Do you email out a sales or marketing newsletter using Outlook? When they receive your emails, what do recipients see? Who are the emails from?
Your FROM line is your branding in the recipients inbox.
It is what the reader recognizes first and what sets you apart from all the other emails in the readers Inbox. It is what gets your email opened!
Here are some tips on choosing a good From line.
Choose a FROM line that your readers/recipients will know
If you are using the email account to send emails to people who know your name personally (i.e. you are the brand) then it makes sense to use your personal name.
If they downloaded something from your website or bought something from your business, then they are probably more familiar with your company name.
Think twice (or maybe 10 times) before you change your FROM line
If you have an active newsletter with many subscribers already then have a serious think before changing your FROM line. Why?
Readers are already familiar with your emails. They may not recognize them (and therefore not open and read them) if you make a change.
For example: We use the Addins4Outlook name for our newsletters which many of our readers are familiar with. Our company name Standss now has a lot of brand recognition but I am still scared of changing the FROM line because almost 30,000 readers of our newsletter are already familiar with Addins4Outlook.
If you decide to change your FROM line, then announce it to your list first.
Send an email out from your OLD From line letting them know beforehand. That way many (but still not all), readers will at least be prepared.
You can find out more about how to change your FROM line in our related post How to Change Your Outlook From Line.
If you are sending out marketing or sales emails using Outlook, you may also want to check out Email Merge PRO for Outlook which lets you use multiple email accounts for sending out emails (i.e. it lets you send out emails from different FROM lines)
Do you need to change the way that your name appears in the Inbox of people receiving your emails? Here’s how you can change the FROM field.
But before that, why is this important?
Having a From field that readers recognize makes your email stand out from other emails. It increases the chances that your email will be opened but… changing it could also result in your Outlook Emails not getting opened.
If you’ve decided you are going to change the From line…
- In Outlook 2010, click File > Account Settings.
In Outlook 2007, click Tools > Account Settings.
In Outlook 2003, click Tools > E-mail Accounts > select View or change existing email accounts > click Next
- Select an email account from the list and click Change.
- Make the change in the Your Name field.
- Click Next. (Wait for Outlook to do some tests)
- Click Finish.
If you sending marketing or sales newsletters, we recommend you read The importance of FROM in your Outlook email newsletters and flyers before changing anything.
Do you have meetings with people in other time zones. We’ve talked about displaying multiple time zones in Outlook previously.
Here’s another time zone tip (for users of Outlook 2010 only). This lets you enter appointments based on the time in another time zone without having to convert it to local time.
* Open your appointment
* Click Time Zones on the ribbon. Outlook will add a time zone drop-down next to the appointment time.
Now you can enter the time of the appointment if the appointment time is given to you based on the time in the other time zone… and Outlook will automatically add it in your calendar at the correct time in your Time Zone.
(Thank you to Ben M. Schorr who writes at OfficeForLawyers for this tip).
Note: If you’re trying to find a suitable time for a meeting based on both your time zones then the tip in displaying multiple time zones in Outlook is better as it lets you see the times in the two zone side-by-side.
How many times have you used Outlook to send out emails with correctly spelt but the wrong words in them?
The mistake I have personally made more than once is “I look forward to jeering from you” instead of “I look forward to hearing from you”… h and j are next to each other on the keyboard!
These mistakes are easy to pick up if you use Outlook’s built-in (but well hidden) feature that will read the email aloud to you.
Windows already has the ability to read text back to you. Here’s how you can add a button inside Outlook to read out selected text to you.
The following tip works in Outlook 2010 only.
How to add the button
- Create a new email.
- Right Click on a blank area of the Ribbon
- Click Customize Quick Access Tool Bar
- Choose Commands not in Ribbon in drop down
- Scroll and select Speak
- Click Add
- Click OK
Outlook will add a new button to your Quick Access Tool Bar as shown below.
How to use the button to get Outlook to read the email aloud to you
- Create a new email
- Type some text
- Select the text that you want read out to you.
- Click the new button that was added in the previous steps.
- Outlook will read the email out to you.
You may also want to add the “Speak Selected Text” button to your Inbox so that you read emails that you are reading in your Reading Pane. Go to your Inbox and follow the steps above to add the button.
Finally you can also open an email that you have received and follow the same steps so that you can hear any email that you have received or already sent.
This simple tip has improved the quality of my emails… it’s so some much nicer to hear from customers instead of being jeered at.
Emails don’t always have all the information I need. Sometimes I have to get additional information by phone calls… or asking someone else in the office.
Other times I get ideas about what I want to put in a reply to an email… but I am not quite ready to send out the reply just yet?
How can you save this additional information with your emails… so that you don’t have to waste time gathering the same information again in the future?
I used to print the important emails and then handwrite notes on them… the problem was that it wasn’t easy to find the printed copies again when I needed them.
So we created Email Notes for Outlook. When I say we… I mean my team and 30,000 or so readers of our newsletter/blog. In fact… this product was mainly designed by our readers.
Here’s how you can use Email Notes to IMMEDIATELY jot down any thoughts you have while reading an email. The notes get added to the email (just like sticking a note to a piece of paper) for your later reference:
- Select an email and click Add Notes button on the EmailNotes toolbar
- Type in your notes
- Click on Save button to save the note contents
Email Notes has made writing notes on emails AS EASY AS STICKING NOTES TO A PIECE OF PAPER!
- One click to add and link notes to emails
- One click to view and edit notes linked to an email
- Forward, Reply and Print your emails with or without notes
- … and much more
If you’re not using Email Notes for Outlook yet… you owe it to yourself to try it out. There is a fully functional 30-day trial on our website
Also remember to check out the NEW YEARS RESOLUTION OUTLOOK PACK. We have bundled Email Notes for Outlook with 3 other Outlook Email Overwhelm boosters. You can save more than 50% for the next few days.
This one technique reduced the time spent by our customer support department on emails by 65%!
We use Insert Text for Outlook to template our responses to the most common questions that our support team receives. This allows us to respond to the majority of our customers’ questions at the click of a button, instead of having to write out the response each time.
Insert Text (which does much more than just text) works inside Outlook and has the following benefits for our company.
- We spend less time writing emails.
- We send out more accurate, more complete emails that better serve our customers (we spend more time creating a well-thought out response since it only has to be done once)
- We send out LESS emails (because our responses have all the information they need).
- Our customers are happier because they get their problems solved faster
- Our team is happier because they are NOT getting bored writing the same things over and over again.
In summary… Less Time… Less Volume… Better Emails… Happier Customers… Happier Us!
Which brings us to… Insert Text for Outlook.
The biggest problem with InsertText is its name… InsertText does much more than just insert text into your emails.
It is a complete email template solution for Microsoft Outlook. You can use Insert Text to:
- Create and use email templates in Microsoft Outlook
- Templates can be used to Create new emails as well as Reply, Reply-to-All and Forward
- Templates can have plain text, formatted text (HTML), To, CC, BCC fields and more (this is a addin specially designed for emails)
- Easy to use interface lets you search, find and use templates easily.
If you’re not using InsertText yet… you owe it to yourself to try it out. There is a fully functional 30-day trial on our website.
Also remember to check out the NEW YEARS RESOLUTION OUTLOOK PACK. We have bundled InsertText with 3 other Outlook Email Overwhelm boosters. You can save more than 50% for the next few days.
This is the first in a series of articles on how we use Outlook addins to get organized and have a more productive year.
One of the problems with emails is the SHEER VOLUME of emails we get…. They just keep coming and coming.
How can we write and respond to so many emails… keep them organized… and find them when we need to.
This article shows you exactly how I PERSONALLY USE QuickFile for Outlook on a daily basis… I hope you find ideas in it that will help you take control of your emails.
I am able to file 90% of the emails at the click of a button
QuickFile adds a toolbar inside Outlook. Whenever I select an email, QuickFile changes one of the buttons to the name of the folder I last used to file a similar email… most times the email needs to go into the same folder. One click and the email is moved out of my Inbox.
What I like:
- I am actually filing my emails because I don’t have to hunt through a tree of folders.. one click is so much faster.
- My Inbox doesn’t feel like a list of endless tasks because it only contains emails that still need my attention.
A COPY of my Sent Emails are automatically filed to the correct folder
QuickFile prompts me for a folder every time I send out an email. The prompt contains a list of folders where I am most likely to file the email…. Double-click and the email is automatically filed to the correct folder after it is sent.(The prompt can be turned off if you prefer to bring it up only when you want by clicking Send&File instead of Send)
What I like:
- Without this, emails in my Sent Items folder were NEVER filed. I don’t look at Sent Items as often as my Inbox and it’s just too easy to forget.
- QuickFile can either move the original email or file a copy from the Sent Items folder. The copy feature was implemented as a result of user DEMANDS and I really find this useful. A copy gets filed to the correct folder and I still have a copy in my Sent Items for quick reference. Many users tell me that they also use the Sent Items emails for filling in timesheets.
I don’t let Newsletters distract me
I subscribe to many different newsletter emails. Most of these newsletters do not need my urgent attention… they do not need to be added to my list of things to do.
QuickFile lets me treat any email in my Inbox as a newsletter at the click of a button. After that any email from that email address automatically gets moved to a folder dedicated to Newsletters, which I then read at my convenience.
What I like about this:
- My Inbox does not get cluttered by newsletters… there is less stress each time I look at my Inbox.
- I’m not distracted from my real work by an email with an interesting topic
- QuickFile reminds me once a day to look at my newsletters with an email in my Inbox… I do a quick scan to make sure that I am not missing out on anything time-sensitive.
- Many emails that I was spending (wasting) a lot of time reading no longer seem important… now that they’re not in my Inbox, I don’t feel as compelled to read stuff that I won’t actually use.
I (defer and then) deal with non-urgent emails in batches
Many productivity gurus recommend that you don’t deal with emails first thing in the morning but… we’re in a different time zone from many of our customers… I need to reply to them first thing to ensure that we are able to communicate while we are still both at work.
I start from my Inbox and deal with each in it. If it’s urgent I deal with it there and then.
Otherwise, I use QuickFile to defer it to 11 am… a time I have set aside for email processing. QuickFile moves the email out of my Inbox and then brings it back at 11 am. (QuickFile can defer each email to a different time of your choosing).
What I like:
- My Inbox does not contain emails that I have decided not to work on now. This keeps me focussed only on what I need to think about.
- The email automatically appears at a time of my choosing.
- Batch Processing emails is actually a much more productive way of dealing with emails instead of getting distracted by emails 50 times a day.
I am able to find Email Folders by typing any part of the folder name
I have many folders of several levels inside Outlook. Finding the right folder to file or retrieve an email can take a long time… OK… it takes less than 10 seconds but it feels like a long time.
QuickFile adds a Find&Goto Folder button to the Outlook toolbar. To find a folder all I need to do is click on the button and type a few characters from anywhere in the name of the folder.
QuickFile shows me all matching folders and I double-click to go to the correct folder. Easy!
What I like:
- I don’t have to remember where the folder is or it’s exact name.. or even the start of the folder name. QuickFile will do a find anywhere in your Outlook file and based on any part of the folder name
- It makes answering queries that requires reference to old emails much much faster.
That covers my favourite ways in which QuickFile makes me productive
If you’re not using QuickFile yet… you owe it to yourself to try it out. There is a fully functional 30-day trial on our website.
Also remember to check out the NEW YEARS RESOLUTION OUTLOOK PACK. We have bundled QuickFile with 3 other Outlook Email Overwhelm boosters. You can save more than 50% for the next few days.
How much time do we waste every day having to resend emails… or makeup for emails that were sent incorrectly or to the wrong people to start with?
We originally designed Send Guard for Outlook at the request of several large companies (it has now been deployed to organizations ranging from 1 user to more than a 1000 users).
However I was surprised how often it was prompting me for missing information once I started using it myself.
SendGuard for Outlook has a collection of extremely useful tools that ensure your outgoing emails are COMPLETE (with no missing information) and are being sent to the CORRECT (and only the correct) people.
SendGuard works inside Outlook and takes no time to learn – you continue to write and send your emails the same way you always have. SendGuard will automatically warn you and let you take corrective action if it detects a mistake.
SendGuard even gives you a way of changing your mind about an email after you have clicked Send.
Have you ever:
- Forgot to attach a document to an email message (which delays matters or could even result in missed deadlines)
- Clicked Reply when you meant Reply-All (and thereby forgot to keep everyone in the loop)
- Clicked Reply-All when you meant Reply (and accidentally disclosed confidential information to the wrong people
- Forgot to write a subject or sent an email with an old subject line (the correct subject on an email generally gets a much better response)
- Fired off an angry message that you later regretted.
- Emailed someone using the wrong email address (for those of us with more than one email address).
If you are running a business, particularly a professional business, these seemingly small errors can make you look unprofessional and waste precious billable time.
SendGuard for Outlook protects you from all these mistakes by automatically warning you if it detects the possibility of any of the above mistakes (and more).
Also remember to check out the NEW YEARS RESOLUTION OUTLOOK PACK. We have bundled SendGuard for Outlook with 3 other Outlook Email Overwhelm boosters. You can save more than 50% for the next few days.
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