Get in Touch

  • Email Us
Call Us
  • INTL 001.562.252.3789
  • USA 800.430.4095
  • UK (+44) 20 3695 2266
  • Switzerland (+41) 43 508 4676
Hal Licino

Crafting Effective Dental Email Subject Lines & Preheaders

Aug 16 2011, 07:12 PM by

Condensing your writing is a key factor in improving the efficiency of your Dental & Orthodontic email newsletters. Especially as we transition into an age where social media constitutes one of the primary channels to engage your clinic's patients and prospects, you have to be able to state your points clearly and concisely, or not at all. In the case of many email marketing factors such as subject lines and preheaders you are working with a very limited number of characters. It can seem next to impossible to cram even just the essence of your message into these precious few words. The important aspect to keep foremost in your mind is that you shouldn't fight the character count, but leverage it to inspire you to achieve better, shorter and more efficient writing.
Never Abbreviate
Many mobile browsers and email clients significantly truncate your longer subject lines and preheaders so you have no choice but to get your point across in verse so concentrated that it would challenge a poet. To top it all off, most email marketers find that using abbreviations in these cases drops the critical open ratios, therefore:

We Are Pain-Free Sedation Specialists

is going to outperform

Sleep Thru Proc. w/N2O & IV Sedation
Focus on a Single Lead Topic
Many Dental & Orthodontic email newsletters contain several topics and the temptation always exists to list each separate article in the subject lines or preheaders. Do whatever it takes to resist this temptation as the result will be a hodgepodge that will make your open ratios plummet. Instead of turning your clinic's email newsletter titling into bullet points, opt for the strategic decision to focus on a single lead subject.
Seek out Hot Words that Jump Out
Your patient or prospect is consistently barraged by incoming email from all corners, so they are going to generally skim through the incoming subject lines and preheaders to determine the value of each message and whether they should bother to open and read through it. Through this skimming process, some words have a tendency to "jump out" more than others, and these are the ones that you need to focus on in your writing. These words are timely, relevant, speak to your reader, but fall well short of trite buzzword or jargon status. There are many Google tools such as Keywords, Insights and Trends that can help you zero in on these elusive but powerful words.

Social Media Scientist Dan Zarrella features a superlative tool on his site he calls "The Most ReTweetable Words Finder." Simply by entering any keyword such as Dentist or Cavities, the tool will produce a list of words that were relatable and proven to be "highly Tweetable" through analysis of actual Tweets in the last 24 hours. These words are in "hot" use right now and thus constitute high quality and relevant Dental & Orthodontic terms you can apply to your subject lines and preheaders to maximize their impact.
Avoid the Spam Word Pratfalls
You have worked hard to ensure that your Dental & Orthodontic clinic is highly reputable so you certainly don't want to risk your sterling reputation by inadvertently using specific words that are identified as spammer bait in your subject lines and preheaders. You can refer to my earlier article on How to Avoid the Top Twenty Spam Words or seek out any of the reputable lists on the web that list hundreds or even thousands of words that will flag your message as nothing more than spam.

Writing effective subject lines and preheaders for your clinic's email marketing newsletters is essentially just good wordsmithing. One of the primary bibles of fine writing is Strunk and White’s Elements of Style, and this quote fully exemplifies and illustrates the art and science of writing great email content:

“Write with nouns and verbs, not with adjectives and adverbs. The adjective hasn’t been built that can pull a weak or inaccurate noun out of a tight place. It is nouns and verbs, not their assistants, that give good writing its toughness and color.”

Posted in Tips & Resources, Email Design & Templates, Dental & Orthodontic

Related Blogs