August 17, 2010 – With so much of our daily correspondence taking place over e-mail, it’s not uncommon to have had years of conversations with someone without ever having spoken to them directly.
How many times have you met someone whom you’ve only spoken to via e-mail, only to find they conduct themselves completely differently on the phone or in person? It’s a common phenomenon in our Internet-heavy lives, and in some cases it can be a costly issue.
Many professionals have been hindered by e-mail correspondence with a poorly communicated tone. It’s sometimes difficult to convey your meaning through mere text in a letter, and without the benefit of being able to hear the tone in the writer’s voice, you may be sending mixed messages.
A new plug-in program for Microsoft Outlook, ToneCheck, is seeking to solve the issue of conveying the right tone in your e-mail by using complex algorithms that run your words through an obstacle course of scrutiny. You set your ‘tone tolerance’ to decide how much of certain emotions you wish to communicate in your e-mails.
A simple plug-in could help save you from a tonal e-mail disaster
Before sending your message, ToneCheck evaluates the words in your e-mail and matches them to an emotional tone – angry, humiliating, enjoyable, contented, etc. You can then review the document yourself and re-think your word choices.
Watching your tone in writing is important in your Web content and blogs as well, not just e-mails. Remember that everything that appears on your website, blogs, and articles is attributed to your law firm, and is a reflection of your online image.
You may want to double check that your latest blog post about victims of a medical malpractice case is written with a sympathetic tone rather than a sarcastic one. If your words come across too harshly, your clients may question your personal interactions within meetings and courtrooms.
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