Follow These Simple Ways To Write Challenging Emails That Gets A Response

writing difficult emails

At times to get your email recipients open and respond to those emails can be a daunting task. With more than a hundred messages being received by organizations every day on an average, it indeed gets tricky to get a response and engage your prospects. Let’s take a look at some of the strategies for writing difficult emails to improve the response rates and craft a message that will attract the attention of your reader.

10 Rules For Writing Difficult Emails

1. Use The Subject Line Favorably

The subject line has its own purpose. Use it to make it clear to the recipient as to why you are adding another email to their inbox, and you will instantly better the chances of it being opened by them.

An unclear subject line (like “ Ask a question”) is not useful and can irritate people- and surely you do not want to upset someone when you want something. Rather, exhibit respect for your recipient’s time and make it clear as to why you have specifically sent the communication. Like for instance:” Want your review: Alterations to program circular.”

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2. Address Your Reader Before Making A Request

Do not launch into making demands or posing questions without bothering to address with a “Good morning” or even a simple “Hi”. Like you would not storm into anyone’s office and begin blabbering your demands, so avoid doing it by email too.

It hurts no one by mentioning something personal before pitching into your request:

“Hi Jessica! How was the weekend spent? I reflected on the activities you took up this Friday and sent good vibes for you.”

Such greetings are concise and simple but display a sincere interest in the recipients. It’s difficult to get irritated with someone who inquires about something that you value or makes a comment. After all, your reader is a human with preferences and feelings outside their workplace. Occasionally, an ideal way to connect with someone is to get them on board is to be pleasant and polite.

3. Begin Your Message With An Open Request

writing difficult emails
writing difficult emails

Another rule to consider while writing difficult emails is not to defeat the object of your email; begin by mentioning your desired response and your deadline. Emails of a third-grade reading level with simple, easy and fewer words in every sentence were regarded optimal.

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4. Maintain Proper Balance In Length

To push your response rate by half, maintain a word length of 50 to 125 words as per the study conducted by Boomerang, an email marketing platform. Response rates dropped gradually from fifty percent for messages comprising of 125 words to almost 44% for messages drafted within 500 words. Consequently, it remained flat until approximately 2000 words and went down dramatically.

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5. Make Your Text Stand Out

Apply bold and color to display the response you prefer. You can utilize bullet points for better readability and not waste the time of your recipient. Moreover, you can try out a separate color text to attract attention towards deadlines.

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6. Bring In Emotional Words

writing difficult emails
writing difficult emails

The Boomerang research discovered that the usage of a reasonable amount of emotional words whether positive or negative like delighted, wonderful, glad, terrible, bad and furious – raised the response rate of an email by 10% to 15% compared to emails that were highly emotional or neutral.

If you are dispatching a complaint, it’s better to write, “I had a terrible experience at your outlet today. The staff behaved impolitely and rudely. Please see to it that such behavior is not repeated,” instead of “ The experience at your outlet sucks. Your staff is a moron and a dipshit. Get lost and I hope you pass off in agony.”

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7. Attach A Deadline

Remember to include a sense of urgency by offering a deadline to the recipient to take action. Also, remain courteous and polite so that your call to action does not sound very demanding. Mention please and thank you to tone down your request. Here are a few instances:

  • Can you please send me a reply by EOD? Thanks!
  • Kindly give me a call by 10 a.m. My cell number is 111-2343
  • I require your spreadsheet as soon as possible
  • Please join the remaining team over our Slack group: abc 456.slack Password: 5678

Based upon the urgency of your appeal, it can be helpful to inquire from the recipient to respond even when the deadline fails. In this manner, you can take forward a dialogue to help avoid drop-off and a closure. Such deadlines are helpful when you actually require the email to be read and responded immediately. When overused, such add-ons can no longer lure and become ineffective.

8. Remain Discreet About The Timing Of The Message

Send it during the morning. A study of 500,000 emails by Yesware, an email tracking software provider, mentions that emails despatched between 6 a.m. and 7 a.m. receive the highest rates, close to 45%.

Due to the bulk of emails being sent during work hours, it is convenient for people to respond to your mail in the early hours of the morning around 6 a.m. or 7 a.m. or after workday say around 8 p.m, whatever the day of the week might be. It all boils down to the simple concept of competition: Fewer emails are despatched at off-peak hours, which indicates that a person may feel that they have more time to go through and respond to your mail accordingly.

9. End Your Emails On A Polite And Appealing Note

email writing tips
writing difficult emails

The culminating part of the email is the portion where you display your concern about the time devoted by the reader in reading your email and the best way to prove its is by finishing the email with polite and captivating words. For example, True regards, sir or thank you, sir.

Always include your signature as it carries your name and contact address. Your signature helps the recipient to identify the sender of the male and its location.

10. Carry Out A Follow-Up

After initiating the above methods, you still do not receive a response, a follow-up becomes necessary. Follow up intelligently, without annoying and offer a time frame before you despatch your next follow-up email. Your last follow-up mail can be something of this type:

Hi (Client name)

It’s been a long time since we have heard from you. At this juncture, we hope that your priorities have changed and your business is heading on a different trajectory. Please feel free to contact us in the future so that we can prove to be helpful.

Such message achieves some leverage as it is polite and reflects concern as it shows that there is no ill will from your end towards the client for their lack of response.

Even though at present you are not hearing from them, you still want to keep the future engagement on a more positive note. Moreover, you have shown your willingness towards any future communication. It is not unusual to hear back from old clients months or years onward when their priorities and workforce have changed. Couching your email in this manner lends you the best possible chances of eliciting a response.

Making it clear to your client that you are signing off in this manner helps to play on the clients’ psychology of missing out – FOMO (fear of missing out) and make them realize that if they want to gain advantage from your services, they have to act swiftly.


Follow these professional methods for writing difficult emails listed above to evoke a response to your emails. Seeking a reply to your email if the response is getting delayed in a courteous manner does not dampen the relationship. Unfortunately, till now there is no other way devised than to reach and access your client through the computer screen and make them respond favorably to an important message. However, dispatching a carefully crafted email and also a follow-up email can brighten up your chances to obtain the desired outcome, while at the same time continuing the relationship on a positive note.



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