I have constant ongoing debates with people on social networks and more often than not, here on Linkedin as to whether cold email still works!
For me, this is not about opinion but about testing and results!
At my business, Marketing Republic, we are implementing B2B sales prospecting campaigns constantly for our clients… it’s our core business, and all of these campaigns involve cold email… NOT cold calls!
With any conversation that evolves to a relationship there are some crucial factors that are essential to success.
Firstly… Knowing your Ideal Customer.
It amazes me how many people really don’t know their ICP (Ideal Customer Profile).
If you say things like “well we can sell to anybody really” then may I suggest that you haven’t thought about your Ideal Customer Profile for your business so you can target specific niches with messages that resonate with that audience.
(Please note… you can have multiple ICP’s for different products and services, or of course you can target different niches with the same product or service but perhaps use industry specific language and terminology for each!).
If you aren’t totally clear on your ICP, the bet place to start is your current client base, think about your best clients and categorise them… it’s almost inevitable there will be trends.
Once you’ve defined your ICP, the next step is to ensure there are enough of them out there for you to target and with realistic conversion rates, ensuring the number is more than enough for you to hit your sales and growth targets if you convert them from prospects to clients!
Then you have to work out a way to reach those people.
Of course there are multiple ways both inbound and outbound, but we specifically use a process we have developed called the OUTREACH Formula to build B2B sales prospecting campaigns.
The first step is to build a database of suspects that fit our clients ICP.
We then build email sequences that reach out to those people. We start conversations via email and that enable us to set up telephone calls so we can qualify (or disqualify) a sales opportunity for our clients.
The key to getting results, is the content of your email.Imagine how you would speak to someone the first time you walked up to them at a social gathering.
Be real. Be human, Be natural… Don’t be an arse 🙂
In real life, a simple conversation starts from an introduction and then simple questions such as….
I’m Stefan, pleased to meet you…
…what do you do?
…how do you help people?
…where are you from?
… who do you know here?
Really not rocket science but I’m sure you agree, if you are talking to a friendly, like minded person you have the beginnings of a conversation and who knows where that relationship can lead to if there’s a good connection.
Look, remember that you aren’t going to marry every person you have an initial conversation with and the same goes with selling!
But the beauty of business is once you know who really gets you, your products and services and you prove there are plenty of people out there, you can be prepared to initiate more of these conversations, almost at will!!
So when using cold email, we keep it simple and remember it’s the start of a conversation!
We’ve all met that person who we meet at a party who after the first introduction spends 20+ minutes spouting off to you about how fascinating and brilliant they are, leaving you scrambling for excuses to get away!
Don’t be THAT person…. at a party…. and DEFINITELY not in a sales environment!!!
Incredibly people forget this straight forward social etiquette and send utter garbage like this as a cold email….
This isn’t mine, it’s available online but I get messages like this every week on Linkedin and my email inbox!
I also get people who send this type of rubbish to me following up, annoyed that I’ve not responded!
Seriously… If was looking for a web developer / SEO expert / social media manager / virtual assistant etc etc (delete as applicable) I would know where to start looking for one… GRRRRRR!!!!!
Back in the room!!
Here’s what we do at Marketing Republic.
We use simple, short emails that typically ask a question.
Here’s an example….
As you can see, it’s very much no nonsense and fluff free!
It’s simple yet polite and courteous.
We primarily aim as high as we can in an organisation in order for the first stage to be a referral from a senior executive, to the person we are targeting.
Simple leverage of seniority to increase the chances of the person we’ve been referred to speaking to us!
Here’s a typical response….
As you can see, they haven’t even answered the question, but jumped straight to a meeting request!
(this is a genuine screenshot btw!).
Of course I am not saying that this happens every single time, but it certainly does happen.
In many instances, we have people asking for more information before they can re-direct us, or they identify themselves as the person responsible.
Lastly they reply with the persons name, often cc’d in.
We don’t always get this after one email.
We always craft a sequence of emails.
The focus should not be open rates but RESPONSE rates.
And… look at total response rates on the data you have, rather than an individual email.
Here’s a section of a report we ran for a client we are working on an international campaign across 22 countries….
This is after a sequence of emails showing an average response rate of 26.94% response.
For this campaign we created a sales pipeline of approx £10M.
Thanks for reading! If you want to find out more, you have two options…
Want to talk to one of our team that can show you how we can do this for your company?
Want to find out how the process works in more detail, and how YOU can do it for yourself?
Want to talk with one of our lead generation specialists who can explain how we can do this for your business?
Would you prefer to find out more about our process itself and learn how YOU can implement it yourself?