Setting an auto-response email is probably not the first thing on our mind before we jet off on holiday. But if we don’t do it, we risk eroding the trust between ourselves and our customers. It’s important to remember that response time is a non-verbal sign that shows clients and business partners how responsible and professional a company is.
It’s crucial for clients to feel as if they can rely on you if they have an urgent request. Before taking time off, you need to create an out-of-office email response. Let your clients and business partners know that you are currently unavailable, but will be back soon. They, understandably, expect you to reply promptly… but everybody is entitled to some time off. Just remember keep your contacts in the loop.
A basic out-of-office message goes something like this:
Thank you for your email. I will be out of the office from (day/month) to (day/month) and will have limited access to email. If you have any urgent questions, please contact [Name] at [email] or [phone]. I will do my best to reply to your email as soon as I can.
But you can do better than that. Surprisingly, you can get so much more out of such a simple letter. A good out-of-office can serve as a tool to generate leads, promote content, and help you stand out by showing off some creativity.
It might seem difficult at first, but we’re here to explain how to do it.
What to include in your out-of-office email
First and foremost, let’s list the elements of a good out-of-office email:
- The exact dates you will be away.
- The reason for your absence. This is not obligatory, but bear it in mind. The thing is, people might still attempt to get in touch with you if you’re on a business trip or at a conference. They are less likely to try to contact you if they know you’re on vacation.
- The people who can assist a client while you’re away. Provide names, phone numbers, and email addresses so that colleagues and clients can keep in touch in case they need urgent help. It makes you look trustworthy in the eyes of the recipient and strengthens your working relationship with them.
With all that in mind, take a look at the following tips and tricks and six examples to make your automatic responses more effective:
1. Promote Content
Use your absence as an opportunity to show off to customers and peak their interest in your content. Sending an out-of-office email is a good way to provide clients with more details about your business. Offer a link to an interesting online resource that your company has developed, like a blog post. This way, recipients are made aware of which lines of business your company are actively engaged in.
By knowing more about your activities, customers are more likely to trust your company. In turn, your company’s outreach increases.
I hope this email finds you well. I’m out of the office right now but will get back to you as soon as possible. Expect a reply next Monday. For urgent matters, you can email or call [Name] at [email and phone number].
In the meantime, we’d like to keep you up to date about our latest news, upgraded features, some useful CRM tips, and beyond. Visit our blog https://nethunt.com/blog/, find something of your interest, and enjoy the articles which we update regularly. Improve your productivity, and make your sales management more effective.
Thank you for being with us!
2. Generate Leads
When we set an out-of-office, we don’t immediately think of lead generation. However, it is a good opportunity to this end. For instance, you could encourage attendance for a webinar or future event, suggest sign-ups for online courses, give links to book downloads, or point recipients in the direction of any other product or service you are pushing. As well as informing the recipient of your unavailability, you are encouraging them to act.
It’s great to hear from you. I’m currently out of the office until mm/dd with limited/ no access to my email. Anyway, feel free to contact [email] in case your request is urgent.
While I am out of the office, here’s our awesome e-book on “How To Choose The Right CRM For Your Business”. It’s free; enjoy it!
I’ll be sure to get back to you when I return on mm/dd.
3. Build Trust
Not being in the office doesn’t necessarily mean you can’t develop your brand’s reputation. To do this, offer a link to some reviews about your product. In doing this, you drive traffic to your website and leave a good impression of your company… providing the reviews are positive. Here’s an example of this method:
Thanks for reaching out. Unfortunately, I’m out of the office from [day/month] to [day/month] with limited/ no access to email. If your question can wait, I’ll be responding to any emails I miss when I return. If not, contact [Name] at [email] or [phone] and he/she will take care of your request.
If you’re interested in our [product/service]. Great! Read what our customers are saying about how awesome their experience has been – https://www.g2.com/products/nethunt-crm/reviews
I’ll get back to you as soon as I can.
4. Encourage Networking
Obviously, not every out-of-office is set for a vacation. You also need an out-of-office if you go on an extended business trip or to a conference. But instead of simply telling people you’re at a business event, why not use this opportunity to encourage networking of new business connections?
I hope you’re having an A+ [week, month]. I’m out of the office at this great conference [link to the event]. It takes place on [date] at [time] in [city and location].
By the way, [Name], our [Title], will be giving a speech sharing unique experience in [field]. I think you’ll enjoy it.
If you have the opportunity to come, let me know — I’d love the chance to connect with you.
5. Engage in Your Social Media
In the digital age, most of us follow brands on social media. When a client follows a company on social media, it keeps them fresh in their mind and makes them more likely to do business with them. You can set an out-of-office to make it easy for a customer to connect, stay current, and maintain the brand loyalty that social media provides.
Sorry, you missed me. I’ll be away from the office until [date]. As my inbox didn’t join me on this trip, I will only be responding to emails only when I return. That will be on [date].
For any requests you might have, feel free to reach out our [Title] [Name] at [email / phone].
To keep up to date with what’s happening at [Company], follow us on Facebook/ Twitter/ LinkedIn/ Instagram (You’ll like our posts on Facebook.)
I’ll get back to you as soon as I can.
Have a great week!
6. Add a Sense of Humour
Rather than sounding like a boring email robot, you could add a funny tone to your letter. Use a GIF or a meme to joke about what you’re doing on vacation, but remember not to go overboard.
Hola, from Spain!
I know you probably don’t want to hear this, but I’m on holiday. I won’t be able to connect with you until [date]. However, there’s good news too: my colleague [Name] will help you with pleasure.
I, in turn, will cheer you up with some sunny photos of this great place where I’m staying.
I promise to write back as soon as I return.
Enjoy your week!
Regards and hasta luego!
So, don’t forget…
Everybody wants to feel needed. It’s always best to set an automatic out-of-office response when you know you won’t have access to your inbox. Take advantage of the examples we’ve shown you and done right, this is a fantastic way to boost loyalty and gain e-commerce sales without being too pushy. Design a message that is funny or thoughtful to help you stand out from the crowd!
Have you ever received or written an out-of-office message that you really liked? If you’re up to sharing them, we’d love to see your favorites.