How to start an email: introduction

Every day we send and receive emails. That is why it is so important to learn how to start them and engage the recipient from the first line. Your intention should be clear so that the person on the other side of the screen interprets your words in the right way. If not, you risk confusing the addressee and getting yourself into trouble, especially if an email is professional.

When you are writing a professional email you need to pay careful attention to the word choice, as well as to the beginning and end of the email. But don’t worry, these skills are rather simple to master and we have gathered everything you need to know in a single article!

Let us create a powerful greeting for your email that won’t leave any recipient indifferent!

Most popular ways to say hello

  • Hi (name);
  • Dear (name);
  • Hi, there or Greetings. This way is used, when the recipient’s name is unknown or when you are writing to a corporate address (for example [email protected]);
  • Hello (name). It is not so formal as ‘dear’ but a bit more formal than ‘hi’;
  • Hello everyone. It is used, when you reach several recipients.

Make sure you use commas in the right places because poor punctuation will make a bad first impression and you risk losing the interest of the reader.

Your opening line at the beginning of the email’s body can include a common fact or a point about the goal of your message. You can also share your positivity and good feelings. Later in the text, you will find examples of opening lines for different occasions!

Greeting lines you must avoid

If you are willing to learn how to start an email, you surely need to pay attention to the most common mistakes that people use day by day:

  • Hi (wrongly spelled name). It is the biggest mistake of any email, so if you misspell someone’s name, you will hardly make up for it;
  • Hi (nickname). If you are contacting a person for the first time, you should avoid using nicknames. This greeting is appropriate only if you have already exchanged a few letters with a person;
  • Hey (name)! It is wrong to add an exclamation mark at the beginning of an email. The addressee may be wondering what you are excited about;
  • Dear Madam or Sir/ To Whom It May Concern. Such a starter means that you didn’t want to waste your time searching for the recipient’s name.

How to start an email: great examples 

1. To managers

Dear Madam,

Hopefully, you have a great day.

This letter is about…

Hello Bill,

Our meeting went great. Thank you for participating!

I was wondering…

Hi there,

I read your article about (topic). It was so interesting. I was thrilled!

I wanted to say that…

When you are writing emails to managers or bosses, it is rather difficult to find a proper balance between a common tone and professionalism. Here are a few tips on how to start an email to your boss:

  • Most likely your boss receives hundreds of letters every day. So contact them only with crucial information and requests;
  • Start with a one-sentence summary of your email’s subject. This will give your boss an idea what the email is about;
  • Stick to the point and avoid mentioning the obvious.

2. To clients

Hello Sandra,

Hope you are satisfied with our services.

This email concerns…

Hey Michael,

I hope you like the obtained services. If you have any doubts or questions, I am always ready to help. 

I would also like to inform you that…

If you are sending a letter to clients, this means that you want to make a deal or to promote services. That is why such emails are rather valuable and you don’t have a chance to make a mistake.

Here are a few tips on how to start an email, when you are contacting clients:

  • Make an interesting and personalized subject line. Let it be catchy!
  • Send information in the form of a rate card or portfolio. This will indicate that you want to save the client’s time;
  • If you promote a good or service through an email, make sure you sell a solution, not a product. Share a story of success how a certain company hired you and the profits increased in the blink of an eye.

These small but important tips will help you to create a remarkable email that no one would want to delete without reading!

If you are working in a sales department, you won’t do without sales templates for emails. With their help, your emails will look professional and natural!

3. To recruiters

Hey John,

I read your job posting regarding (position).

I am…

Hello Ross,

Hopefully, you have already found a few brilliant candidates.

I have 10 years of experience…

Even though emails to recruiters don’t have strict rules, as when writing to a boss or a CEO, it may greatly influence your future and you need to approach it seriously.

It is the first impression you make and the hiring company needs to see at once that you are the person they need. That is why you need to make sure that you are smart, enthusiastic and experienced.

Consider the following tips, when writing an email to recruiters:

  • Check spelling and grammar. It doesn’t matter whether you are a graduate student or a doctor with 20 years of experience: your English should always be flawless;
  • Understand the goal you are willing to reach and center email around it. For example, your goal may be to make a hiring manager look at your CV or schedule a phone call;
  • Be specific, when writing the email. Hiring managers read hundreds of emails every day, so you should show them that you value their time.

No more troubles with writing!

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Tips on how to start an email

Choose the right greeting

When you start an email in the right way, it is pure art! Try to address the recipient with ‘Hello’ or ‘Hey’. If you have a professional connection with the person, using ‘Hello Mr. Smith’ or ‘Hello Mrs. Smith’ is always the right option. Be sure that the first letter of the recipient’s name is in caps. If your relationship is quite casual, you can use the first name, when greeting.

Don’t forget to thank a person

Thank You line is optional and greatly depends on the circumstances. For example, if you are sending the first letter to possible customers, there is no need to write a thank you line. However, if the customer reached you with a question, starting your email with a thank you line is important.

Right after greeting the recipient write ‘Thank you for contacting us’. Don’t forget to change this line considering every situation.

The aim of your email

This part is probably the most important section of the whole email. It should contain the message that you are trying to render. Don’t forget to remain concise and clear. If you make your message watery, you risk losing the interest of the reader and your intentions won’t be clear.

The KISS method is always applicable: keep it short and simple. It is a great formula for a professional email.

Final part

It can be divided into two main sections: remarks and closing itself. Remarks should include such phrases as ‘Thank you for cooperation’ or ‘Thank you for attention’. However, these remarks should depend on the situation and the person you are writing to.

The last part of your email should contain a relevant closing with a signature (your name) and designation. Choose the one that fits your email’s tone. For example, Cheers or Regards.

The structure above can be used not depending on the type of your email and missing any of the sections may cost you efforts, time and even profits (if it is a business email).

Final thoughts

Emails have occupied an important part of our everyday lives. We write letters to colleagues, relatives, and friends; we even write messages to unknown people from other parts of the world to learn about other cultures and traditions.

That is why it is so important to master the art of sending emails! It is not difficult but still requires some time and devotion. Pay attention to small details and always put yourself in reader’s shoes: how you want the message to look like? What can make it readable and clear?

With a proper email, you can find a well-paid job, attract a new client or make lifetime friends! Only because your email was created thoughtfully.

Feel free to use the tips that we have mentioned above and you will learn how to start an email with ease! If you have any questions left, our specialists are ready to answer them! We are always happy to read your success stories, so don’t forget to share them with us.