Get Replies: Best Follow-Up Email Subject Lines

5
Min
Created On:
November 14, 2022
Updated On:
May 3, 2024

Thanks to AI-driven tools, sending bulk emails has become easier than ever. But, is sending an email enough? Well, studies say otherwise. FYI, 80% of sales take place between the 5th and 12th follow-up email. 

Now that you know, let's jump into how to write one. The subject line is the trickiest part of a killer follow-up email. Imagine, what can you possibly say after rewriting the same piece of content 3 times already? 

Cough…cough…that’s my cue. I have listed down the most effective follow-up email subject lines. Now, please stop scratching your head and pick one. 

When to Write a Follow-Up Mail?

As I mentioned, you must keep following up patiently to make the sender reply. Before diving into examples of follow-up subject lines, let me tell you when and how many times you should follow up.

Following-Up for                 Number of Days after Sending the First

First time                           3 day

Second Time                     5 days

Third time                          8 days

Fourth time                       10 days

Fifth time                          15 days

Sixth time                         20 days

Seventh time                   30 days

After the seventh time, keep sending follow-ups with good email content every month. Note that this works mostly on prospect and sales emails. 

For one-on-one networking messages, you can stop after the fifth follow-up mail. Also, it depends on your personal choice. If the potential network is very important, keep going at it with shorter emails. 

Additional tip: Stop following up when they say no. 

Benefits of Following Up

Following up is crucial in email marketing campaigns. If you intend to stop sending the initial email, I suggest you skip email marketing altogether. Here’s why you should always keep writing to your potential customers (within healthy intervals):

  • Increased Open rates: Following up with helpful content will increase open rates dramatically. The receiver might ignore the first, second, and even third email messages but open the fourth. So, stay put and keep going at it. 
  • Increased Brand Awareness: Following up with the right content will increase your brand awareness. This point is crucial for new companies in the market. 

If someone doesn’t buy your product or service, they will remember your brand’s name. This way, if they need such services in the future, they will think about your business. 

  • Increased Email Deliverability: Providing informative resources/info can improve your email deliverability rate. As a result, your bounce rate and spam rate will decrease significantly. 

To do this successfully, always keep the content related to the email recipient’s field of interest.

  • Increased Sales Rate: As you already know, emailing is the most preferred channel in content marketing. But, here’s a catch. The strategy works only if you keep following up and building a trustworthy relationship with your target audience.

You can start a newsletter if sending random information doesn’t seem right to you. FYI, around 81% of B2B marketers use email newsletters as a form of content marketing.

60 Follow-Up Email Subject Lines to Increase Open Rates

We write follow-ups to cold email campaigns, networking messages, customer support emails, etc. We write such mails every day, and that too with various intentions. You must have the right words to stay away from the spam folder. So, here’s a categorized list of subject lines for following up. 

SALES or Promotional Emails

  • 5 mins date? 
  • Message deleted 
  • Hello again here from {company’s name}
  • Take the next step
  • I noticed you…
  • {Name} here from {company’s name}
  • Get 30% off on Premium Plan + Land Gigs in Style
  • I see that you recently got {achievement}
  • Congratulations on taking on the new challenge...
  • Great job on {achievement}!
  • Did you know {so-and-so product} can do {this}?
  • Is ABC a goal for your company?
  • We helped {company} reach {goals}
  • How do you feel about {a recent development}?
  • {Name of the offer} just for you

PROSPECTING EMAILS

  • Get 20% off on Premium Plan + 5x Revenue Increase
  • {Company} featured in Forbes. You can too
  • Is {goal} a priority for your company?
  • Let's cut to the chase
  • December collaboration?
  • I think {an update} is great! 
  • Imagine a 5x increase in revenue 
  • Congratulations on reaching {so-and-so achievement}!
  • I noticed your company recently {achievement}
  • I saw your competitor {business name} in the news for {achievement} 
  • Quick question about {prospect's pain point}
  • Chat about {business name}
  • Wanna feature in Forbes?
  • Here’s what {business name} did for {propect’s problem}
  • We helped {business name} reach {goals}

NETWORKING Email Subject line

  • Coffee date? 
  • {Your name} again
  • 10 mins date? 
  • Knock! Knock! A fan mail
  • Hello from upside down
  • November collaboration?
  • Let’s reach the next level
  • {Name of mutual connection} insists we meet
  • I disagree with your article on {topic}
  • I see that you recently got {achievement}
  • Hey, meet again? 
  • {Name of common acquaintance} suggests we collaborate
  • Did you know {so-and-so product} can do {this}?
  • I can help with {problem}
  • I disagree with your views
  • I am a fan
  • I have something for you

CUSTOMER SUPPORT

  • Help is coming 
  • I am there for you
  • Give us 15 mins 
  • Knock! Knock! Tech Support here
  • Incoming help
  • Hey from upside down
  • All okay?
  • Let me help you
  • {Name of staff} is reaching you
  • What do you think about {product/service}?
  • I see that you recently got {purchase}
  • Need help with {product/service}
  • How’s it going
  • I can help with {problem}
  • I have something for you
  • Gentle reminder
  • Friendly reminder

4 Things to Keep in Mind When Writing Follow-Up Subject Lines

Bribe them

More than 300 billion emails are exchanged every day. The receivers of your email are busy people who receive 5 or 6 dozen messages daily. They don’t have the time or desire to go through every mail in their email inbox.

So, bribe them. Tell them you have something to give in the subject line itself. For instance:

  Get 20% off on Premium Plan + 5x Revenue Increase 

This subject line is great for 3 reasons: 

  1. Solving a pain point–client’s budget issues
  2. Using a keyword
  3. Showing scope for growth

First, you’re solving a pain point–budget. Most potential buyers/customers, especially small businesses and start-ups, don’t respond because of their tight budgets. Second, you’re using a keyword related to your product–” Premium plan”. And, third is that you’re showing scope for growth. 

There’s one problem with these types of subject sentences. They work only for sales follow-up emails. But, don’t worry! There are other ways of bribing your reader: 

I can help with {problem}.

This will work for sales, cold mailing, networking, and also for customer support. You can mention how you can ease their job with your service/product in the email body. In case you’re not selling anything, you can also come up with advice or observation which will benefit them professionally. 

I can help increase sales by 5x. 

Knock the Curious Door

Sentences used for subjects also work if they’re thought-provoking and can make the email lists curious enough to open them. The best way to do this is to ask a simple question in a conversational tone:

Wanna feature in Forbes?

Or

Is XYZ a goal for your business?

The intention is to intrigue them. So, if statements work best for you, you can go ahead.  

We helped {competitor’s name} achieve 10x clients.

You can also use absurd subject lines to write a funny email, such as:

Message deleted

Or 

Forget me not

Play Reverse Psychology 

The subject of email playing reverse psychology is one of the most successful ways to catch the recipient’s attention. Some subject line examples are: 

Do not open this message

Or

Look away

Personalize

While curiosity can increase open rates, personalized mails will increase response rates. Use AI-based tools like Smartlead to gather potential clients’ professional information while sending mails in bulk

Some examples of personalized follow-up messages are: 

  • I see that you recently got {achievement}
  • Congratulations on taking on the new challenge...

Additional tip: Write on the email thread of the original email. 

Follow-Up Email Templates

For Cold Emails:

SUBJECT: We helped {competitor’s name} reach {goals}

Hey {recipient’s first name}, 

What’s your process for {event}?

Last month, {competitor’s name} achieved {goals} in the XYZ area. Our {service/product} helped their {so-and-so process}.

Do you have any plans in place for addressing it?

I have a few suggestions. Let’s schedule a call to discuss this further.

Best, 

{Your name} 

{Designation} 

{Company’s name} 

{Contact info}

 

For Networking Mails:

SUBJECT: Did you know {fact} about {topic}?

Hi (Recipient's first name),

It was a pleasure meeting you at (venue name) and learning about (topic). I must say your views influenced me deeply. 

After our chat, I found the attached (piece of content) on (topic) while researching. I thought you might be interested.

I look forward to knowing your views on this. Let’s be in touch. 

Thanks again,

{Your name} 

{Designation} 

{Company’s name} 

{Contact info} 

Best Practices to Follow While Creating a Follow-up Subject Line

Creating an effective follow-up email subject line requires careful thought and strategy. Here are some best practices:

  1. Be Specific and Clear: Your subject line should clearly state the purpose of your email. Avoid using generic phrases and instead, aim for clarity and precision.
  2. Use Personalization: Including the recipient's name or referencing a previous interaction can make your email stand out and increase the likelihood of it being opened.
  3. Keep It Short: Long subject lines can get cut off, especially on mobile devices. Aim for 50 characters or less.
  4. Create Urgency: If appropriate, creating a sense of urgency can encourage recipients to open your email sooner.

Mistakes to Avoid While Writing a Follow-Up Subject Line

Avoid these common mistakes when crafting your follow-up email subject lines:

  1. Being Too Vague: Generic subject lines like "Checking In" don't provide enough context and may not capture the recipient's attention.
  2. Using All Caps or Excessive Punctuation: This can come off as spammy and may lead to your email being ignored or marked as spam.
  3. Making False Promises: Misleading subject lines can damage your credibility and lead to a poor response rate.

What Makes a Subject Line so Important for a Follow-Up Email?

The subject line is often the first thing a recipient sees when they receive your email. A well-crafted subject line can capture the recipient's attention, convey the value of your message, and motivate them to open the email. On the other hand, a poorly written subject line can result in your email being ignored or deleted.

Final Thoughts

Dear readers, take an oath to follow up. Be it sales or networking, following up with relevant information will open new gates for your business/career. 

In addition to establishing your brand name, it will also increase open rates and response rates. I hope the subject lines work for you. 

With this, I bid you farewell for today! See y'all! 

Frequently Asked Questions

1. How do you politely follow up an email?

To politely follow up an email, start by providing context for the follow-up and express understanding if the recipient has been busy. Be clear about your request and maintain a respectful and professional tone.

2. What are some effective formulas for creating follow-up email subject lines that generate high open rates?

Effective formulas for follow-up email subject lines include personalization, clearly stating the purpose of the follow-up, creating a sense of urgency, and offering value or benefit to the recipient.

3. Should I use the same subject line throughout my entire follow-up campaign, or is it better to switch it up occasionally?

While consistency can be beneficial, it's generally a good idea to switch up your subject lines occasionally. This can help keep your emails fresh and engaging, and prevent them from seeming repetitive or spam-like.

4. How can I test and refine my follow-up email subject lines to improve performance?

A/B testing is a useful way to refine your subject lines. This involves sending two versions of the same email with different subject lines to a small segment of your audience, then using the one with the higher open rate for the rest of your campaign.

5. How do I maintain a consistent tone and voice across various types of follow-up emails (e.g., sales, customer support)?

Maintaining a consistent tone and voice starts with understanding your brand's identity and how you want to communicate with your audience. Regardless of the type of follow-up email, aim for a tone that is professional, respectful, and aligns with your brand.

What’s a Rich Text element?

The rich text element allows you to create and format headings, paragraphs, blockquotes, images, and video all in one place instead of having to add and format them individually. Just double-click and easily create content.

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Static and dynamic content editing

A rich text element can be used with static or dynamic content. For static content, just drop it into any page and begin editing. For dynamic content, add a rich text field to any collection and then connect a rich text element to that field in the settings panel. Voila!

How to customize formatting for each rich text

Headings, paragraphs, blockquotes, figures, images, and figure captions can all be styled after a class is added to the rich text element using the "When inside of" nested selector system.

Author’s Details

Rajnish Das

Rajnish Das is an in-house writer at SmartWriter and SmartLead. She writes product-oriented, data-driven content for B2B SaaS audiences and educates them on marketing and sales topics. Her expertise includes outbound marketing techniques like cold emailing and LinkedIn outreach.

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