Love it or hate it, electronic communication is here to stay. If anything – it will become more prolific rather than less so. But we can do our part to abate the junk mail, provide information, and still be effective.
Here are a few tips that will help your email be read (to the bottom) and make your writing better, over all.
- Be polite, but get to the point.
- Be clear – are you asking for a response? Do you need something? Are you sharing an opportunity? Make it clear.
- Stick to the matter at hand. Do not add unrelated questions or information. Use a separate email for those.
- Keep it brief. Many people read email on their phones. This makes your email look ten times longer than it is. And feel even more overwhelming.
- Always check your spelling (especially peoples’ names).
- Reduce the amount of slang you use. It will make you sound more professional (and intelligent).
- Similarly, reduce the number of acronyms – not everyone knows what they mean.
- Avoid buzzwords. They are pretentious and overused.
- Use proper grammar. When in doubt, ask someone to proof your work.
- Use commas sparingly – but correctly.
- Avoid exclamation points – it comes across as shouting or overly-enthusiastic.
- Avoid abbreviations.
- Do not use texting shortcuts in email.
- And NEVER write an entire email in all caps, or all lower case.
By being concise and using proper grammar, spelling, and punctuation, email will be better received.