‘Tis the season for holiday email marketing. But with so many emails flooding into everyone’s inboxes, how do you convince your customers that *yours* are worth opening? Well, the folks at VerticalResponse (an email marketing company) analyzed the subject lines of thousands of emails during last year’s holiday season and made a note of the words that generated the most opens. And then they offered up their results in this festive infographic! Fa la la la la…

A few caveats and takeaways:

  • The subject line is only half the battle. Make sure you’re giving your customers some content in the email that lives up to the hype.
  • Don’t overdo it. Using these words sparingly during the holiday season will probably help you get more opens. But sending out dozens of emails with subject lines like “New Free 20% Off Holiday Sale Now!” is going to get you ignored or, worse, flagged as spam by the people on your distribution list.
  • Words like “Free” and “Sale” don’t need to be avoided in email subject lines these days. Years ago, these words did tend to trigger spam filters. However, filters these days are based less on content and more on sender reputation. So as long as your readers aren’t flagging your emails as spam, you should be golden.