As positive as email is, it’s important to understand proper email etiquette in order to avoid business pitfalls. When we let the rule slide you risk unintended consequences.
Email etiquette tips
To make sure you never fall afoul of digital communication, here are four things to keep in mind when emailing potential client or customers.
Avoid Using The Term “Unfortunately” | Email Etiquette Tip #1
Unfortunately, businesses use this word all the time in emails. It’s a tricky term because it draws a line in the sand. In essence, you’re saying you can’t, and won’t, help. From a customer service perspective, this is frustrating. You want them to feel heard and cared for. “Unfortunately,” doesn’t accomplish this task. The trick is to say “no” without saying no. Try and find some sort of win, or at assure them you care and are looking into the matter.
Avoid being rude | EMAIL TIP #2
Regardless of what someone says over email it’s important for you to remain professional. This doesn’t mean you become a doormat or put up with abuse but there are ways to terminate a conversation without putting your professional reputation on the line.
Eliminate Outdated information | EMAIL ETIQUETTE TIP #3
I’ve talked about creating a digital business card with your email signature before and while that’s important there’s also the risk of not updating your digital signature and confusing potential customers or clients with outdated information. Take a quick look at your email signature and update as necessary.
If your email signature changes with some frequency, consider outside help like https://www.templafy.com/templafy-email-signature-manager/.
Avoid typos and grammar mistakes | EMAIL TIP #4
Another way to appear unprofessional is to send an email with typos and other errors. Although there is some forgiveness when typing on a mobile device, you risk being seen as lazy or worse. As harsh as it sounds, an unintended consequence could be your client wonders if you’ll deliver a professional service if you don’t even bother to spellcheck your emails.
For a quick overview of how to catch typos in your own writing, here’s a helpful checklist.
Of course this isn’t an exhaustive list but if nothing else, I hope it will convince you to pay attention to how you come across when you email customers and clients. A little goes a long way.
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- How to Get Your Email List Started (and What to Send)
- Why Freelancers in Marketing and Communications Should Have an Email List via Story Board
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