The Best Subject Line Length for Opens is …

By Bob West

Email marketing is blowing up in ag circles as companies tap into growing web use among ag professionals and appreciate the cost effectiveness and immediate results to be gained from delivering a message right into a grower’s in box. And companies are learning what content engages their prospective customers most effectively and creates the most click-through activity to their website. (Click here for a Meister Interactive blog post reviewing benchmark edirect metrics.

Assuming, of course, the email gets opened in the first place! Numerous studies have illustrated the importance of the subject line in getting email recipients to open a message, but we regularly see our direct marketing clients treat the subject line as an afterthought that gets pulled together at the last minute.

This new study from Retention Science can help you write the most effective subject line for your emails. The study evaluated open rates from more than 260 million emails and found that those with subject lines of six to 10 words produce the best open rates. However, most marketers prefer longer subject lines — 11 to 15 words long — which were found to produce the lowest open rates. Even shorter subject lines — less than six words — produce better results.

More advanced marketers use email platforms that allow for personalization of subject lines with the recipient’s first name, and the study found that this tactic boosts open rates from 15.7% to 18.3%.

Bob West is the Director of Interactive Sales for Meister Media. Contact him at 440-602-9129 or for more information on how email marketing can help you reach ag professionals.