How to Keep Your Emails Professional
For a lot of professionals, email is one of the go-to tools and takes up a good part of their marketing plan. However, many of us still don’t know how to make the most of our email campaigns.
Are you making the most of your email marketing strategy in 2018? Here are tips to help you out:
Tip 1. Don’t Wait Too Long to Respond
Normally, when prospects/clients contact you with a business request, they want the answer sooner rather than later. On a normal business day, emails should be answered within 24 hours except when you’re away. If the email comes in during the weekend, it’s generally okay to wait until the next business day to respond.
Tip 2. Use a Vacation Responder
If you’re going to be out of the office for a lengthy period and won’t be able to check your email, it’s a good idea to let people know. Use a vacation or out-of-office auto responder message, such as the kind you can set up through Gmail.
Tip 3. Don’t Use Email as a Crutch
Email is convenient. You can use it anytime and it leaves a written record of a conversation. But remember, email is not the right choice for every situation.
If you think your email message may be misunderstood, a call or even a face-to-face meeting might be a better choice. Especially make sure that you’re not sending an email as a crutch when avoiding difficult conversations.
Tip 4. Consider Your Email Audience
Whether the tone of your professional email is formal or informal depends on who you are writing it to. This is the main reason why it’s important to know who your audience is. If you can, use the writing style your audience prefers.
Tip 5. Always Be Polite
Good manners mean good business. Each email that you send will leave an impression on the reader at least twice: the initial impression when they first receive the email and a second impression when they read its content.
Tip 6. Shorter Is Often Better
Who really has the time to read a 500-character message word-for-word? The longer your message is, the more likely a reader is to skim through it—making them miss important details.
Get to the point, be as quick and concise as you can. There’s no need to be overly wordy with your professional email messages.
Tip 7. Write an Effective Subject Line
Your subject line is the first thing the recipient sees. If you use the wrong subject line, your recipient will have the tendency to skip over your message. Or worse, mistake it for spam.
Tip 8. Use a Template
If you find yourself frequently answering the same questions, you can save a lot of time by using email templates so you don’t have to write every email from scratch. Instead, you start with a well-written message and customize it accordingly.
Tip 9. Reread Your Email
An email full of typos and other errors could be embarrassing or even damaging for your business. That’s why proofreading is as important as ever. Catch mistakes when you carefully go through your message before you send it.
Tip 10. Avoid Using Reply All
Habitually hitting Reply All every single time you send a message may cause your message to be sent to the wrong recipients. So, get rid of this habit.
Tip 11. Integrate your Inbox with a Task Tool
For some of us, opening an email equates to getting a work assignment. A lot of professional emails require follow up of some sort—often a task that must be performed or another message that must be written. Email tasks can seem overwhelming unless you discover a way to manage them. One way to manage email tasks and insure that none fall through the cracks is with a task tool. Gmail has a helpful task tool that integrates your inbox with a task list.
Tip 12. Combine Multiple Inboxes into One
Do you still have a list of email addresses you run through each time you check your messages? Logging in and out of various email platforms is a nuisance and can take extra time. Streamline the process of checking your email by combining multiple inboxes into one.
Tip 13. Schedule a Time to Check Your Email
Checking email constantly can slow you down and interrupt your thought processes. Unless your business requires that you respond to each new message as quickly as possible, it’s better to schedule two or three times during the day to check and process email. Setting aside dedicated email times frees up the rest of your day so that you can focus on other tasks.
Tip 14. Use Email Security
No list of professional email tips would be complete without a mention of email security. While there are no guarantees when it comes to online security, there are some steps you should take to protect yourself and make sure your email is more secure. To protect your online information, it’s important to learn everything you can about your email platform’s security tools. Once you’ve learned about them, put them to use.
Dealing with your emails may take up a lot of your time and managing your multiple email accounts may even seem overwhelming at times. But, it doesn’t have to be that way. Many of the tips in this article can be used with any email platform. Following them will save you time and help you to become more productive.
So, whether you’re composing, checking, or organizing your email system—you can be more efficient.
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