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The Karate Chop Method: The Secret To Writing Email Subject Lines That Boost Open Rates | CopyMonk

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I’m slightly weird…

I’m mostly of the those who will voluntarily refill their mail inbox with newsletter after publication only thus I can study them. I do it because I’m a copywriter and a complete inbox simply means an even more important one since every little thing visits my swipe file.

However, many people are the exact opposite.

We, including your customers, hate the actual fact they’re getting countless e-mails. You already know this, but there’s no shortage of screenshots on Twitter of people showing a huge selection of unopened email messages from their particular inboxes.

With so many people’s inboxes flooded with emails like yours, it’s more difficult than ever to stand down. And while I’m maybe not an admirer of open prices in general (they have been more or less ineffective in case your KPI is product sales), it is important to learn how to compose mail subject outlines that shake individuals out of their “zombie-like” condition and get noticed in stupidly crowded inboxes.

Luckily, We have my own little system to composing these types of mail topic outlines quickly along with as little mental stress possible.

I call it “The Karate Chop Method”.

Karate Chops: The Best Technique For Email Marketers

You’ve ever before seen old school style flicks?

I’m maybe not speaing frankly about the really cool things like Drunken Master or Hero. I’m referring to the truly cheesy American “kung fu” films in which everything was simply karate. I’m certainly not yes why The united states decided to cluster all fighting techinques into just Karate, nonetheless it occurred.

Anyhow, point is… it’s considering those movies that karate chops shot to popularity.

That and all sorts of the movies of crazy individuals chopping bricks and panels all around us.

Funny enough, “hidden” inside that technique are attributes that each and every email marketer has to give consideration also with regards to writing topic range. The thing is, all “karate chops” tend to be nearly the exact same.

They Have Been…

  • Brief
  • Fast
  • Powerful

In email marketing land, this would indicate short regarding just how many terms it contains, fast in terms which you it could capture your interest although you’re just skimming through, and powerful in that it shocks you adequate to end and allows you to so interested in learning what’s in you open the e-mail.

Something “The Karate Chop Method”?

We genuinely believe mail topic outlines are the key part of any email you compose.

But features nothing to do available rates or other things like that…

To publish great backup, you may need suitable idea behind it. When you write e-mail topic lines, you’re basically making a choice on just what the storyline will likely be as well as the angle you are taking. It essentially establishes the stage for what’s within the real email. This isn’t always 100% real all the time, however it is that more frequently than maybe not.

The Karate Chop Method came about because I experienced difficulty coming up with a lot of mail topic outlines fast. Associated with the copy writing work I’d to complete for myself and for my clients, email messages made nearly all that work. Including writing over 1,000 specific email messages throughout my job.

Heck, we nevertheless remember the time we published 60 email messages within a 24-hour duration. Ugh, that has been worst…

Anyhow, mail subject lines are very important.

However, a lot of people turn to really standard topic lines that don’t do just about anything to stand completely and feel you’re providing myself a bland calculus lecture in place of a thing that is in fact likely to help me to (or at the least some thing I would enjoy reading).

Rather, you should look to headlines that make the difference between life-and-death. I’m speaing frankly about tabloid headlines.

The Reason Why Tabloid Headlines Make Perfect Email Topic Lines

There are plenty magazines in blood supply, detailing them away would take all week.

That is apparent when you go to the grocery store. Each time i’m in line to pay for my grub, I begin to see the whole isle of publications and tabloids. Most are about development, some about health, some about technology…etc

In a host that way, the best headlines winnings. Stage. Publications and tabloids understand this, so that they usually get the best copywriters and spend them well because their particular success just about will depend on it.

Imagine which headlines usually grab my interest?

The headlines from tabloids or the headlines from publications being modeled after tabloids.

Regular magazine headlines are created to be educational. They really summarize what exactly is said in the article it self or work as “introductions” to the human anatomy for the story.

However, tabloid headlines are to design to surprise the heck off you.

Also they are only various sounding generally. Many newsprint headlines seem like one another while tabloid headlines sound like scandals.

Heck, till this very day from the reading a certain tabloid headline that has been about aliens that have been discovered “in concealing” on Earth. I happened to be just like ten years old or so when I see clearly, however it had been quite a read… specially at that age lol.

Not all the tabloid headlines are just like that however. Simply browse the New York Post for a few of the greatest headlines in the field.

The 5 Qualities Of A “Karate Chop” Subject Line:

Writing email subject lines utilizing the Karate Chop method is wholly not the same as composing regular mail subject lines. Actually, you may actually too nervous to actually make use of them is likely to e-mail marketing efforts at first because are that different.

It takes some practice. While topic lines that say “How to…” or “the reason why…” tend to be pretty standard and straightforward. These topic lines require a little more thinking and creativity.

it is easy though, particularly when do you know what to find.

Quick & Punchy

Imagine yourself going through an inbox which has 50 unopened email topic lines. Odds are, you’re likely to be skimming through all of them and simply clicking the ones that appear the absolute most interesting.

However, in the event that you can’t read the entire topic range or if perhaps it requires too-long to learn when compared to rest, it’s going to be easier to dismiss.

In addition, unless you’re currently an excellent copywriter, longer topic outlines turn out to be less “tighter” than they should be. Indicating you’ll have the tendency to added unnecessary words or state way too much when an inferior subject range could have done better.

As soon as your subject range is brief & punchy, you are free to say lots in a manner that’s effortlessly consumable. it is additionally forces one to be much more careful using what terms you employ because it will make or break your e-mail marketing attempts.

That’s why we have a tendency to stay between 4-6 words.

Not every topic line needs to be this way, but once you practice to remain in this range, you will straight away see a lot higher quality subject outlines.

Active Voice

Back in school, we wrote mainly every thing passive-voice.

Heck, I nonetheless do.

But the greatest writing is commonly in energetic voice. If you’re a “grammar-dropout” like me, the difference between energetic and passive voice is simple, but it’s there.

Essentially, active voice has got the topic of your sentence performing an action and in most cases in the very beginning of the sentence. Passive sound gets the topic nearby the center or end of phrase and it is the receiver associated with action.

Energetic Voice: Monk reveals copywriting secret
Passive Voice: Copywriting secret uncovered by Monk

Most of my writing is probably nevertheless passive voice (we don’t understand. We don’t really check always). But we make it a point to keep my e-mail subject outlines in active vocals as it’s the key to “punchy” copy.

Just go through the two examples I offered an extra ago. Discover an enormous distinction between the way the active voice version sounds like versus the passive voice variation. It’s just stronger, more vigorous, and in actual fact faster (4 terms vs 5 terms).

No matter if you’re perhaps not an author, just like me, remember this.


Everyone loves development.

It’s type of ingrained in our biology (perhaps not actually, nevertheless understand what I mean). And I indicate all sorts of development, not only the sort that displays upon your local TV station. Information often means such a thing from national emergencies to simply gossip between buddies.

Fundamentally, most of us like to be nosy and/or know what’s taking place.

Many material you notice in your inbox just isn’t news-worthy. At best, you’ll see a “New article!” subject line that might pique your interest if it is from a source you generally enjoy to read through from. Normally though, it is some boring blog-like email that supposedly brings “value”, presuming you can remain awake long enough to read it.

News is naturally entertaining.

Right now, as I compose this, we’re in the center of the 2016 presidential race. With about two weeks or something like that remaining prior to the final ballots are cast, things tend to be heating. The past 12 months though happens to be filled up with all kind of news-worthy headlines however.

Every thing ranging from Hillary Clinton along with her emails to Donald Trump and all sorts of the homophobic, racist, also stuff he says.

Even if you don’t like politics, you intend to understand what’s taking place.

Same principle must certanly be put on your emails.


Folks are naturally inquisitive.

Actually, it absolutely was Gary Halbert (one of the best copywriters ever), whom stated that interest is one of powerful trigger that you could affect your copy. Absolutely nothing else even comes near.

If you examine regular magazine headlines, many let you know what’s happening close to the headline. After that, if you’re thinking about obtaining full tale, you read more.

But by informing folks every little thing within topic line, here actually is no reason behind all of them to open up your email. Bear in mind, people are busy and are also seeking a justification to not ever read everything deliver them.

Having said that, “curiosity-based” is just a little obscure.

Funny adequate, that’s just what curiosity-based backup is. It’s copy that’s obscure on what’s in fact becoming delivered.

An illustration of this this will be one of my better subject lines, “Apple’s Warning To Email Marketers”.

It’s news-worthy, it’s brief, it’s in active-voice, also it gives you sufficient is interesting without giving out the entire form. In reality, if you’re a message marketer, might eliminate to understand what Apple’s caution is.

That’s the power of curiosity-based subject outlines.



At the end of a single day, people actually just value on their own. Every thing should be centered on their demands, wishes, and desires. If they feel it offers nothing at all to do with them, they just won’t open. I know I Mightn’t.

Heck, I’ve left whole membership sites because I didn’t feel things had been appropriate to me. The exact same is true of emails.

When your subscribers read your subject line, you need to explicitly or implicitly, hint that reading your mail is going to benefit all of them for some reason, form, or type.

What’s an advantage?

It just answers the concerns, “What’s with it for me personally?”

Today, often an advantage will probably be direct. Including, “lose 30 weight in 3 months” or “potentially increase your conversions”. Those are advantages. You will be informing me personally that I’m planning to get one thing Needs. With this stuff though, I’m utilizing a “looser” definition than usual.

Lets use these 2 instances.

Example number 1: Monk’s e-mail secret enhances sales

Inside instance, you know the email is going to mention some form of “email key” that enhances sales. You might not know very well what it is however, but it’s bound becoming there. And if you’re trying to find out about improving your sales, you realize you’re probably going to wish read this email since it’s suggesting that you’re likely to learn something.

Sample #2: Apple’s caution to email marketers

Within example, things work slightly in a different way. You’re not going to get “how-to” guidance. Instead, you understand you’re likely to acquire some sort of development that may probably impact the means you choose to go regarding the e-mail marketing. Now, while this isn’t an explicit advantage, there is certainly however an implicit advantage because knowing this development can help you through your own e-mail marketing efforts.


If you’ve caused it to be this far, you now possess foundational knowledge to write email topic outlines that shine and potentially induce even more opens than normal.

Now, while it does take some rehearse to get this right, it’s doable proper to-do really rapidly. In fact, it’ll probably be your favorite component to composing a message.
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