“Writing is easy. All you have to do is cross out the wrong words”
– Mark Twain.
My recent blogs regarding e-mail and selling created quite a stir with my readers. Apparently, e-mail is a very thorny issue for many sales people. Sales people are increasingly forced to sell through e-mails since many customers seem to hide behind their PCs. Writing effective e-mails is hard work and there is also confusion about when to e-mail and when to call (or leave a voice mail).
Here are a few more recommendations and comments about e-mail from my readers:
– E-mail is best for messages that are positive or neutral. If the message is negative, it is best to call them on the phone .
– Use subject lines that are concise and to the point; avoid teasing the reader.
– Avoid the use of any spam like words such as “free”, “discount”, “Viagra”, etc in your subject line. since your e-mail won’t get through the spam filters.
– Keep your e-mails short (one screen length) since people don’t have the time to read long e-mails (they will just get deleted).
– Limit them to one subject only; this allows the reader to pass the e-mail on if necessary.
– Break up the body of your e-mail with short paragraphs or bullets; help people find your important points.
– Never send an e-mail when you are angry; put it aside and review it later.
– Read your e-mails aloud before sending to insure that they read the way that you intended.
– Limit your CCs to people who really need to read your e-mail.
– Don’t write anything in an e-mail that you wouldn’t put up a billboard; e-mails can be easily forwarded without your knowledge.
– Save all your e-mails; don’t delete them. E-mails should be saved for seven years just like tax records.
– Beware of e-mail strings that get forwarded; some people will go back and read everything (you may not want them to do that).
– Don’t be sarcastic or joke around since the humor could get lost in translation.
– Always say thank you and be friendly in your e-mails; it is easy for e-mails to seem curt or angry or rude.
– At the end of every e-mail, include your contact information.
– Don’t assume that they kept your last e-mail.
Know and comply with your company e-mail policies; more and more employers are writing e-mail policies that are increasingly restrictive. According to a survey by Proofpoint, 40% of large companies staff employees to read other people’s e-mails in a search for violations to their e-mail policies. Big brother is watching.
P.S. Always include a postscript since everyone reads it!
John Bradley Jackson
© Copyright 2006 All rights reserved.
Please visit my website at www.firstbestordifferent.com