Importance of subject line in a cold email

Cold email is an extremely important prospecting channel in today’s world and it has good reasons to be so. Its success stories have encouraged organisations around the world to adopt it and that is precisely where the trouble begins. As its effectiveness is encouraging companies all over to try this tool, it also means that the arena of cold emailing is also becoming very competitive.

As more and more emails land up in the inbox of prospective clients, the more chances are there of those mails getting deleted or ignored. Hence, it is important for an organisation to design its cold mail in such a way so that it grabs the attention of the prospective clients and this is where the subject line of a cold mail becomes so important. Although it does not take up much space, the impact of the subject line is very significant. It can go a long way in deciding whether a prospective client will open the mail or simply delete it. It may end up being the only chance that companies have to connect with their clients.

The following aspects very important while writing the subject line of a cold email:

  • Short and crisp: The subject line shouldn’t be a summary of the content of the cold email. It must be kept brief and impactful. Filler words and phrases like “hello” or “good evening” must be avoided. In fact, it has been proven that subject lines with 50 characters or less result in 12% higher open rates and 75% higher click-through rates than emails with longer subject lines. This must give an idea as to how long a subject line should be
  • Place your words correctly: Placing the words correctly in a subject line becomes very important in deciding whether a prospective client will open the mail or not. It is essential to drop clichés phrases and line and adopt an innovative approach. One such method can be to phrase the subject line in such a way that the important words are placed in the beginning. This becomes even more important because in today’s time a huge chunk of the population access their emails through their smartphones. And since it is uncertain as to how much of the subject line can be viewed from the smartphone, it is important to place the impactful worlds in the beginning


  • Offering Value: The subject line must convey what the mail, in particular, intends to offer to its prospective clients. A person would be much more interested in opening a mail if s/he knows that it contains information relevant to him or her rather than just any other mail. For example, If the subject line says that “Improve customer on-boarding experience”, the client will immediately know what the mail aims at.



  • Personalisation: Whether sending the mail to an individual or to a company, a personalised subject line will definitely have higher of chances of getting a reply than a mail which is just generic. Further, if the mail is being sent on someone’s reference, it is important to mention that person’s name. “Chandler, can you help me out?” is sure to generate more interest than “ Request to fill out a survey”.


  • Catchy: The best way to grab the attention of the readers is to make the subject line catchy. For example, the subject line can be a question. It will definitely pique the interest of the readers. Or it can be so framed that it conveys a sense of urgency. It has been found that subject lines which possess a sense of urgency have more chances of getting a reply that too within a short time.

There is no ” one size fits all” way of writing a subject line for a cold email. Trial and error method is the best way to find what kind of subject line appeals to whom. Always try different templates and subject line while sending emails. This will help you find out which subject line is better than others. In fact, use a tool like Sellulose which can give you subject line analytics.

However, it is important to remember that one should not give into gimmicks. While it is very important to make the subject line relevant as well as attractive, it must be ensured that the content of the mail must be good enough to match up to the promise made in the subject line. In brief, in the quest of inducing readers to open the mails sent by the company, subject lines should not become mere click baits.





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