Email Mistakes To Avoid
By the end of this year, there will be an estimated 5.6 billion email accounts. That helps to explain why email is the dominant medium to market and communicate. Think about how many useless emails that you receive daily. The people who you are trying to influence likely receive just as many. How do you stand out in a cacophony of claptrap? Avoid these common email mistakes identified by Hubspot:
- Misusing reply all. Only use reply all if your response affects more than 70 percent of those receiving the same email. If only a few people need to see your response in a chain, hit reply and use CC to send your message to appropriate parties.
- Forgetting to proofread. Sending emails with grammatical errors or spelling mistakes makes you look unprofessional and unintelligent. If you use Microsoft Word, use the review feature to catch typos and punctuation errors.
- Using a deceptive subject line. Inaccurate or misleading subject lines create mistrust. How many times have you received an email from someone asking for a reorder when you never ordered from that company previously? Take advantage of the subject line to capture attention. A couple of examples: “Here are three ideas to make your life easier.” “Here is your exclusive offer (if it is exclusive).” The best subject lines are creative, interest-provoking and informative.
- Choosing a lazy greeting. If you've started an email with "To Whom it May Concern," you're guilty of using a lazy greeting. Take the time to craft personalized messages to your recipients.
- Not formatting your message. A 2018 study found that nearly 50 percent of emails are opened on mobile devices. Use short paragraphs and bullet points, links and lists to make emails readable on mobile.
- Sending emails late at night. Avoid the temptation to send emails after regular business hours and on weekends because they could be interpreted that you are understaffed, inefficient or desperate.
- Not including a signature. Failing to provide a complete signature foregoes valuable real estate. Include your name, title, contact information, recent industry honors (if you have them, e.g., Best of Houzz), and a headshot photo.
- Failing to have a call to action. Your emails should be asking the recipient to commit to something, such read a blog post, schedule a visit or make an introduction. Even if you have been turned down before by someone you are trying to reach, you can ask where you can learn more about their organization or project.
- Getting Too Creative. Using nonstandard or creative fonts makes an email more difficult to read. Stick with the tried and true.
- Being impatient. If you don’t receive an immediate response or even a reply the following day, avoid the temptation to send another email. Use 10 days as a rule of thumb for following up your email.
- Using email as a way not to communicate. There are times and situations where you should call or meet face-to-face instead of sending an email. Examples include multiple back and forth emails with no resolution or consensus. If you need to write more than three paragraphs, a call may be more productive and less time-consuming.
- Failing to get to the point. Tell the recipient why you are writing and what you want to them to do upfront.