The 10 Most Common Mistakes in Writing a Sales Email
Making a good impression is a big challenge for any salesperson. But that challenge becomes even greater when that impression relies on a sales email.
Talking in person or even over the phone with a customer allows the salesperson to explore a series of communication features that are not always available when communicating in writing.
Therefore, it is essential that you dedicate yourself as much as possible when writing a sales email. If, on the one hand, nothing guarantees that you will get a response from your potential customer, on the other hand, a good email can be key to the development of a negotiation.
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For this to be possible, it is necessary to stand out in every way possible from the other emails that your customer will find in your inbox. This may not be an easy task, so why not start by just avoiding the most common mistakes made in writing sales emails?
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Mistakes You Should Avoid
Grammatical errors are, without a doubt, the most common in the writing of any email. Sometimes it could be a typo. Other times, maybe you just don’t know the correct spelling of a word. It may sound silly, but in a competitive market, even a mistake like this can reduce your credibility in the face of your competition.
There is no reason to panic, after all, we all know that Portuguese is not one of the easiest languages. Still, with the automatic text correction tools available in software such as Microsoft Word or even natively in the latest versions of Windows or Mac OS, there is no excuse not to give the correct one before sending your email.
If you work in sales, you must be used to having your routine interrupted countless times throughout the day. So it’s not always easy to sit down and calmly write an email without getting a call in the middle of the process. As a result, when it’s time to go back to writing, you may end up repeating words you’ve already written without even realizing it. Nothing that a quick reread won’t solve.
Misspelling the customer’s name or company
This one is painful! It’s the kind of mistake that can imply that the seller isn’t as attentive or interested in their own customer. While some people may not care, others may even be offended. Again, nothing a quick review won’t solve.
If you’re talking to a client or company with complex spelling, it’s best to keep your attention double! When in doubt, copy and paste the name from a secure source, such as the company’s website or a previous email from the customer.
Misspelled your own company
This is another mistake that is hard to swallow, but it happens quite often. It’s certainly less serious than getting your client’s business name wrong, but it’s still an easily avoidable problem.
Get your contact information wrong
Some time ago I moved to another city and, in the process, I ended up changing my phone number and changing my area code. When creating my email signature for my new job, I ended up including the new number, but with the old area code. The result? I lost some professional contacts until I realized the mistake.
Whenever you are providing your customer with a way to get in touch with you, whether by phone, Skype or whatever, double-check that the details are really correct.
Not using commas correctly
It may seem surprising, but many people believe that the comma is just to mark pauses in reading. However, the comma is also intended to emphasize expressions or clauses and to prevent any ambiguity. These functions are not exclusive and you must be aware of all of them.
It can be a bit boring to read a text when you come across commas that shouldn’t be there. Perhaps even worse is reading a text without any comma. But nothing is worse than possible ambiguities arising from the incorrect use of this type of punctuation, as in the example below:
Maria, study all the chapters for the evaluation.
Maria studies all the chapters for the assessment.
Can you see the difference in meaning between these two sentences? While the first orders Maria to study, the second informs that Maria is already studying. The meaning changes completely, right? Now imagine something like that in a sales email.
Do not use the full stop
The endpoint has a very simple purpose: to mark a complete break. Yet many people seem to forget to use it, writing long sentences that never seem to end. The lack of a period tends to make reading very difficult, so, even if it seems obvious, it is important to leave the warning here: don’t be afraid to use the period.
Do not use paragraphs
The paragraph works as if it were a piece of speech that expresses the same thought. Also, breaking the text into paragraphs helps a lot in reading. If you’ve ever had to read a long block of text, you’ll agree with us that the experience isn’t the best.
Use a vague or evasive speech
Let’s be honest: no one likes receiving an email with offers or proposals for products or services. You may end up buying what was offered in the email, but the initial reaction is usually not so positive.
Perhaps that’s why so many salespeople seem to be wary of writing a sales email. The worst thing is that many times, this ends up being noticed in the content itself. It’s as if the salesperson is embarrassed to demand the attention of his potential customer.
The result of this is often excessively long sentences that can provoke even more doubts in the customer. Instead of writing “Would you, by any chance, be interested in scheduling a conversation so that we can better discuss the issue?”, try to be objective and honest about your intentions, opting for something like “What do you think about scheduling a conversation of 15 minutes for me to better introduce you to the product?”.
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Not paying attention to formatting
When you copy some text from a web page and paste it into the body of an email you are writing, it is common for the original formatting of the copied passage to be kept in the email. When we talk about formatting, we refer to details like font size and type, for example.
If you’ve ever received an email in which part of the content is written with a font of one size, while elsewhere the size is different, then you’ve run into this type of error. It’s not that big of a problem, but it can be difficult to read and make the email look amateurish and sloppy.
Read more, write more, and ask for help
I have already said that here in this article, but it is always worth emphasizing: Portuguese is not an easy language. Nobody expects your writing to be perfect, but knowing how to communicate from writing is a skill that should be developed by any salesperson.
For some people, however, writing is a little more difficult than for others. Still, it is necessary to understand that writing is not a gift, but a competence. And, like any competency, it can be improved.