How long emails can harm your business

Communicating via email in this day and age is a necessity, so it’s important to know how to write well. If you can’t effectively communicate your intended message, you may as well be out of business. There are ways, however, to get your writing to work for you.

According to Keith Harwood, founder of Inspire Speakers, your written work – be it an email, a proposal, or anything else – “has got to be good”, no matter what industry you’re in.

Despite being the most time-consuming part of his job, ensuring his written work is concise is of the utmost importance for Keith's business success.

He suggests that the best way for business owners to ensure their writing is good is to make it short and conversational; something he picked up from internet marketing guru Frank Kern.

“His emails are always very conversational, very short. I’ll open them because they’re short,” explains Keith.

“My newsletters are very conversational, very short. But also my written proposals, they can be long and chunky, but I’ve got to make them just two, three sentences. I’ll often space it out quite a lot, not long paragraphs.”

Keith also suggests that it is important to think of how written text will visually appear to the recipient.

“Think about … what looks good to you, because when people open up their email, they see long, chunky paragraphs,” he says.

“Straight away you’re thinking, ‘Oh, Jesus!’, you know?

“It’s got to be paragraphs, never more than two or three sentences, nice and broken out, a couple of links here and there to speaking footage.”

When writing speaker proposals, Keith makes sure he has obvious evidence to back up the speaker he is trying to promote.

“It’s got attachments of the speaking profiles, if they want to know more, but it’s punchy … [including] evidence-based [reasons] why they need a certain speaker,” he says.

“Not just, 'These guys are good, yeah, have a look through and let me know what you think'.”

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