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PostPoints tips: Don't recycle e-mail subjects

If you're having a long conversation with somebody over e-mail, it's easy to click the "Reply" button over and over without ever changing the original subject line. But unless the both of you have one-track minds, that subject header will soon have little to do with the contents of each new message. That, in turn, means that the next time you're trying to find the e-mail your friend sent you about, say, neighborhood bakeries, you'll have to remember that it arrived under the same "Re: baseball" heading as the previous 25 e-mails to carry that subject, some of which may have mentioned bakeries in other contexts. Instead, treat the subject line like the headline-writing opportunity it is: Think of something creative, specific and memorable that will both get the other party's attention and make it easy to identify that message out of a list of hundreds later on. Your recipients will appreciate the effort--especially if they're copy editors, or anybody else who enjoys reading a clever headline.

By Rob Pegoraro  |  April 14, 2009; 9:08 AM ET
Categories:  Tips  
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