Email is not dead. It remains one of the best communication tools available to your church.
But for your church emails to be effective, people need to read the emails.
And if we want people to read our emails, we need to master the art of writing great subject lines.
In today’s episode, we unpack some of the tips and tricks we have learned to help you write subject lines that will get opened.
Table of contents
Keep It Short
Short subject lines perform better than long ones. If your subject lines are long and drawn out, people will assume the body of your email will be even worse.
There is no right number of words for a subject line, but as a general rule, the fewer, the better. Keep in mind that most phones will only allow for about 30 characters in a subject line, so that number is a good rule of thumb.
This is a great practice. Whenever we can include personalization, we see an uptick in open rates.
But be sure your database is clean. If the recipient’s name is misspelled there, it will be misspelled in their subject line. That is a great way to get people to unsubscribe.
When possible, give your subject lines expiration dates. Ensure that the recipient knows that time is of the essence, and they need to open the email right away.
Terms like “Last Chance to…” or “Registration Closes at Midnight,” will increase your open rate and help more people see your emails.
Make It About Them
One of the biggest mistakes we see church communicators make is forgetting who their content is for.
When we write subject lines, we need to remember that people are more likely to read on if the content is something that will be about them.
Instead of talking about all the great things happening at your church, we should be talking about all the ways your recipient will benefit from the great things happening at church. There’s a big difference.
Don’t Give Away The Content
The subject line should whet people’s appetite, not fill them up. If you have a big announcement, don’t tell people the meat of it in your subject line. Use the subject to let them know that the information is contained in the email. This makes it so that recipients have to open the email, thus increasing your open rate.
For example, if you just hired a new worship pastor, don’t use the subject line: Meet John, Our new Worship Pastor. Instead, try something like: Our New Worship Pastor is…
We bet that you will see a much higher open rate on the second one.
Use an Emoji or Two
Emojis aren’t for everyone, but they are everywhere. While your church needs to appear professional, an emoji used strategically is a great way to get your emails opened.
Please don’t overdo it. Nine emojis are too many for a subject line, but one or two about the theme of the email makes sense.