Well, you will be delighted!  There IS a way that you can manage this cumbersome project in a much more efficient manner.  Check out this list and see how many of these practices will help you do just that. These six tips will help you reclaim some of your work life!

1.  Don’t Peek!

As soon as we hear the sound, we know that there’s a message waiting for us, and what do we do?  That’s right! We stop what we are doing and allow that message to interrupt our workflow. On average, people check their email messages about 15 times a day.  When you turn off your notifications, you can read your messages when it is convenient for you, rather than when they arrive.

That will help you focus on your work, and then you won’t be interrupted in the middle of a call or an office visit.  You can check your email only when it’s needed.

2.  Tell It When!

You can limit your level of stress by setting yourself on a schedule.  Read your email messages three times a day. Perhaps you will read what is in your mailbox at the start of the day, at lunchtime, and at the end of the day.  If your schedule on a particular day won’t allow that, then decide on three other times to run to the mailbox.

When you check your messages more often than that, you actually increase your level of stress.  By adding some structure to your email-checking, you can get necessary work done–and still get caught up with your email messages in timely fashion.

That doesn’t mean that you should have three marathon sessions each day, sessions that bleed into the next.  Not so. Instead, limit the time that you read through your messages, and you’ll find that you learn to do this more efficiently and effectively.  Only allow yourself one hour to take care of the most pressing messages.

3.  Sort Them All!

As you know, some email messages are more important than others.  We have clutter notes like newsletters and team emails crowding our inboxes–and those just are not as important as questions from customers or invitations to meet.  Sort your messages. Identify the ones that need your focus and attention. Delete the ones that are promotions to things you don’t need. If something doesn’t need a response, put it in a folder for a later time.  Respond only to those that need your attention.

The second tip is to use the “Two Minute Rule.”  If you can read a message and write a response in two minutes or less, go for it.  Do it. No sense cluttering up your Inbox with messages that can be taken care of. It’s so satisfying to see the list of messages get shorter and shorter!

4.  Repeat – Repeat – and Repeat Again!

If you find yourself sending the same message to a number of people, turn your response into a canned response, one you can use when the situation comes up again.  First create a list of commonly asked questions, and then craft messages to answer those.

Companies take this concept to the next level by turning those messages into articles they put in a Knowledge Base for their customers, and that way their clients can teach themselves more about the product or service, finding the answers for themselves.

Once these companies create shortcuts on their site to answer those questions often asked, they can quickly and easily set up canned responses they can send to customers to guide them in the right direction.  Here are some tips they share on how to set them up and what templates you might consider using.

5.  Let Go!

Allow yourself to say no.  You don’t need to read every email.  If you made reading every email one of your daily to-do’s, that might very well be all that you do in a day!  Ask yourself: how much email can you get through today? Base your response on your workload for the day, your schedule, your goals–how many times should you realistically check your inbox–and then stick to that.

Email is only a part of your work, a part of your life.  Work on achieving office zen by spending less time managing those messages.  That will help you clear your head and focus on what is important to do for the day.  Try to achieve some office zen and release the need to clear it all out right now.

6.  Use OSP!

As you might imagine, we saved the most important tip for last!  With all of the extra time you now have by managing your email, you can use that time to learn more about how you can put Online Sales Pro to work for you by sending out meaningful messages to your potential clients.  By connecting an OSP landing page you can craft messages in an email campaign and they will be sent out automatically for you when potential customers sign up. They are the ones who do the work!

You provide an opt-in page to that particular list–and you can certainly have more than one, depending on which product or service you are promoting–and once they sign up, they are sent messages automatically.  Check out this video on how to set up an autoresponder that will do this for you.  If you are ready to get started, here’s a link to our preferred email service provider.

Put these six tips to work and you will marvel at how much more time you have each day!  Not only can you manage your email before it manages you, but by using OSP and our tools and resources, you can manage your email so it makes sales for you!