Article: End your emails with gratitude to get a response: Study

Employer Branding & Communication

End your emails with gratitude to get a response: Study

Not sure why you don't get replies to emails you spend hours drafting? Check how you sign-off.
End your emails with gratitude to get a response: Study

Writing emails does take time and effort and since it does, it is good to know if you have a strategy in place to write them? How often do you find yourself wondering whether to begin with a ‘hello’ or a ‘hi’?  Or how long do you wait for a catchy subject line to manifest itself before you hit ‘send’? Besides, all of us know we cannot disappear without an appropriate sign off. Some of us don’t worry as much as we should and get away (unfortunately) by just writing our names. We don’t bother saying, ‘thanks’, ‘sincerely’ or ‘warm regards’ etc. Now, whether you believe it or not, but according to a new study how you sign-off greatly affects response rate to your emails. 

The research was conducted by Boomerang, an email plugin which is compatible with Gmail, Outlook and Android. The researchers analysed over 3, 50,000 emails and their closings and found out that eight sign-offs were the most-oft use. These include: ‘thanks’, ‘regards’, ‘cheers’, ‘best regards’, ‘thanks in advance’, ‘thank you’, ‘best’ and ‘kind regards’. You may say this observation isn’t surprising as most of us have used all or at least five of these when we conclude our emails. But, not all of these popular sign-offs result in a high response-rate. 

Versions of ‘thank you’ i.e. ‘thanks in advance’, ‘thanks’ and ‘thank you’ garnered 65.7%, 63.0% and 57.9% responses respectively. In fact, even ‘kind regards’ and ‘cheers’ couldn’t do what a ‘thanks’ could. Also, people who signed-off with ‘best’ had the worst response rate. 

Clearly a note of gratitude goes a long way! You are thanking someone for a response they are yet to give and so they fulfill your expectation with a reply. In a blog published by Boomerang, they mention that their findings reaffirm the results of a 2010 study published in the Journal of Personality and Social Psychology titled “A Little Thanks Goes a Long Way.” Some college students received emails with “thank you so much!” while the rest got one with any expression of gratitude. The researchers found out that the former bunch of recipients were twice as likely to offer help because of the ‘thank you’ in the email. 

Now you have a talisman to get recipients to respond to you. A note of ‘thanks’ is going to do you good, won’t it?

Topics: Employer Branding & Communication

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