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Keeping Your Business Emails Short and To The Point

Communication over business email always has always had a few consistent requirements, like speed and brevity. With so many people forced to engage with one another via video conferencing, we get the privilege of seeing how many distractions are present in everyone’s lives as they try to perform their regular duties.

Our homes and jobs have merged into one, and notifications are becoming too numerous to count. While we attended those video conferences, we heard the bells and whistles of electronic devices and got to see that everyone is equally distracted.

The constant deluge of notifications and distractions are dizzying. You compete with an extensive array of concerns and contenders for the focused attention of the recipient of that business email.

Formatting Your Email

The format of your email is one of the things that can help you write shorter, concise business emails. If you just step outside for a moment, you will see that people are glued to their devices. You have to think that they are scrolling through social media, their personal news feeds, and any other topic that interests them.

You want your emails to be wanted and viewed. You want them to be received. A quick test to ensure that your email will be received well is to compose an email and send it to yourself on your mobile device before you send it to a business recipient. If you have to scroll more than two times, you have a lengthy business email.

Saving Space

You will have to do some editing to make your message short, while effectively positioning the important content. With brevity, you want to dispense with lengthy explanations and proposals.

You just do not have that kind of time or space. Short business emails are great for suggesting ways to have a follow-up meeting. This short email is good for asking a brief question or two about a recent engagement.

There is not enough space to go into long sales pitches or introducing new services or products. If you conserve the space, you can have an effective call to action. You can ask for other contacts within the firm, who may be responsible for handling the specifics of your query.

Short Email Etiquette

A short email should have the feel of meeting a friend of yours in passing. You agree to coffee in the near future, but you do not have to sit down and have an evening meal on the issue.

You just want to nudge them a little bit to find out some small piece of leverage that will work in your favor in the future.

Another point to consider is that you really want this short email to move your business contact to interact with you beyond the confines of the email. An actual meeting with your prospect would be ideal; however, this short email could be the tool that you use to set up an initial phone call.

It’s nearly impossible to set up a strong relationship through email. The phone is a much better way to bring you into a closer working relationship with your business contact.

We can’t overemphasize brevity. This short business email has to be absorbed quickly, and you do not want the recipient to feel overwhelmed or bored with all the little stuff. The industry standard for important relationships through email is to send these emails about once a week.

Short Emails means Your Relationship is Casual

Perhaps you’re telling them that you’ve done something new on social media. The email can be sent to introduce a link to some new features on your website. Encouragement, thanks, and offering help are always timely emails to send once a week. You’re just checking in on your business relationship.

You might see this happening in your own inbox. These emails may be longer than what we are discussing here, but the approach is the same. Emails that you welcome are those that gently seek ways to engage you. These prompts can help you make a purchase or gauge your interest.

As you create these short emails, think about being focused on the topic at hand. Only reflect on current events or peripheral issues only if they are relevant to why you are sending the email.

You would not ask your business contact about culinary arts if your relationship is based on automobile tires. You have used up precious real-estate in your email by not being focused. Remember, your contact has their electronic device going, and their social media account notifies them of some new development minute by minute.

Staying Relevant

Make sure that you keep the conversation relevant. You will not want to miss answering questions or missing important continuations to earlier conversations. You want to stay plugged in at all times, without being a nuisance. Prepare to keep track of your conversations.

Also, pay attention to current events and see how you can slip in some short suggestions about upcoming opportunities. During the pandemic, astute marketers anticipated the need for masks and face coverings. Keeping track and anticipating needs are important aspects of successful brief communications with your contact.

Be sure to click the ‘Reply’ button when you respond to your contact with these short emails. This will facilitate the ability for you and the recipient to keep track of the email thread, as it moves between both of you. If you send a new email every time, you run the risk of losing an important aspect of the conversation you are having with your contact. This can cost you precious time and lucrative opportunities.

Since time is a precious resource, don’t miss the opportunity to answer queries to your questions quickly. There’s an understanding that it’s important to engage an opportunity while it’s fresh.

A Few Cautions

Think about how long you would wait for a burger at a fast-food restaurant; if it took them a long time to serve you, you wouldn’t stick around too long. The email is short, but everything centers around preparation and execution. Don’t think that the short email is less effective than pages of web content.

Use the priority option (!) sparingly. This is a problem with many incoming emails. The use of the priority option is nearly always an unnecessary option in the world of email.

Hopefully, you are already a part of your prospect’s safe sender list. You shouldn’t have to resort to creative means for getting the attention of your business contact.

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By Audrey Horwitz

Audrey Horwitz holds a master's degree in communication and a bachelor's degree in business administration. She has worked with numerous companies as a content editor including Speechly, Compusignal, and Wordflow. Audrey is a prolific content writer with hundreds of articles published for Medium, LinkedIn, Scoop.It, and Article Valley.

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