Writing “Read Me” Emails

By: Deb Kloeppel, Founder and CEO, CASY-MSCCN

Detrimental Emails can:

  1.  Make or break your business
  2. Make or break sales negotiations
  3. Make or break recovery of a bad situation or business activity

Example of a Detrimental Email:  “I know we spoke today, but I wanted to make sure you understood my exact point when pointing out my point. Understand?”

Yes, I actually received an email such as this from a person trying to make a strong point.

Knowing that emails can do SO much damage, we as an American society, still treat emails as pen-pal correspondence, much to the detriment of our intellect.

Over-Thinking Emails that Say Nothing “In accordance with pending Board rulings which propel the new directive to fully cooperate with managerial facilitation which pertains to the orientation of new hires be taken at all levels of authority, hereto this day.”

Say What?

When writing a “read me” email remember 6 simple rules:

1.       Get to the point in the first four sentences:

“Tara – It was great to speak with you on the phone the other day. The plans you have to expand your market reach are impressive and I thank you for including my organization as part of your expansion plan. You can count me in.”

Getting to the point quickly – in a polite and enthusiastic tone – screams to the reader that you are a decisive person who’s joyful in all that you do. No matter how you’re feeling when you write an email –you MUST come across as:

  • Interested
  • Enthusiastic
  • Compassionate
  • Decisive 

2.       ALWAYS Spell Check – every email : every time

3.       Research the appropriate title of the person you are writing to

Ms. / Mrs. / Mr. / Dr. / Admiral / General / Honorable / Esquire / Captain / ect.

4.       Ensure you use the correct first and last name of the person you are writing to

When I receive an email that addresses me as Mr. Kloeppel or Debbie or Betty – I really do not read the rest of the email

5.       Never – and I mean never use mass email without the blind copy status.

Nothing is more irritating than receiving an email in which 100 other people are in the address place holder. Besides, you might be sending the email addresses of your best funders, super-clients, and private marketing list to recipients who should NOT use those email addresses for outside marketing purposes.

6.       “The Tell-Tale Heart” Emails.
Take care when forwarding on a long train of emails that it doesn’t include a derogatory reference in an earlier message to an addressee who has since been added on; additionally, double-check email addresses before clicking “send” to ensure you haven’t included the one person you absolutely did NOT want to receive your email.  Many employees have been fired for sending unintentional emails to the boss!

Here are 5 Goals You Should Strive For When Writing Winning Emails:

1.       Eye Appeal for a Business Setting

  • Don’t use juvenile fonts, colors, pictures and sayings in business emails

2.       Enhance Your Message Format – Clean and Crisp 

  • When sending an e-newsletter, ensure you place the first and/or last name with the proper title and NOT – “Dear Insert Your Name Here”
  • Don’t take over the entire front page space with your newsletter – ensure you have space for an introduction of the newsletter you are sending

3.       Transition the paragraphs peferctly 

  • In addition to
  • On another subject
  • Equally important
  • Additionally
  • In Closing
  • On another important matter

4.       Orderly Sentences

  • Purchase a fourth grade English book – honestly! Everything you need to know when forming a proper sentence – you learned in fourth grade.

5.       Brief emails that are concise, that contain orderly sentences, written in a joyful tone :

  • Win Contracts
  • Gain Influence
  • Give the Power to Persuade
  • Leave a positive note that makes the recipient want to hear from you again
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