Archive for October, 2010

Get Your Emails Read

Your e-mail receivers decide in the first three seconds to either read or delete your email. Obviously you want them to read your e-mail, but you also want them to respond to whatever you’ve asked them to do.  That means you need to find a way to get past their delete button, and capture their attention.

There are two keys factors:

  • The message
  • Your approach

Even if you’re emailing a list of people who have never heard of you or your ministry, it’s possible to responses to your e-mail.

Here are Seven Things that will help your e-mails get results:

  1. Keep your e-mails short. Keep your initial email as short as possible to encourage them to at least glance over it.  The reality is most of us won’t take time to read a long e-mail so be sure it’s a quick read.  Limit your message to a maximum of four sentences per paragraph, and limit your email to three paragraphs, plus a closing sentence.  Hint, “white space” is visually pleasing to the reader.  Try inserting a one line paragraph in the middle; it will make your e-mail appear shorter.
  2. Personalize the subject line.  A personal subject line will significantly increase your response rates.  This is especially import if the receivers won’t recognize your name or your ministry name.  Your subject line can capture their attention and encourage them to open it.  Questions are usually good, you might try something like; “Can we talk next Wednesday at 3:00pm?”, or “Should we talk about ____?”
  3. Use a salutation. To get a response your message should be informal and inviting.  Begin your emails with a warm greeting using the contact’s first name, such as “Hi Fred.”  If you absolutely can’t get their name, you could begin with “Hi, Bill Bender here,” but understand that will lessen the effectiveness.
  4. Don’t focus totally on your ministry or service.  E-mails need a personal touch to get noticed.
  5. Limit the number of e-mails you send at a time.  If people do respond, they expect a reply to their email in 24 hours or less.  Limit your list of receivers to whatever you can respond quickly to, this tells the receivers that you are a real person, not an automated marketing blast.
  6. Customize your message. A small e-mail list also allows you to be personal in your message.  Try to include things you believe they are concerned about, or struggling with.
  7. Forget what your English teacher taught you.  Emails are more personal than a business letter and should be written conversationally.  The more relaxed your email is, the better the chances of receiving the response you desire.

Email is one of the most cost effective ways to reach people today.  If we master the technique, our e-mails will be noticed and remembered.

As always, thank you for reading Linked4Ministry.  If you are new here, the best way to receive all the new posts is to subscribe for e-mail updates at the top right.  If you have been following Linked4Ministry and find it helpful, please consider sharing it with other ministry partners that it could benefit.  It’s easy to do by clicking on the following buttons, and it’s OK to click more than one 🙂 !

Bill Bender
Anothen Life Ministries

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