We are of course talking about your tone of language in your emails (and any other non face-to-face communication for that matter). Remember every little interaction you have affects your brand, and emails are probably top of the list, where people fall down.
We get it all the time, some people just do not come across well in emails, even though they are the loveliest person in the world! If it was down to emails alone we would just simply not like them and not want to do business for/with them.
For that reason it is incredibly important to manage the way you come across in emails, and spend a little bit of time on them! Don’t let the efforts you put in on branding and marketing go to waste with poor communication.
Furthermore if you are somebody’s client – then poor communication can really affect the project you may be paying for. Nobody wants to go the extra mile for Mr. Awkward!
Everything you do and say has an impact on the way people think about you, the way you communicate with them then is very important – it can put people off, it can put people down, and it’s all too easy to have people think of you in a bad light.
The worst part is you probably don’t even mean to do it! How many times have you just thought oh I’ll reply quickly on my phone, or you haven’t got time for the niceties and rush a reply. It’s not helpful either and can be quite frustrating when the reply you get back doesn’t fully answer your questions, or ignores them completely. Moreover it wastes both of your time to do another email or call to ask for the same thing again.
So what can you do about it?
- be nice and polite
- remember their names and spell properly (especially names like Shaun/Sean, Sarah/Sara)
- a little bit of small talk is nice, ask them if they are well, and take a genuine interest
- take note of passing comments, and acknowledge them in emails to show you have taken an interest. E.g. “Nice chatting yesterday – hope your meeting after went well”
- make time in your day, every day, to reply fully to all emails
- have some kind of method/time slot/process of keeping up with your emails
- always be as helpful as possible and don’t skimp on the details
- if an email is going to be too time consuming – maybe pick up the phone instead?
- try to reply to all emails ASAP, within 24 hours is good practice
- if an email is going to take a couple days to reply too, then send a quick reply to let the person know you have received the email, and will reply in a X amount of days. Making sure it is in your diary to hit the deadline.
All of our inboxes can get full to the brim, and we know emails can be a bit of a pain when time is pressing, which is why a good email strategy is essential – and can help to give your brand a boost!
Every little helps!
ACTION: Put yourself a time in the diary to reply to emails (after lunch? At the end of the day)
ACTION: Have a strategy in place for managing emails. We use Gmail, so can star our emails. A Star means we must reply, and we must clear all stars by the end of the day.