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Don’t Hang Your Laundry On An Email

August 12, 2020

clothesline with wet dripping clothes attachments handing from big envelope representing email puddles on groundblank vertical space, 24 pixels highLaundry? Email? Say what??blank vertical space, 24 pixels high

Just a quick tip: if you’re sending someone a cold email, including an attachment can trigger a spam filter which routes the email to Trash.blank vertical space, 16 pixels high

What’s a cold email? An email you’re sending to someone who doesn’t know you.blank vertical space, 16 pixels high

As a freelancer, I send out cold emails all the time. I send them to prospects who might have a need for my work.blank vertical space, 24 pixels high

You can’t blame companies for using spam filters. 45% of emails sent every day qualify as spam.blank vertical space, 16 pixels high

Spam filters are designed to delete emails with attachments because a lot of malware is distributed that way: you open the attached file and out pops a virus that sets up shop on your hard drive.blank vertical space, 16 pixels high

Suppose your cold email makes it past a spam filter– what are the odds the recipient will click on the attachment?blank vertical space, 16 pixels high

Pretty much nil because of the malware danger. Put yourself in their place– you’d trash the email, too.blank vertical space, 16 pixels high

Another good reason to avoid attachments: they increase the size of an email, which means it will take longer to load– always annoying for a recipient.blank vertical space, 24 pixels high

Is there a work-around? Yes: simply include a link to the file rather than attaching it. You can even include a call-to-action button that serves as the link.blank vertical space, 24 pixels high

Note: all the above applies to cold emails.blank vertical space, 16 pixels high

If you’re writing to someone who does know you, someone who has you in their Contacts list, sending them an email attachment should not be a problem.blank vertical space, 16 pixels high

The spam filter will give you a pass, and the person will open the attachment because they know and trust you.blank vertical space, 24 pixels high

That’s today’s laundry tip, now I need to mop up these puddles on the floor.
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About Mark: I’m an illustrator specializing in humor, editorial, branding, social media, and content marketing. My images are different, like your brand needs to be.blank vertical space, 16 pixels high

You can view my portfolio, and connect with me on Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn.blank vertical space, 16 pixels high

Questions? Send me an email.blank vertical space, 40 pixels highRecommendation testimonial for Mark Armstrong Illustration from Christopher Richards, business book ghostwriter, Christopher Richards Ink

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6 Comments leave one →
  1. August 12, 2020 9:51 PM

    From your post title, I thought you were going to talk about not ‘airing your dirty laundry’ in an email – ’cause you never know who might also read it!


    • August 17, 2020 1:29 PM

      Ha!! I can see how you might jump to that conclusion!– which reminds me: I really need to wash this tee-shirt!! Always good to see you, Margy, thanks for, er, dropping me a line! 😊


  2. August 13, 2020 12:24 AM

    Hi Mark…. good point. I agree, when I receive an “unknown”, right in the trash it goes. I don’t do much cold emailing, but your article is worth note in the event I do in the future, thanks.


    • August 17, 2020 1:34 PM

      Always appreciate your kind comments, John, thank you! Yeah, there’s something about email attachments that conjures up bad feelings– not worth taking a chance. Fortunately, as illustrators, we’re naturally ruthless– ZAP!! 😊


  3. September 4, 2020 3:16 PM

    Thanks for ‘cold email’. Never heard of it before. I find it amusing. 🙂


    • September 5, 2020 1:23 PM

      Ha! You’re right– funny to think of an email being “cold,” like it just came out of a freezer! You also hear people talk about making “cold calls”– calling a person who doesn’t know you on the phone, to try to interest them in your services. Thanks for your comment! 😊


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