email Subject Lines

Humor can be a powerful tool when used correctly in email subject lines. A funny subject line stands out in a recipient’s inbox, making them more likely to open the email.

  1. “Need a day at the beach?” – Used by travel agencies, this funny subject line offers a light-hearted way to promote holiday deals.
  2. How to survive your family during the holidays” – This line offers a humorous take on a common pain point, prompting recipients to open the email for tips.

Cold Email Subject Lines

Cold email subject lines require extra effort because the recipient might not be familiar with your brand. Here are a few examples of effective cold email subject lines:

  1. “Hello [Name], I loved your recent blog post” – This personal email subject line shows the recipient that you’ve done your homework and are genuinely interested in their work.
  2. “[Name], improve your sales process with our software” – This subject line is personalized, clear, and focused on how your service can benefit the recipient.

Remember, testing different subject lines and personalizing your emails as much as possible will yield the best results.

If you’re looking for a tool to streamline your email marketing processes, remember to check out Mailarrow, our powerful cold email outreach software.

Email Marketing: Beyond Subject Lines

Crafting the perfect email subject line is just one part of the larger email marketing strategy. Let’s explore a few more components that are vital for a successful email marketing campaign.

Preview Text

Next to your email subject line, the preview text is what your recipients see first when your email lands in their inbox.

This is a snippet of text pulled from the body of your email, and it can significantly influence whether or not your email gets opened.

Consider your preview text as an extension of your subject line. It should provide a brief summary of your email’s content and incite curiosity or provide a compelling reason to open the email. Here’s an example:

  • Email Subject Line: “Unlock Your Exclusive Offer”
  • Preview Text: “Don’t miss out on your personalized discount, available for 24 hours only!”


Personalized email subject lines and content can significantly improve your open rates and engagement. Use your recipients’ name in the subject line, reference their previous purchases, or mention the content they’ve shown interest in.

Mobile Optimization

As more people use mobile devices to check their emails, it’s crucial to ensure your emails, including your email subject lines, are optimized for mobile. Keep in mind that long subject lines might get cut off on mobile devices, so it’s best to keep them short and engaging.

Regular Testing and Evaluation

Your email marketing strategy should include regular testing and evaluation. Test different subject lines, send times, and email content, and use analytics to identify what works best for your audience.

In your quest for perfecting your email marketing, Mailarrow, our cold email outreach software, can be your ideal companion. Sign up to streamline your email marketing efforts and take your campaigns to the next level.

Writing Subject Lines: A Step-by-Step Guide

Having dissected the science behind writing good email subject lines, let’s explore a step-by-step guide on how you can create great subject lines, that get your emails opened, read, and responded to.

Step 1: Understand Your Audience’s Pain Points

Your email subject line should resonate with the pain points of your audience. For example, if your email campaign targets eCommerce businesses, your subject line could be, “Boost your online sales today!”

Step 2: Keep it Short and Sweet

A long-winded subject line can make it hard for the recipient to grasp your message instantly. Try to convey your message succinctly and make every word count.

Step 3: Use Actionable Language

Start your email subject line with a verb to create a sense of urgency or excitement. For instance, “Join our guest blogging class today!” is more engaging than “Guest blogging class available.”

Step 4: Create a Sense of Urgency

This can prompt your recipient to open your email immediately. However, avoid creating false promises or making your emails sound too salesy.

Step 5: Personalize, Personalize, Personalize

As mentioned earlier, personalized email subject lines improve open rates. Leverage data like recipient names, job position, or recently browsed products to tailor your subject line.

Step 6: A/B Test Your Subject Lines

A/B testing different subject lines allows you to understand what resonates best with your audience. This knowledge can enhance your email marketing strategy moving forward.

While subject lines are a small part of your email, they’re a crucial factor in your email’s success. Remember, your email subject line is your first impression on your recipients, so make it count!

To make your email marketing process smoother and more effective, sign up for Mailarrow, our cold email outreach software.

Why Your Email Subject Lines Matter for Your Brand Voice

An often overlooked aspect of email subject lines is the role they play in conveying your brand voice. From the very moment a recipient glances at your email in their inbox, they’re forming an impression about who you are as actual person and a brand.

Reflect Your Brand Personality

If your brand is playful and lighthearted, your subject lines should reflect that. On the other hand, if you’re a serious, professional brand, your subject lines should also reflect that tone.

Consistency is Key

Consistency in your subject lines helps establish your brand voice. The more consistent you are, the easier it will be for your email recipients to recognize your emails in their crowded inboxes.

Avoid Spam Trigger Words

Ensure that your subject lines do not trigger spam filters. Words and phrases like “free”, “act now”, “guarantee”, and multiple exclamation points can make your email land in the recipient’s spam folder.

Use Subject Lines to Build Trust

Over time, consistently well-crafted subject lines can help to build trust with your email recipients. Avoid using deceptive subject lines that promise something your email doesn’t deliver. Doing so can harm your brand reputation and erode the trust you’ve built with your audience.

At the end of the day, your email subject line should be a clear, concise, and accurate reflection of your brand voice and the content of your email.

Are you ready to perfect your email subject lines and boost your email marketing results? Sign up for Mailarrow, our cold email outreach software.

Writing Engaging Newsletters: Subject Lines and Beyond

Newsletters are a staple in email marketing. However, capturing your audience’s attention among a sea of emails can be challenging. The right subject lines can make all the difference.

Subject Lines for Newsletters

Newsletter subject lines require a slightly different approach. Your audience already expects the email, so use the subject line to highlight the most interesting content.

For example, “June Newsletter: Top Email Marketing Trends You Can’t Ignore” gives readers an insight into what they’ll gain from opening the email.

The Power of Emojis

Emojis can make your email subject lines stand out in an inbox. However, they should be used sparingly and only when appropriate to your brand voice and message.

Retargeting Email Subject Lines

If your newsletter targets users who have previously engaged with your brand, a personalized subject line can be very effective. For instance, “We Miss You! Here’s an Exclusive Offer Just for You!” creates a sense of personal attention.

Engaging Content

The best email subject lines won’t help if your newsletter content isn’t engaging. Maintain a balance between informational and promotional content, and always provide value to your readers.

Don’t Forget Mobile Users

Ensure your subject lines and newsletter layout are optimized for mobile devices. Remember, many users read their emails on-the-go.

Writing engaging newsletters with eye-catching subject lines is an art. With practice and continuous learning, you can master this art and see tangible results in your email marketing campaigns. To help you on this journey, consider signing up for Mailarrow, our cold email outreach software.

Mistakes to Avoid When Writing Email Subject Lines

As we explore the art of crafting engaging email subject lines examples, it’s also crucial to understand the common pitfalls. Below are some mistakes to avoid when writing email subject lines.

Overuse of Capitalization

While all caps can grab attention, they can also come across as aggressive or spammy. Instead, opt for sentence case or title case for a professional and friendly tone.

Making False Promises

Your email subject line sets the expectation for the email content. Therefore, avoid making promises in your email subject line examples or lines that your email content does not deliver.

Overuse of Spam Trigger Words

Words like “free,” “buy now,” “urgent,” and spam words “profits” can trigger spam filters, sending your emails straight to the spam folder. Do your research and avoid spam trigger words in your subject lines.

Using Jargon or Complicated Language

Your email subject line should be clear and easy to understand. Jargon or complicated language may confuse your readers or deter them from opening your email.

Not Personalizing

As we have emphasized, personalized subject lines can significantly improve open rates. If you’re not personalizing your subject lines, you’re missing out on an opportunity to connect with your audience.

In conclusion, your subject line can make or break your email marketing campaign. Avoid these common mistakes to increase your email open rates and drive engagement.

Ready to get started with perfecting your email subject lines? Sign up for Mailarrow, our cold email outreach software.

Great Examples of Email Subject Lines and Why They Work

Learning from great examples is a fantastic way to improve your email subject lines. Let’s examine a few examples and why they work.

Example 1: “Uh-Oh, Your Prescription is Expiring”

This subject line from Warby Parker creates a sense of urgency. It also does a great job of personalizing the subject line to the recipient’s situation.

Example 2: “Your Pin’s Price Dropped!”

Pinterest sends this email when a product that a user has pinned drops in price. It’s personalized, timely, and highly relevant to the user’s interest.

Example 3: “You’re Missing Out on Points!”

This email from JetBlue creates a sense of loss aversion, a strong psychological motivator. It also compels the recipient to act promptly.

Example 4: “Tonight Only: A Denim Lover’s Dream”

This subject line from Guess demonstrates how creating a sense of urgency can increase open rates. It also speaks directly to their target audience: denim lovers.

Example 5: “Where to Drink Beer Right Now”

This subject line from Eater Boston is straightforward and appeals to their audience’s interest. It creates a sense of immediacy and curiosity.

These are just a few examples of effective email subject lines. The key is to understand your audience and craft subject lines that resonate with them.

Eager to craft engaging email subject lines for your next campaign? Sign up for Mailarrow, our cold email outreach software.

Perfecting Your Email Marketing Strategy with the Right Subject Lines

As we have seen, the right subject line is crucial to the success of your email marketing campaign. It forms the first impression, affects open rates, and can significantly influence your overall email marketing strategy.

Review and Learn

Always assess the performance of your email subject lines. Which ones had the highest open rates? Can you identify why? Use these insights to continually improve your subject lines.

Keep Testing

The best subject lines for cold emails are the result of continuous testing. Use A/B testing to try out different subject lines and see which ones resonate most with your audience.

Personalization is Key

Personalizing your sales email subject lines also can increase open rates. Include the recipient’s name, reference a recent purchase, or mention an upcoming event they’re interested in.

Use Power Words

Power words are compelling and trigger emotional responses. They can make your subject lines more engaging and persuasive.

Match the Content

Always ensure that your subject line accurately reflects the content of your email. Misleading subject lines may increase open rates in the short term, but they harm your brand reputation in the long term.

In conclusion, a well-crafted subject line is a powerful tool in your email marketing strategy. With practice, you can learn to create compelling subject lines that drive engagement and boost the success of your email marketing campaigns.

Ready to start optimizing your subject lines? Sign up for Mailarrow, our cold email outreach software.

Closing Thoughts on Crafting Compelling Email Subject Lines

We have traversed the world of email subject lines, from understanding their importance to learning how to craft the best ones. As we conclude, let’s revisit some key takeaways.

The Importance of Subject Lines

Never underestimate the power of a good subject line. It’s your first chance to make an impression and get your emails noticed in a crowded inbox.

Personalization and Relevance

Personalized and relevant subject line makes your lines are more likely to be opened. Whether it’s using the recipient’s name or referencing a past interaction, personalized subject lines can significantly improve your open rates.

Clear and Concise

Your subject lines should be short, clear, and to the point. Remember, many people check their emails on mobile devices with smaller screens.

Test, Test, Test

Regular testing is crucial. What works for one campaign may not work for another, and what works for one audience might not work for another.


Above all, keep your subject lines genuine. They should reflect the content of your email and your brand voice.

Crafting compelling email subject lines is an art that can be mastered with practice, patience, and persistence. And now, with these insights at your disposal, you are well on your way to crafting personal email subject lines that resonate with your audience and deliver results.

If you’re ready to take your cold email outreach to the next level, consider signing up for Mailarrow, our cold email outreach software.

With features designed to help you optimize your email marketing strategy, Mailarrow is the partner you need in your journey to mastering the art of email subject lines.


What makes a good subject line for an email?

A good subject line is concise, clear, and grabs the reader’s attention. It’s personalized, relevant to the recipient, and sets the right expectation about the email content. It also avoids spam trigger words to ensure the email doesn’t end up in the recipient’s spam folder.

What should you not put in the subject line of an email?

Avoid using all caps, multiple exclamation points, and spam trigger words in your subject line. Don’t make false promises or create misleading expectations about the email content.

Also, avoid complicated language or jargon that your recipients may not understand.

What is the attention on the subject line of an email?

The “attention” on the subject line refers to the element that catches the recipient’s eye and prompts them to open the email. This could be a personalized element (like the recipient’s name), a compelling offer, or a sense of urgency.

Which are examples of good email subject line?

Here are a few examples of good email subject lines:

  • “Uh-Oh, Your Prescription is Expiring”
  • “Your Pin’s Price Dropped!”
  • “You’re Missing Out on Points!”
  • “Tonight Only: A Denim Lover’s Dream”
  • “Where to Drink Beer Right Now”

Is the most important part of an email its subject line?

The subject line is indeed one of the most critical parts of an email, as it’s the first thing the recipient sees and it influences whether the email is opened.

However, the quality of the content inside the email is equally important for maintaining the recipient’s interest and achieving your email’s purpose.

What is the most important thing I should do with every email?

The most important thing to do with every email is to deliver value to the recipient. From the subject line to the email body, every element of your email should serve this purpose. Also, always ensure that your subject line accurately represents the content of the email.

How do I choose a good subject line?

To choose a good subject line, consider your audience’s interests, needs, and pain points. Understanding your audience could also help you in your email sequence.

Make your subject line relevant, personalized, and intriguing. Test different subject lines to see what works best for your audience.

What is the correct subject line to properly protect the contents?

To protect the contents of your email, it’s essential to avoid sensitive information in the subject line. Keep your subject line relevant but general enough not to reveal any private or sensitive information.

How important do you think are subject lines?

Subject lines are incredibly important. They can significantly influence your email’s open rate, and by extension, the success of your email marketing campaign. A compelling subject line can grab your recipient’s attention, pique their curiosity, and prompt them to open the email.

Should email subject lines have a period?

Email subject lines typically don’t require a period. They should be concise and not structured as complete sentences. However, if your subject line is a question or includes multiple sentences for effect, you might use appropriate punctuation.

Should the subject line of the email clearly convey the purpose of the email?

Yes, the subject line should give the recipient an accurate idea of what to expect in the email. Misleading subject lines can harm your open rates and your brand reputation over time.