How to write an email- 5 spam-proof tips

There are a couple of important things to note when you’re writing an email. The average person receives about 120 emails each day and only opens 25% of them. This is approximately 30 but I guarantee you that it’s probably way less. I for one only open about 5 on a good day. You need an email that doesn’t get lost in the noise of the receiver’s inbox.

When the receiver opens, the goal is to get them to read your email instead of adding it to spam. Here’s how to write an email in 5 easy steps:

1. Start with an eye-catching subject line

Your subject line is the make or break part of your email. If you’re competing with 130 emails for attention then you want to stand out in every way possible. Make sure your subject line goes straight to the point. NEVER send an email without a subject line.

If it’s a job application, sometimes employers give guidelines for what your subject line should be. In this case, follow the rules. It’s not the time to get creative. Keep your subject line short and sweet- should be 55 characters or less.

Here are a couple of good examples of good email subject lines:

Job Application: Application for the role of Marketing Associate
Cold email: Career growth training opportunity for your employees
Follow up: Re: Application for the role of Marketing Associate

2. Time for salutations

‘Dear Ms. Z’ Or ‘Dear Mr. Y’ is really your safest bet in formal situations. If you’re sure about the gender of the person you’re sending to, you can use ‘Dear Sir’ or ‘Dear Madam’.

Please avoid saying ‘Dear Sir/Madam’ as much as possible because it tells the person that you didn’t really bother to do a bit of research on who you were sending the email to.

For less formal companies and organisations, you can just say Hello X. If you’re in doubt, always use Mr., Ms., Dr. or Professor to be on the safe side

3. Ask how they’re doing

This is just a one-liner that makes a good difference in your email. It’s a tad rude to just go straight to what you want. When you’re sending an email, you want to ask how they’re doing before saying anything else.

4. Introduce yourself and get straight to the point

So you’ve gotten the receiver’s attention, good job! It’s time to give them a brief but concise introduction of yourself  and what you do in relation to the email you’re sending.

An email

Here’s a great example:

My name is Sola Adebakin and I’m a software engineer at XYZ solutions. I am writing to apply for the role of Chief Technology Officer at She Leads Africa.

If you’re writing on behalf of a company, you should introduce yourself first and say your role before introducing your company and what your company does.

Example:

My name is Sola Adebakin and I’m a software engineer at XYZ solutions. I am writing to give you a better and faster alternative to 4G internet for your company through a new solution provided by XYZ

XYZ is a wifi solutions provider that gives companies up to 5 times faster internet services. We’ve helped companies like Sterling Bank, Frosty Bites and MalcolmTrust get up to 5 times faster internet and we’d love to do the same to you.

You can then go on with your ask but keep it as short as possible never let your email exceed 4 paragraphs unless absolutely necessary.

5. Close it out

For your closing words, Warm regards is one of the safest options to use. You could also use Best or Regards in a more informal email.

Example:

Warm regards,
Tiffany Aku

That’s it! your email is ready to conquer your receiver’s inbox!

Yasmin Says: Mastering the art of the email follow up

She Hive Lagos Participant on Email
  At the end of a networking event or conference, you may end up with dozens of business cards in your portfolio or your purse. While getting the initial card is definitely important, it’s even more important to master the art of the email follow up. First things first: a few days after the conference, send a brief follow up email to everyone you met. Don’t wait too long or the conversation you had will no longer be relevant in their mind. 1. Have a clear subject line like “Follow up from XYZ Conference” so they don’t assume you’re sending spam since they’re unlikely to recognize your name. 2. Don’t assume they’ll remember exactly who you are since they probably met a bunch of people at the conference. So include subtle hints that will juggle their memory. Here’s an example:

Hi Mrs XYZ,

It was so lovely meeting you at XYZ conference and having the opportunity to talk to you about SLA, the organization that I co-founded which supports young African women on their journey towards professional success. See what I did there? I subtly reminded them who I was by referring to my organization. 3. Don’t get aggressive if they don’t respond. Everyone’s busy and its not their job to help you. If they don’t respond at first, wait a week and then send the exact same email again. If they still don’t respond, wait a month and then send them an update email, sharing some of the progress you’ve made over the past month and then include your request again. IF they still don’t respond, fall back but keep sending them updates on you and your business once a quarter or once every six months. Everyone likes to be associated with success, so  showing them how well you’re doing may encourage them to respond. I’ve emailed people for over a year before they responded!! Be persistent yet respectful, and keep up with the follow up.