Email reputation is kind of a buzzword recently, and it’s a good thing because this is something that all professionals and business owners should give some thought to. Email is a form of communication that we all thought would go away as text messaging and social media platforms became ubiquitous for both casual and professional communication.
To our surprise, email continued to survive and to be consistently used today, still, especially for work of course. That’s why even today, we need to consider our email reputation, and here is what that entails.
What is Email Reputation?
You can probably guess what this means if you don’t already know, and you would probably be right. Your email reputation is the sum of various elements of your conduct when using email, such as the length of time you take to reply to someone, the quality of your writing, your professionalism, and other traits.
It basically means the same thing as your personal reputation, but instead applied to how you handle emails.
The Importance of Response Time
This is an aspect of email correspondence on which customer service agents are constantly hyper-focused because they understand that people expect to get a reply pretty quickly.
If those people don’t get that quick reply, then they assume you don’t care very much about them. This is probably the most prominent aspect of email that contributes to your reputation the most.
People Notice More Than You Think
Think about an instance when you realized that you took an unreasonable amount of time to get back to someone through email, and see if you ever thought this to yourself: “Oh crap, I never replied to them… Well, I’m sure it didn’t really bother them too much.” Think again.
The best way to understand the reaction and thought process of the person in that scenario is to imagine yourself in their position, instead (someone has surely done it to you, too). That’s when you see how much a long response time actually does stand out to you.
The real problem with sending emails back very late is that the next time that same person sends you an email, they will think, “Oh man, this guy is going to take forever to get back to me,” and people will only tolerate that for so long, if at all. We all notice that conduct, and it unfortunately contributes to a negative email reputation.
Word Spreads Much Faster Now
We all want to assume that no one will tell anybody when we do something wrong; in fact, we hope for it desperately sometimes. The truth is, though, that damn near everybody in the developed world is only one Tweet or online forum comment away from discovering your, albeit momentary, lapse in great customer service.
There is no telling where someone will leave a scathing review about your business explaining that somebody didn’t email them back in a timely manner about some question that they had. That person might just be a big cry baby who loves to complain, but all the same, you have to look out for your email reputation as vigilantly as possible.
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Stephanie is the Marketing Director at Talkroute and has been featured in Forbes, Inc, and Entrepreneur as a leading authority on business and telecommunications.
Stephanie is also the chief editor and contributing author for the Talkroute blog helping more than 100k entrepreneurs to start, run, and grow their businesses.