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Optimizing Email Preheaders

optimizing email preheaderIf you look at a quality marketing email as the sum of its parts, it becomes important to pay attention to more than just the message your email is conveying. In fact, even more important than the message is the manner in which it’s being conveyed. This is where the subject line, sender and preheader text come into play.

These three variables are definitive in generating opens, making them tantamount to the success of your entire email message. It’s critical to understand the role each plays at the point of contact, so you can optimize them in a way that’s fluid, leading to opens and eventually, clicks and captures.

Who’s the email from?

The sender name might seem like a non-issue for some, being overlooked in favor of the all-important subject line. But before you get ahead of yourself in the preheader optimization game, the sender name bears some consideration.

How are you formatting the “from” name. Is it from a person or a business? Do you identify a department? Let’s take a look at some of the most common sender monikers in successful eCommerce email marketing campaigns:

  • “Michael from Dunder Mifflin” is a common format for executive-type emails and those conveying company information.

  • “Michael Scott” as a name without a title or company is frequently used for general marketing, giving a more personal approach to solicitation.

  • “Dunder Mifflin” offers the prestige of a company name and helps customers more easily identify who they’re receiving messages from at a glance.

  • “Paper Sales” as a company division title or a specific segment of business enables customers to get an idea about the contents of an email before they open it.

Depending on the perception you want to give off or the notions you want to instill in a recipient before they open an email, any of the above sender superlatives can be applied.


What’s the subject?

The importance of a good subject line can never be (and rarely is) understated. A good subject line is appealing, encouraging of opens, a precursor to the chief message and inclusive of the recipient. Thousands of articles have been written when it comes to subject line generation and there’s far too much to say here about how to craft the perfect subject line. Instead, we’ve compiled a list of essential, must-do steps when generating your best subject line:

  • Make it short, sweet and easy-to-read;

  • Use action-oriented verbiage;

  • Create a sense of urgency or value;

  • Use personalization tags when possible;

  • Don’t over exaggerate with caps or punctuation.

The list can go on and on depending on the nature of your email, but these staple few rules will genuinely improve just about any general subject line. Keep in mind that A/B testing subject lines through Remarkety’s A/B test features is also a superior idea for helping you discern what works well and what falls flat.

Preview with the preheader text

You get, at most, two small lines of text space to preview your email to recipients—roughly the space of a tweet. It’s in this space that you need to capitalize and make your email too enticing to not open! There are a number of ways to approach preheader text:

  • Make an introduction. “Hi Pam, we’ve got a great deal for you!”

  • Ask a question. “Have you seen the new line of paper products we offer?”

  • Explain the subject. “We’re selling our glossy paper for 30% off for a limited time!”

  • Start a sentence that encourages an open. “The secret to a great sales pitch is having the nerve to…”

The purpose of this segment is to build on the subject line and further draw readers into opening your email. If it falls flat or negates your subject line, your message may never get the chance to market properly. For example, one of the most overused and uninspiring wastes of preheader text is the error text placeholder: “Email not displaying correctly? View it in your browser by clicking here.” Definitely not helping your message.

Put them all together

By paying careful attention to all aspects of your preheader messaging, you can help boost open rates and engagement potential for your emails. Remember, this snippet of inbox information is your first chance to make a good impression—don’t waste it!

The great news is Remarkety is here to help you with your email marketing set-up, management and automation to ensure great delivery, open rates and conversion rates! Go ahead and schedule a 1-1 demo with an email marketing specialist today!