This Message Was Sent With High Importance

By, 07/09/2014

Previously, I wrote about how to get the most out of your emails. In this post I want to focus on a very specific part of the email: the subject line.

First, consider the mediums through which one can access email. Besides the traditional desktop and laptop, many professionals now read a lot of their emails on a smartphone. A short, pithy subject line stands out a lot more than a sentence-long description, especially on a smaller screen.

That said, your line needs to pack a punch too—otherwise, your email could easily get overlooked. Stating what you need up front (e.g. “Review Required: Project”) tells the recipient right away what the email is about. However, make sure you are selective with your language. If you include “URGENT” with every email you send, and they’re not all time-sensitive, you risk being the “boy who cried wolf.”

Though there are other ways to make your message stand out (some applications allow you to flag your email with “High Importance”), a solid subject line can be just as effective in grabbing your recipient’s attention.