You can spend hours, days or weeks ensuring you have created a well thought out campaign, and when it is time to pitch, we invest a lot of time crafting the body of the email- but does the subject line get enough TLC?

The subject line is arguably the most important part of your pitch. The words you choose here may be the difference between your email being left unopened, or earning that well deserved link!

Here at Shout Bravo, we share some tips and tricks on how to create compelling subject lines that will give you the best chance of landing coverage. 

Don’t underestimate the power of the subject line

Subject lines may seem a minor detail, but this tool has the power to make or break a campaign’s success. 

If you can imagine your pitch email as a present, and the subject line the “wrapping paper”, you want your email to look as attractive and tempting as possible!  As first impressions are everything, the selection of words used here must convince the reader, in this case the journalist, why they need to open your email. 

Creating a cliffhanger within your subject line will be an effective way of enticing the reader. Building suspense by using words such as “Revealed…” will instantaneously add an element of suspense, leaving the recipient curious, and wanting to find out more. 

Journalists will receive hundreds of email pitches on a daily basis, so how can you ensure yours will stand out from the crowd? 

  • Write your subject lines after you have written your pitch, by doing so, it will make it easier to pick out key information you wish to communicate in the subject line.
  • Share your subject lines with your team, they may have other ideas or suggestions to make your subject lines even better!
  • Monitor your open rates by using the AB testing method, this will allow you to gage how well your email is resonating with the recipients.  If you find your email is not being opened, switch up your subject line and repeat this process until you can see a positive increase in opens. 
  • Consider all possible angles and adjust your subject lines accordingly, avoid using the same subject line throughout the outreach process.
  • Convey the email’s purpose within the subject line, this will allow your recipient to gage immediately, whether or not your pitch will be of interest.
  • Keep it short and sweet! A long subject line will be off putting. Be sure to eliminate words that don’t add value, keeping it straight to the point. 
  • Tailoring a subject line to a specific publication or journalist by mirroring their tone of voice will most likely increase the chances of your email being read.

Here is an example of how mirroring a publications tone of voice within the subject line, landed coverage in regional publications, such as Cambridgeshire Live.

Here is our subject line:

And here is the article live:

Have some fun with your subject lines! The more creative, the better! If you think you could use some friendly advice on your digital PR activity, why not get in touch and see how we can help you!