Thursday, October 4, 2007

Can you communicate via email?

Communication is key in marketing. To be an effective marketer, you have to be an effective communicator.

Today, we received a link to remind us of the proper way to write emails - things like getting to the point, and not using fancy words that don't impress anyone. Its even stated there ""Clutter is the disease of American writing," says William Zinsser, author of On Writing Well.

Personally I have to disagree with that statement. As I learned on my 'Organizational Behavior" class I completed to get my MBA (long, tortureous story), various cultures have different definitions of how to write professional emails. For instance, in 'high context' cultures http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/High_context_culture, such as the Arabic Countries, they would like to get to know you first discussing life, before going straight to business. In fact, those high context cultures, find our emals (that are often straight to the point) rude. Thus, I think looking globally, America (being all about business) would not be the one with a 'clutter' disease.

Thus, I believe to be an effective marketer one has to know their audience - and not assume that every culture is like the American one.

For those working in US (in marketing or not) here are some interesting resources to help with writing effective emails. http://grammar.about.com/od/words/a/redundancies.htm

Paste your copy in the cliché finder to see if you have common clichés in your work.

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