E-mail can be a very
effective communication tool for many businesses when it is handled properly.
The speed, ease and interactive nature of email coupled with clear messages
can be an effective way to communicate with customers, vendors and employees.
all email senders communicate clearly and in a business manner. Consider
the following two messages:
"hi bill we
got your order and wanted some more info. whats your address/? we need
the po# 2 thnx jim"
Thank you for your
order. We need some additional details to get the order processed and
shipped quickly. Please provide a shipping address and a purchase order
Thanks again for
the order. We appreciate your business.
Which one do you think
makes the better impression on your customer?
- Treat your email
with respect. It should be like any other piece of business correspondence.
That means proper spelling and punctuation. Take advantage of spell-check
in your email system if it is available. Read it over before hitting
the send button. Many people print email messages and you want any printed
material to properly present you and your company.
- State your reason
for the email. Many people receive dozens of email messages every day.
Get your reader's attention by getting to the point very quickly. The
reader may never get to your message if it is hidden in the second or
- Don't overload
the reader. Sending several email messages a day with little pertinent
information will bore your reader.
- Include contact
information. Always make it easy for the reader to get back in touch
with you. Include your name, phone number and email address. Remember
that the message may be printed out and then deleted from the reader's
system. If that happens, the reply button will not be sufficient.
- Make it look good.
Format the message so that it is easy to read. A page of single-spaced
type is no easier to read on a computer screen than it is on a sheet
of paper. Some white space (a line) between paragraphs will make it
much easier to read. You can use bold and italic if needed. However,
a message that is all bold or all capital letters is going overboard.
- Be careful with
attachments. Attach pertinent information if it is appropriate. Large
attachments with extensive graphics take time to download. If you want
your reader to see your beautiful brochure, make it a part of your website
and provide a link in the email message. The reader can always print
it from your website.
E-mail can be a great tool. But remember that it will only be effective
if it used properly.