Why Don't People Email You Back? And What to Do About It.

Why Don’t People Email You Back? And What to Do About It.

Email is how today’s business world communicates. Companies that only want face to face meetings or phone calls will find that it’s becoming harder and harder to make them happen. In a digital world, where time has become more limited, we resort to sending an email because it can be more efficient.

It’s hard enough to get someone to return a voicemail, but now it seems people don’t have the respect to actually respond to each other by computer, ipad, cell phone, or any other device that we all know is strapped to them at any given moment.

I get it… They get hundreds of emails – OK maybe they are even so popular that they get thousands, but what I don’t get is that they feel not responding to a personal email, request, note etc.. is OK. That because they are so busy, they just will get back to you four weeks later, or never!

My stance? It’s rude. I email introduce business owners I have known for years and they won’t even reply back to the other. It’s happening to so many brands I know in the wedding business and to my clients and wedding PR consulting clients. It’s a blatant lack of respect for one another and their time. When you don’t respond to an email, you are basically saying I could care less that you reached out to me.

Who does that? Well, I don’t need to ask that question.. many of us do it. Everyday. AND to a lot of nice, excited, kind people that deserve a reply.

Now if you get that many emails and truly don’t have time to respond to business inquiries, partnerships or media, then it’s clearly time for you to consider get an assistant who can help you manage them. I know we have lives outside of work – yay for spouses and families and hobbies after 5 p.m., but it’s not an excuse to be poorly managing your time and business.

To you business owners and kind hearts and souls who are trying to reach out and hoping for an email reply, here is what I suggest to my wedding PR consulting clients and  now to many of you:

1) Keep it Short and Sweet: Don’t send a long email when you are trying to connect with someone who is probably very busy. They will get overwhelmed by a lot of information, and if they don’t have time they will freeze and just not respond for awhile… which could turn into never!

2) If they don’t respond- give it a week and follow up again. Don’t be afraid to practice the art of “the follow up”.

3) If they still don’t respond – give it another week or 2 and follow up again. It’s nice to give others the benefit of the doubt- maybe they never saw the original email, or it went to their junk mail, or they were on vacation and are just catching up and need a few extra days to reply.

4) After 3 times of reaching out with complete radio silence, it’s time to move on.

Think to yourself… do you want to do business with someone who won’t even return an email or a phone call? Or do you want to send your clients to those kinds of people? I don’t!  It’s offensive. It can be hurtful and I don’t really have tolerance for it.

Even if I am not going to hire a PR applicant that reaches out, or I know a new client inquiry isn’t a fit for me, or a media outlet wants to interview a client and I know they will not want to do the interview – I always, always, always, do my best (and make sure my staff does their best) to give them the respect and courtesy of  timely response. They are human beings, just like you and me and they deserve that respect. So do you.


  • http://www.twitter.com/weddingPR weddingPR

    The rudeness of ignoring email… do you do it? http://su.pr/1D4ftV

  • http://www.twitter.com/travelgaljd travelgaljd

    @weddingPR pet peeve of mine but I like the tip of 3 tries and then your out.

  • http://www.twitter.com/Weddzilla Weddzilla

    @weddingpr great post! This happens all the time, especially when you are trying to contact someone initially.

  • http://www.twitter.com/belathee belathee

    @weddingPR we try VERY hard and everyone hears back from us! Not true for many people out there though.. our client love us for it!

  • http://www.twitter.com/leonamorelock leonamorelock

    RT @weddingPR: The rudeness of ignoring email… do you do it? http://su.pr/1D4ftV

  • Lana P.

    Love this post! SO true!

  • http://www.facebook.com/weddingpr Hustle Your Bustle

    Well said Leila!!

  • http://www.facebook.com/Mrs2BeKeith Mrs2BeKeith

    What’s one of the RUDEST things that can happen in business? Let’s hear @weddingPR’s view: http://mrs2.be/1mv

  • http://www.twitter.com/weddingprlisl weddingPRlisl

    Can’t help but picture Stephanie Tanner saying “How Rude!!” after reading today’s post… #fullhouse http://www.inspiredbythis.com/2012/11/why-dont-people-email-you-back-and-what-to-do-about-it/

  • http://www.twitter.com/love_styled love_styled

    That’s why you guys are the best! @belathee @weddingPR

  • http://www.twitter.com/lapetitepeach lapetitepeach
  • https://www.ktmerry.com/blog/ KT Merry

    Great post! I really like the topic and in this age I think it’s something we all need a little reminder on once and a while, thank you!

  • http://www.twitter.com/weddingPR weddingPR

    su.pr/1D4ftV How to NOT do business… http://instagram.com/p/SDvCjdQktP/

  • http://www.twitter.com/MattKeo MattKeo

    RT @weddingPR su.pr/1D4ftV How to NOT do business… http://instagram.com/p/SDvCjdQktP/

  • http://www.twitter.com/EAhoneymoons EAhoneymoons

    I LOVE todays post on @weddingPR- such great advice! And happy I’m not guilty of this :) http://www.inspiredbythis.com/2012/11/why-dont-people-email-you-back-and-what-to-do-about-it/

  • http://www.twitter.com/laurencowart laurencowart

    Eek RT @weddingPR: http://su.pr/1D4ftV How

  • http://www.twitter.com/myolivebox myolivebox

    @EAhoneymoons @weddingPR love this article! :) send a snail mail ;)

  • http://www.twitter.com/tcreativedesign tcreativedesign

    Great post, I totally agree!! RT@weddingPR: The rudeness of ignoring email… do you do it? http://su.pr/1D4ftV

  • http://www.twitter.com/tcreativedesign tcreativedesign

    @weddingPR It really is, because more than likely I am waiting on them to respond in order to do my job!

  • http://www.twitter.com/LilWedding LilWedding

    @weddingPR what’s your best advice for a student in PR who wants to break into the bridal PR industry? (Me) thanks in advance :)

  • http://www.twitter.com/Fig2Design Fig2Design

    RT @lapetitepeach: Everyone needs to read this #petpeeve via @weddingpr http://bit.ly/SPSRwk

  • http://www.twitter.com/weddingpr weddingPR

    If you are the type to not respond to emails… this is for you: http://www.inspiredbythis.com/2012/11/why-dont-people-email-you-back-and-what-to-do-about-it/

  • http://www.twitter.com/KellyOshiro KellyOshiro

    @weddingPR this is such a big pet peeve of mine too!

  • http://www.twitter.com/JacquaBelle JacquaBelle

    RT @weddingPR: If you are the type to not respond to emails… this is for you: http://www.inspiredbythis.com/2012/11/why-dont-people-email-you-back-and-what-to-do-about-it/

  • http://www.twitter.com/WeddingLovely WeddingLovely

    LOVE this post by @WeddingPR. “Why don’t people email you back and what to do about it.” http://www.inspiredbythis.com/2012/11/why-dont-people-email-you-back-and-what-to-do-about-it/

  • http://littlebitheart.com Jenna @ Little Bit Heart

    This is fantastic advice, and should be a must read- it really is shocking the amount of people that don’t reply to emails, especially business ones! We feel so awful about late responses that we really do try our best to make sure that this doesn’t happen. No one’s perfect but ignoring someone who’s emailed you 3 times? That’s nuts.

  • http://www.ilovetulip.com lesley frascogna

    I love this post! It is so timely as I was just complaining about this last week. Lack of response via email, phone, or text drives me insane!! Thank you!

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  • http://faith-michele.com/ Faith

    Glad I found your site — will visit often!

    And thank you for pointing this out. As a wedding photographer, I always follow up and email photos to vendors of their flowers, cakes, etc., and almost never hear back even a simple “thank you.” And when I say, “almost never,” I mean that it’s happened twice. That’s it.

    Very discouraging and sad, given that I’ve gone out of my way to give them something of value.

    On the bright side, that makes it even easier to build relationships, because if you can be the one person who does respond back, that puts you ahead of the pack in a big, big way!

  • Heatblizzard

    I find people rude in general and are self centered. I have come to discover Jesus is the only source of comfort and the rest can burn in hell if they don’t want to change because if you try to change then you will only get angrier and angrier till you do something stupid you will later regret.

    I’ve also realized strong drugs may also be a likely factor in why people don’t reply as they are too *high* to give a ahem *fuck* about it so why should you? They have a tiny brain size and are misusing it instead of responding to their customers.

  • Heatblizzard

    Also unless they are a corporation being bailed out by the government the company that is ignoring you will soon experience a thing called *bankruptcy* and cease to exist. Not a business worth dealing with as you will only set you’re hearts on the wrong people who at the very least don’t feel the same and in the extreme case the opposite.

    Sorry if I sound preachy but this is just a personal experience thru different filters in life and seeing all sorts of weirdos out there and on the internet.

    There are many periods where there are *spiritual movements* which suddenly the majority of the people have manners such as opening the door for somebody or helping an elderly lady up the stairs to her home and then there are *spiritual regressions* where it seems people are self centered and mean.

    This is one of those *regressions*.

  • Heatblizzard

    I actually was visiting our grandma with our parents and going to the car to get something I helped an elderly lady in her late 70s/early 70s open the door and she was shocked at such kindness and actually told me she thought there was no more such thing as kindness and I helped change her mind.

    In other words like I said those people you tried to email are messed up in the brain with priorities and likely don’t give a damn.

  • Heatblizzard

    I am wording things wrong and must stop. Damn!

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