[This is the third in a series about e-mail. Read earlier posts under the category e-mail.]
Here are a few easy tips for tidying up messy messages:
Check spelling and grammar before sending. Spell-check goes a long way toward making you sound smarter, but some people surprisingly don’t use it.
Don’t use all caps. I thought everyone knew this, but apparently not. Type the way books read. Otherwise you’ll look like you’re yelling. DON’T DO IT. See? It looks like I’m mad at you.
Don’t use all lower case. You’re not e.e. cummings. Properly capitalize.
Use a descriptive Subject line. Subject lines are summary lines. They should give a good indication of what’s to come. Still, I receive many messages that say things like, “Hi” or nothing at all. Write your message first, then come up with a good summary based on it to use in the Subject field.
Keep your temper. Don’t say anything in e-mail you wouldn’t say to someone’s face. You have to be so, so careful with e-mail. Take extra care not to sound snippy.
Overall, be selective in who you send messages to. If you’re not going to mail something to 150 people, then why would you e-mail it?