In this article, I want to share with you my top five tips for email productivity. Email is something we all have to deal with and it’s something that can be time-consuming if you don’t handle it in the most productive way possible.
Whether it’s following up with clients or just keeping organized and keeping your inbox to a minimum, I believe that if we can deal with email in a more effective and efficient way, that will buy back a lot of our time that can help us with our small business or focus on the things that matter the most to us.
Embrace common templates
The first of my email productivity tips is to have what’s called boilerplate or standard copy. This is some text that you have set aside, probably in your drafts folder, so that if there’s something you always have to do on a regular basis you already know what that email is going to be formatted like.
Obviously, when you’re doing your welcome in the email, you should definitely personalize that as much as possible, however, if there’s a standard procedure, let’s say you have consulting clients maybe you should go ahead and have the information that you know they need the most already written out in advance.
That way you can keep it consistent for everyone, and this is going to save you a lot of time since we can just copy and paste this in from your drafts and send it to anybody who needs it. All of a sudden, an email that might’ve taken you five or ten minutes to formulate takes 30 seconds.
Stick to a schedule
In my day to day business following up with people via email is actually one of the most important things that I do. One of my email productivity tips is that I actually schedule a time every single day, multiple times a day, to just do my follow-ups and reply to people. This can be really helpful because instead of checking your inbox consistently throughout the day which could end up being a huge time-suck for you if you actually schedule it at intervals that make sense.
Then you can spend maybe 10 or 15 minutes on it during those times, then you’re making this really efficient. So you have a set amount of time every day, it’s only dedicated to this letting you focus on other things.
Use folders for everything
Tip number three is to create and have folders in your inbox, to keep yourself organized. This is great so that you can prioritize things if you know that this is an email you don’t have to get to right away having a specialized folder for it can be helpful.
If you’re someone who travels like me, being able to go ahead and put all of your travel plans and your itinerary in one folder in your inbox makes a lot of sense. In a similar way, I put all my self managed super fund details and bank statements in another folder. It allows you to get to information and know exactly what it is. I really believe that this one’s going to save people the most time.
Email productivity tips number four is set up auto-responders. If you know that you’re going on a trip, set up a custom autoresponder and this is really easy especially if you’re using Gmail to go ahead and notify people who emailed you to make sure they understand that you won’t be getting back to them right away.
This could be even more helpful if you combine this with wanting to schedule certain emails. It could be a really helpful combo for you in terms of making sure that when you’re away and you’re on a trip like the ones I go on to conferences and conventions, then you have a way of making sure that system is in place for you to follow up with people and keep track of it.
Consider email signatures
Luckily last of my email productivity tips is to set up a custom email signature. Setting up a custom email signature or even multiple ones can be extraordinarily helpful. It’s something you won’t have to believe about and it’ll make your emails a little bit more professional. If you know there’s a lot of different types of people you interact with, setting up multiple email signatures is perfect so that you can make sure that it’s always having the right context.
In your email signature, consider using some of your social media profiles or actually send a link to something you have that’s a free offer that could get people to sign up for your email list or that gets them to really get a personal relationship.
For example, if you know that you’re emailing a client and you have a video that you’ve done on YouTube that has something like top 5 or top tips for that type of client go ahead and feel free to link to that in your email signature so that they’re always getting it and it’s another way to build on that relationship.
Five email productivity tips
I believe if you follow a lot of the above email productivity tips, you’ll find that it saves you a lot of time in your workday and that people that you’re trying to stay in touch with, will end up a lot happier.
Having things organized and being consistent with your emails add up to really successful business habits. I really believe that’s going to help you make the most of your time and be more efficient than ever. I know these five email productivity tips are working very well for me anyway.
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