With everything that has happened in the past year or so, it makes you wonder where we would be if we didn’t have email to keep us connected at work. Making sure you are able to send out an easy to read and sufficient email is essential to your workplace success.
What to Include
First and foremost, you need to make sure you have a substantial subject line. Make it easy to identify and single out when scanning through other emails. Unless my email is going to someone that I trust will read the entire email from start to finish, I try to make my subject line as informational as possible. The goal is for them to see my name and my subject line, and then know exactly what kind of content they are opening.
Who you’re addressing is more important than you would think. Some people will trash an email immediately if they’re not properly addressed in an email. Not a very good practice, but still a strong reason to take the time to address someone thoroughly. Making this part of your routine can also save you from sending emails to the wrong person. When you go to proof read your message, just double check that the recipient line and the intro match and you’re golden!
Each email has its own set of rules based entirely on how familiar you are with the person on the receiving end. For a first contact email, it is important to state who you are and what you need in the clearest way possible. I always start with my name, my job title, and the company I work for. It prevents your message from looking spammy and sets up a nice little introduction to whomever I’m emailing. If this person is someone you email everyday, you obviously don’t need to reintroduce yourself each time. Just remember, your email has a better chance of being read if the person receiving it knows who they’re talking to.
After you’ve explained the purpose of your email and politely asked for whatever you need , tag on a quick thank you. In my experience, a thank you never hurt anyone. It might not always be necessary, but taking the time to put in a phrase of thanks has always been a nice touch. If I’m really shooting for a prompt response, I like to use the phrase, “Thank you in advance for your help.” It’s one of those things that might help, but never really hurts your chances of fast communication.
As a designer in the Marketing team, I cannot stress enough how important a professional signature looks! When everyone from your company has the same signature format and everything is linked properly, your company looks amazing! It show that you have not only taken the time to present yourself as professional, but it also reveals a level of oneness and technical savvy that others can appreciate. Simply putting “sincerely” and your name does not cut it. As far as I’m concerned, a poorly constructed signature is a red flag for more. It feels like a higher possibility of being spam or from a malicious email. That isn’t always the case, but I am certainly more wary of a message without a proper signature.
How to Promote Your Company
Your signature is your company’s easiest form of marketing. As you reach out to customers and interact with people outside of your organization, you are acting as a representative of your company. If your marketing team has a standard signature for you to follow, it is likely for a reason. Our signatures at FriendsOffice shows off our company colors, our logo, and we have the option to promote our social media pages! If you click out logo, it sends you to our website. With everything linked, our contacts never have to wonder where to go. It’s the easiest way to share more about our company and make our employees look good, as a whole. And if you’re going to have a signature anyway, why not make it look nice?
The great thing about a good signature is that they come in all different forms. Adding additional images below a signature to promote special offers and features is a great way to stand out from others. We use additional images at FriendsOffice to promote events like our “12 Business Days of Christmas,” where we offer a new deal every day during the holiday season. Our company representatives can promote event dates and timely information like this at the bottom of their email signatures.
Tips and Tricks
- Follow a Set Structure: When you follow a set structure, you have a lesser chance of sending something you didn’t mean to. It makes for an easy to read email and helps you maintain a level of professionalism in organization.
- Be as Descriptive as Possible: More detail is ALWAYS better than less detail. Whenever you’re emailing a person, asking for something, giving them the most information possible gives them the best chance of avoiding a misunderstanding. This eliminates an excess of back and forth communication and gets the job done faster.
- Be Polite: The thing about email is that anyone can read what you’ve written, whether or not you sent it directly to them or not. Emails get shared and forwarded to others all the time. So even though you might feel comfortable with the person you’re emailing, it is ultimately better to just keep it polite and professional.
- Be Intentional with Your Tone: I have been bad about this trick on more than one occasion. I have a bad habit of getting really focused and writing emails that come off as rude and short, when the intention was just to be quick and move onto the next task. Just slow down and think about how others might read what you’re typing.
Email hasn’t been our only saving grace during this crazy time! Being a good Zoom user has become just as important as being able to write a great email. Check out our previous blog post, “What Makes You a Good Zoom User?,” for more information!