I believe that the greatest tool that you have as an online business owner is your email. This is where all the most important stuff lands. Opportunities for collaborations, potential clients, the occasional crabby customer... it all happens in your inbox. Your email is almost always your first line of contact with people, and the experience you give them there will massively impact the outcome of each client/customer relationship!
Whether you are a shop owner, an online coach, consultant, or freelancer, you absolutely cannot afford to ignore your email game! Why? Because people will decide to spend their money on your services if they love the experience they have with you - even if it's just a few brief emails.
Here are some mistakes I see ALL THE TIME in business emails.
- Robotic and distant canned responses. "Hello customer, Thank you for your inquiry. Here is a link to address this issue." (Yawn. Bye.)
- When you get an auto-response that says, "Thanks for your email! We'll get back to you in 24 hours!" And then they don't respond in 24 hours. (Insert eye roll emoji)
- Type-o's and misspelled names. DON'T GET ME STARTED.
Ready to Boost your Email Game?
There are so many QUICK and EASY tools that you can use to make your client experience amazing using email. Here are my top three email secrets that will make people absolutely LOVE to see you in their inbox.
1. Use Canned Responses, but make them PERSONAL!
Canned responses aren't the enemy! They're actually a major secret weapon for saving time. But be intentional when you're throwing a canned response together. Think, "If I'm going to be sending this to hundreds of people, how do I want them to feel when they read it?" Then add in fields to customize with each email.
Here's my real life example:
Email I receive all the time: "Hi! I'm interested in your services! Can you tell me a little more about what you do? What is your hourly rate?"
Canned Response: "Hey NAME! I'm so happy to hear from you! SOMETHING PERSONAL (ex: I saw your Instagram about your daughter yesterday - She is the cutest!). Here's what my services would look like for a ROLE (blogger, photographer, etc.) like you. Yadda yadda yadda..."
Long story short: make it look like it's NOT a canned response. Nobody wants to feel like a robot is talking to them.
2. Set clear expectations and FOLLOW THROUGH!
Setting up an autoresponder is a great way to let people know what to expect in their contact with you. If you're super busy and only get to your inbox once a week, say that! The worst thing that you can do is over-promise. Don't say that you'll get back to them in two business days if it's really going to be four!
There's a reason this saying is used way too much: "under-promise and over-deliver". If you know that you'll have a response sent by Wednesday, don't tell someone you'll have it in by Tuesday because you're scared of disappointing them. Tell them you'll respond by Friday. Then, when you send it in on Wednesday, they're thrilled.
(hint: This applies to EVERY area of your business, not just email!)
3. Please, please, please, PLEASE proofread your emails.
Can I say please about ten more times? In my opinion, the single most sloppy thing you can do is to send an email full of type-o's, misspelled names, and grammar mistakes. Everything you send out by email is a reflection of your business, and I don't think that sloppy is what you're striving for!
If I receive an email from someone that spelled my name wrong (I have a pretty basic name so it doesn't happen too often!), it's going straight to the trash. #SorryNotSorry but if someone can't take the time to look two lines up at my name, I don't want to hire them!
If this is something that doesn't come easy to you, that's OKAY. Sometimes it's nearly impossible to catch all your own mistakes. This would be a great thing for you to outsource! There is nothing wrong with sending all your emails to a VA for them to edit before they're sent out.
And while we're at it, let's talk about outsourcing your whole inbox! Yes, that's scary. Yes, that's letting someone see ALL THE THINGS in your business. Yes, they'll see money things. But if you're consistently struggling to get responses out, or you're always drowning in mail, it's time to hire a VA to do it for you! Let an expert give your customers and clients the amazing email experience they deserve.