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Email marketing tip : use a colon

Posted by Michael Bloch in web marketing (Saturday June 9, 2007 )

Here’s an interesting tip on the use of the colon and positioning of keywords in email subject lines to help boost open rates.

Given the very small number of characters available for use in subject lines; it can be quite challenging to craft a line that encourages people to open the note.

Copywriter Alan Sharpe suggests placing important keywords at the beginning of the subject line, then use a colon followed by descriptor text.

This post’s title is an example of using a colon. I could have called it – “Using colons in email marketing subject lines”. It’s a little drawn out and might not grab attention in amongst a recipient’s other emails.

“Email marketing tip” states what the post (or email) is about and offers value immediately; i.e. that there’s something useful in the contents.

The addition of the colon helps to shorten the subject line; in this example, 46 characters is cut down to 34, without losing any of the value or making the subject line vague.

The text after the colon gives the recipient a little more information about the contents, without stating why the tip works and therefore curiosity is stirred, which will hopefully lead them to open it.

You can read more about the use of colon in your email marketing subject lines in Alan’s post.

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2 comments for Email marketing tip : use a colon
  1. Definitely a good trick for email marketers to have in their arsenal.

    I’m sure this could be a useful tool for PPC landing pages as well – when push comes to shove

    Very original article Michael :)

    Comment by victor — June 9, 2007 @ 5:37 am

  2. A great tip. Also good for article titles.

    Comment by Alex — June 11, 2007 @ 4:08 am

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