When you start a business, a lot of your communication with vendors and clients may take place via email. It’s also very possible that the floodgates will open with people who want something from you (depending on what type of products and services you offer). Before you click send, below are 5 email tips every entrepreneur should consider.
1. Proofread and check your tone!!!!!
Remember to always hit spell check before you send an email. If the message is very important, you could even craft the email in Microsoft Word and then copy and paste. In addition to proofing the message for misspellings, make sure your grammar flows and that your tone is clear. Pay attention to words that could be misinterpreted; the misuse of capitalization; or the misuse of punctuation marks—in a business email 1 question mark or exclamation point is typically enough. 🙂 Doesn’t the header of this paragraph feel like the writer (me) is doing too much?
2. Use your signature as your business card.
People often send hundreds of emails throughout their workweek, but can miss the opportunity to highlight their brand. Create a signature template for the closing of your message that not only includes your contact info, but also provides a link to your social media channels, shares a link to your latest news coverage or blog post, and invites others to subscribe to your newsletter. If you have a tagline or fast fact, also include that. Try to keep this just a few lines, too much text can be overwhelming.
3. Dedicate a time of the day for checking and following-up with emails.
Create a window of time when you can check and respond to email messages. Pick a block of time that will allow you to carefully read emails and either file them or delete them once you respond. The goal should be to have an empty email box by the end of the day. If necessary, you may need to scan emails for emergencies throughout the day, but use “email time” to truly dive in.
4. Make the subject line meaningful, simple, and descriptive.
When I used to work in advertising, one of my managers taught me a valuable lesson. He noted to always use a strong subject line that clearly and quickly communicates what the email is about. I absolutely don’t like no subject emails or emails about one subject that becomes a new topic. Stay on topic in emails and make sure you always add a specific subject line. It helps you stay organized when you can search for an email by subject.
5. Remember your spam box.
First, make sure to check your spam box. I don’t know how many times people have sent me something and they ask me did I receive it and I thought I didn’t, but it was in my spam folder. With this same point, be mindful of ways that your message can be spammed. To avoid being mistaken, keep your subject line clean–don’t add a URL, all caps, all lower case, or weird punctuation. Overall, be aware. I had a potential customer reach out to me and her business had 3 Xs in the name. My email system kept spamming her. She thought I was blowing her off and had no clue that her business name (for a non-porn business), which was placed in her signature, was being flagged. Nonetheless, the incident was a reminder for me to check my spam box consistently.
Happy Emailing! Wishing you all the best, Business Rock Stars!
What other email tips would you add? Leave a comment below or tweet them to me @bestrategicPR.