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Articles of Interest...

  1. The title of the email should be short, convey your message and incite some interest on the respondent's part. Look at it from the respondent's point of view.
  2. Identify who you are and how you have their email address. Remind them if necessary, that they are a member of your list, group or that they have agreed to participate.
  3. Briefly tell them what the survey is about, how long the survey will take and why they should participate. An incentive ($$) is always a good idea. If there is an incentive, tell them what it is.
  4. If there is a drawing put a link to the Rules / Legal page. Tell them you will publish the winners and do that when the study is done.
  5. Put the link on separate lines with a space above and below. Give them instructions on what to do if clicking on the link in their email does not work.
  6. Use plain text (.txt), not HTML. Keep the line spacing at about half screen or about 65 characters in length. Long wrap around sentences do not look good full screen.
  7. Give a name and number where someone can be reached if they have problems.
  8. Promise them anonymity and keep your word.
  9. Test, test, test before sending.

  1. Spam (send without permission).
  2. Use esoteric language that is specific to your company or project.
  3. Apologize for anything, length of survey, etc.
  4. Assume they don't want to do the survey.
  5. Be overly wordy; keep it short and concise.
  6. Have a superior OR subservient attitude. You are asking politely for their time.
  7. Write it in your Word Processor and expect to “translate” to email. Email is slightly different and is “Viewed” not held in your hand and read. Best to write it directly in your email program.

Next page for Sally Hooper's Bio

Download PDF file of How To Write An E-Mail Invitation