Never Say Never or FREE email advice, today only.

The Deal of The Year sale is next month. As an email marketer, you want to grab the attention of your list members and be able to direct them to your website with a coupon incentive. You have everything ready except the Subject Line. You believe the best Subject Line for this event can only be “Deal of the Year”. However, you’re reconsidering the Subject Line, as you say to yourself:

“Self, can I use the word Deal in a Subject Line and get away with it?”


You are concerned, with a Subject Line like that, your email will be considered too SPAMMY to be passed on to the inbox by most Junk filters.  Are you right?

I’m sure you’ve heard or read somewhere, never use the words “Free, Discount or Deal in your Subject Line. These words, according to some, invite Spam filters to trash your message.

I suppose using the word Free or Deal or even Discount may trigger the spam filter, but if you regularly send out informative emails to a list of people who opted into your list, the message will bypass the filters, landing where it should. And using a word like Free, once in a while might pique curiosity with results such as an increase in opens.peeking through

And as far as deliverability, as I said this should not be a problem especially if the recipient has opened your emails in the past and hasn’t marked them as SPAM.

In fact, depending on your reputation and past content, Free or Deal may be a great word to use. Remember to use those words wisely and consider personalize your Subject Line for added impact.

Addressing someone by their name in the Subject Line is nothing new. Once in a while, instead of addressing the Subject as “Mary, the Deal of the Year is Here”, try using a pronoun instead; “The Deal of the Year is here, just for YOU.” Either way, the Subject Line adds a personal touch. And to decide which to use, always do a few A/B tests to figure out which works better with your audience.

And while you’re getting personal, how long should your subject Line be, in other words, how many characters? There have been several studies on the ideal length of an email Subject Line – search under the ideal length of a Subject Line to see various schools of thought. For myself, I think the Subject Line should be limited to the idea you’re trying to get across. I’m not saying make a paragraph or a long run on sentence, but something readable and interesting enough for your reader to want to know more. And should these messages always be in HTML with images and graphics?

Plain text messages aren’t pretty. They do not include links to your sale or coupon, in fact, they are very similar to emailing a typed letter. Some recipients prefer it. In fact, with Dundee ListManager, when you create your HTML message, a text message is created too. The use of multipart MIME, (actually called actually called Multipurpose Internet Mail Extension)

The multi-part MIME also assists in email delivery – as most spam filters like this format, they want to see that there’s a plain text version as well as an HTML version. And as for your subscribers: Statically people are less suspicious of a plain text message versus an HTML message. For them, it’s a matter of security and even privacy.

Speaking of subscribers, did someone tell you never to use those pop-ups to grow your list? Pop-ups are actually very useful for subscriber growth. jack in the box

There are some considerations, including the timing, the design, and the offer. Pop-ups are very successful and versatile for email capture. They are so popular there are even several Email Pop-up Best Practices posts on the net to review.

Speaking of reviews, have you read that using one big image in an email is bad? Well, it might be if the recipient doesn’t download the image that would allow him to read your message. And then consider the belief that image only emails are a red flag to most spam filter blocking them as the first line of defense. But then again there are cases where an email warrants a large image. You’ll have to experiment with A/B testing to find out. Overall, occasionally a large image is fine.

What about writing a Subject line in ALL CAPITALS? The old school of thought tells you that using all capital letters is rude, it’s a form of printed yelling. But that’s not true, in fact depending on the point you are expressing, capitulation is just fine. It may be a bit harder to read, that’s all. You could go extreme and leave out a subject altogether.

Subject Lines matter, as its goal is to get the recipient to read your message. With a solid email reputation and known brand, it may be fun to send out a blank email and see what the response rate is.

And did you know you can increase your response rate if you incorporate emojis in your Subject Line? 😍 Emojis statistically increase in open rates. They can evoke an emotional response, they are creative and appear to be something that took time to do -the downside, the emojis, do not look the same in all email clients, some testing is in order to use them – But emoji’s save space and if you can’t say it with words say it with an emoji 🙌

Putting emoji’s aside, to be successful, break some rules, have some fun, try different things. Not everything will work, but you might be surprised what does.