How to get more emails opened: email open rates made easy

By | April 3, 2018
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open rateWe all know when you get more email opens, more email open rates, you get a greater chance of people clicking the links in your emails.

More clicks = more engagement = higher chance of sales 

That’s why every email marketer struggle to achieve the higher open rate as possible.

Today we’re going to talk about how to get more email opens.

People decide 🤔 whether they want to open a certain email or not by the:


1) From name 
2) Subject line

We’ll talk about from name for another day. For today’s post, let’s talk about how to craft more appealing subject lines so your emails get opened more.


Open Rate Hack #1 – Widely Known Phrase

email open rates


In the subject line, use a widely known phrase or undeniable truth, but break the phrase into 2 parts… 1 part for the subject line, and the other in the beginning body of the email.


E.g. 1

Subject: Apple VS…

Beginning body: Samsung


E.g. 2

Subject: All good things…

Beginning body: come to an end


E.g. 3

Subject: Jack of all trades means you’re a…

Beginning body: master of none


E.g. 4

Subject: Bill Gates is…

Beginning: the richest person on earth


Our brain hates incompleteness. Hence when we see part of a widely known phrase or undeniable truth, we’ll try to complete it in our internal mind.

And we want to verify that we’re indeed correct, and to do that we open the email.

Of course, make sure you tie in this phrase or truth with your content. Don’t just use this hack for the sake of getting more opens.

But this can increase the average email open rate


Open Rate Hack #2 – Short

Short subject lines catch your attention because they’re easier to scan (remember people scan and not read), plus they just stand out from the others because most people use longer subject lines.

Don’t believe? Go check your email inbox to verify.

If you do what most people do, you don’t stand out.

Also, when viewing your email account inbox on a mobile device… if you have long subject lines, they’re going to get cut off.


email open rates


Open Rate Hack #3 – Benefits


Include benefits in the subject line (i.e. what’s in it for them)benefits email marketing

But first, you must understand that benefit is not the same as feature.

Let me repeat:

Benefit is NOT the same as feature.

Some examples…


🌀 Features:

* Send sequence/Drip emails
* Send broadcast emails
* Collect email addresses using our forms


🔥 Benefits:

* Sequence emails enable you to automatically follow up and build relationships with your subscribers, even when you’re sleeping

* Broadcast emails is useful when you have a new offer or newsletter or blog post that you want your subscribers to be aware of

* No more manually copy-pasting emails from Excel to our system. Let our forms do the hard work and collect leads automatically for you

🌀 Features (computer):



🔥 Benefits:

* Fast loading and zero lag — open every app and your computer will still be running fast. No more waiting. No more frustrations.

Can you see the difference?

Combine short subject line + benefit and you’ll get more email opens and you also have more email marketing conversion rate

E.g. Subject line: How to get more email opens

This is short and contains benefits (every email marketer wants to know how to get more email opens).


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Open Rate Hack #4 – Curiosity


We humans are social creatures. We want to know what’s happening with our family, friends, colleagues, partners, etc. Put it simply, we’re always curious about other people.

That’s why everyone is on social media posting status updates.

You can use to increase email marketing open rates


social interaction email marketing

Here are some examples  of curiosity-driven subject lines:

 New subscribers not opening your email?
 The overconfident copy
 Weird culture in my country?
 Don’t write another email until…
 This person spammed me


All the above are actual subject lines I’ve used in my emails.

Weird culture in my country? Hmmm I wonder what that is.

Don’t write another email until… Hmmm until what? I need to know about this before writing my next email.

New subscribers not opening your email? I definitely got to find out why so that I can avoid this problem.


Open Rate Hack #5 – Contrast

By contrasting/contradicting in a single subject line, people naturally want to open your emails because it doesn’t make sense. They want to find out what it’s all about (again, curiosity).

See sometimes when you use 1 hack/tactic, it creates/results in a


nother hack.


In this case, contrast creates curiosity.



E.g. of contrast subject lines:


 I’m coming back for poor food (normally you’d never come back if the food is poor)

 Overweight beauty expert helps moms lose at least 20% of their weight (hmm… why is a beauty expert overweight? I’ve got to check this out)

 The man with the woman voice (how come? What happened to him [or her]?)

 How this Karate beginner became champion (how is it possible that a beginner becomes the champion?)


Try it out for yourself the next time you write another email. Use contrast in the subject line and you’ll see an increase in open rates.


Open Rate Hack #6 – Open Loops

Let me repeat that we humans are social creatures.

We’re always curious about their STORIES.

Of course you want to tell your story.

But to get maximum impact, there is a structure on how you should tell it.


email marketing conversion rate

In an email, you tell your story but don’t complete the story. Instead, leave a cliffhanger. Keep your subscribers in suspense.


A great analogy of this is when you’re having intercourse, right before you max out, your partner stops you and say “Okay enough let’s stop this!” 😱😱


It’s really frustrating, isn’t it? So close yet so far…


So after you’ve built up all that suspense, you say: “Want to know what happen when I open the door? I’ll tell you tomorrow in my email.

Or if you’re giving a top 7 steps to achieve a result, you can give 4 steps today, and leave the remaining 3 in another email. If they miss any step, it becomes incomplete. And our human brain hates incompleteness.

This is the kind of emotions and anticipation you want to have in your emails so that subscribers can’t help but to open your next email.




Use each of these hacks sparingly. Mix and match them. Don’t always use the same hack — e.g. you keep using the curiosity hack successively for 10 emails.

As with anything, anything that gets repeated over and over again becomes predictable, and predictable is boring, and boring = no emails opened. People open email when they are constantly motivated.

Now go write your next subject line and share any tips you have! 


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