Tag Archives: Mail

7 Tips for Effective Email

There is something about e-mail that fosters poor communication habits. Users see it as a form of instant communication and therefore, doesn’t require the same care and attention that a letter might.

For many organizations, e-mail has become the preferred means of communication, both formal and informal. Here are some tips to make your e-mail as effective and efficient as possible:

  1. Use short paragraphs. E-mail is generally read from a computer screen. Keep your paragraphs short –50 words or less– to ensure maximum readability.
  2. Get personal. Use second person terms. Words such as “you”, “your”, and “yours” let the recipient know you’re thinking of them specifically.
  3. Don’t send spam. This includes forwarding every bad joke and poem your second cousin sends you. People don’t like receiving junk paper mail at home and they don’t like the electronic version either. If you’re building a new relationship with a customer, don’t bury them in your sales spam.
  4. Check spelling and grammar. You should invest as much effort in checking the content of e-mail as you do any other written communication. A sloppy e-mail message will communicate negatively about your professionalism.
  5. Include a signature section. Most e-mail software will automate this process for you. Your signature should include your name, job title, contact information, and company name.
  6. Respond efficiently. Develop at set of personal rules for processing your email in a productive way. Read:  @ 43 Folders
  7. Ignore the above tips. If you exchange a large number of messages with a particular co-worker, create a set of rules to optimize the way you each process e-mail. You can develop short cuts and templates that bypass some of the above tips and steps because you have worked out you own protocols.

3 Elements of Effective Business Email

Have you ever received an e-mail message saying something like this:

“I need the first quarter sales reports”

or have you sent such a message? There’s no greeting, no thank you, no signature, nothing to make the message look professional.

There are many people who use e-mail a some sort of instant-messaging system. They think they can dispense with basic communication principles by using a couple of smilies and an “lol”.

Like any form of communication, the business e-mail you send tells the recipient a great deal about you. The old “first impression” adage applies to email just a much as a face-to-face meeting. If you are inconsiderate in your email, that’s what people will remember about you. If you approach e-mail with professional business attutude, that’s how the reader will see you.

Every email you send should contain three basic elements:

  • A Greeting – Even if it’s as simple as “Hi”, you start off your message with a positive tone. Mobile e-mail users might use a shorter greeting to save key strokes, while desktop users have opportunity to add a name to the greeting.
  • Courtesy – If you require something from the recipient, ask politely. Learn the word please. Ask for the information; don’t demand.
  • A Signature – Always end with a “Thank You” or “Sincerely”, then your name and business name. This is quite simple. Every e-mail client —whether desktop or mobile— has the option to set an automatic signature. Take a moment to configure that setting and every message you send will have a closing without having to type anything extra.

You don’t know what benefit may come from your next e-mail message. Make sure it is conveying the best impression of you.