If you are reading this, you are in sales.

You’re also probably spending hours between Linkedin, Facebook and Twitter for lead gen, branding, positioning yourself as an expert, gaining referrals or a variety of other sales and marketing outcomes.

Then why do so many sales reps ignore, waste and suck with their out of office message?

Bad ooo messages send prospects running to the competition and turns your current customers off.

Let me show you what I mean by showing you a very poor out-of-office email, to one slightly better and then to three really good ones.

Here we go with the really bad ones that irk me!

“I am in the office this week, but will be in new employee training the majority of the week and will have limited access to email.”

“I am out of the office in Spokane, WA from Monday through Thursday returning to the office Friday morning. I will reply to any messages as quickly as possible. If not quick enough please contact Seth or Val.”

“Out of office.”

Really! These three came to me all in one week! That’s what promoted this blog!

You don’t know if I’m a long time customer, a prospect in the early stages of the sale, or brand new because someone referred me to you and this is what I get from you!

What kind of impression did these three reps make with me?

Now, let’s take a peek at a slightly better one…

“I’ll be out of the office Oct 13-19 and will respond to your email when I return. If this is an urgent matter, please contact (name), Director of Sales at (insert email address).”

This one is more common… yet still misses the mark.

Now for three really great ones…

“Thank you for your email. This week I am traveling to (city 1) and (city 2), visiting some of our great clients and am going to have very limited availability. The best bet is to text using the info at the bottom of this note. I will return your message as soon as I can.
If you need anything immediately, please contact the team members below:

Operations: (name, number and email)
Sales and Marketing: : (name, number and email)
Career Development: : (name, number and email)
Financials (name, number and email)”

“Hello and thanks for your email. I am out of the office leading our Genuine Sales course to a start-up operation boosting their new hires time to performance. I’ll be responding to emails in the evening.

For any other inquiries please call my business associate (insert name) and (number.)

Also, check out this free swipe file on 68 Best Responses to the Most Common Sales Objections.”

“Hi. I’m out of the office at dreamforce.com conference. If you happen to be here too, text me at (insert number) so we can connect.

I’m looking forward to hearing from the world’s leading experts on ways in which to add value to my customers.

My emails will be responded to in the late evenings… for anything more immediate my colleagues will gladly help:

Support (name, email, phone)
Sales (name, email, phone)
Service (name, email, phone)

P.S. Here’s the dreamforce agenda link.  Take a look and see if there’s anything you want me to pay extra attention to.”

What did you notice?  My take away – DON’T WASTE THE VALUABLE EMAIL REAL ESTATE!

Be the sales professional your customers yearn to work with.  Speak like a winner.  Offer pertinent information and value.  Show some personality.

Keep these Must Do’s for Emails top of mind:

1. Cover the basics. When will you be available? How quickly or slowly will you respond? Who can they contact in your absence?
2. Showcase yourself. People want to do business with winners. Boast a little about what you are doing and with whom.
3. People like free. If the person takes the time to open your email, peak their curiosity with something that will be of interest to them, as they very may very well click on your link to articles, blogs, and more.

Try it out. Use all 3 must do’s and stand out from the crowd and drive engagement at the same time.  Be a winner and win big!