E-mail Writing

E-mail Writing


At the end of session student should be able to:

• Describe the structure of an E-mail

• Explain the nuances of E-mail writing

• Identify E-mail etiquette in a professional context

• Compose an E-mail using the norms of E-mail writing


• Structure of E-mail

• E-mail Etiquette

• Nuances of E-mail writing

• Types of E-mail: Enquiry, Thank-you, Acknowledgment, Information

• Methods to write an E-mail

• E-mail abbreviations and acronyms

E Mail - An Introduction

• Email is a message distributed by electronic means from one computer user to one or more recipients via a network

• Email is easy to use and is an effective communication tool/channel

• A method of exchanging digital messages and can quickly reach a wide audience

• Originator and the recipient both should have respective email addresses to receive email

Example- E-mail

E-mail Etiquette

• Include a clear, direct subject line

• Use a professional email address

• Think twice before hitting 'reply all'

• Use professional salutations- Don't use laid-back, colloquial expressions like, "Hey you guys," "Yo," or "Hi folks"

• Use exclamation points sparingly

• Be cautious with humor- Humor can easily get lost in translation without the right tone or facial expressions.

• Know that people from different cultures speak and write differently. Miscommunication can easily occur because of cultural differences, especially in the writing form when we can't see one another's body language.

• Tailor your message to the receiver's cultural background or how well you know them and Check every message

• Double-check that you've selected the correct recipient

• Keep your fonts professional

Types of E-mail

E-mails can be categorized as:

• One to many: Marketing e-mails, Notification E- mails,

• Transactional (One to one): Enquiry E-mails, Complaint E-mails, Asking for specific advice/information Emails

E Mail- Structure/Format

• Subject Line

• Greeting

• Introduction/Purpose

• Detail

• Ask/Action

• Closing/Sign-off

• Attachments if any

Use of ‘To’, ‘CC’ and ‘BCC’ Tabs

• ‘To’ field – For people that the message directly affects. If you expecting someone to do something, they should be in the ‘To’ field. The ‘To’ field can be used for multiple addresses

• ‘Cc’ (or carbon copy) field - It's mainly for people that do not need to act or reply to the message, but to keep them informed

• ‘BCC’ field (Blind Carbon Copy) is used when you want one to receive the message; however, you don't want the other recipients to know that the person has received the message.

• ‘BCC’ is used explicitly in marketing domain. However, it is unprofessional to use ‘BCC’ tab otherwise.

Subject Line

• Clear, concise, and meaningful

• Summarizes key information such as purpose and urgency, not describe

• Avoid descriptions such as ‘Important’, ‘Help’, or ‘Urgent’

• Should not exceed 6-8 words

• Should not start with a verb ending with –ing

• Should follow ‘Title Case’

• Proof-read subject line before sending the mail

Bad Subject Line: “Re: Re: Re: Need to talk about change”

Good Subject Line: “Guest Lecture on Women Empowerment dated 20.01.2017”

Greeting/ Salutation

While sending an E-mail, the following salutations are used:

• If the recipient is not acquainted with the sender, the sender knows either the name or the gender –

 Dear Sir/Ma’am

• If the recipient knows the name and gender of the sender, however, not acquainted with the person-

 Dear Ms. Kapoor/Mr. Kapoor (In case of unavailability of the last name, first name is used)

• If the recipient knows the sender and is well acquainted with the receiver and are at the same level

 Dear Lisha (First name) is used

• If the sender hold a prestigious title, the title should be mentioned –

 Dear Dr. Khan, Dear Lt. Col. Verma

The following points should be kept in mind while writing the salutation –

• Mr./Ms. and Dr. (or any other title) should not be used together

• Mrs. should not be used unless the recipient specifies

• It is advisable to use last name with salutation


• Clear and concise

• One or two sentences at most - necessary details will be added below

• Avoid Emails that include more than one topic or request, unless they are closely related or linked

Provide a summary of the issue or request. By reading the introduction, the recipient understands the context of the detail to follow.

Some examples of the introductory phrases for an e-mail are:

• This is to bring to your notice ……

• I am writing to you …..

• Hope this mail find you in best/pink of health….

• This is to inform you….

• As discussed…

• This is in reference to the mail …


• Provides the necessary background or supporting detail

• Limit yourself to several bullet points or a few, short paragraphs (3 paragraphs maximum)

• Provide the minimum information needed to explain the issue or ask the question

• Ensure you provide brief explanation of the five key questions; what? When? Where? How? Why?

• When the Email has a file attachment to it, ensure to refer it in the message, what it contains, and any actions needed

• Be polite, professional, and respectful while presenting issues or asking questions

• Avoid sarcasm, jokes, humor, or tone that can be misinterpreted

• Avoid emoticons

In case, the detail is elaborate, attach it in form of a document/excel (avoid bulky attachment)


• Provide a specific call for needed action

• State the appropriate response or action

• Ensure clarity about exactly “who” needs to perform “what”

• If there are deadlines, provide the "when" prominently to the recipients

The Ask/Action is one of the most important components of the Email message where you state exactly what you are looking to get, from whom, and by when.

Example E-mail


• Use phrases or words conveying respect and formality e.g., “Sincerely,” “Best regards,”

• Include signature lines that contain helpful contact information

• Follow institutional protocols for use of closing/sign-offs

• Casual, routine business communications often do not use formal sign-offs

The Sign-off is where you provide a courteous "thank you" for assistance and provide required contact information.

Tone and Language

Think of who your reader is going to be

• Use a neutral tone for most business emails

• Avoid extreme emotions while writing an e-mail

• Do not use words with multiple meanings

• Do not use jargon

Note: Be very careful of capital letters, punctuation, spelling and basic grammar

Note the difference between Informal and Formal:

• Informal – Thanks for emailing me on 15th February

Formal – Thank you for your email dated 15th February

• Informal – Sorry, I can’t make it.

Formal – I am afraid I will not be able to attend

• Informal– Can you…?

Formal – I request you to..

Points to Remember While Writing an Email

• An Email should be professional, organized, clear, concise, and grammatically correct

• Use a proper email address, not a nickname or username

• Keep the subject header short and accurate

• Write a proper salutation, and introduce yourself, if necessary

• Write the message, keep it to the point

• Sign off appropriately, then sign with your full name

• Proofread the email before sending

• Make sure your e-mail includes a courteous greeting and closing

• Address your contact with the appropriate level of formality and make sure you spelled their name correctly

• Spell check - emails with errors are not taken as seriously

• A few additions of the words "please" and "thank you" go a long way

• Be sure you are including all relevant details or information (Attachment, PPT etc.)

1. Use proper sentence structure

2. Use a legible Font style

3. Control your emotions while writing an email

4. If sending attachments, check file size to make sure you don't fill the other side's inbox causing all subsequent e-mail to bounce

5. Refrain from using the “Reply to All feature”

6. Make one last check that the address or addresses in the

To: field are those you wish to send your reply to

7. Read your email again before sending

Email Abbreviations



























• Email is a message distributed by electronic means from one computer user to one or more recipients via a network

• The nuances of e-mail writing:

• Types of E-mail: Enquiry, Thank-you, Acknowledgment, Information

• Methods to write an E-mail

• E-mail abbreviations and acronyms

• Use of ‘CC’ and ‘BCC’

• E-mail etiquette and Basic structure of an E-mail

• Tone and language of an E-mail

• An Email should be professional, organized, clear, concise, and grammatically correct

• E-mail abbreviations


All data and content provided in this presentation are taken from the reference books, internet – websites and links, for informational purposes only.

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