The Complete Guide to Good Email Habits

There’s a lot of chat and noise out there about what works when it comes to email. These are our top tips. By Rob Martin.


Email writing – It’s like riding a bike right? Well yes… but while some of us need stabilisers and wobble from side-to-side, others can sprint in the fast lane.

And here’s another cycling analogy – it’s not the quality of your bicycle that matters but what you do with it.

How many times have you received an email which looks great? It’s got different fonts, bright colours and hilarious pictures but is lacking in the main component – a clear and simple message or request.

Email writers often over-complicate their endeavours and forget the key rule in email marketing is that often “less is more”.

So here are a few pointers which everyone building emails and campaigns today should take into account before pressing send:

Design: You’re not showing off your art or layout skills. The sole job of an effective email is to impart information. Job done.

Length: Keep it short and to the point. If people want to read a novel they’ll visit a book store.

Don’t be a bore: Ask yourself, would I read this and be interested? Or did you have to read it twice, as it was so dull?

Readers digest: People lead busy lives and don’t have time to decipher emails which are tricky to understand. Double check your emails before sending to ensure the message is crystal clear.

First Impressions: Spend time on your subject line and clearly state the purpose of the message.

Don’t overshare: If you Cc too many on one email each reader believes the emails are generic and not personal encouraging them to move on without reading.

Enough of the questions already: Okay so you’ve decided not to over-write, well done. But make sure your email is clear, informative and not half-baked. If your recipient is forced to email you seeking clarity you’ve clearly confused rather than informed.

Relevance: If possible make your subject title relevant to an event taking place that’s very well-known i.e. The Olympics, a festive time of year, the Oscars etc. – it just shows some thought has been put into the mail.

Push…but don’t be annoying: Find your line. An email that’s too strongly e-mailed can antagonise the reader and that’s the last reaction you want to trigger.

Spell-check every time: If you haven’t taken the time to check that all spellings in your email are correct why should anyone spend time reading it?.

QUIETEN DOWN: Words written in CAPITAL LETTERS imply shouting and trigger headaches!

If it’s not ‘urgent’ don’t mark it so: Akin to shouting above.

It’s all about timing: Don’t send emails at some ungodly hour of the early morning when they’re likely to wake the recipient.

Finally, write with a smile. No, really, try it out and you’ll see the words on the screen flow better and are instantly more positive.

Comments are closed.