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Presentation is everything, right? Just as we want our food to look great, so should our e-mails. After all, if the e-mail doesn't catch someone's attention, they probably won't read it. E-mail is a quick medium, and people have a tendency to skip and look for parts that catch their eye. In this video, I'll show you five ways to use formatting to your advantage when composing an e-mail. The first is bullets. Using a bulleted listed is a great substitute for any kind of lists in paragraph format. Not only are they appealing to skim readers, but they will also help your reader maintain a To Do list of sorts.
The second is to use color and bold. Use color and bold sparingly, only to draw attention to very important words or short phrases. Beware though, if an entire sentence is in a color like red, it may be the only thing that gets looked at. The third is to use headings. This is especially useful if you have a long e-mail; you can break it up into sections with clearly labeled headings. Though the headings make the e-mail longer, it will be far easier for people to read and digest. The fourth is to use horizontal lines. You can separate sections by inserting a horizontal line.
Place your cursor in the spot where you like the line to appear, click on the Insert tab on the Ribbon and choose Horizontal Line on the far right. The fifth is to use clipart with a little bit of text wrapping. You can bring life and emotion to your e-mails with the occasional use of clipart, photos, and other graphics. Thankfully, the Insert Photo tool and clipart is exactly as it is in Microsoft Word, so I can add a few images with ease.
Remember that you can resize your photo by dragging on the corners, and we can activate text wrap by selecting the picture, pulling down the Wrap Text menu, and choosing Square. A simple drag and drop moves the image to the other side of the e-mail. You might even get fancy with a border or using any of the other photo style features available through Microsoft Office to make the image stand out. And finally, don't forget the use of hyperlinks discussed in our first chapter.
They can reduce the clutter normally associated with those long ugly Internet addresses. But what about the e-mails you really want to stand out? Our next video covers a few tricks to get maximum attention.
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