For most of us our “second self” is the way people interact with us, know us and buy from us. It’s the person(a) we present to others when we aren’t there. In some cases, it’s our second self is a figment of our imaginations – ourselves at our uber best. In other cases, not so much. It’s a sloppy, self-centered and sometimes lazy rendition.
Imagine this: In good faith, you write to a seller to ask for something – anything. The out-of-office reply you receive says:
“Thank you for your email. Your receiving this because I am out of the office on important biz travel. I will check my email at random times and will get back to you when I can. My colleague is also out of the office this week so no one will be there to assist. I apologize.”
No, I’m not kidding. That is real – spelling and all. (Want more “Email Wall of Shame” examples? Check out my FB biz page.)
What if it had said this:
“Thank you for your email.
The US business day has now come to an end and I will be returning to the office tomorrow Thursday, June 12, 2014 at 9am.
I will be in touch upon my return to the office however if the matter is urgent please contact the Assistant Manager on 555-555-5555
Thank you once again for your email and please count on us to provide you with an extraordinary visit to Scottsdale.”
You may find the second response a bit too formal for your taste, but even if you do, I’m 100% confident that you think better of the writer.
What type of email writer are you? Take this quick quiz:
At the end of an email to my boss, I write:
a. Your thoughts?
b. With your approval, I’ll take care of this by Friday.
At the beginning of an email to a prospect, you write:
a. How are you today?
b. Thank you for considering X for your Y.
In the middle of an email, you write:
a. I’m looking forward to talking more with you about…
b. I’ll plan to phone you Friday morning to talk more with you about…
How many A’s did you circle?
If you circled any, your email style is too tentative. Readers may also think you are being insincere. Instead, take control of the next step, eliminate the fake rapport and focus on making the next step easy and effortless for your buyer.
Present your best second self to get best results.