Improving email performance one subject line at a time [Hack #061]

A subject line is your email's first impression

You only get one shot to grab an email reader’s attention and that comes from your subject line. It must be engaging and intriguing. What it can’t be is unoriginal or boring. There are a lot of opinions on how to craft great subject lines, but for our business the default should be some sort of call to action. 

We have sufficient resources to make offers that are meaningful to guests and you are essentially buying their attention with a giveaway offer or special service reward. The offer or incentive doesn’t have to be expensive to you, just perceived as valuable to the guest. For example, one great offer we have seen is a “Move to the top of the waiting list” award. Not having to wait for a table on a busy night is a powerful value to your regulars and can be leveraged to elicit specific behavior such as completing a survey or providing more personal information. You can control the impact by manually sending the voucher and limiting the number based on effective dates.

The other key is brevity. We live in a 140 character world and asking people to read a ton of text to get to your message is a recipe for getting ignored. Keep your subject line short and direct, so it’s message is easily consumed. For example, “Complete Our Survey, Get Our Jail Free” This headline is brief, witty and will get them to open your email to learn more. It takes planning and creativity, but the results will show you how powerful email can be when you get the subject right.

Got a cool restaurant hack of your own? Let us know!

More Restaurant Tips: