How do you decide which emails from the day’s batch to read first thing when you open your inbox? When an email has certain characteristics, it is more likely to be discarded or even flagged as spam.
The answer is usually included in the headlines of the emails. Despite the adage “don’t judge a book by its cover,” it’s not uncommon for people to make snap judgments about emails based on their subject lines.
To increase the percentage of opened emails from prospective students, your school must first become adept at crafting attention-grabbing, enticing subject lines. After all, it would be pointless to put effort into creating engaging content for an email if no one ever bothered to open it.
Read on to find out how to improve the effectiveness of your school’s email campaign by writing attention-grabbing subject lines that your potential students can’t resist clicking on.
A Higher Number of Student Opens = more enticing + more clear
Email subject lines can be tricky to write so that they are both interesting and clear about what the email is about and why the recipient should open it. However, many articles stress the importance of “mysterious” subject lines, claiming that readers will be compelled to open the message out of curiosity.
Below is an example of a mysterious subject line that is meant to attract readers but leaves out important details from the University of Kansas. Something has the reader anticipating something, but they aren’t sure what.
Keep Subject Lines Brief
Schools in the modern era should think about the impact mobile device use has on subject line visibility, as this can increase or decrease the likelihood that an email will be opened. Hubspot reports that 46% of all emails are opened on mobile devices as opposed to desktop or laptop computers. When checking their inbox from a mobile device, users typically only see the first 25 characters of a subject line.
When crafting subject lines for your school’s emails, it’s important to keep in mind the impact that mobile devices can have on their presentation. A good rule of thumb is to keep your school’s subject lines under 50 characters to make them easily scannable for everyone. Keep your sentences short and to the point.
Consider the Preview Text Vital
Though brevity is ideal, consider this: What if the value of the preview your readers receive of your email’s content could be increased even further? Preview text refers to the words immediately following an email’s subject line. Your school has some say over what appears in the preview window, though how much is dependent on the email host and the user’s device. If you want to entice and inform your readership as much as possible without sacrificing readability, maximize the amount of text displayed in your preview.
Make your College Admissions Email Subject Line Unique
Why not go the extra mile and use the prospect’s name in the subject line, given all the praise for sending emails that are specific to your personas?
In a sea of impersonal emails, ones with personalized subject lines stand out. Customers are more likely to open an email if it contains their name in bold.
But that doesn’t mean you have to write a new email for each lead. Using customer relationship management and marketing automation tools can hasten the procedure.
HubSpot’s “personalization token” feature allows users to tailor subject lines to individual contact properties. In this instance, the recipient’s first name will appear at the beginning of the subject line.
Email subject lines in higher education should use language that speaks to students’ identities.
In advertising, some phrases are more convincing than others. In fact, the words you use in your content will have a significant impact on your marketing outcomes regardless of your school’s industry, target audience, or goals. Why? The power of words to alter perception, emotion, and action.
Word choice is crucial when writing subject lines for academic emails. It’s the first thing people will see when they receive your email, and it can make or break the first impression people have of your organization.
You should also think about not using a “sales pitch” in your email subject lines if you’re trying to market your school via email. This is especially important for educational institutions that value their reputation as places of learning over financial gain. The tips are consistent with what we’ve talked about so far in terms of crafting engaging subject lines for electronic correspondence.
Make a Video and Interesting Visuals a Top Priority
Video attachments in emails can boost clickthrough rates by as much as 300 percent. Video marketing has been shown to influence enrollment decisions by nearly 70%, and video is Generation Z’s preferred content source.
Some examples of videos that can be used for email marketing
- Brand narratives representing the institution’s guiding principles
- Itineraries around College Campuses
- Videos of lectures and other course materials Application guides
- Evidence from former or current students
- Brands can stand out more effectively with the help of video storytelling because it can evoke an emotional response and capture the brand’s ethos in a way that still images can’t.
Consolidate Efforts Across Divisions
Be sure to coordinate content calendars if other departments handle student communications as well. Effective and clear communication with potential customers is facilitated by a streamlined, cross-departmental strategy.
Plan on getting together with your email marketing team on a consistent basis. The following items can serve as a checklist:
- Does the timing of email deliveries follow a regular schedule?
- Do work and email schedules collide?
- Do different parts of the content seem to contradict each other or are they all similar?
- Does the institution’s image always reflect its reputation?