Your email query is going directly to an exec’s smartphone. You’re not just sending a letter. You’re tapping them on the shoulder. So when is someone most amenable to being tapped on the shoulder?
Time of Year – Holiday periods aren’t as “dead” as people think. Give or take a weekend(s) around Christmas and Hanukkah. Use common sense. There is a summer slowdown. Hit and miss depending on individual vacation times. August is the slowest month of all.
Month to Month – Be aware of upcoming film festivals. A week before and during fests like Cannes, Sundance and TIFF can be a very busy time for many execs. Moreso at production companies who actually have a hat in the ring. Research.
Weekdays – Don’t query on weekends. You may get passes on a Sunday because the reader is handing them out as he reads but that doesn’t mean they’re open for business. I never queried on Mondays. If the amount of erectile dysfunction spam I have waiting in my inbox on Monday morning is any indication of the norm, you’re lumping yourself in with the delete all crowd. I never queried on Fridays either. Tuesday never saw as many bites as Wednesday or Thursday.
Time of Day – Be mindful of time zones. Operate on the Pacific Standard clock (or Eastern if you’re hitting New York – you should know where your recipient is based). I like to hit send a few minutes before the top of the clock. Meetings are scheduled on the hour or at the half hour. Therefore, execs may find themselves “free” for a minute or two just before those meetings begin. They will spend no more than 10 seconds on your query, so that’s all the time you need.
I also factor lunch. Meaning I don’t query just before lunch. Blood sugar’s low – especially on the older guys – why risk irritating them? After someone’s eaten they’re more content, more receptive.
Crazy over-thinking? Probably. But I put this much care into my writing, why wouldn’t I do the same for my querying?