Getting outbound emails opened: Crafting subject lines

A great outbound email can sometimes be the deciding factor for whether you connect with a prospect and ultimately make a sale. So knowing how to write good emails is key—and everything starts with the subject line. The subject line is arguably more important than the content of the email itself, because it gets a prospect to open the email in the first place. By the same token, a bad or uninspired subject line might mean the email never gets opened—and then whatever’s inside doesn’t matter.

A good subject line is compelling, creative, and sometimes a bit cheeky. It aims to pique the recipient’s interest or provide a tidbit of information, but it doesn’t give away everything you want to convey.

We recommend trying out a few tried-and-true subject lines before trying to reinvent the wheel. And if you’re curious about what time is best to send, we recommend checking out this resource from Growbots.

Here are a few of our favorite subject lines:

  • [Mutual connection] suggested that I get in touch
    • Mentioning a real person can get real results. If your prospect trusts your mutual acquaintance’s judgment, he or she is going to be willing to hear you out.
  •  Ideas about [something relevant and important for the prospect’s company]
    • You’ve done your research, and you know what they care about. Why wouldn’t they want to hear a few relevant ideas?
  • Question about [recent event, interesting part of their business, or goal]
    • If you don’t reveal the question in the subject line, they’ll be intrigued and open the email to find out what it is.
  • [Your company] + [their company] or Intro: [your company] <> [their company]
    • Placing the two names together indicates that you’re serious about doing business together, and they’ll want to see what you have to say.
  • Intro: [prospect’s name] <> [your company].
    • Personalizing the subject line with the prospect’s name can go a long way.

If you’d like to see more examples, there are plenty of other resources out there. For example, Hubspot has also done a great job coming up with some sales-oriented subject line templates and explaining just why they work, whether you’re reconnecting with a prospect you haven’t heard from in a while or reaching out for the first time.

So give these a try and let us know how they work for you!