(credit mrjoro.) I’ve got a thank-you note ready to send out this afternoon, only it’s not a pretty little note card with an embossed “Thank You” in flowing script. It’s a piece of my art with my note scrawled along the back. It’s really colorful. I know she’ll keep it.
- First Hack: Snail Mail’s Back– You want to impress someone these days? Send them mail to their physical mailbox. No, not fliers for your crappy credit card. Send them something real. Try doing this with new business contacts you meet. If they list an address, send something there.
- Subject Line Ninja– Use subject lines to their fullest. Here’s a subject line I sent today: “Are we still on for meeting tomorrow at 3?” I forgot who gave me this hack (Gary?), but it was to put: SSIA (subject says it all) in the subject line. That way, people don’t even have to READ the email. They can just read the subject. Think of it as IM for subjects.
- Rules Rule!– Write rules, dammit. Use the filters. You know why they’re there? Because email applications KNOW you’re too busy. Stop manually weeding things out. Oh, and use the THIS IS SPAM feature on things like Gmail and Yahoo mail. I have to pray that this adds to the technology to beat spam. Help out.
- Be Brief– Use short sentences. Make your point. Move on. Fill someone in only if they ask. Give them a “teaser,” if it’s enough for them to make a decision for action. By the way, that’s what MOST email should be about. Action.
- Set a Timer– Allow yourself only brief touches of email while working on things. Switching from your task to email and back stirs your head and takes away your focus. Try setting your email to check less frequently. If you’re freaked out, set special rules that the BOSS’s email sets off a wav file, or a buzzer, or forwards to your cell phone, too. Whatever. Make it stand out, so you know who NOT to ignore.
- Call to Action– End emails that matter with a “next step required” for the other person. If you’re telling someone you just met that it was nice meeting them at the conference, end the mail by saying, “I’d like to talk more with you about Sasquatch. Are you free on Thursday or Friday evening at 9PM for a call?” It gives the other person a REASON to write you back, if only to say that they hate Sasquatch and they were just humoring you.
- Promote Yourself– If you’re running a business, a blog, a podcast, an art collection, put your damned links at the bottom of your email in a signature. Give them a little grab line to make them even more intrigued. Right now, I’m signing some of my emails like this:
12 Week Challenge
Begins NOW at
Boy that worked.
These are the hacks that rolled off my head immediately, and I’ve talked about some others before. What do you have? Add your 39 cents.
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tag: hacks, email, lifehack, howto, communication, correspondence, promotion