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Tips for Answering Emails on Time

Team YS
27th Aug 2012
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Emails; we receive hundreds of them. Among the clutter of spam emails and promotional offers that don’t make sense, there is also the email from your client, the ones that don’t land in the junk folder.Replying to these emails is important. What is more important is replying to them quickly. Clients love to be updated on their project’s progress and what you are up to. Here are a few quick tips to help you with answering emails and replying to them on time.

Be precise

With almost everyone reading their emails on their phones, make it a point not to make it longer than ‘one scroll’ (the client must be able to read everything you have written without scrolling down) be absolutely to the point and be quick.

10 second rule

The 10 second rule kicks in as soon as the email comes in. If the email can be replied immediately, reply to it right away and get done with it. Alternatively, if it cannot be replied with a proper answer send in a courtesy email.

For example

Dear Gaurav,

We have decided to use your services for our business. Can you get back to me with a detailed proposal about how you will be incorporating it with our current plan and deliverables?

Regards,

XYZ

Founder ABC

As soon as you get this email you know it’s a confirmation from the client that he wants your services, he needs a detailed proposal which will take a few hours to prepare. There are two ways of handling this – replying to the client directly with the proposal in a few hours or replying to him right way with something like this –

Dear XYZ,

That’s great! We would love to get started on your project soon. I will prepare a proposal and get back to you by EOD.

Regards,

Gaurav

This way the client knows you have started work on the project and you have acknowledged his approval to get started on the project.

CC , BCC:

CC stands for Carbon Copy ,BCC stands for Blind Carbon Copy-  question is where do you use these in a corporate email? Partners from the other firm should be CC’d if two people are handling the project at the client’s firm. It is a good idea to CC both of them.

If you are working under a team leader responsible for closing the deal and you make the first contact, CCing him will also be a great idea. The recipient of the email (client side) knows there is someone else also involved in the conversation and later on when the team leader takes over to close the deal, the client has an idea about who the person is.

BCC could be used to send someone a copy without anyone knowing that he has been sent a copy – say for example the CEO tells you to contact a client and close a deal, it’s a good idea to BCC the CEO in your conversations so he knows you are sending out the emails and keep a tap on the conversation.

Preset signature

Having a preset signature helps you save a lot of time and makes your emails look professional and better. Signatures can be preset even on your phones. Make sure you have your signatures saved – they must not be too lengthy.

Example,

 

Regards,

YourName

Position

Organization’s Name

You can include your phone number if you wish, including the email or the organization’s website might not be such a great idea as it might clutter the signature. Usually, there is a dot com for the website after the name of the organization, so that is taken care.

Using emails as reminders

Emails can also be an amazing way of reminding you of work to be done. Unread emails can be marked on your phone say, BlackBerry after replying to the person if there is more work to be done. By just going over the un-read emails you will know the work that is left and since the unread emails are shown on the home screen itself all the time there’s a lot of chances of it working great.

BlackBerry tips

BlackBerry is still the best for email.

Here are a few BlackBerry Shortcuts as well:

  • To mark an email un-read: Go to the email and press Alt + U
  • To view all un-read emails: Go to your messaging and press U
  • To view earlier emails in the thread: Go to messaging and press K or J

Remember: It’s all about communicating – the faster you do it the better it is.

 Author credit: Gaurav Prakash

 

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