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clipboard accessI’m willing to bet you spend entirely too much time composing email replies. You may have the need to write the same response to different people throughout the day. This takes up more time than it should – especially if you’re mobile. There’s no need to keep banging out identical answers (even if you’re responding to someone’s identical twin).

You may have already used the “signature” feature of your favorite email client to keep these types of responses a click away, but what about when you’re on the road – limited to just one email signature on your iPad or iPhone, specifically?


Create a new folder named “Clipboard” in your email account of choice. Save individual messages (as drafts or sent items) there. You shouldn’t need to enter a specific respondent in the “To” field – you’re not actually sending anything. Choose a few words for the subject line that will remind you later which response this is, such as “Thanks for Interest.” Use the “Body” to compose a standard response.

clipboard access

Save it as a draft and copy/move it to your “Clipboard” folder.

clipboard folder

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Now your predefined messages will be easy to get to, should sit at the top of an alphabetical folder hiercarchy, and… it’s a free solution. Now when you’re accessing it from your iPhone, iPod Touch or iPad; it’s simple to open up a message, Select All, and Copy its contents to the system’s clipboard to be pasted in a response.

clipboard access

Why not use a separate Notes app for something like this? Because… well, if you’re replying to email on an iPhone, iPad, or iPod Touch, you won’t have to switch apps to get to the information – it’ll just be in a separate folder.

After you do this for each one of your common responses, you’ll have a customized collection to help you cut down on the amount of time spent typing (or waiting for when you’re no longer mobile). It’s a great hack to send quick replies when you’re on the go.

This was guest post by Chris Pirillo. Chris is a geek. He’s on YouTube, Twitter, and Facebook – not to mention the first result for “Chris” when you search on Google.

  1. timmyjohnboy
    July 21, 2010 at 8:25 pm

    Nice trick, Chris. I'll be sure to be using this one.

    Along similar lines, you can use email filtering and canned responses in conjunction in gmail as an automated response system for specific requests (check out an old article about it).

    BTW, are you going to turn into a regular contributer here? That'd be cool.

  2. David Albee
    July 8, 2010 at 5:38 pm

    Nice talent for understatement there: "Chris is a geek." He's actually one of the originals, IMHO.

  3. SocialMediaSean
    July 8, 2010 at 10:01 am

    Hi Chris,
    I like your creative use for gmail and keeping things organized. After I updated my iphone 3GS it now supports pretty fast multi tasking. Do you think in this case using the notes app would have any additional advantages.

    Thanks 4 the daily email.
    Sean

  4. Urza
    July 8, 2010 at 10:37 am

    http://xkcd.com/763/

    This is how I feel about this post.

  5. Urza
    July 8, 2010 at 8:37 am

    http://xkcd.com/763/

    This is how I feel about this post.

    • timmyjohnboy
      July 21, 2010 at 6:18 pm

      LOL! This cartoon fits well with how non-geeks work sometimes.

  6. SocialMediaSean
    July 8, 2010 at 8:01 am

    Hi Chris,
    I like your creative use for gmail and keeping things organized. After I updated my iphone 3GS it now supports pretty fast multi tasking. Do you think in this case using the notes app would have any additional advantages.

    Thanks 4 the daily email.
    Sean

    • ænon1mus
      July 8, 2010 at 9:03 am

      Using the apps notes means switching applications, which is quite a hassle in this case.

  7. Henry D'Andrea
    July 8, 2010 at 6:30 am

    Great post Chris! Glad to see your knowledge here! Will try this!

  8. MatthewS
    July 8, 2010 at 6:27 am

    Nice one Chris! I think I'll do that ;)

  9. HN
    July 8, 2010 at 5:26 am

    Hmmm.... canned responses on Gmail ?
    Although I don't use Iphone (thank god) so I don't know how it looks there

  10. HN
    July 8, 2010 at 3:26 am

    Hmmm.... canned responses on Gmail ?
    Although I don't use Iphone (thank god) so I don't know how it looks there

    • timmyjohnboy
      July 21, 2010 at 6:39 pm

      There are actual canned responses in gmail. It's a labs feature so you have to go and enable them.

  11. cl
    July 8, 2010 at 2:45 am

    Nice! Thanks for the info!

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