I’ve been thinking a lot about subject lines lately and how to make sure everybody who should open an e-mail from us does. There’s a lot of advice out there about how to craft a perfect subject line. But what we’re seeing is that, rather than focusing on A/B testing or coming up with something new for each send, putting our time into sending out more mailings to smaller groups of people increases our open rates (and has the added benefit of decreasing unsubscribes).

And we don’t have to worry at all about how clever, unique, or urgent our subject lines are.

Why? Because these e-mails contain messages that are timely, relevant, and targeted to a specific subset of our audience. Rather than send to anyone and everyone to ever express a remote interest in getting a deal and hope our subject line is enticing enough to get them to open, we can just say “You are one of only 300 club members to receive this special offer.”

Nothing catchy or clever about that – it’s just the truth. The e-mail goes on to explain that one of our books has gone permanently out of print, we only have 20 copies left, and that because the reader is a loyal club member who has also purchased a book from us recently, he can snag one of these copies at a super low price. So, here’s a screenshot showing the results 24 hours after the e-mail with that subject line went out. That 76.51% open rate is pretty impressive, right?! Sure, it only reached 300 people (way less than even 1% of our whole e-mail list), but it resulted in real sales and goodwill.

stringletter e-mail open rates 76.51%

What are you doing to make sure the right people are receiving and reading your message? Leave a comment and share your ideas!