Email Marketing & Sales: Writing Cold Emails that Get Responses
I’m a little bit unusual, in that I delete a lot of the email marketing messages I receive without even reading them.
I know that kind of reckless abandon might make a lot of you uncomfortable, but them’s the facts about me.
The other day, however, I received an email marketing piece promoting a webinar on writing cold emails, and I gave the thing a read. (Notice how “meta” this is getting?)
Bryan Kreuzberger, the founder of Breakthrough Email claims a 90% success rate in getting responses to his cold emails to sales prospects. A response could be a sale, or it could just be a meeting. Either way, most businesses don’t even come close to achieving that kind of statistic with their email marketing and sales efforts. My interest was piqued.
So I watched the webinar (can’t beat free content). Here are the top five things I picked up as particularly helpful for improving cold emails and, in some cases, other B-to-B email marketing efforts:
1. Your subject line is not as important as you think.
Many businesses operate in Microsoft Outlook, with settings enabled where they see either your entire email or the first two lines before even opening it. Kreuzberger recommends agonizing over the first two sentences, but making the subject line a simple phrase, such as “Appropriate person.” In your first line, you should ask to be directed to the person who handles [fill in the blank].
2. Don’t write to one person. Write to four people with escalating titles (guy, his manager, that manager’s manager, CEO).
Your second line should mention you’re also emailing three other people at various levels within the organization. This way, the people who are higher up know they have a few people to easily delegate this to, and the people lower down might feel they’re taking initiative by responding.
The phrases you use can shape how people perceive the level of investment they’re required to make in you. A “talk” feels easier than a “meeting,” and putting you on their “calendar” (sometime in the next few weeks or months), is easier than fitting you in their “schedule” (next few days).
A “talk” feels easier than a “meeting,” and putting you on their “calendar” (sometime in the next few weeks or months), is easier than fitting you in their “schedule” (next few days).
4. Don’t waste your time when things haven’t progressed.
Kreuzberger recommends writing to unresponsive prospects to ask if you can close their file. Use the subject line “Close your file.” According to Kreuzberger, these emails elicit an extraordinarily high number of responses and are helpful whether the answer is yes or no.
5. Get the decision maker from the beginning.
If someone else is trying to relay your message or represent your company, they’re not going to do a good job. They won’t know how to answer questions, and they’ll never be as good at overcoming objections as you will. Make sure you’re talking to the right person from the beginning, or be prepared to waste some time.
Kreuzberger’s free webinar provides a few other email tips you might want to check out, including which apps to use, how to figure out email addresses, and how to avoid burning a good lead.