6 Ways to Send a Polite Reminder Email
We have all been there: You sent an email; you need a response but still haven’t received one, and now you are getting held up by the lack of communication. Maybe you have already called or sent one follow-up, but you need a clear reply.
How do you politely remind someone that you need a response? Here are a few tips.
1. Be short and sweet.
Short emails are easy to read, and they usually get a response.
Like a quick text or a note from a friend, these emails can be colloquial, effective, and nonintrusive. Above, the clothing company Everlane keeps it to just two sentences. At the same time, they pack in important data, like the $20 value proposition and the clear deadline of December 11 at 11:59 p.m. ET to redeem the reward.
2. Give the right amount of context.
Make sure the recipient knows what you are talking about by either forwarding your original email or mentioning your request again. If they haven’t gotten back to you, they may have forgotten what you needed.
Using subtle differences in text formatting — such as a color change in the example above — can help quickly distinguish between the first and second follow-up notes. When your recipient is drowning in a flood of emails, making the message as clear as possible will go a long way toward getting a reply.
3. Don’t assume they forgot about you.
Suggest that you may have missed their response, don’t assume they forgot about you. “I may have missed your email, so I wanted to check in.”
This keeps the thread going, makes it more like a conversation, and steers away from the follow-ups becoming a series of disjointed notes that quickly get annoying.
Research shows that a personal touch is more important than ever for winning over your customers. With increasing competition to capture and retain users of your product or service, small tweaks can make an enormous difference.
4. Remind them of a due date (if one exists).
In addition to being a valuable piece of information, a due date adds a subtle sense of urgency to the email — which has gotten people to act.Image Source]
You don’t have to highlight the deadline or make it large and bold to affect a small sense of FOMO (fear of missing out). It’s important to strike a balance between sending an effective reminder and being pushy or bullying your readers into taking action — which usually doesn’t work.
Working it into the text like MailChimp does (above) keeps it casual yet helpful.
Don’t forget to keep the deadline within the recipient’s time zone.
5. Use captivating images.
Adding strategic images helps captivate viewers over and above plain text.Image Source]
Doing a bit of audience research can go a long way toward selecting or crafting images that truly resonate with your readers and make them enjoy your follow-up email. This doesn’t have to be an expensive or time-consuming project. There are many free or inexpensive tools for marketers you can experiment with, like VSCO and the Google Nik Collection to add a professional touch.
6. Give your readers something unexpected.
People who open marketing emails anticipate some sort of reward or opportunity from the company itself. Lyft flips this on its head by reminding people to register to vote!
While this isn’t a traditional reminder email, it’s still a great marketing tactic for Lyft. It highlights the company’s commitment to public service at a time when its competitors are deceiving the authorities and upsetting customers.
Spontaneous reminders like this can double as fun and creative forms of PR. Figuring out what issues interest your readers and adding to the conversation can forge a deeper connection with them, leading to valuable relationships over time.
Keep It Simple
At the end of the day, if you just want to get a reply, forwarding the original email with a “gentle reminder” will often do.
But if you have a little extra time to be creative, small additions will go a long way. Plus, it can get boring repeating the same tactics. Test out the above strategies to mix it up.
If you have more tips, please leave them in the comments section below. What is your method?
Want to improve your reminder emails more?
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