Email Subject Lines

Ask any small business owner who handles their marketing and they will probably tell you they have a love/hate relationship with creating emails. Well, to be honest, probably mostly a hate relationship. I admit that I found creating emails for the shop to be a daunting task but, it was worth the effort. 


As a florist it was easy to email during holidays but what about those low sales times during the dead of winter before Valentine's Day and especially the summer when there are no flower holidays at all. I never wanted to be a pest but it was important to keep my customers aware of our business. I'm sure if you are like me, you probably get 2 emails daily from Target, Walmart and your favorite clothing brand, so why should my shop have been any different. I'm a believer that if you are not getting lots of unsubscribes, you are not emailing enough. 

I think we get focused on open rates. I know I did. Whenever I created an email, it was fun to keep checking the stats to see how many people actually clicked on and opened the email. However, I learned early on, it did not matter if someone opened my email, it was just as important for them to see my subject line. That alone could spur someone on to ordering. 

I'll give you a real life example of emails that I get from one of my favorite businesses in my town. The business is Simple Vino (a wine/liquor store that used to be called Princeton Wine Company) and they have fantastic wine tastings. For $10 you get 4 wines to taste, cheese and crackers, information about the wine from the owner and 10% off your purchase that night. What a deal!! We love it!  I get emails from them probably 2 or 3 times and a week, and one is always going to be about that weeks wine tasting. As a matter of fact, I received one Sunday and the subject line was "Wine Tasting Wednesday at Simple Vino". That was it and that's what it is almost every single time he has his Wednesday wine tasting. Did I open it? In this case, I did because I was curious about the theme of the tasting (it happens to be Portuguese Wines) but often I don't open these emails. Why? Because I don't care what the theme of the tasting is, I love the reminder and Kevin and I go almost every time we can because we love it. Now if the owner looks at me as a person on his email list, he might think that I'm not very engaged when in reality, his email is working great. He's reminding me about Wednesday Wine Tasting and I show up. Other subject lines are also enough to give me the information I need in order to make a purchase such as special sales on certain beers or special hours for holidays. Very often I don't need to open the email because he's done a great job of giving me enough information in the subject line. 

I guess what I'm getting at is don't be concerned if not all your emails get opened. If you are creating great subject lines, it might be enough to entice your customer to call you or stop in. When in doubt, if you have time, send an email. Got in some new gift items? Send an email. Created flowers for a worthy event? Send an email. Hired a new employee? Welcome them by sending an email. If you are emailing only during holidays you might be missing out on an opportunity to reintroduce yourself to your past customers. Let them know that what you have is what they need, all year round. They want to hear from you until they don't, by unsubscribing. Until then, email as often as you can!! Happy emailing!