Email congestion is a non-terminal disease from which millions of Americans suffer. We expect news of this dreadful condition to be hitting the mainstream TV headlines any time now.
Its caused by a need to consume new information, sales opportunities and a need for companies to stay in better communication with their customers in an oversold society.
The worst part is, we are part of the problem.
You are only able to read this because you sorted through your congested inbox, found our email and clicked it. We are grateful, and at the same time, guilty.
The topic of email congestion arose after a day away from home when my four-year-old daughter suddenly needed an emergency pair of shoes. We successfully executed an urgent expedition for some inexpensive shoes.
That part of the
mission was successful, but during the checkout process I was asked whether I
would like to add my email address to my shopping account. I declined (already suffering from
email congestion myself), but the sales clerk was not going to give up. She tried once more to buy my email, offering a deal this
A promise of future coupons?
I almost caved but remembered the chronic email congestion disease of which I am a victim.
I tried to explain, but that explanation fell on deaf ears. The salesperson’s job was not to listen to strange excuses; her job was to collect emails.
I wanted to tell her that I understood completely, for I myself am an email address collector. My business contributes to email congestion at least statewide, if not nationwide.
As if to further the point, later that day I had my car
serviced, and again
I was asked to provide my email address.
I declined once more (I am fiercely fighting this disease), even when the promise of future
coupons was AGAIN dangled in my face.
Some of you are thinking, why don’t you just give them your darned email, then scan and delete as necessary?
Well, the truth is I am an information-monger and currently subscribe to so many newsletters and specialists that I receive 30 to 60 emails a day, and I have to very carefully watch for the important ones - those emails from fans, customers, vendors, family, etc.
Step One: Unsubscribe to newsletters you no longer read or find relevant. You can always resubscribe. Just don’t unsubscribe from OUR newsletters. J
Step Two: Commit to replying to all emails that require less than a 2-minute reply time.
Step Three: Create labels and archive all interesting or important emails that should not be deleted.
Step Four: Schedule time to reply to all open emails that are going to take longer than two minutes.
Step Five: Delete everything else. It is so liberating. Sooooooo liberating.
How can we improve our communications with you? We want to do our part to alleviate your email inbox congestion. Please take our survey and tell us what you want to see more of and what you want to see less of.