review request subject line email templates

61 Email Review Request Subject Line Templates

Is your review request subject line weak? It doesn't have to be that way. Your subject line is the tool to attract attention. These 61 templates will help.
Reading Time: 11 minutes

Updated: 1/27/2020

Your review request subject line plays the most important role in your review generation email outreach. Let’s face it, the subject line of the review request email determines whether your customers even open the email in the first place, and unless your customers hate you, they should want to hear from you! 

You’ve wowed your customers. Your team has under promised and over delivered. Customers are satisfied and happy. Their positive experience is still fresh in their minds. You’re ready to ask for a review. 

So what’s stopping you? 

Your emails — your subject lines in particular. Best-case scenario? Your customers are eager to respond. Worst-case scenario? You are ignored or your customers are prompted to write a negative review.

The review you receive depends on your pitch

But you can’t make a pitch.

If you’re missing a compelling review request email subject line, reviewers won’t even see your pitch. Your review request subject line is the opener. You’re competing with everyone inside your reviewer’s cluttered inbox.

And their inbox is cluttered.

According to the Radicati Group, the average office worker receives approximately 140 emails per day, sending roughly 40 emails daily. There’s a good chance your reviewers are dealing with information overload. 

business emails sent per day

The competition is real.

What exactly does this mean for you? If you want amazing reviews, your email review requests need amazing email subject lines. There’s no way around it.

Why the wrong review request subject line means you'll be ignored

This seems obvious, doesn’t it?

If your review request email subject lines are terrible, people are going to waste their time. If you’re a marketer, this is so incredibly obvious that it’s not even worth discussing, or is it? 

We need to know why.

Why are email subject lines ignored? Readers pass on emails for three specific reasons.

1. They’re afraid you’ll waste their time, deceive, manipulate or abuse them. They’re unsure about who or what they’re getting into.

2. They’re repulsed, something about your subject line is a complete turnoff. It’s a small mistake but it’s enough to kill their interest.

3. They’ve missed it. Most of your customers are buried under a never-ending list of emails. They missed your message and it was quickly buried by new incoming messages. 

That’s pretty much it. 

There are other broad reasons at play here, but these three are the biggest offenders. If a review request subject line fails to perform, this is the best place to start.

What does this look like?

  • No subject line
  • Your emails are vague | Subject: email
  • Too promotional | Subject: buy {product} now!!!
  • Poor grammar or punctuation | Subject: PleAsE rEaD ThIs EmAiL
  • It’s dishonest (e.g., using a faux re: to trick readers into responding)
  • It's unfocused | Subject: Hello…
  • You’re abusive, toxic or dysfunctional | Subject: that stupid mot-erf–k-r thought he could say no to me…
  • You’re too cute | Subject: I bet you’re going to open this email!
  • You ramble | Subject: Here’s a new and exciting product I want to tell you about that’s perfect for specialists like you who are looking to make more money and less time and with less effort. Contact me today to learn more about how I can help you with your…

If you’re making these mistakes, stop it now.

 Seriously.

These mistakes are unbelievably common. They’re great ways to receive the “mark as spam” designation instantly.

So what can you write? 

That’s a pretty easy question to answer. Your email review request subject line has one job to do. 

Get the click.

This is actually pretty helpful because it limits the kinds of messages you should be sending. Top shelf marketers do their best work when they’re forced to work within restrictions. Email subject lines are no different. Generally speaking, your subject lines should fall into (at least) one of three categories. 

1. It’s fascinating or remarkable

2. It’s educational and or informative

3. It requests/provides clarity, confirmation or verification

At first glance, these three categories seem a bit restrictive, don’t they? In reality, they’re anything but. I’m generalizing a bit to keep things simple here, but you get my point. Your email subject lines should be simple and purpose-driven. 

Mailchimp analyzed 24 billion delivered emails with subject lines composed of approximately 22,000 distinct words. They wanted to answer a simple question. Which subject lines do people respond to? Here’s what they discovered:

  • People respond to subject lines with a sense of urgency or importance
  • Personalization works (no surprise there)
  • Free isn't guaranteed to be successful
  • Recipients are more interested in announcements and event invitations than cancellations and reminders
  • Requests for donations are largely ignored
  • Frequently used word pairs (like thank you) have a significant impact on open rates
  • Capitalization helps (slightly)

What does this mean for brands? What impact does this study have on our review request subject lines? Let’s take a look at several review request subject lines you can use in your email review requests.

1. Review request subject lines that create curiosity/mystique

1. {Customer name}, {negative reviewer name} said some really nasty things about us…

2. {Customer name}, {negative reviewer name} says this is the worst thing about us…

3. {Customer name}, you’ve always been the best at…

4. {Customer name}, do you disagree with {negative reviewer name}?

5. {Customer name}, what if we decided to add this to our {service}?

6. So {Customer name}, {negative reviewer} says we need {xyz}. Do you agree?

7. {Customer name} can you help? {Negative reviewer name} accused us of…

8. {Customer name}, is it a mistake to add this to our {service}?

9. {Customer name}, would this make our {service} better for you?

10. {Customer name}, {reviewer name} says you want this. Are they right?

Did it work? Aren’t you curious as to who this {reviewer name} is in the templates?

Curiosity is an attractor.

As people, we’re naturally curious about unanswered questions. We obsess over secrets, and we focus on solving puzzles. These subject lines feed a reviewer’s curiosity and need for novelty.

Answer their questions. 

If you lead with curiosity, satisfy their need in the email like this:

Subject: [Customer name], you’ve always been the best at…

[Customer name],

You’ve always been the best at giving it to us straight. Right now, we need your help. A reviewer by the name of [reviewer name] thinks we’re kind of the worst.

He said some pretty bad things (about us).

So here’s where you come in. Is [reviewer name] right about us? We’ve worked with you for [#] years, and it seems you’ve always been happy, but maybe I’m missing something.

Would you share your story?

[Button with a link to the specific review site or a review funnel link

[Your name]

See how I maintain the scent of that subject line in the body of the email? That’s what you’ll want to do if you decide to use mystique to trigger a response.

2. Review request subject lines that create action/alarm

11. {Customer name}, {reviewer name} says you should avoid us at all costs!

12. “It’s almost impossible to reach you.”

13. “You’re ripping people off.”

14. “This is the worst I’ve ever had in my life!”

15. “{Customer name}, I’ve had better than you…”

16. “You’re nothing but a dirty scammer…”

17. “I’d give them zero stars if I could.”

18.I have mixed feelings about this place.”

19. “They’re not bad, but they’re not good either.”

20. “{Customer name}, the owner of {business} is a horrible person.”

Can you feel the nervousness and tension behind these subject lines? What’s going on here? Why would anyone use these subject lines to attract attention? Where did they even come from?

They come from your negative reviews.

Here’s how it works:

Step 1. You take snippets or excerpts from your negative reviews. Use excerpts that are broad, generic or extreme. Avoid using excerpts that show specificity or a known failure on your part (if you’ve screwed up, there’s no need to draw attention to it).

Step 2. You turn them into alarming subject lines. Be sure to add the quote from the reviewer so your recipients have context and understand what you’re trying to say.

Step 3.You send them to your happiest, most satisfied customers/clients. 

But when?

When do you send these out? You send these alarm triggering subject lines out at two distinct moments. 

1. Right after you’ve wowed a customer/client

2. To known loyalists, customers who love, admire and trust your company 

That’s how you minimize risk.

Doing this accomplishes several important things. It grabs your customer’s attention immediately. It motivates them to take action quickly on your behalf.

3. Review request subject lines that are direct and trustworthy

21. What do you think about the subtle changes to our {product}?

22. Hey {Customer name}, are you willing to be radically honest with us?

23. {Customer name}, what do you think we should change about {service}?

24. Hi {Customer name}, can we ask you {#} questions? Takes {#} min.

25. {Customer name}, what can we do to earn a review from you?

26. {Customer name}, Did we earn your trust?

27. {Customer name}, what should we fix/keep doing?

28. They said: “{Quote from a negative review.}” Are they right?

29. They said: “{Quote from a positive review.}” Do you agree?

30. {Customer name}, would you work with us again?

These review request subject lines are open, direct and sincere. They act as skilled generalists. They’re able to generate the interest you need from apathetic yet open-minded reviewers.

When do you use these?

You use them when customers are on the fence about you, your business or the results you’ve provided. Use it when you’re dealing with neutrals who are willing to be convinced or sold.

4. Review request subject lines that increase significance, status and prestige

31. {Customer name}, you’re part of an elite group…

32. {Customer name}, you’re in the top 2%. One of our best customers and…

33. {Customer name}, you’re an {attribute}. What do you think about…?

34. {Customer name} you’re amazing! Here’s what you did for us.

35. {Customer name}, you know something others don’t. You know…

36. {Customer name}, you’re in the top 3%, what do you think?

37. You know us better than anyone else. What do you think?

38. You’re one of our [first] customers. What do you think?

39. You’re our [biggest] customer. Is this wrong?

40. {Customer name}, you’re our most knowledgeable customer. Are they right?

We all have a desire for significance. 

It’s more important for some than it is for others, but the need is there. These subject lines feed your customer’s need for significance. This works well when you notice some of your clients are focused on a few specific things:

  • They’re focused on "getting the credit"
  • Name dropping (e.g., I know so and so, or I’m part of Yelp’s Elite Squad)
  • Looking to improve status, show off in front of others or be seen
  • Focused on status and hierarchical ranking mechanisms

These headlines meet their needs.

Use these review request subject lines directly after a purchase, visit or event. You can approach this one of two ways. Segment your audience ahead of time by asking questions. Or, you split test these subject lines, allowing reviewers to self identify.

5. Review request subject lines that trigger positive rebellion

41. {Customer name}, you couldn’t even say thank you

42. {Customer name}, he thinks you don’t know what you’re talking about…

43. {Customer name}, you’re a know-it-all… and we love that about you

44. {Customer name}, why on earth would you do that?

45. {Customer name}, did you know you’re friends with a liar

46. Our customers aren’t good… [In body of email: They’re the best. Then explain why]

47. {Customer name}, you’re not really likable, are you? [In body of email: They’re loveable. Then explain why]

48. {Customer name}, who do you think you are? [In body of email: You’re a [rockstar], that’s who]

49. {Customer name}, is this really what you stand for? [In body of email: You’re all about fairness, kindness, etc.]

50. {Customer name}, no one likes jerks but you? You’re a… [In body of email: You’re an incredible customer, etc.]

Remember how we talked about maintaining the scent in your email with mystique?

You’ll want to do that here. 

Rebellion is a dangerous trigger to use. It’s unbelievably effective, but it’s likely to trigger anger if you don’t know what you’re doing.

Here’s why.

Rebellion has the potential to create a dramatic emotional response. Defensiveness, stress and anxiety are possibilities. When reviewers open that email, they may be high on these emotions. 

Relieve their stress.

Like this.

Subject: [Customer name], did you know you’re friends with a liar?

Hey [Customer name], 

So [reviewer name] thinks you’re friends with a liar (us). He posted a review online stating that we lied about [product]. Here’s the thing though. 

We didn’t lie. 

You know that. You know our services pretty well. What it includes, what it doesn’t. 

Would you be willing to vouch for us? To set the record straight? We’re getting picked apart and we could use your help. 

Takes just 3 min.

Are you willing to share your story?

You’re amazing! 

Help us out here.

[Button with a link to the specific review site or a review funnel link

[Your name]

See what I did there?

I grabbed their attention using rebellion as a trigger. This gave them a taste of the emotional cocktail we received. Then, I relieved their fear.

Finally, I gave them a single action step — not four or five or six. 

Just one. One. 

There are no footer links to compete with. No social media links. No links to products or services. No site links. Just one link directing them to your review portfolio.

See what I mean?

6. Review request subject lines that create urgency

51. Urgent: {Customer name}, we’re in trouble, and we need your help…

52. Urgent: {Customer name}, we’re being attacked. Can you help us fight back?

53. {Customer name} they said we {Lied}. We didn’t. We need your help ASAP.

54. Help needed ASAP: {Customer name}, it’s horrible. They’re accusing us of…

55. {Customer name}, it’s our Last Chance to Fight Back. With your help, we can win.

Mailchimp found that people respond to a sense of urgency or importance.

words that impact email open rate

The hidden truth here is honesty.

If everything is urgent, or you routinely use urgency triggers as a way to manipulate attention, people stop listening. Another important component of Mailchimp’s study is this: Email recipients really don’t like to be “told they’re missing their last chance to get something they’ve already been emailed about.” 

How do you use this to request reviews?

There are lots of ways to use urgency as a review request trigger. Here’s a short series of steps you can customize for your business.

  • Pick a recent negative review. This review could be hostile, toxic, abusive or dysfunctional.
  • Send a broadcast email out to the ideal customers in your database.
  • Use these subject lines to grab their attention.
  • Use the body of your message (short and sweet) to rally them to your cause.
  • Aim your loyal customers at the hostile reviewer who's looking to hurt your business.

Pretty straightforward, right?

7. Review request subject lines that thank customers and subscribers

56. {Customer name}, thank you from the bottom of our hearts

57. {Customer name}, thank you so much for…

58. {Customer name}, this means so much to [me] thank you so much

59. {Customer name}, you’ll have our gratitude forever

60. {Customer name}, my [mother/father/wife/husband/other] cried when she saw your email

61. {Customer name}, you’re the only one who cared. Thank you 

Research from Mailchimp shows people love to be thanked.

It isn’t because of the ‘thank you’ it’s because of the word pairs. Apparently these word pairs provide readers with the context that a single word can’t convey. Here’s an example from their study.

review request subject line word pairs mailchimp

Thank yous are powerful until they’re not.

Until they’re ruined.

You’ve probably had an email where someone said thank you, and then they turned it into a glorified sales pitch. If you’re like me, this kind of thing leaves a bitter taste in your mouth. It damages the relationship and it makes it more likely that subscribers will ignore your subsequent emails.

Don’t do it.

If you’re going to give customers or subscribers a thank you, focus your attention there. Don’t attempt to sell them anything; don’t woo, manipulate, persuade or coerce them in the slightest.

Just say, thank you.

Nothing more, nothing less.  Just one problem.

What exactly are you thanking your customers or subscribers for? Believe it or not, there’s a whole lot to be thankful for. As you practice gratitude, you’ll find that you notice more and more things to be thankful for.

Here are a few examples.

  • Thanking your first customers for believing in and supporting you in the beginning
  • Thanking customers for treating your employees well
  • Thanking subscribers for trusting you with their email address
  • Thanking specific subscribers, customers or commenters for "telling it like it is"
  • Thanking subscribers for giving you a chance
  • Thanking specific subscribers, customers or commenters for adding to the conversation
  • Thanking your pre-sell customers for jumping on board and supporting you
  • Thanking customers for supporting your charity or fundraising cause
  • Thanking customers for sharing a negative review
  • Thanking customers for defending you and your business against trolls, ragers or toxic reviewers

The opportunities for gratitude are endless! 

Saying thank you builds the relationship. It shows subscribers and customers that you’re paying attention to their efforts. That they matter and you’re willing to acknowledge them when it counts. 

It’s a huge relationship booster.

But it only works when it’s done from a place of genuine warmth and gratitude. If it’s used as a way to manipulate people into doing what you want, it hurts your relationship.

The review you receive depends on your pitch

Your review request subject line is where it starts with review management.

Are your review request subject lines weak? You’re far less likely to receive the reviews you’re looking for. But it doesn’t have to be that way. Your review request subject line is the opener, the tool you need to attract reviewer attention and earn great reviews (that deserve to be thanked in your positive review response).

You’re competing with hundreds.

Thousands of emails in each reviewer’s inbox. The average office worker receives 140 emails per day or 980 emails per month.

The pressure is on.

You’ve wowed your customers. Your clients have under promised and over delivered. Customers are satisfied and happy. Their positive experience is still fresh in their mind.

What does this mean?

You’re ready to ask for a review. With the right psychological triggers and a careful (and sometimes clever) approach, you’ll have everything you need to create successful email review requests, no barriers necessary.

This Post Has One Comment

  1. Really loved this article. Great and helpful email subject tips to increase click-through-rates. I’ve actually began implementing some of these tips in my review campaigns. Thanks for sharing

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

350 Shares
Tweet148
Share111
Share
Buffer91