Each day across the globe, 247 billion emails are sent. I know you only send a small portion of them, but shouldn't yours get noticed and be the highest priority in the stack? If you want your emails to be noticed and get a quick response, here are five things you can do to bump up your odds...
1. Use a clear, action-oriented subject line. "Yo home dog!" might be effective and fun when emailing your BFF about what smokin' hot chicks will be at this weekend's tailgate, but in business, you need to be more specific. Use words such as "Action Requested by Friday Nov 13" or "Please review and respond". These subject lines are more likely to get your email opened and acted upon in a timely manner.
2. Use ONLY a subject line. On the topic of subject lines, why not convey a super short message using ONLY a subject line? If you're confirming an appointment, or responding to a yes/no question, just put it in the subject line like this: "CONFIRMING: Chili's Nov 3 @ noon. END" or "Response to blue fabric choice is yes. END" You use the word "END" to signify that's the entire message. It works!
3.Address a single topic. Sometimes it's impossible, but it's best to try to address a single topic per email. This ensures your subject line is accurate and then if your reader is searching later for your email, he'll find it quicker based on the subject line.
4. Use bullet points in the body. Don't you love when you get an email and you open it and it's two or three paragraphs long but you go ahead and read it anyway and then you realize that you're halfway through it and you still don't know the reason the person emailed you and then you have to skim it again to look for the action items and the questions? Whew. Don't be that person. If you MUST address more than one topic per email, make it simple on your reader by using bullet points and short sentences.
5. Pay attention to spelling and grammar. This one should go without saying, but you'd be amazed how many emails I receive with misspellings and horrid grammar. I'm not saying you have to whip out the AP Style Guide, but for Pete's sake if English is your first language, have some pride, people. Know the difference between there, their and they're. Use your and you're properly. Apostrophes show possession or create a contraction -- they aren't for pluralizing. And once and for all, the word "LOSE" only has one O! Listen, I know I sound fussy but in business, clear, professional communication is crucial. It doesn't matter how amazing your ideas, skills, products or services are if you can't communicate intelligently.
Use these five tips to make your emails stand out and get noticed among the sea of other emails, and you'll get the answers and actions you need a lot faster!