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The Subject Line

The Subject Line is one of the most important parts of an e-mail. Yet many people create really bad ones.

The subject line has three main purposes:

  • Summarises the content of the e-mail
  • Allows the receiver to determine how important and urgent the message is
  • Allows the user to find the e-mail later on, without having to open it

The subject line is not for:

  • Trying to the trick the receiver to open it
  • Writing "hi", or leaving it blank
  • Showing off your sense of humour

If you can, try and fit in all the critical details of your message into the subject line. If you are arranging a meeting, put the date and time. If you have made a decision, put it in the subject line.

Examples of Good Subject Lines

Subject: Weekly Meeting moved to 2pm this Friday

Subject: Purchase of new printer now approved

Subject: 5 Ideas for Joanna's birthday present

Examples of Bad Subject Lines

Subject: Hi

Subject:

Subject: Team Meeting

Subject: George

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