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Why Author Email Addresses Make a Difference

Do you know what makes me cringe?

Getting an email from a professional that isn’t professional.

I’m not talking about the tone or content of the email. I’m referring to something much simpler than that: the email address.

There’s nothing as disheartening than getting an email from a business or established author with a return address like JimBoBoBones97sparkles@aol.com.

Really?

It’s time to get a real email address.

Now, I don’t mean to be unnecessarily harsh. But if your email address even loosely resembles the one I made up, it doesn’t reflect very well on you as a professional. If you want to be treated as a professional writer, make sure that your address is up to par.

Most of you probably already know that means using your real name, and not random letters, numbers, or words. What may surprise you is that it’s also considered unprofessional to use generic e-mail providers after the @ in your email address.

That means, no addresses that end in:
  • @Aol.com
  • @Ymail.com
  • @Juno.com
  • @Facebook.com
  • etc.

Those smack of unprofessionalism. They’re perfectly okay for your personal correspondence, but in the professional world they can hurt you. You can do so much better.

Gmail is somewhere in the middle of the field. As it becomes easier to create a professional email address based off your name, Gmail is sliding down to the unprofessional side of the scale. It’s time for a lot of people, including myself, to make the switch.

If you were going to hire a lawyer, a nutritionist, or a publicist, you wouldn’t take them seriously if they had an email address that wasn’t professional. You’d expect the standard “name @ company website” format. Anything else and you’ll probably throw that business card away.

Don’t you think agents and editors think the same way?

Being a creative doesn’t give you permission to be unprofessional.

The beauty of being a creative means that you can be professional…with panache.

You can craft the warmest and wittiest emails, but if no one believes you are a legitimate writer, it won’t matter. They’ll just take one look at your address and then delete the letter without opening it up. The same with your newsletters.

If you have a website, you should have an email address to match it. This should be your formula: Yourname@yourwebsite.com.

Tweetables:

  • It’s time to get a real email address. – Click to tweet.
  • If you want to be treated as a professional writer, have a professional email address. – Click to tweet.
  • Being a creative doesn’t give you permission to be unprofessional. – Click to tweet.
  • Why author email addresses make a difference. – Click to tweet. 
  • What does your email address say about you? Does it matter? – Click to tweet.

Simple. Clean. Effective.

The first step is to get your own website. Have you claimed your domain name* yet? You need to do it before someone else does. Think of it as an investment in your professional life. It’s what agents and editors will look at before they contract you.  After you’ve built your website (or had your website built), make sure that your webmaster sets up your email address correctly.

Have them set up:

  • yourname@yourwebsite.com
  • info@yourwebsite.com
  • contact@yourwebsite.com

All three can be routed to the same inbox. You can manage the accounts from Gmail or Outlook, whichever one is your favorite. No one has to know. Just make sure you check on the inbox, keep it at zero, and use it for all your professional correspondences.

Need help setting up your professional author website? Schedule your free consultation today.

 

 

* When you buy your domain name, please avoid GoDaddy. What you don’t pay for upfront, you’ll be paying for in headaches.

 

About Caitlin Muir

Caitlin Muir knows the power of social media first hand. She's on the editorial team of The Social Media Club, which connects media makers from around the world to promote media literacy, industry standards, and ethical behavior. She blogs about faith, love, and social media at CaitlinMuir.com.

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5 Responses to Why Author Email Addresses Make a Difference

  1. I’ve been using godaddy as registrar for 6 or 7 years now and haven’t experienced any of the headaches you speak of. I maintain two accounts with more than a dozen domains. I’ve found their web site to be easy to use and their service excellent. I avoided them when looking for new hosting as the reviews were not positive, but as a registrar I’ve found them great.

  2. Everyone loves it when folks come together and share ideas.
    Great website, keep it up!

  3. What a great suggestion, Caitlin. A person’s email address definitely give a first impression. I just changed mine on the Cpanel of my website to sound more professional.

  4. I agree with part of this post. It’s definitely wise to have a professional email vs a silly one. And as ridiculous as it seems to me, I have seen people judge resumes that have outdated emails like aol.com or even yahoo.com.

    However, I have never once heard a comment that someone should have a domain email of their own. That is completely unnecessary. It’s lovely, if you choose to do it, but agents and editors absolutely do NOT expect it. Agents and editors are actually more forgiving of the silly emails even, all they care about is the writing. How do I know this? I spent over a year working as an agent.

    I also have an issue with warning people off GoDaddy. That seems like an agenda, frankly and not appropriate. I’ve used GoDaddy for years and have never had an issue. Their domain prices are dirt cheap. I set up a website for my brother’s business on Weebly and they wanted to charge something like $50 for the domain we wanted. I checked GoDaddy, and got it for $13 and just directed it to the Weebly page.

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