What would we do these days without email? Most American families now have
a home computer and many find that staying in touch with their friends and family
is easier with email than "snail" mail. Writing a letter on a computer is faster and
easier to edit than writing by hand. It takes almost no time for an email to reach
its destination. You could have many messages sent and replies received in the time
it would take a letter to be delivered.
Email has become almost indispensable in business. However, the style and format
for a business email should be more formal than when writing to friends. Below,
we present an article that provides guidance for sending business emails. The
article is specifically geared to writers or other freelancers who are writing emails
to prospective employers, agents or content buyers.
Since we are a content buyer, I will say a few words about what we prefer to see
when we read our incoming emails. First, it is important that the Subject field
of the email is filled in and is concise but meaningful. If a writer is submitting
an article for possible publication on this web site, we'd like to see a Subject such
as "LFC submission - My Proposed Topic". Substitute the topic of your proposed article
for "My Proposed Topic". If the Subject is blank or doesn't clearly indicate the purpose
of the email, we may delete it without even reading it!
We get many emails each and every day. If you want to stand out in the crowd, say
something to get our attention, but say it succinctly. Of course you should provide
the information we ask for in our Writer's Guidelines, but you will be more likely
to be remembered if you use a little humor or point out something unique about yourself.
The topic of your proposed article is a major factor in our decision about whether
or not we are interested in buying your submission. Be sure that you understand
our Writer's Guidelines and have read several of our published articles so that you
know what we may be interested in buying. If your article is passionate and gives
solutions for a general condition or problem, along with some description of your
encounters with the topic, we'll be more likely to be interested in buying your piece.
We endeavor to be businesslike yet friendly in all of our emails. We will be honest
but not overly harsh in our evaluations of all submitted work. We state clearly what
the next step in the process will be and we provide a timeframe that we strive to
keep to. This, and the points mentioned above, is what we look for as well in the
emails we receive.
NetManners.com is a site with extensive information
on how to behave online. Their multi-part article on Net
Etiquite 101 should be essential reading for all computer users!
Email Replies is a site that
explains how to send effective email replies. It discusses why email etiquette is
necessary and lists email etiquette rules. It provides advice on implementing an email
policy for businesses.
Read what American Express' Small Business site has to say about Email
Here is another good article on Email
For more information on Email and Business Etiquette,
we recommend the following books:
E-mail Basics (SparkCharts)
This two-page chart covers: Basic universal email features. The 10 cardinal rules
of email. 5 questions to ask yourself before sending an email. Rules and etiquette
for personal email. Rules and etiquette for professional email. Emoticons, abbreviations,
and acronyms. Instant messaging and text messaging. Spam. Viruses and worms.
Because Netiquette Matters!: Your Comprehensive Reference Guide to EMail Etiquette
and Proper Technology Use
Imagine... You can practice proper e-mail etiquette and avoid looking inexperienced
in just 24 hours! In Judith Kallos' powerful new book, Because Netiquette Matters!,
learn the nuances of e-mail etiquette and every day technology use from a personal
and business perspective. In easy to understand terminology, the author has a conversation
with you as though you were getting your personalized tutoring session on the important
issue of online etiquette. Many of the topics covered by the book are often encountered
by people online, and they will only take a little effort on your part to apply. With
the combination of this book and its growing website, you now have access to this
important information on or offline so you may thrive online! Remember, online ignorance
is not bliss and perception is the only reality!
E-Writing: 21st-Century Tools for Effective Communication
Are you guilty of email "trigger finger"? Do you constantly "cc" people you never
even see? What are today's rules for conducting business over the Internet? Now, The
Elements of Style meets "the Miss Manners of memos" in the ultimate writing guide
for the digital age. E-Writing is poised to become the new bible of business writing.
Accessible and inviting, this Web-savvy "how-to" book promises to transform anxious
e-mail hacks and mediocre memo writers into eloquent electronic scribes in no time
Encyclopedia of Business Letters, Fax Memos, and E-Mail
Here you'll find the most complete and up-to-date collection of model business correspondence
for every conceivable occasion -- sample letters, memos, and e-mails you can use as
is or adapt for your own purposes. The result? You eliminate hours of wasted time
and effort composing correspondence; we've already done the work for you. You can
get your message across clearly, easily, and quickly...so you cut writing time and
can focus on more important tasks. The Encyclopedia contains more than 300 model letters
with instructions for adapting each to your particular situation. Letters are organized
into chapters by category, and the detailed table of contents guides you quickly to
the letter that best suits your needs.
our exclusive Feature Article:
by Nicole Allard 7/26/05
Not long ago, the only communications freelance writers had with editors were by phone
and snail mail. Freelancers mailed out submissions or queries, and patiently waited
for a phone call or a letter in the mail. It may have brought news of acceptance,
or rejection. If there was that always welcome acceptance, there was then the wait
for the payment check in the mail.
Although we still sometimes linger around our mailboxes, we now have the convenience
and ease of the almighty Internet. We have online guidelines, which usually replace
hard copies. We have email and fax, usually replacing the phone. Although libraries
are a vast resource, we generally don't need to spend gas money and time getting there.
We have the convenience of communications and research, all from the comfort of our
I think some of us have used the web for fun for so long that when it comes down to starting a freelancing career, we may forget to present ourselves in a professional manner. Check out these top 5 email communications mistakes, and see if you need to adjust your messages.
Top 5 Email Communication Mistakes:
1. Attachments: Never, ever, ever (did I say never!) send an editor/potential client
an attachment in an email, unless your goal is to have your message immediately deleted.
The only exception to this rule is if it's solicited. If the guidelines state that
you can send documents as an attachment, go ahead and do it. If the editor emails
you asking for an attachment, go for it. If it is not asked for, don't send it. Simply
cut and paste everything you need to send. The reason for deletion is that there is
a risk involved in opening attachments. Viruses, worms, stuff that can screw up your
computer (sometimes irreversibly) can be maliciously embedded in them. People are
no longer willing to take the risk. Even if you have already had contact with that
editor, that doesn't mean that they are willing to trust you.
2. Color/Graphics: Background colors and/or graphics might be fun to send to family
and friends, but it isn't a good idea to send to potential clients and editors. Sending
a colorful message with butterflies (or whatever) in it will only make the editor
assume you're an amateur, and they will probably delete it. Colored text probably
isn't so bad, but it's best to stick with black on white. Backgrounds and images take
up more memory than a plain text email, and that's no good for an editor who receives
hundreds of submissions and queries a day.
3. Misspellings: I think I speak for editors everywhere when I say, For the Love of
Puppies, use your spell-checker! It's simple, and only takes a couple seconds to spell-check
your message before sending it. If you don't already have it running, you can usually
turn this feature on in the options or account settings part of your email program.
By doing this, your message will be automatically checked for spelling errors when
you press send. Don't forget to proofread it as well, as spell-checkers don't usually
catch grammatical errors.
4. Poor Format: You're not writing to your sister to say 'hey', you're emailing a
potential client, whoever that may be. Your message should show that you are a professional.
A message like the following does not portray this:
"I have a few article ideas for your publication.
That message might be okay if you're sending a message to an editor that you write
for consistently. Under any other circumstances, if you want to be taken seriously,
your message should be formatted like this:
"Dear Editor (or their name),
(Insert Irresistible Query)
Thank you for your time.
Basically, it's best to treat your email queries as you would a snail mail letter.
5. I'm a Beginner!: Just because you're a beginner, doesn't mean you have to announce
it! Stick to highlighting your skills, experiences, education, strengths, etc. There
is no need to let the editor know any of your weaknesses or limitations.
When communicating with an editor, you need to demonstrate a few important attributes:
1. Professionalism: You are a self-employed professional, and are offering quality
2. Enthusiasm: You are happy to do the work, and want to do it for that particular
3. Ability: You are willing and able to take on what that project entails.
4. Promptness: You will meet any and all deadlines.
5. Hard-working: You will do what it takes to provide quality work that you and the
editor can be proud of.
That's E-etiquette 101 in a nutshell. Remember to be as persuasive as possible, without
going overboard. You want the editor to feel that their publication will benefit from
your work, as it should. Once you are able to do that, practice it often. Practice
may not make perfect, but you will become the best you can be. It does become second
nature with experience, and that's a wonderful thing. If you need more than just this
article can offer, search for a book or take a class about writing sales or query
letters. It can be quite beneficial to learn as much as you possibly can about selling
Take a Cruise!
Need a Vacation? Take a Cruise! How would you like to learn all about the fun you could have on a cruise? No
one knows more about a cruise vacation than a travel agent who specializes in cruises!
You will learn all there is to know about taking a cruise when you get in touch with
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Please read our article about taking a cruise. Then call Marsha at 704-469-9048.
Buy a 3D TV!
Looking for a new Flat Screen TV? Read our review of the Visio 42 inch 3D Television written by a woman who owns one! Read about the clarity of the display, the 3D aspects of the set, accessories, internet ability, sound and gaming suitability. If you are looking for a new TV, this might be the one for you! In any case, you'll learn about features that are now available in the latest models of flat screen 3D TVs!
Like the Twilight Saga? Read Etude!
There is a new Young Adult book series that lovers of the Twilight Saga will probably
enjoy as well. Etude has a similar theme and similar characters. Both
are about teen girls who meet and fall in love with immortal guys. What things
about Etude are the same as Twilight and what are different? Please read our
interesting review of Etude, the first book in the Birthright Legacy series.
It provides an insightful analysis of how Etude is the same as Twilight and how Etude
is different from Twilight!
What can Middle Earth say about Real Earth? Have you read or seen the Lord Of The Rings books / movies? The Hobbit is a book that has the same kinds of characters, themes and settings but came out first.
Read our article on the upcoming Hobbit movie. The author talks about the themes in The Hobbit and Lord Of The Rings, and presents the idea that they can be viewed as a commentary on the Environment!
Get A Date!
Online Dating First Impression! If you are one of the many people who have joined online dating sites, or if you are thinking of joining an online dating site, then you will need to make a good first impression with a perfect
profile! Whether you already have a profile for an online dating site, or are thinking of making a profile for an online dating site, read our Perfect Profile article for helpful tips! What makes a great online dating profile? Please read our article on How to Write the Perfect Profile for an Online Dating Site and learn how to attract the perfect person for you!