Tired of sending networking emails that don't get a response? Don’t fret. If you follow the below steps, you'll be well on your way to networking email success.
1. Mind your subject line.
Subject lines matter. They're the very first things your reader will see, and you only have one opportunity to make a great first impression. So send an email that has an effective subject line. Make sure to avoid general statements like "hello" and don't ask for something in the subject line. Instead, come across as interesting and charming. Further, when crafting your subject line, keep the following questions in mind: If you read it, would you want to open the email? Does this sound like an interesting email to open? Is there a clever quote or phrase you can use?
2. Make sure your email is easy to read.
Some of the worst emails I've read are ones that take forever to get to the point. Clarity and time efficiency matter to people with busy lives and too little time to do everything they want. So make sure to begin your email this way: Introduce yourself. Identify your connection to the reader or purpose for contacting the reader. And clearly state the purpose of your email.
3. Create a crystal clear call to action.
While it should be clear to the reader why you're contacting them, it should also be very clear what's supposed to happen after the email. Are you requesting a call, a meeting, a lunch, a document review? Provide a clear call to action. And give your reader all the tools they need to follow up. Make it very easy for them.
4. Include your contact info in an easily-accessible format.
Have you ever visited a website and found it incredibly difficult to find the correct email address for the person or organization you searched? How frustrating is that? Very. So, when you're sending a networking email and you hide your contact information, how do you think the reader will feel? It is a professional courtesy to include your contact info in your signature block for every email you send. In this type of email, I would also suggest including your phone number or other contact information in the body of your note, to present it as clearly as possible.
5. Focus on how you want the reader to feel.
Maya Angelou once said: “I've learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.” Whether you create a format for your emails, or follow the recommendations above, you can’t forget to think about how the reader feels during and after reading your email. Here are questions you want to think about when you craft your emails: Will the reader be interested in reading the entire email? Does the reader have a clear understanding of why they're receiving the email? Does the reader feel celebrated and appreciated in the email? Does the reader have a reason to respond?
6. Express your gratitude.
A “thank you” is never overrated. At the close of your email, make sure to share your gratitude for the reader’s time and attention to the email in a unique way. This will leave your reader with a positive feeling and impression of you. Remember, final impressions are just as important as first impressions.
A version of this post previously appeared on Fairygodboss, the largest career community that helps women get the inside scoop on pay, corporate culture, benefits, and work flexibility. Founded in 2015, Fairygodboss offers company ratings, job listings, discussion boards, and career advice.
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