A site visitor writes:
If someone expects a reply to an email, should it be stated in that email? And, what about a general informative email that has been addressed to a large group for informational purposes?
If you have a deadline and require input — yes, then ask. Otherwise, this is where discretion is applied.
When not outright asked for a response, you pretty much know if a reply is required or desired. When a contact takes the time to email with questions or concerns, common courtesy dictates that you respond on a timely basis. Even with a simple FYI type email, a nice “Thanks for the update — appreciated!” is a welcome reply.
This approach let’s the Sender know you did in fact receive and read their email. Contacts may assume you did not receive their message or that it was lost in the shuffle without a reply. So taking a few moments to let them know you did receive it and add any info that may be relevant, helps to show you are an efficient communicator.
You Don’t Have to Be Asked to Respond
To not respond because the Sender did not ask you to, can cause you to risk being perceived as though you are ignoring the message. Responding promptly, even if to just send a “Thank You” helps build relationships and avoid misunderstandings. Both of which are critical to building strong partnerships when it comes to using email to build your business.
As far as informative mass emails, I would assume a reply is not expected if it is announcement type email. The exception would be if you have specific issue with something in the email that you feel the Sender needs to be aware of. In that case, I would reply directly to the Sender — and NOT Reply to All.
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