How to Achieve the Best Response Rate with Email Prospecting

Being a service professional in the sales business is never an easy job. Convincing the individuals out there to take a look at your brand or products is tougher than it seems, and more so now since the internet is crowded with a million features. If you’re a salesperson looking to generate leads and make sales, email prospecting might be one of the options you wish to look into.

Sending out emails sounds like a fairly simple task, right? However, what actually counts in email prospecting is not the number of emails you send out, but the people you send it out to and those who actually open them. A survey by ChiefMarketer states that not only is email the best way to generate leads, but also the channel that produces the highest ROI leads.

What is Email Prospecting?

Email prospecting is a sales prospecting technique in which sales reps send out emails with the hope of reaching out to potential leads. Cold-calling is slowly being realised as a thing of the past since most consumers are too busy to even answer a call, which is why the shift from calls to emails has been evident.

Information such as site visitors and contact forms provide an insight into those who have showed an ample interest in your business, and you can target them with your emails accordingly. Since email prospecting is directed towards those who are already aware of your brand, it works much better than cold-calling. This is what makes email prospecting a foundational element in any B2B sales and marketing strategy.

Tips for Email Prospecting

Research shows that every email user receives an average of 147 emails per day, of which nearly half the amounts gets deleted in under five minutes. With 75% of prospecting emails getting ignored and only 24% of sales emails getting opened, the challenge of getting the readers to reply to your emails is trickier than you think.

The point isn’t whether your emails work as a channel, but as to how much they stand out in an individual’s inbox. If a prospect feels compelled to open your email and start a conversation with you, you will know you’ve cracked the code. In order for this to happen, it’s essential to customise your introductory emails. Read on to find out about some tips that come in super-handy as far as email prospecting is concerned.

1. Do Your Research

Before you send out any email, it’s necessary to know whom you’re sending it out to. Therefore, the first step in email prospecting is doing your research. You have to know what kind of customers fit your business profile, because sending it out to someone who doesn’t need your products will lead to your emails being marked as spam.

Come up with the perfect customer profile, for this will entail the category of individuals who are likely to purchase your products. Before you contact a particular individual from a company, explore the company’s features, such as its size, geographic location, the industry it belongs to, its product offerings, sale size, and how long it has been around. Once you find out about these, then research as to who is the right person to get in touch with from this company.

The person you communicate with will essentially be the one who makes decisions aligning with what you’re selling or offering. Hence, it’s important that you make him/her the subject of your research. If the company they belong to has a small deal size, the information you need to collect will be basic. However, if the company has a bigger deal size, you will have to expand your research accordingly.

2. Focus on Personalisation

It’s not a surprise that content which is personalised always drives individuals to make a purchase. A study conducted by the University of Texas discovered that personalised content makes people feel unique and special and also gives them a sense of control. Click-through rates have proven to improve by 14% and conversion rates by 10% when emails are personalised.

The importance of personalised emails can’t be stressed enough. Prospecting emails that perform poorly are mostly the ones that belong to stock templates and are too cliché and typical. Your consumers don’t want emails that don’t address their needs and concerns. Your email outreach campaigns will reach a whole new level once you add a personal touch. Personalisation makes the buyers realise that you care about them and are willing to invest more time in evaluating their requirements, which will eventually work in your favour.

Depending on the deal size, you can moderate your personalisation accordingly. The basic personalisation elements include first name, last name, position/title, and company name. The in-depth ones will also consist of demographic info, recent awards, recent published content, alma mater, and the like.

3. State the Benefits

When you receive an email from a brand and all it talks about is the features of the company, it immediately becomes off-putting. Don’t make this mistake. Instead of just talking about your company and its history, talk about how associating with your brand will benefit the customers.

Once a buyer reads about the profits that he/she will receive by purchasing from your company, you are more likely to receive a reply than if you go on and on about the bland details that no one is interested in.

4. Exhibit Social Proof

You know how if someone recommends you a book, you want to read it even more? Or if your friend visits a restaurant and says the food is delicious, you want to try it out, too? This is where social proof becomes important. More than 85% of the consumers trust reviews as much as personal recommendations and 73% have stated that they tend to trust a business more if they hear positive things about it.

Social proof is also known to increase a prospecting email’s response rate by up to 468%. Yes, social proof indeed plays a huge role in influencing someone’s decisions. One of the ways to include social proof in your email prospecting is to provide a review by one of your most loyal customers, or a case study aligning with the challenges of your prospect.

5. Timing is Everything

Imagine you’re looking up summer vacations online. If you receive an email at that exact moment that enlists the best places to travel to during the summer, you’re most likely to open that email, right? Timing plays a huge factor in email prospecting. If you time your emails right, you’re most likely to get numerous responses.

The sooner you send emails related to a person’s likes and predilections, the faster responses you’re likely to receive. Focus on your prospect’s behaviour and see what is the best time to send them an email, and act in accordance with that.

6. Follow Up

At times, prospecting emails not getting a reply has a lot to do with the salesperson not following up with the existing or potential clients. You can’t expect your prospects to reply after the very first email. You need to show your dedication and enthusiasm and send follow-up emails, too. Stats reveal that 70% of unanswered email chains reportedly stop after the first email.

An Iko System study revealed a reply rate of 18% on the first email, 14% after the second, 13% on the fourth one, and a whopping 27% on the sixth. They sent a total of seven emails, with even the last one having a response rate of 17%. Therefore, you absolutely need to follow up to get the desired results.

7. A Gripping Subject Line

Just like how a gripping headline makes you want to read a news article, similarly, a gripping subject line will make your buyers want to open your email. Reportedly, 35% of recipients open an email depending on whether they find the subject line intriguing or not.

There are quite a few things to remember when drafting a subject line in email prospecting:

·       Include the first name of the recipient

·       Ask pertinent and relevant questions

·       Don’t put in spammy lines

·       Keep it short

·       Make it go through the subject line checker tool to see how well it ranks in open rates

8.  The Crispier, the Better

No one likes to read a long email, especially from a stranger or a company they know nothing about. Therefore, it’s best to keep your emails short and crisp. Just make your points quickly, and give them an effective call-to-action.

An analysis was conducted with over 40 million emails, and it was discovered that most people respond to shorter emails. Having a relatively short email will prove to your prospects that you value their time, which will eventually lead them to opening your email whenever it pops up on their inbox.

When it comes to a new provider, about 77% of the buyers are known to respond favourably. In fact, 31% of the sellers state that sending one-on-one emails post proper research and personalisation proves to be very effective. Not to forget that 80% of the customers prefer to be contacted by sellers over email.

With the popularity of email prospecting on the rise, employing it as a marketing technique is one of the smartest decisions to make. As an outbound marketing technique, it surely works wonders. Businesses are known to make worth hundreds of millions by using this tool as the dominant channel for lead generation. Once you make use of these tips and include them in your business plan with a well thought out strategy, you’re bound to get the desired response from customers everywhere.

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