How to Write Compelling Survey Email Subject Lines


When you’re attempting to gather survey participants over email, your subject line can make or break how successful you are. So long as you understand what factors differentiate  good survey email subject lines from a bad ones, you’re sure to find success. To help you write an alluring and compelling survey email subject line, we’ve outlined some helpful tips below.

Avoid Sounding Like Spam

When you write a subject line using spammy words, it’s sure to negatively impact your survey’s open rate. For one, when you use the wrong words in your subject, you risk triggering an email server’s spam filter. This can cause your email to be placed in someone’s junk folder, where they might never see it.

Even if your subject gets past an email’s spam filter, the wrong words can signal a red flag to the reader. For example, words that you want to avoid using include offer, winner, urgent, act now, risk-free, and cash. These words are so commonly used by spam emails that they are cause for suspicion. Instead, try to write in a voice that’s more natural and less dubious.

Write a Personal Subject Line

When it’s clear that you copy and pasted your message with no regard to the person at the other end of the email, it can be off-putting. You’re asking someone to take time out of their day to fill out your survey, so the least you can do is to personalize your email.

Adding a touch of personalization is easy. All you have to do is add the recipient’s first name at the beginning of the email. A simple, “Hi (Mr/Mrs. Last Name)” to introduce your survey request will suffice. When you call your email recipient by their name, it makes them more likely to respond.

Keep It Brief

These days, people’s inboxes are flooded with a plethora of emails. To capture the attention of your recipient, you want to keep your email short and to the point. Otherwise, a long subject line could serve to scare them off from reading your message in the first place.

When you keep your subject line concise, it shows that you respect the other person’s time. For this reason, you’ll want to keep your subject line under 60 characters in total.

Writing a compelling email subject line is crucial when gathering survey responses. When you make an effort to avoid using spam words whilst making your subject personal and concise, your response rate will surely rise. For quick tips on how to improve your survey subject lines, take a look at Chattermill’s infographic below.


About Mike Gingerich

Mike Gingerich, President of Digital Hill & TabSite is a business blogger Marketer and Consultant. Part geek, part marketer, part strategist, total fitness and running junkie. Mike is an author and speaker, having presented at Social Media Week Lima, Social Media Camp (Canada) and more. Mike is a marketing, social media, and business startup enthusiast with 10+ years experience building apps, consulting, and training businesses with winning integrated strategies. Mike loves deploying tactics to increase awareness, sales, and maximize ROI in both B2B and B2C markets via digital media.