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Friday, April 20, 2012

How to Write an Email That Will Get a Response | Brett & Kate McKay, The Art of Manliness

This article is in the Money and Career section of this male-oriented website. But, obviously, its advice is equally useful to women.

The McKay's write:
No matter how basic a life skill, it’s something you still have to learn. And unfortunately, nobody seems to be teaching young folks the components of an effective email, despite the fact that it forms the backbone of modern communication. Knowing how to write a good email—one that will actually get a response–is crucial to your success: it can make the difference between whether or not you get a job, find a mentor, get funding for an idea, or receive potentially life-changing advice.
They write that each email is essentially a pitch, much like marketing a business idea--and its recipient is likely getting a bunch of emails every day. So they advise: "The key to getting a response to your email is to put yourself in the recipient’s shoes and tailor your email accordingly."

The McKay's lengthy list of useful suggestions includes topics like these:
  • Respect the recipient’s time and make sure the email is even necessary.
  • Build a bit of rapport before getting down to business. 
  • Keep it short and to the point. 
  • Make your request crystal clear.
  • Follow-up once. But just once.
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