For those who use email as a means of communication with their audience, either massively or individually with each specific customer, the beginning and end of an email may not be the most important aspects of a communication, but the truth is they make a contribution that may be decisive for success.
The way you start and finish your contact will define your contact's disposition for the two most important moments of this interaction: first, the way they'll read your email; then, the mood they'll be in after they do.
Start with the right foot
The first words your customer reads in the email will set the overall tone of the communication. If you start with a 'Dear Sir/ Dear Madam', you will immediately set an impersonal and formal tone; if you open with 'Hello friends!', the reader will immediately feel a young, relaxed, and informal environment for the rest of the communication. After setting the tone, you'll hardly be able to change it the rest of the communication! So study who your audience is right away and what the tone of your message should be, so that the openness of communication fits the general tone of the email.
- More important than ‘Dear’ is the word that follows it.
- Of course, in emails sent directly and specifically to a person, you must then say their name;
- But when it comes to a massive submission, you'll have to ask a few questions: Who is your audience? Why are you contacting them? Are they associates? Customers? Members?
- Saying 'Dear Associate' is not the same as saying 'Dear Mr. Smith’.
- When possible – and applicable – define the nature of the relationship you have with your audience from the start.
- In this way, you will be making that relationship clear right away, reminding the recipient of which identity you represent... and making it realize that it already has a connection with you.
Dear Sir/ Dear Madam
- Whenever possible, segment your communication into gender, avoiding having to create a code that distances you from the audience. Are they Sirs or Madams?
- Use your audience's demographic information to send a gender-specific communication, especially if your audience is predominantly female.
Good morning... at 5 p.m.?
- The use of 'Good Morning / Good afternoon / Good Night' has advantages and disadvantages.
- On the one hand, you may be saying 'Good Morning' and your addressee might just read the communication at night - all the intended meaning is lost.
- However, this choice places the communication in a specific moment of the day, which is not necessarily negative.
- This type of opening will be more appropriate for direct and individual contacts, especially if you're sure that your recipient will read the email in a brief period after you send it.
- It's particularly not recommended for mass communications.
- It’s more suitable to informal and relaxed relationships.
Finish as you started
It's important that your communication ends in a way that your recipient understands that the message is complete and that everything it needs to know has already been said, having been made clear what's the next step you expect to be taken.
End with a call to action
- If you're sending a mass communication and using an elaborate layout, further from the ordinary 'mail' , it's not strictly necessary to conclude in a traditional way (for example, with 'Best regards').
- Feel free to finish the email in the way that is most effective for the nature of your contact.
- Keep in mind that an email marketing can – and should – end with a call to action.
Maintain the tone
- If it's an individual message, always conclude by following the same principle and tone as you used in the start.
- From 'Best regards' to 'Sincerely', what matters most is that the conclusion is in line with the openness and body of the message.
Smooth a negative contact
- If you’re communicating what can be understood as bad news on the part of the recipient, try to conclude, before signing, by softening the overall tone of the message and thus fighting the negative environment generated by your message.
- A negative situation can be countered, even if not completely overcome, with a phrase like 'I will be at your disposal to cooperate as much as possible'.
A subtle personal touch
- If you want to give a more personal touch to the communication, a simple word can make a difference 'My best wishes'.
- Sign with your name as well, completing with your function in the company.