Here is what I don’t get….I sell Real Estate and make a good living because I pride myself on returning phone calls AND emails as fast as I can. I have often found myself the REALTOR chosen because I do the small thing of returning calls and emails. If I am in meetings/away or cannot respond right away, I let the client know and give them good options.
The stats from service industry research say that service providers do not respond quickly to their emails. Someone sending an email is already on the Internet and moving at high-speed expecting full information. They expect responses and communication at the speed that they are moving. They are not willing to wait and come from a generation that thinks “Microwave” is slow cooking.
Here is what I really don’t get though…often when I send emails from my database, they bounce back telling me that the mailbox is full, over quota or that the email address is not active anymore. Email addresses are easily forwarded from one to another and boxes can be cleaned out. There is a lot of software that recognizes SPAM and deals with it so that you only receive valid emails. Changing your email address will only cut back on SPAM for a short while if you are using the web to market yourself and your services. SPAM is snail mail flyers on Steroids, bothersome but not the end of the world as we know it.
Most of us have numerous email addresses; choose one and make it your base email with all your other addresses forwarding to that email address. I suggest making it part of your branding which means it includes your name, so that if you move from one Company to another, your email address never changes and is easily recognizable as part of your brand. Make it your email address for life!
I am amazed that people in “Business” would change their contact information without notifying past clients or connections…..however my database proves me wrong, especially with email addresses. What is even more amazing is that I have been the recipient of business cards that have old and unused email addresses on them at the time they are given to me or I meet someone who tells me that “sorry…this is my old card or old email address” or says “OOpps, I don’t have my card with me!”
Our Industry Organizations are constantly trying to educate and update the members but are reporting big problems with out-of-date databases or members who do not want to use email.
So here is my solution! Do not get an email address, a computer, a Blackberry or PDA and whatever you do: DO NOT RESPOND TO EMAIL!!! Your market will be easy prey for those of us who do!
Technology will not take your business but competitors with it will! It’s time to get in the game and put care and energy in your email etiquette. You will reap great rewards!!