You may be asking, “Surely the way I write my emails doesn’t change the message inside?” Put simply, it does. The way you present yourself to other people through your emails says a lot about you, and that affects how they perceive your message. Here are eight tips to help your make your emails as professional as possible!
Check your email address.
If you’re still using your email address from when you were on MSN Messenger with your school friends, and it’s something along the lines of email@example.com, chances are you won’t be taken seriously when applying for your next job. Create an email address that uses only your name, with numbers or punctuation added if your name alone isn’t available.
Check the address you are sending to.
For example, if you’re contacting your colleague about a marketing project and you’re sending your email to the HR department when it should be sent to the marketing department, you’re giving the impression that you didn’t do your research.
Check the instructions in the email you’re replying to.
If your boss has contacted you asking for a document, make sure you attach it. It only takes a couple of seconds to check through your work and to ensure that you’ve answered all the questions in an email.
Use the correct terminology.
For example, don’t start work emails with “Yo man!” Something more along the lines of “Good morning, Steve” would be a lot more appropriate.
This applies throughout the email; when signing off, you may be tempted to write something like “Cheers,” or you may even finish your emails abruptly. Instead, it’s much more professional to end your emails using a phrase such as “Many thanks” or “Kind regards.”
Additionally, if you’re talking about a certain subject within your email, use the correct terminology for that subject. By being precise, direct, and accurate with your emails, you’ll create a much better impression of yourself, and communicate more effectively.
Nadine Day, the editor for PaperFellows, says, “It’s very easy to slip into this habit, especially if you’re constantly switching between talking to your colleagues, friends, and business partners throughout the day. To ensure this isn’t a problem, take a breath before you start writing your emails to ensure you know exactly who you’re talking to.”
Edit to perfection.
While on the subject of editing, you’ll also want to check your grammar and your spelling. If you were reading an email that was riddled with spelling mistakes, you’d begin to doubt the credibility and reputation of the writer.
Thanks to modern-day technology, it’s not difficult to use features such as a spell-check to ensure accuracy. If you’re in need of ways to improve your grammar, your spelling, and your overall writing style, websites such as State of Writing and Via Writing have comprehensive guides to help you enhance your knowledge. If in doubt, use an online proofreading or editing service to check over everything before you send. For example UKwritings, BoomEssays, Proofreadbot, or EssayRoo.
Keep things short and to the point.
Nobody likes to read endless pages of content when it could have been summed up in a couple hundred words. The person you’re emailing may have to read through hundreds of emails a day. Use online tools, such as Easy Word Counter, to ensure you never exceed 200 words unless you have to.
But, include relevant details.
Sufficient detail will stop endless conversations where someone is asking you clarifying questions about your previous message. If you’re asking questions, write exactly what you want to know and what you already know, so there’s no confusion.
If you have multiple questions that you wish to ask the recipient of your email, you can make it easy to follow by formatting your questions in a bulleted list. This will allow the reader to copy and paste your questions into their emails and answer them one by one.
Finally, the subject line is there for a reason.
A surprising number of people still leave this blank or are extremely vague with their subject lines. Write a comprehensive subject line to ensure that your email is opened and the person you’re emailing is automatically on the same page as you when reading and replying.
This is such an important aspect to remember. Many people who use email clients will usually skim their inbox for anything that jumps out. So, if you were writing about a sales project, your subject line could be “Sales Project: [Date].” This means your reader can easily see exactly what you’re talking about and will be in the right frame of mind when replying.