These tips are adapted from Inc.'s How To Write a Convincing E-Mail:
- Have a specific conclusion in mind.
- Structure your supporting argument into "digestible chunks."
- Bolster each argument with evidence.
- Repeat your conclusion as a "call to action."
- Stick a benefit in the subject line.
The Inc. piece has six tips, beginning with one that strikes me as too specific to be really useful— "Start with a decision in mind." Most of the emails I send and receive are about questions and answers, seeking clarification, or an invitation to a dialogue. But as for the other tips—
- Specific conclusions give your emails focus.
- Digestible chunks are easier to read on a computer screen than unbroken blocks of text.
- Evidence drives your message home. ("There’s also the fact that numerous studies—including one that tracked eye movement, one that surveyed people, and even one that examined the habits displayed by users of two academic databases—show that we start to read faster and less thoroughly as soon as we go online.")
- Repetition? Duh.
- Offer a benefit in the subject line—brilliant! ("Chocolate in my office—now")