It’s the middle of summer and your vacation begins in a few days. All of your bags are packed and your tickets are printed, but there is one thing you’re missing… it’s to turn on your out-of-office auto reply!
With your busy schedule, preparing an out-of-office reply is most likely last on your to-do list. But little do you know, an out-of-office auto reply can be more than just a message that informs your clients that you are out of town. With a little more time and creativity, you can evolve your auto reply message into an opportunity for you to stand out from your competitors, strengthen your brand, and even offer some value to your customers.
Here are several ways you can spruce up your auto reply messages!
1. The Blunt Approach
Be completely honest. While you’re on vacation, it is perfectly acceptable and understandable for you to avoid checking any of your emails, but to have to dig through the pile of emails when you get back can also be a pain. To avoid this mess, look at this perfectly crafted message:
“I am out of the office and expect to have only infrequent email access. Thank you for your message. Emails received between [these dates] will be deleted from this server eight hours from now. Please send your message again after [this date].”
If the message is truly important, they will find some other way to contact you. If the message can wait but needs to be viewed by you, then they will send the email after the designated date. Otherwise, all of the spam or nonessential emails you receive will be deleted. When you get back from your relaxing vacation, you won’t have to endure the stress caused from your overflowing inbox.
2. Be Funny/Clever
Take a creative approach. Whether it is to insert a GIF, or use some famous quotes, it will make the process of creating a message less dreadful and put a few smiles on people’s faces. With this method, you can unleash your creativity and craft a message that interests you and can amuse others. Don’t be afraid to use pop cultural references, or source comics that make your audience laugh and not dread your absence.
3. Generate Leads
Aside from all the fun, you can also use your auto reply message to generate leads. You can have them sign up for newsletters, encourage webinar attendance, persuade whitepaper downloads, and much more! Whatever sales and marketing tactics your company is utilizing, further market through your auto reply message. Don’t miss out on a chance to increase your business.
“Hi! I’m out of the office with no access to email until [this date]. If your request is urgent, you can contact [email/phone number] for assistance. Otherwise, I’ll get back to you as soon as possible when I return.
While you wait, why not check out our blog? You’ll get actionable tips three times a week geared toward helping you grow your business. Subscribe here [link].”
If lead generation isn’t what you are aiming for, you can also direct people to engage more with your social media. Provide a social media handle people can reach you at if their message is urgent. Promote your company’s social media by plugging them into your message, promote the value they will gain from visiting,, and BAM! You have increased your social media engagement.
“Hello, I’m out of the office this week, but my Twitter signal is always on. I never fail to tweet fascinating stories about how people can win big with their marketing efforts. So, until I’m back at my desk, here is where you can follow [link].
Whether you follow me or not, I’ll get back to you as soon as I can upon returning to my desk on [this date].”
Before you go about with changing your auto reply message, here are a few things to remember:
• Check your company’s policy on out-of-office replies
• Know your audience
• Keep your message brief
With just a few tweaks, the often overlooked out-of-office message can be an incredibly useful tool. You can provide value to your customers even when you’re lying in a hammock sipping on yourpiña colada!