12 Best Must-Follow Email Writing Tips For Professionals
In the present age, emails have become the predominant method for all types of professional communication, be it logistical details, project plans, or run-of-the-mill day-to-day work-related information. With the increased digitization of companies, emailing has become the preferred medium for keeping in touch with clients. Learning how to write a professional email is vital for all professionals today, as it helps one to make a good impression on one’s business associates. This article takes a comprehensive look at emails and effective emailing tips, so be sure to check out these email writing tips for professionals.
Take a moment and think about the last time you wrote a letter with pen and paper. I think one can safely bet that it was quite a while ago. The reason for this redundancy of traditional mail is the rise of electronic mail or email as it is popularly known across the world today. Since email is the predominant method of communication in business, can you afford to miss out on email writing tips for professionals?
The history of email dates back to 1971 when for the first time, a message was sent between two computers over the ARPANET network by Ray Tomlinson (this is for all the history geeks out there). Since then, email has taken over the world by storm. It is now ubiquitous and used for both personal and professional purposes. The days of sending letters through the post office are long gone (except in the case of some official documents).
In this article, we shall discuss professional/business emails in detail. We shall take a look at:
- types of business emails
- the prescribed format for writing a professional email
- email writing tips for professionals.
The Common Types of Business/professional Email Are Listed Below: –
1. Welcome Emails
Welcome emails are sent by a company to users immediately after they subscribe to the company’s mailing list. Sending welcome emails is a good idea because it shows that the company cares about its customers/subscribers and does not take them for granted. Welcome emails should be eye-catching and colorful and should have a festive feel to them.
One should use beautiful images/graphics, and it always helps if the text contains some witty and memorable one-liners. The gratitude you feel towards your new customer should also come across adequately through the text. A good content writer can help you with written content that meets these requirements by keeping in mind email writing tips for professionals.
Newsletters are news reports that are published by an organization or corporation and contain news about the recent activities of that organization. In contrast to newspapers, newsletters contain information about only one or two main topics that are the primary concern of the publishing organization.
Newsletters are typically sent to regular customers, business partners, employees, and other subscribers of an organization. Newsletters may be printed or electronic. Electronic newsletters are usually sent via email. An interesting fact about newsletters is that they pre-date modern newspapers by many centuries.
The first known instance of newsletters being published was in ancient Rome where they were used by Government officials to share important news with their colleagues. Later on, merchants also started publishing newsletters that contained information about events that were directly related to trade or likely to influence trade (for example, political events).
You will find a variety of email newsletters on the web. The most common types are: –
- reported newsletter
- curated newsletter
- visual newsletter
- user-generated newsletter
- holiday/seasonal newsletter
- event/invitational newsletter
- hybrid newsletter
Following the email writing tips for professionals will help you to design excellent electronic newsletters.
3. Offer-related Emails
If you want to grab the customers’ attention, offer-related emails are your best bet. These emails are used to inform potential and existing customers about offers such as discounts and free gifts etc. As can be expected, offer emails have very high open rates and conversion rates.
The great thing about offer-related emails is that they can be used to reward loyal long-time customers and also to attract new customers, so they are an excellent promotional tool for any business. It is not necessary to offer huge discounts in the 30-40% range or give away expensive free gifts in case your business is new or struggling.
Even if you offer small discounts (8-10%) or modestly priced gifts, it will attract customers’ attention. This is because all offers, whether big or small, are usually appreciated by most people. By keeping in mind these email writing tips for professionals, good content writers can create attractive emails that engage the readers’ attention regardless of the type of offer. Offer-related emails are a handy tool that you can use at any time to boost your sales.
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4. Survey Emails
Surveys are used to get the readers’ feedback about a product, service, or any subject in general. They enable companies to know their customers better, and to improve the quality of their products and services. Surveys are also very useful when it comes to understanding prevailing and upcoming market trends.
Surveys can serve a variety of purposes. Companies that manufacture a product or provide a service can use the information collected through surveys to improve the overall quality of their product and also to tweak the product or service according to the preferences of individual customers.
Surveys also make the existing customers feel that their opinions matter and they give the impression that the surveying company is serious about the quality of its product. However, if a survey is not well-designed, the receiver will probably not complete or even open the survey.
Therefore, it’s important to structure your survey email in the right way by taking into consideration email writing tips for professionals. The following are the most important points to keep in mind while designing a survey email: –
- Both the subject line and the body of the text must have clarity.
- The surveys should be kept short.
- The expected time required to complete the survey must be mentioned (5 minutes, 10 minutes, etc.)
- Mention when the survey will be closed.
- Share the survey results with the readers.
- Explain the purpose of the survey.
- Offer some incentives with the survey, such as a discount coupon. (This helps to increase the open rate and conversion rate of your emails.)
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5. Promotional Emails
The term promotional email is self-explanatory. It gives the readers information about any new promotion that the sender is running. Some of the commonly encountered promotions are: –
- Special deals like buy-one-get-one-free, discounts, and referral deals.
- Limited-time deals.
- Product launches.
- Contests and prizes.
- Free content such as e-books, infographics, etc.
- Welcome offers for new subscribers or customers.
Marketing surveys have consistently shown that promotional emails are a highly effective tool for increasing trade volume. It costs practically nothing to design and send a marketing email, and the returns are exponential. Promotional emails have been shown to increase sales significantly. Therefore, it is imperative to know these email writing tips for professionals.
However, there is no one-size-fits-all format when it comes to promotional emails. The design of your promotional email will depend on the objective you want to achieve with your promotion. Also, keep in mind that promotional emails for the same product will be worded differently for new and existing customers.
Email writing tips for professionals will help you to craft an effective promotional campaign. Some of the common reasons why people send promotional emails are listed below: –
- To Increase sales volume for a particular product.
- To enhance brand awareness.
- To improve relationships with customers.
- To increase the volume of traffic to the company website.
- To reward loyal customers.
- To bring back old customers who have left.
Here Are the Most Important Email Writing Tips for Professionals: –
1. Write a Good Subject Line
The subject line is the first thing a person will read when you send them an email. Therefore, it is also the most important part of your email. If the subject line is poorly worded, then it doesn’t matter how well the email has been designed and written, because the receiver will probably not even open the mail.
So, all the hard work that has gone into crafting the email, and the countless hours spent doing research for the subject matter will be in vain. An entire article can be written on writing the perfect subject line, but here we will discuss the matter in short.
- Clarity is the most important characteristic of a good subject line. Simply by reading the subject line, the reader should get a clear idea of what the email is about. A vague subject line makes it unlikely that the mail will be opened at all. An example of a subject line with poor clarity is – ‘Open this mail to find out what’s new at our store.’ A much clearer and the better subject line would be – ‘New fall collection available at our apparel store.’
- Catchiness is next to clarity in order of precedence when it comes to importance. Remember, your email is competing with hundreds of others for the reader’s attention, so it helps to stand out from the crowd. There are several ways to make the subject line catchy. To grab attention, you can write a witty one-liner (“Wristwatches you can always count on, unlike your sibling”), and you can also ask a question (“Is your home security system safe enough?”) or write a teaser style subject line to pique the reader’s curiosity (“Thought hair loss was permanent, but then….”).
- Some words or phrases that are too mercenary can cause your email to go straight to the recipient’s spam folder if you include them in your subject line. Examples are – “buy”, “buy now”, cash bonus”, “earn extra cash”, “free”, and “work from home” You can find comprehensive lists of such words on the net. Also, you must avoid all caps and multiple exclamation marks (!!!!) in your subject line to stay out of the spam folder.
- One must keep in mind that nowadays most people prefer to use smartphones for web browsing, where typically only 5-7 words of the subject line are visible. So, it’s a good idea to keep the subject line short and within this word limit.
- Including a deadline in your email subject line is often a good idea, as it creates a sense of urgency. This is likely to move your email up in the recipient’s priority list when they scan their inbox for new mail.
- Making keywords a part of the subject line makes it easier for the recipient to find your email when they look for it at a later date. Considering how much care goes into crafting a business email, it’s essential to know these email writing tips for professionals.
Here is a guide for Writing Business Email
2. Use An Appropriate Greeting
It’s important to write a proper greeting at the start of your email. Include the recipient’s name in the greeting. For example – ‘Dear Mrs. Smith’. Make sure to get the recipient’s name and gender right. Nothing is more insulting to a customer than addressing them with the wrong name or misgendering them.
If you aren’t sure about their name and gender, use a generic title instead, such as ‘Dear recruiter’, ‘Dear customer’, ‘Dear reader’ etc. This makes the recipient feel more involved, and also makes the message more personable.
3. Clarity Above All Else
Remember, attention spans are notoriously short in the digital age, so be straightforward and to the point. In the world of professional communication, nobody has any patience for those who beat around the bush or go round and round in circles. Include only relevant information in the main body of your email.
After reading your email, there should be no confusion in the reader’s mind regarding the message you want to convey and the purpose of your mail. It’s best to use simple language that your readers can understand. All the flowery language in the world is useless if the recipient doesn’t get what you are trying to say. Email writing tips for professionals will help you to stay on track and keep the reader’s focus.
4. Be Polite and Professional
Always maintain a respectful and courteous tone. Remember, the recipient of a business email isn’t a personal friend, so don’t take any liberties with them. Refrain from using emojis and smiley faces in your message. That may be okay in WhatsApp and SMS chat but generally looks out of place in a business email.
Writing a business email requires one to do a balancing act, and in such cases, it is safer to err on the side of caution. What this means is that sounding a little too formal is safer than adopting a tone that is too casual and presuming familiarity with the client that doesn’t exist in reality. That is a big no-no and is sure to offend the reader. It’s essential to know these email writing tips for professionals in order to stay in the reader’s good books.
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5. Put the Customer’s Needs First
Remember to make the email about your customer, and not about yourself. Prioritize their well-being over your needs. In practice, this translates to saying “Allow us to take care of your office supply needs”, instead of “Help us to become the biggest supplier of office goods in the region”.
Another thing to keep in mind is that while promoting a product, say, for example, an electronic gadget, you must tell the customer how the product will benefit them, instead of sharing the technical details and specifications of the product. Prioritize value over information.
If you feel that sharing technical details is important, then instead of including them in the main text body, you can create a link that will take the reader to a separate web page where such details are available.
6. Include An Appropriate Number of Images
Including a few eye-catching images in your email makes it more visually appealing, and this increases the probability of the reader going through your email from start to finish. However, take care not to include too many images, as it distracts from the main body of the email text.
7. Use a Little Humour
While the overall tone of the email should be professional, you can still throw in a few witty one-liners and captions, maybe even a joke or two. A little wit from time to time hurts no one. However, take care not to use any off-color or offensive language, or joke about sensitive and controversial subjects.
8. Include a CTA
Always include a call to action (CTA) at or near the end of your mail. CTAs are words/phrases that tell the user to take a specific action, such as “Buy Now” or “Join Today”. They usually take the form of a button or link. CTAs are very useful, as they subtly nudge the reader towards the next step you want them to take.
9. Thank the Reader
Always remember to thank the reader at the end of the email. Your customers are the ones who pay your salary, so always show gratitude to them when they take the time to read your messages. Including a thank you note at the end tells the customer that you genuinely care about them. Not doing so is impolite in the extreme.
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10. Use An Appropriate Sign-off Signature
“Best wishes”, “Regards” and “Thanking you” are all appropriate ways to end your email. Don’t forget to add your name after the signature. It’s a good idea to set an automatic signature so it always appears at the bottom of your emails.
11. Provide Contact Info
Providing your full contact info (Work phone number, office address) at the end is a good idea. This gives the impression that you are eager to stay in touch with the customer.
12. Proofread Your Email
Always proofread your email at least once when you finish writing because all of us inadvertently make mistakes in spelling and grammar now and then. If you send an uncorrected email to a client or recruiter, it shows sloppiness and carelessness on your part.
FAQs About Email Writing Tips For Professionals
Q1. Is email marketing an effective strategy for growing my business?
Yes, it is. Several online marketing surveys have been conducted by different organizations to assess the effectiveness of email marketing. Invariably, the conclusion arrived at is that email marketing is highly effective, much more so than social media marketing. Feedback from the majority of respondents, both consumers and sellers, indicates that this is the case.
Q2. Are there any email writing apps available online?
Yes, you will find many good email writing apps on the net that will help you to write and design great emails for your business. The best ones are: –
- Hemingway Editor
- Just Not Sorry
- HubSpot Email Templates Builder
- Detective by Charlie
Q3. How often should I send marketing emails?
The correct frequency for sending emails will be different from one recipient to another, but generally one should try to send emails as often as possible without annoying the recipient. As a rule of thumb, once a month works in most situations, but this may vary depending upon the type of business you are in and your target audience.
Q4. What is the best time to send my marketing emails?
Again, this depends upon the preferences of the recipient, but most people check their mail during weekends and morning hours.
So these were the best email writing tips for professionals. In the digital age, likely, you will never get the chance to have a face-to-face meeting with a significant proportion of your clients and business partners. Many of them will know you only through your emails, so it is important to leave a good impression in this area. For the client, an email from you is a window that allows them to have a peek at your personality, professional etiquette, and communication skills. Therefore, you need to be exceptionally careful while crafting your business emails.
The thing about emails is that they combine the best of both worlds. They allow us to retain the old-world formality of letters even as we march onwards into the digital age. This makes them an excellent choice for online business communication. The evident effectiveness of email marketing is another reason why you should invest your time and energy in learning the art of email writing and these email writing tips for professionals. Hopefully, this article will help you to do just that.