Win the Inbox: Two marketers compete for the best subject line

The team at Emma is here to help you send better emails, so we created a video series to equip you with all the knowledge you need to send messages your customers will want to open. In this video, Caroline and Rob go head-to-head in a competition to choose the best subject line. 

How to choose the best subject line

In case you need a refresher, we've already talked about email subject line mistakes to avoid and the data behind great subject lines, but in this competition, you'll have to put this knowledge to the ultimate test. 



Round one

Subject Line A: 🍎📏Let’s get ready for back to school 📚
Subject Line B: Are you back to school ready?

Answer: Subject Line A. 

Emojis are the way to go. People are definitely more likely to click on subject lines with emojis because they're so approachable, especially when the content is based on a sale or promotion.

You also wouldn’t want to use emojis for something serious, like a declined charge or error message, but they’re a great choice for fun emails. After all, brands that use emojis have seen a 56% increase in unique open rates.


Round two


Subject Line A: These awesome deals are for you!
Subject Line B: Emma, see our top picks for you!

Answer: Subject Line B.
Personalization is the way to go. In fact, emails with personalized subject lines are 26% more likely to be opened.

Round three

Subject Line A: Actionable ideas for a Merry Christmas
Subject Line B: Actionable ideas for a Merry Christmas - Tips for every step...

Answer: Subject Line B.

Preheader text that includes a summary or teaser, like subject line B, can inspire more opens. 

Round four

Subect Line A: Thank you for your purchase
Subject Line B: Woohoo, Emma! Your recent payment has been submitted...

Answer: Subject Line A.

While the second option uses personalization really well, the message gets cut off because it includes too many characters. 

Wrap up

Learning subject line best practices is important when you're writing them, but also make sure to read over them from a customer's perspective before you click send. Is the subject line something that makes you want to open it to read more? If not, keep reworking until you land on one you'd be happy to receive in your inbox. 

About the Author

Emma is an email marketing platform that gives you all the tools you need to send campaigns that really connect with your subscribers. With our

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