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24 Cold Email Subject Lines That Grab Attention And Get Responses [Pro Tips, Examples, Infographics]

47% of emails are opened or deleted without reading based solely on the subject line. There are too much information and too little time to devote more than seconds on whether to read an email or not.

That is, almost half of the success of your cold email is determined by those several words that you put in your subject lines.

In this article, I have gathered exclusively winning and already tested approaches to excellent cold email subject line creation and gladly share them with you.

#1. Make your cold email subject line not so cold with a mutual connection/recommendation

People trust people and want to work with people – this is a fundamental psychological principle for any business. Add a bit of humanity to your first email and an element of personal relationships by indicating a common ground.

This approach immediately makes your sales email subject line warmer, by adding a note of affinity. The recipient will most likely open the letter and do it subconsciously, assuming that the information in the letter may be valuable as it contains a reference to a specific familiar person.

Here are some good examples:

  • “Hi, [Recipient Name]! We met at a conference in Dallas”
  • “Anastasia Smith told me that I could write to you”
  • “A lot of time has passed since our last meeting, but …”

Of course, this type of subject line will only work if you really have points of contact with the recipient. Although, they can always be found even if they are not obvious. For example, you can be subscribed to the same Facebook group – this is better than nothing.

cold email subject line examples

#2. Grab attention with a relevant offer

Irrelevant emails no longer work. Emails with a vague subject line do not work well anymore either. Therefore, you should get to the core of the issue immediately, skipping the long preludes.

Here are some ideas for sales email subject lines when a message is strictly focused on the main point.

  • “I know how the X industry problem can be solved”
  • “Here is the way out of the situation you are looking for”
  • “There is only one way to fix the mistake 99% of X industry professionals make”

Keep in mind that this approach will show a high open-rate only when you know that your recipients are in a current search for a solution, and you have something to offer in return.

cold email subject line with offer

#3. Create a sense of urgency and missed opportunity

Yes, this is one of the oldest but still highly efficient marketing techniques. Although marketing approaches were transformed and digitized, human nature has remained unchanged.

People subconsciously perceive a limited offer as valuable and beneficial, and you can intentionally use this tendency to write a catchy cold email subject line.

Here are some nice examples:

  • “The offer is valid until 12 pm”
  • “Waiting for you on Skype in 10 minutes”
  • “Your competitors effectively use these 13 secret industry tips (but you don’t)”

60% of the millennials admitted that they made a purchase under the pressure of urgency and for fear of missing out. Therefore, if you know that your target audience fits into the framework of this age, add some driving stimuli to the subject line.

However, there is one important note! Don’t use artificial urgency amplifiers, such as “act now,” “order now,” “limited time,” “urgent” and so on. These are too hackneyed words that are recognized as spam by default.

cold email subject line evoking urgency

#4. Keep an intrigue

This approach to writing cold email subject lines is as old as trying to evoke a sense of urgency. And it also works great at the psychological level. That’s how you stir up users’ curiosity.

And here is how you can provoke the talk using the intrigue:

  • “Do not open your business profile on Instagram until you read it!”
  • “Be silent about the thing we are going to share with you!”
  • “Your competitors will be frustrated to know that you achieved…”
  • “Goodbye!”

Attention! The last sales email subject line is more arrogant than humorous. However, there is a simple explanation of why it works. Most people will want to find out who allowed himself such arrogance to say goodbye before saying hello, and … open your letter.

In this case, you need to continue the letter with some logical explanation. For example, ‘[The name of the recipient], you’ll say Goodbye to your headaches after trying this remedy…].’

intriguing cold email subject lines

#5. Ask a pain point question

The best cold email subject lines are ones that hit the mark. The most efficient way to score a hit is to ask the right question to the right person so that he/she once again feels that his/her problem is really relevant.

These examples show how to do this politely and accurately:

  • “Hi, [Recipient Name]! Are you tired of hiring people who quit in a month?”
  • “Hi, [Recipient Name]! Well, how does your baby sleep at night?”
  • “[Recipient Name], will you let me ask you a question about …?”

Use this strategy in the second or third letter if you have not received a reply to the first cold email. If your question refers to the user, then with a high degree of probability, your letter will be opened.

cold email subject line with question

#6. Use The Secret Word That Can’t Be Ignored

No, this secret word is not “free 18+ site subscription.” By the way, for such a wording you will be punished with a lifelong spam filter, and we will talk more about this later. In fact, the secret word is very simple and effective – video.

According to the study, emails with videos have a 300% better click-through rate, and the word “video” in the cold email subject line increases the likelihood of opening by 19%. These are decent numbers to try this strategy, and of course, reveal the power of video marking inside of your letter.

Some examples for your inspiration:

  • “A demo video explaining how our sales-boosting product works”
  • “We are almost sure you want to have a quick look at this video tutorial”
  • “This video with 10 email marketing hacks will improve your mailing results”
  • “Find out how to skyrocket sales with [Product name] in a short video”

It’s a truly brilliant sales email subject line technique for the SaaS marketing strategy. The remaining companies can still adjust and make the most of this approach as well.

Important! Don’t use this secret word chaotically if you are not going to embed a video in the email. Also, make sure that you insert a high-quality video so that your reputation won’t be damaged.

cold email subject line secret word

#7. Follow-up letters matter more than you think

The reality is that not all of your letters will be opened and read. Even the use of the best cold email subject lines (in your opinion) are not a 100% guarantee.

That is why you need to prepare a segmentation strategy and give yourself (and users) the last chance. Perhaps this attempt will be beneficial – if the recipient eventually wants to find out who this stubborn one is.

Here are some catchy subject lines for cold emails that you can use in your next follow-up campaign:

  • “Hi, this is [Your Name/Company Name] again! Just in case you didn’t receive my previous letters …”
  • “Let me know if I’m too persistent”
  • “Thanks for your time, [Recipient Name]!”
  • “If it’s not convenient for you to chat here, let’s meet on Skype!”

By adding at least one follow-up message to your email sequence, your average reply rate will go up around 13%!

follow-up email subject lines

#8. Make Sure You Are Not Using (and Never Use) These Words

Perhaps it was worth starting the article with this paragraph because there are some words that can kill even the best cold email subject lines. The email services automatically recognize them as spam, and therefore, it’s extremely important to avoid them.

Although these phrases seem absolutely neutral and harmless, in fact, they can destroy not only your campaign but the entire domain reputation.

In addition, always use spam and email checkers to ensure that your letters won’t be flagged as spam before the delivery.

spam words in email marketing'

Infographics

Here are 24 actionable cold email subject lines that I listed above, gathered in one place. Bookmark this infographic and use the provided templates in your next email marketing campaign to watch your response rates skyrocket!

cold email subject lines infographics

Conclusion

Remember that all these subject lines for cold emails are just my ideas and examples. There is no universal wording suitable for every business.

Your task is to make these phrases relevant to your company profile and stick to the eternal standards of successful mailing: be polite, follow anti-spam rules, don’t violate personal boundaries, and find an individual approach to your target audience. This is the only way to grab users’ attention and get positive responses!

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