When you check your email as often as you check the time, crafting everyday professional emails is a necessity. So, whether you’re following up and thanking a company for an interview, or if you are trying to send a friendly reminder that someone has failed to get back to you, there is most definitely a right way to go about writing follow up emails.
The tone of the entire email conversation starts with the email subject line. To start your emails off on the right foot and to help increase your email response rate, we have provided a list of fool-proof options that will help you create the perfect follow up email subject line. Some of these examples are wittier than others and some of these examples are straight and to the point. We will leave proper usage of these examples to your professional judgment.
Below, be sure to check out our 10 tips for what not to include in a follow-up email subject line.
For Time Sensitive Material: “Deadline approaching, 1 week remaining.”
Post Interview: “(Name), Thank You for the Interview.”
Conference Follow Up: “Nice Meeting You at (Event Name)!”
One Sentence Questions, get the message across: “Picked venue. Next steps?”
Answer Questions: “Yes, go ahead with booking hotel for Aug 3-7 conference.”
Admit Mistakes (we are human): “Finally getting back to you on that payment question.”
Let the Person Know if You do not Need a Response: Save everyone some time.
“Received assignment, thank you. No reply or follow up necessary”
Make an Inside Joke or reference a point of conversation, (if appropriate), for new acquaintances: “Let’s meet again soon! Need someone to distract me from the Yankees losing streak”
Add Humor: “Why did the chicken cross the road? I’m not sure, but here’s the content revisions you asked for.!”
For Your Sport Loving Co-worker: “I would rather worked on Sunday than watch that game, you can send me those numbers tomorrow.”
Don’t Forget Your Manners, Say Thank You: “Thanks again for the insightful feedback.”
Heads Up: Great Cupcakes Megan! Reminder: Your on snack duty this Thursday Tony.”
Polite Declines: “No interest in offer, thank you.”
State Your Inquiry: “Following up on availability as discussed on 5/1/2016.”
Sending To-Do Lists: “Action Item List from Internal Meeting Included”
Close Buddy at the Office: “Happy Friday! Just kidding it’s Monday, here is your weekly calendar as requested.”
Clarify Email Importance: “Time Sensitive: final information regarding event dates” OR NTS: final information regarding event dates.
Keep the People in the Know: “I have received all necessary submissions, feedback regarding annual performance to come shortly.”
Be Friendly: Perhaps send an inspirational quote to the entire office as a follow-up or congratulations on a job well done!
Late Response: If you realize that you accidentally missed an email, you could acknowledge this in your email subject line, “Apologies for the delayed response, yes move forward with booking.”
Leave it as is: This last one is a bit obvious and maybe even a bit overused, but don’t forget that you can always use “RE: Whatever subject line the original sender created.”
Don’t be too aggressive: Even if you don’t mean to, sending a follow-up email with a subject line written in all capital letters can appear threatening, avoid subjects like: “URGENT!!!!” and “REMINDERRRR.”
Eager Symbols: Remember not to use too many punctuation marks, such as question marks or exclamation points in a subject line, it can come off as pushy and impatient, avoid: “Did you see my email???” Or, “Still waiting for response!!”
Spelling and Grammar Errors: If your email subject line includes a spelling error, odds are, your email content will too. Don’t allow the reader to think that you do not pay attention to detail before they even open your email.
Lengthy Email Subject Line: Avoid writing what could be perceived as a “short novel” in your email subject line. Leave the main details for the email itself and provide only a simple and concise subject line.
Completely Vague Subject Line: Make sure the reader knows what the email is about, this will increase their chances of opening it as opposed to leaving it for later when they open other spammy looking emails. Avoid subject lines like: “Open,” “Read Me,” “For Now/Later,” “Question.”
No Subject Line: Avoid forgetting to insert a subject line. This can come off not only vague but spammy to the reader. If the email copy includes sensitive material, it may appear in place of the subject line.
There you have it! Over 20 Fool-proof options for creating follow up email subject lines and a list of friendly reminders for what not to include in an email subject line. If all else fails, don’t forget to keep it short and simple. If you can, be crafty, you want the recipient to keep reading. Consider who the recipient is and your relationship with that person before creating the subject line and the email that follows. Above all else, make sure the email subject line is relevant to the email content. As Voltaire once said, “writing is the painting of the voice.”