September 5, 2019
Streak includes a free CRM setup with project “pipelines,” but I don’t use those features at all (I keep all of that stuff in Dubsado!). Instead, I focus on the expanded email features—namely, these three:
I want to share a little bit more about each feature, because they are integral to my inbox management!
What it is: Okay, this one feels a little creepy sometimes… but Streak’s Email Tracking feature actually allows you to see when your email has been read (in real time). Each sent email in your account is accompanied by a little eye icon. When the eye turns green, it means that your email has been read!
How I use it: I think this is a helpful feature so you can customize your follow-ups. When it appears that a lead has “ghosted” you or a client hasn’t responded in awhile, you don’t have to worry about an email glitch or tech mishap. You can see if they’ve read your email (and how many times they’ve opened it!)—so you’ll know how to follow up and best serve them.
What it is: This feature is just what it sounds like! “Send Later” allows you to draft emails and schedule them to send at a later date.
How I use it: I use this feature in a few different ways!
First, I like to batch-work. This means grouping tasks and knocking them out all at once, in one sitting. I can set aside 15 minutes to tackle my inbox, and take care of all emails at one time—instead of checking emails as they pop up. I usually do this twice a day (once in the morning, and once in the afternoon). Send Later helps me complete inbox management in batches, even if some emails should go out at a later time.
Secondly, Send Later helps me keep my communication within business hours. As an entrepreneur, I love the flexibility of my schedule. Some days, I might start work early in the morning so I can take the afternoon off! However, I believe communication boundaries are hugely important to maintaining a professional relationship—including set office hours. Send Later allows me to manage emails whenever I want (even if it’s over the weekend, or at 7:00am, or nearing midnight!)… but those emails will be sent only during business hours.
Lastly, Send Later can also be used for longer stretches of time. For example, I might have a lead who isn’t ready to commit right now, but they want to circle back in a couple of months. If I want to follow up with them, I can just draft the email now and schedule it to send at a later date! Instead of putting it on my to-do list two months later, I can just get it done now and cross it off my list.
What it is: Snippets are an easy way to save email templates—whether it’s a full email, or just a few sentences. It allows you to easily select a Snippet and pop it into a new email.
How I use it: I’m such a huge fan of email templates. My policy is: if you find yourself typing it more than once, it should be a template. As entrepreneurs, we are the customer service desk of our own businesses. We encounter a lot of similar leads, questions, and concerns from our clients. Email Snippets can help you cut down on repetitive communication and serve clients with thoughtfully composed messages.
I use Snippets for everything, including just a few of the following:
– Inquiry Emails (Branding and Website Design)
– Brand File Release
– Decline (Calendar Full)
– Decline (Not a Good Fit)
– Decline (Do Not Offer those Services)
– Questions about Showit
– Questions about Brand Files
– So many more!
One nice thing is that you can still tweak a message before you send it, so you can still customize each email with the client’s name and a personal detail or two.
Lastly, these template emails are such a life-saver when it comes to saying no. There are many reasons we might need to decline a project; email templates help me say no in a timely, polite, and clear manner… and I don’t get tempted into saying “Yes” every time I type a response! If you struggle with over-committing, feel free to check out my post with free swipe copy to help you say no (and say YES to more time in your schedule for the things you love!)
So there you have it: one easy and free tool to boost your inbox management. This post isn’t sponsored at all, and Streak is totally free! It’s the easiest thing you can add to your Gmail inbox to expand its features.
For me, this tool is a no-brainer. It helps me retain professional boundaries, saves my valuable time, and helps me serve clients as well as I can. I can’t recommend it enough!
Looking for more tools that can boost your business?
Right this way! → Favorite Creative Tools and Resources
Did you give a try? Let me know what you think!
I’d love to hear how other creative entrepreneurs are making Streak work for them!
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