What E-mail Greetings Say About You

The blueprint for writing letters was laid down a long time ago, but with e-mail the terrain is still being mapped. What does your e-mail salutations and sign-offs say about you?

What E-mail Greetings Say About You

Using the proper email greetings can help you convey the right professional image. Use this list to pick out the appropriate salutation for your email.

Dear Ms White. You don’t know me but I’d like to make a good impression. That’s why I’ll close with Best wishes.

Richard. Sit up and take notice because I’m very important-most likely your boss. There’s no need for me to finish with anything but my full signature, including surname and title.

Hi Simon. I’m an informal kind of person. You and I are either associates on a similar level in business or good personal friends. As a sign-off, Cheers has such affable connotations.

Hello Chris Hunt. I don’t know your gender or whether you’d be offended if I used your first name only, so I’m playing it safe. I’ll end with Kind regards.

Dearest Rob. I have great affection for you and you know that already, even before you read Love before my name at the bottom.

Good Morning Maria. I like tradition but I’m not hardline about it, so in closing I’ll say Warm regards or As ever.

Darling Amy. You are either the love of my life or I am exasperated with you and about to let you have it. All my love goes with the first, Sincerely or I mean it this time with the second.

Sweetie! We’re playmates who share secrets. Ta-ta, See ya, xx or Ciao for now are suitably silly finales.

Anybody home? You haven’t answered the e-mail I sent three days ago. Toodle-oo softens the reprimand it implies.  

Greetings. This message has gone to everybody in my address book, so however it ends won’t make it seem personal. But Best wishes makes the best of it.

Emoticons such as a happy 🙂 and a winking 😉 sit more comfortably in personal e-mails than in business ones (apart from informal exchanges between colleagues). Also, think carefully before you use acronyms. While LOL can mean Lots Of Love, it also stands for Laugh Out Loud and Little Old Lady!

Marion von Alderstein is the author of The Penguin Book of Etiquette.

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