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3 Awesome Ways to Increase Your Email Open Rates

  • By Pam Langord

Paaaam! My email open rates tank!!

Ouch! I’m feeling you Sunshine. I know because I’ve been there. You pour your heart and soul into a newsletter or blog, send it out into the universe and what do you hear?


And it sucks. It truly and royally sucks.

You know there are people out there who want to hear what you have to say and will relate to your words. You want to help them so much. So why isn’t it happening? What gives?

That, my loves is a question we’ve all had to haunt us.

The bottom line is this – in order for someone to read your brilliant thoughts, they have to open your email. That’s step numero uno.

And I’ll tell you – if there is one metric we consistently watch and try to improve, it’s gotta be email open rates. Whether you’re using MailChimp, Aweber, ConvertKit, or Infusionsoft, I’m going to make bets that you check out your open rate percentage every time you send something out and feel so frustrated (insert “like a failure” here) when it’s low.

You totally feel that way because you know that if your subscribers aren’t opening your email,  they can’t read about:

  • Your newest coaching program
  • Your latest must-have tool discovery
  • That epic blog post you just wrote just for them

And wasn’t that why you sent the email in the first place?

Well, here’s the deal and this isn’t just some made-up fluff – this is the down and dirty truth.

You only have about two seconds to entice a reader to open your email.

Yup! That’s right. 2 frickin’, lousy seconds.

EEK! That’s the attention span of a flea.

And even worse, you have to do it in ten words or less. WHAAAAT?

I know. Wowzers, right? That’s a pretty tall order, even for seasoned copywriters. Forget about us DIYers on a budget. So what’s a girl to do?

Ah! But this wouldn’t be a Pam Langord blog if I didn’t give you some handy dandy tricks you can implement now.

So without further ado…..

My top 3 FAV tips for getting your peeps to open your latest brilliant missive.

1. Be Ambiguous

Be a woman of mystery. You know what I’m talking about. You’ve no doubt seen those “clickbait” headlines that say things like, “She adds this to a box of Wheat Thins and I’m drooling!” The reason headlines like that work is because we can’t help but want to know what “this” is that she’s adding to her Wheat Thins. Is it sugar? Salt? Peanut butter? OMG! The possibilities!! We have to know, so we click.

You can use the same technique in your email subject lines. Just substitute the word “this” for the actual thing you’re writing about, and you’ve got instant enticement.

SWEET!! Nothing like a good trick you can use right now – huh?? Oh, yah girlfriend – I got your back.

Here’s another tip…..

2. Use Numbers

Numbers are a fabulous way to create must-read content.

“7 Hidden Benefits of Waking Up at 5 am”

“3 Unlikely Ways to Close the Sale”

“5 Social Media Platforms You Shouldn’t Be Ignoring”

Get the gist?

The reason numbers work so well in subject lines is because we are ego-centric and curious. We simply gotta know if we already know what those three ways are to close the sale. We’ll either walk away feeling pretty smug for being a totally awesome marketing maven, or we learned something new. Both are pretty darn good reasons to open an email. Right?

Last tip and I really love this one!!

3. Use Power Words

Now I know this is really sounding like copywriting. Hang in there. Just as with all writing, choosing power words is far more effective than settling for their weaker counterparts.

If your eyes just glazed over at the statement, I don’t blame you. Let’s look at it in a different way. Imagine these two subject lines appear in your inbox. Which are you would you open?

“WordPress Makes Better Looking Websites for Non-Designers”


“Create a Gorgeous Website—Even if You’re Not a Designer”

They both offer the same information, but the first one is weaker, while the second is far more exciting and compelling.

“WHAT? Even I (the total left brain non-creative girl) can create a gorgeous website? Yippee! Tell me more!!”

The truth is – If your subscribers aren’t opening your email, they’re not connecting with you. And they certainly aren’t buying your services or programs. Paying closer attention to your subject lines is really the single most important thing you can do for your email marketing campaigns.

I can’t wait for you to start implementing these handy tips. I KNOW it’s going to give those pesky open rates a nice little bump. Got a tip of your own? I’d love to hear it. Let’s share some email marketing love in the comments. 🙂