We all agree that emails are NOT our favorite part about running a photography business. The three of us each have different theories on the right timeframe to answer emails, but Kate is a huge believer that email inboxes should be ignored while on vacation. In fact, her favorite part about going on vacation is setting up her vacation auto-reply before she leaves the house! The only problem with this is when she comes back from vacation, she's faced with an inbox that is sometimes hundreds of emails deep, and she knows she needs to get through them ASAP to avoid losing potential clients. On this week's Three Minute Tips episode, Kate gives three tips to help with quickly clearing your inbox! Kate's Tips for Quickly Clearing Your Inbox:
- Unsubscribe: This is something you can do to prevent your inbox from getting overloaded in the first place! Be careful about what email lists you subscribe to; ONLY subscribe to lists that you absolutely NEED with your business email... use a personal email for other ones. Subscriptions can flood your inbox super quickly, making it hard to see just how many emails you have to respond to vs. how many emails are just trying to sell you something. Kate uses unroll.me which puts all subscriptions into one folder and makes it easy to unsubscribe from emails you aren't interested in.
- Organize: Before replying to anything, sort & clear out any unneeded emails or messages that you don't need to respond to. After that, make a folder of the MOST urgent emails. This should be full of emails that absolutely require a response NOW. Answer those first, and then tackle the others that can be answered a little later. Using templates will help you get through these a little faster: make templates for the most common questions about pricing, availability, etc.
- Disconnect from distractions: Websites like Facebook will TOTALLY affect your ability to focus on the email task at hand. Kate can easily get sucked into a Facebook hole while answering emails that is almost impossible to get out of. If this is an issue for you, consider using certain websites (listed below) that help you stay away from time suck websites like Facebook or Instagram while you're working on quickly clearing your inbox!