Why Face-to-Face Requests are More Effective Than Emails

Email is one of the most popular forms of communication, and for good reason.  It is quick, easy-to-use, and it’s free! It remains one of most effective and important marketing channels, but despite its popularity research has proven that it’s still not as persuasive as a good old face-to-face conversation.  When businesses are making a request, they will have a much better success rate when they ask in person versus emailing their request.  Let’s examine a few reasons why face-to-face requests are more effective than emails.

Nonverbal Cues

Body language is an extremely important part of communication.  It’s not always the words you say, but also your posture and facial expressions that can really make a difference in a conversation.  All of these nonverbal cues are lost in emails, and your ability to communicate effectively is altered.  You lose the ability to show emotion in an email, and this is critical when you are asking someone to do something for you.


There is no question that it is necessary to have face-to-face encounters in order to build a more authentic and trustworthy relationship.  Emails are fine when you are trying to send information, but when you are trying to persuade someone it is critical that you develop a personal connection.  You are much more likely to get that person to respond to you if they know you, trust you, and can put a face with the request.


Mimicry and mirroring can be very effective tactics for motivating others.  For example, if you are in the same room with other people who are participating in an activity, you are much more likely to be driven to join them and engage in whatever action is going on.  Therefore, if you ask an employee to complete a task there’s a good chance that the person sitting next to them will also be more engaged in their work.  You miss the opportunity to motivate others around them when you resort to emailing requests.


Face-to-face meetings are generally shorter than conference calls because everyone is much more likely to remain focused and engaged when they are sitting across from one another.  The same is true when it comes to emails.  If anyone has a question or concern, you can immediately address those issues in a face-to-face conversation whereas it would take several emails back and forth to answer the same questions.

It is Easier to Sell Yourself

It is far more difficult to sell yourself in an email than in a face-to-face meeting.  No matter how knowledgeable you are, it is difficult to showcase charisma, emotion, and personality through email.  When you meet with someone in person, it is much easier to tap into their emotions and develop a more personal relationship.

There is just something about face-to-face communication that emails will never be able to top.  Personal communication seems best, especially when it comes to making a request.  The lack of that one-on-one connection could end up costing you what you really want.