March 20, 2014

golden mail signsOkay so your latest email blast is set up and ready. You have spent time and effort collating contacts, devising the message and scheduling it for just the right time on the right day.

It drops into the inbox of your prospect and they are greeted like this:


If your subject line looks like this, that time, effort and money invested into your email campaign will be wasted.

Certain words, phrases and punctuation will send your email straight to the spam folder and even if it does wriggle through the filters and into the inbox of your prospect, they will put it into the bin themselves.

Some of the following words, phrases and styles of punctuation are in the 100 most popular spam trigger phrases of 2013:

  • !!!
  • 100% free
  • $$$/£££
  • Act Now!
  • Attention
  • No Gimmicks
  • FREE

The connotations of these phrases reek of desperation. Remember, you are trying to reach out to human beings, so what will make them open your email?

Despite your subject line being such a small amount of the whole email blast, it is one of the most important parts of your campaign. The following tips will help make your email campaign effective and will hopefully attract customers instead of deterring them:

SimplicityBarack Obama when he was running for president sent out an email simply titled ‘Hey’. Sometimes it is best to be colloquial and not over the top – however being too colloquial in a message can be disastrous, so try and find the right balance.

Rhetorical QuestionsA great rhetorical question can immediately grip a prospect: “What can you afford?” This type of question does not de-value the product that you are selling by offering discounts and it directly appeals to the prospect by making the product or service more accessible.

PunsTrawling through emails can be tedious and boring for your prospect, so why not try and put a smile on people’s faces? The same old boring, clichéd line day in, day out can get monotonous, so break the mould and try to be witty and topical at the same time.

These tips are generic but cannot be applied to every single email campaign: put your campaign into context: what am I trying to offer my prospect and who is the prospect?

Get out your thesaurus, go through some of the spam words and make them more sophisticated, for example, instead of using the word ‘free’, use ‘complimentary’.

All of a sudden you have now added a bit of class to your campaign, give it a go.



Ben Lyons copy

Ben Lyons

Marketing Assistant

The Internet Marketing Academy

(Image by Stuart Miles at

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