In both the business world and your personal life, often the first point of contact with someone new is email. It’s important to make a good impression in that first point of contact. It will open doors for you and make the rest of the future relationship go that much smoother. Of course, making a good first impression in email is very different from an in-person meeting. Here are three tips to put yourself in the best light possible.
- Check Your “From” Field & Craft a Thoughtful Subject Line
Take a minute to open up your email program and look at your inbox. Pay attention to what you see before you even open any given email. It’s the “from field” and the subject line. Think of them as a mini first impression when it comes to sending your own email messages. They are what makes the other person decide if they want to open your email or ignore it, or worse, immediately delete it.
Next, go to your settings and look at how your own “From” field is displayed. You can also see this if you click on your sent folder. Make sure it makes sense and is appropriate for the circumstance. For most of us, your first and last name will suffice, but you may also include your title or the name of your place of work or business.
The other part people see first is the subject line. In online marketing and business writing, a good subject line is a craft of its own. For personal use, though, keep it short and to the point. Put a little thought into it, but don’t overthink or worry too much about it.
- Pick the Right Tone
Your next task is to find the right tone for the email you’re about to send. Will it be more formal or casual? Based on that choice, you’ll pick a salutation and closing. Of course, the tone will also carry though the message itself.
Choose wisely and if you need help with the right salutation or closing, a quick google search will give you plenty of ideas and examples.
- Edit and Spell Check
Once you’ve finished crafting your email message, don’t press send just yet. Instead, walk away for a minute, get some air, get a cup of coffee, or work on something else for a few minutes. Then come back and edit your message. You want to make sure the content is clear and well laid out. In addition, you want to catch any spelling or grammatical errors before pressing send.
Letting a little bit of time elapse between writing the email and editing it will allow you to catch mistakes that would otherwise have slipped by unnoticed.