From maintaining the flow of communication in an organization to generating leads for your business, emails are a vital part of how we stay in touch with our peers, teams, and customers.
The data tells us that by 2025, we’ll have more than 376.4 billion daily emails read and shared across the globe. How do busy professionals keep up with all that? By delegating email management to virtual assistants.
Want to know the best VAs do it? Let’s dive in deeper.
Benefits of Having a Virtual Assistant for Email Management
A cluttered mailbox just makes room for errors and a loss of our most productive time.
Hiring a virtual assistant will streamline the sorting of emails, synchronizing with daily tasks. Thus making it possible for professionals to spend more time innovating and working alongside their clients.
Here are a few other ways in which virtual assistants use email to help business owners.
Manage Multiple Email Accounts
Emails over the years have adapted themselves to suit a faster and more hyper-connected world. For instance, automated emails come in to thank you for your purchase, or to leave a review. Tracking down a purchase from one email account can get confusing if you can’t remember where you first logged in from.
A virtual assistant doesn’t shy away from the fact that their client has multiple email addresses and a lot of incoming information. They will use their best practices to track down emails and sort out the best folders and labels to attach to them. This way, the most important emails are always at the top of the feed. They’ll also clear out all of the spam, update contacts lists, create useful templates, and hunt down any missing information that the client needs.
Effective Follow-ups and Calendar Management
A virtual assistant helps maintain consistent communication with all important parties, whether that be services a professional is waiting on or their own client base. Whoever is being reached out to, the conversation can remain confidential and consistent with an experienced virtual assistant.
Having a VA manage follow-ups with contacts to set important reminders for future meetings or business calls, will improve day-to-day operations. Their ability to use email in sync with Google Calendar or Outlook will come in hand. VAs can expertly customize and manage a calendar to make appointments, events, and vacations easier to fulfill.
A virtual assistant will supercharge a client’s mailbox and calendar, making them significantly more productive at work. But, there are a few things that need to happen for someone with multiple accounts to reap the benefits of a virtual assistant.
How to Effectively Manage Emails for Multiple Accounts
To cut down on email overload and maximize productivity, here are a few actionable tips for effective email management for multiple accounts.
Safely Store Login Credentials
The last thing anybody wants is a breach of privacy. Virtual assistants are often trusted with confidential information like billing details, email passwords, and sensitive documents. To properly manage different email accounts, setting up a shared account on a service like Last Pass will allow everyone who is intended to have access to quickly login without compromising security.
Have a Dedicated Time for Emails
Emails come in all day long, but stopping other tasks to deal with them isn’t a great practice. It breaks your focus and could make other work impossible to get done.
Select a dedicated time to focus on emails. While some people prefer to make it their first thing to do in the morning, others prefer to go through emails at night.
With a schedule in place, you’ll refrain from checking your mailbox every two minutes, which means less distraction and more work in a day.
Save Useful Email Templates
Don’t waste important time drafting repetitive emails. Instead, use templates to frame replies to scheduling requests, travel booking details, internal memos, and many more situations.
Virtual assistants can share their canned templates and work with their clients to develop custom templates that ask and answer frequent questions. With these saved in a drafts folder, it’ll be easier for everyone to plug in the necessary details and keep operations rolling.
Automatic responses can also be set up for busy periods. Using the autoresponder feature, the VA can set up emails to let recipients know the turnaround time for a response or further details related to the client’s office hours.
Email Folder Management
Filing emails and segmenting them in the order of priority can go a long way.
Many email providers give you the option of labeling and adding rules to emails. A virtual assistant might go through all of the shipping notifications a client receives and create a rule that redirects them all to a folder titled “Shipments”. This kind of sorting can do wonders to help someone reach Inbox Zero every day.
The VA should spend some time reviewing which folders are already in place. Sometimes it’s harder to find something because there are too many similar folders. Knowing what to consolidate, eliminate, and create will require asking questions to understand the reasoning behind each email account and its contents.
They can also set up features in a client’s inbox that keep management easy even when it’s not under the watchful eye of the VA. For instance, they may add Unroll.me to help users quickly unsubscribe from newsletters they no longer want to read.
Manage All of Your Accounts in One Place
The final tip is to use a tool like Mailbird. The app enables the management of multiple different inboxes at the same time, which means no more logging in from one email provider to another.
Mailbird has a feature called the “Unified Inbox” this feature allows users to not only combine messages from all your different email accounts into one simple inbox, but it also makes having a Unified Calendar possible, where personal and work duties can easily be coordinated.
When it’s time to work exclusively from one account, simply toggle the inbox view to only show that particular inbox.
A VA can do one of two things to manage accounts with Maibird
- Ask their clients setup the Mailbird and give access to their license (each license can add up to 3 users).
- Request permission to add their email address to their own Mailbird account. Each Mailbird account allows you to add an unlimited number of email addresses.
Getting started with Mailbird is incredibly easy. The interface is simple, clean, and super user-friendly. Processes like adding a new email account and all of its contacts is done in just a few minutes.
It is important to be proactive when managing emails. Virtual assistant services should prepare an overview of opportunities like the ones listed above. That way, they can show prospective clients what makes onboarding as hassle-free as possible.
Carla Andre-Brown works on the marketing team at Mailbird. She is passionate about having a healthy relationship with our jobs and finding productivity tips that feel sustainable. When she’s not working on content, she’s teaching digital marketing at BCIT, or studying Instructional Design at USask.
This is a guest blog post from the Team at Mailbird. Mailbird are delivering a productivity Masterclass, followed by an Apps Masterclass including walking through Mailbird for Members of the VA Membership and students on the VA Mastery Course in June 2022.