Email Overload

by Terry Johnston - Date: 2005-12-10 - Word Count: 879 Share This!

Email overload is such a big problem that I believe your SitePro News subscribers would love to read several practical tipsfor coping.

If you wish to publish this article in Site Pro News, pleasefeel free to include it entirely or edit as you see fit. I thinkit would be beneficial to include the short bio and links at thebottom of the article.

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Should you publish this article please let me know when you putit on your website and/or include it in your ezine.

I look forward to your response.

Best regards,

Terry =================== Terry Johnston Vice-PresidentMarketing Caelo Software Inc. direct: +1 604.269.9006

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Email Overload - Coping Strategies

By Terry Johnston

We're here... the information age! Having fun yet? What's thatyou say.... too much information, finding the spammers aregetting the best of you, facing a bloated INBOX everyday, toomany friends are sending you those silly jokes and greetingcards, dealing with a mountain of lists and ezines that youspend more time sorting & deleting than reading, can't find that"important" email in the haystack, can't meet those deadlinesbecause you're so preoccupied with sorting out your email?

THIS is the information age? What, pray tell, comes next....Perhaps "The Information Organization Age" - Bingo!

You've all heard the statistics: * Every day 8 billion emailsare exchanged on the Internet. * By 2005 this figure willincrease to 36 billion. * 81% of corps. that implemented emaildid so to improve efficiency . * The average email user inbusiness spends at least 2 hours a day dealing with email. *According to Internet researcher Jupiter Media Metrix, by 2006consumers are expected to receive an average of 1,400 pieces ofjunk e-mail every day! * Yada yada yada.

Resources: Email organizing software does exist -- check out: and aswell as websites that provide information that help with emailoverload such as and

Coping tips: For those of you brave individuals who want to takea stab at manual organizing here are some practical, tried andtrue strategies:

USE MULTIPLE EMAIL ADDRESSES Although most of you have alreadyfigured this one out, it's worth mentioning because it's sofundamental to an anti email overload strategy. One way to thinkof your correspondence is Personal and Public. For instance, youcan open webmail accounts (e.g. Hotmail & Yahoo!) for yourpublic, not-so-critical correspondence. This could includeregistering when you download software and utilities from thenet, marketing promotions, chat rooms and message boards. YourPersonal address is reserved for higher priority businesscontacts, friends, relatives and associates. Although I now useemail organizing software, hence my need for webmail accountshas dimished dramatically, at my peak I had well over a dozenaccounts going. One caveat to this webmail strategy is that bothHotmail and Yahoo! are now applying strict minimum usage rules(they'll close the account if it's not checked in withfrequently). Many people apply this strategy using POP accounts.

THE GOLDEN RULE Help your friends and colleagues cope with theiremail overload by NOT contributing to it! You know how it goes:"do unto others..." It's the old cause and effect thing. Unlessthey've expressed an interest, perhaps you can hold back onsending those jokes, greeting cards and CCing them onevery-little-bit-of-business. While we're on CCing, it'simportant for companies to develop a policy on what to CC and towhom. If your company doesn't have a policy in place maybe it'stime for you to be the Corporate Hero and...

DEAL WITH A MESSAGE ONLY ONCE How many times have you read amessage, flagged it for follow-up, came back to it, read itagain, perhaps left it until you have more time, came back toit, read it again... then replied. This is not a very efficientuse of your valuable time, is it? A great discipline is to dealwith the message once. That is to say, once you've committed toreading it, reply right away before you go on to the nextmessage.

DON'T REPLY TO 'EVERY' MESSAGE That heading was hard for me towrite because one of my pet peeves is when people don't reply tome. (I'm getting over it.) The fact is that it's NOT necessaryto reply to every message. Especially with those one-wordreplies... like: Great, Cool, Thanks, Beauty etc. Remember theGolden Rule? Those short, sometimes meaningless, replies areoften only contributing to the recipient's email overload.

CREATE FOLDERS Most email clients allow you to set up folders.Although limited in scope, people, project and client specificfolders can reduce a lot of stress, especially when it comes tofinding a message. I know people who religiously go throughtheir Inbox and drag and drop each and every message into afolder (including a trash folder). Time consuming and tediousyes, but in the overall scheme of things folders can make youremail existence much easier.

SPAM BUSTING Don't fall prey to the "oldest spamster trick inthe book" - don't use the unsubscribe feature in spam messages(not to be confused with Lists and Ezines). Spam marketers andlist providers use the unsubscribe feature to qualify emailaddresses! Do you see the irony?

You can consult with your ISP. More and more ISPs are providingspam filters. You can also forward the spam you get to the FTC.Send it to

I hope these suggestions have brought you some hope. This list,of course, could extend to many more pages but I'd better letyou go.... You've got tons of email to deal with!! Happyorganizing!

Terry Johnston is Vice-President of Marketing with CaeloSoftware Inc. Caelo develops user-friendly email organizingsoftware

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