According to a research study conducted by the Radicati Group, the average business person sends/receives 120 emails each day. Even though that’s already a lot – the technology research firm predicts this number is only going to increase over the next few years. With communication moving to more of an email-focused format, it’s becoming increasingly more important to understand how to communicate effectively to your clients through email.

As an account manager, I get to experience various types of email user types. Over time I have come to realize there are three main email user types that clients fall into. Read on to become more familiar with each user type and how you can improve upon your communication regardless of their email type.

1. Skipper

This type of email user is generally seen with clients who have a catch-all account. All their emails come through the same account; whether they are new lead emails, current customer emails, or vendor emails. Having a catch-all account helps to keep everything in one place, but also makes it difficult to stay on track of everything. Emails can be skipped over simply because of the volume of emails coming in to the account.

If your client is a skipper, your primary focus should be making sure your email stands out among the rest. For emails, this is all about the subject line. Make sure it is succinct and clear. If there is a necessary action from the client, include it directly in the subject line of the email so they can see it right away. With this type of email user, following up in a timely manner is necessary.

2. Skimmer

Life is busy and sometimes we just don’t have enough time to read every email thoroughly. This brings us to our next email user; the Skimmer. This user will most likely notice your emails more often than the skipper, but may misinterpret your email because of reading through it quickly.

If you find that your client is answering some questions but not all of them, keep your messages short, sweet, and to the point. If there are specific questions that need to be answered, make sure they are listed together and not dispersed throughout the email. This will make it easier for the client to understand the true goal behind the email and may help to get your answers all at once.

3. Sharer

Depending on who your point of contact is, you may be sending emails that will then be passed on to other recipients. This type of email user is a sharer. Unlike the skimmer, this email user will be very interested in knowing all the nitty-gritty details of the subject at hand.

If you know that your main point of contact is going to be sharing information readily with other people, be ready to share as much information as possible. Work closely with your point of contact to make sure they understand your message and are getting all the information they need. That way they can truly understand what is happening and can successfully convey it to another person.

Whether your client is a skipper, skimmer, or a sharer make sure that you are providing them with an email that is structured in a way that is best suited for them. Knowing your clients’ email style will only help to improve how you communicate and your overall relationship.  Regardless of the email user type, following up with your client is always best practice. Depending on the urgency of the subject at hand, a secondary email could work or a phone call might be the necessary next step.