When you’re a salesperson trying to get the attention of a prospect by email, you’ve got your work cut out for you.
Considering all the businesses out there competing for attention in people’s inboxes, it’s not easy to stand out from the pack.
As someone who has been both on the giving and receiving end of countless sales emails, I’ve spent a lot of time observing which techniques work best.
Today, I’m going to give you five tips that will make your sales emails stand out and help you cut through the noise.
Nail your subject line.
According to Campaign Monitor, personalized emails are six times as likely to result in a sale, while emails with personalized subject lines get 26 percent high open rates.
In my own experience, I’ve found I’m far more likely to open an email when something in the subject line speaks directly to me.
How do you do this? Research your prospect on social media—preferably on LinkedIn. In your email, reference something they posted that resonated with you.
ReminderMedia was recently named to the Inc. 5000 list for the fourth consecutive year. After the news broke, I got an email that referenced the news in the subject line. If you’re guessing that I opened that email, you’re absolutely right.
While you want your subject line to be personal, you don’t want it to be too long. According to Marketo, about 41 characters is ideal. (You might end up going a little longer, but don’t go too long.)
Don’t be afraid to make your subject line look a little unprofessional. I wouldn’t go so far as to suggest misspelling words, but your capitalization and punctuation shouldn’t always be perfect. When everything is just so, your recipients might flag what you send as a mass email and simply delete it.
Get your point across quickly.
Just like your subject line, the body of your email needs to be concise. Otherwise, people won’t read what you send them.
Personally, I’ll probably only read the first two sentences of most of my emails. If someone hasn’t gotten my attention right away, I’ll move on.
How do you get someone’s attention in two sentences? I’ll answer that with another question: How do you add value to someone’s life?
Open with something that is both relevant and useful to your recipient. That way, they won’t be tempted to stop reading.
There are times when someone sends me an email and it’s not really me who they need to talk to. That’s fine, so long as it’s handled properly.
The phrase that pays is, “Please point me to the right person.” If you’re looking to sell something for IT, ask for my IT person. If you’ve got an HR solution, ask for the HR department. When you only have one point of contact within an organization, make it easy for them by giving this information up front.
Of course, you’d ideally just direct your emails to the right person. I might be interested in your product if it will improve my business, but I also don’t have all day to forward emails.
Simpler is always better.
Write your emails so a third grader can understand them. Your copy should be really easy to understand—clear and straight to the point.
Don’t talk about all the technology and unique algorithms. I don’t care about any of that right now. Tell me how this product or service is going to make my business run better.
When you get caught up in the details, you risk alienating or boring people. That’s the last thing you want to do when the goal is to make a sale.
Open strong, get to the point, and create a clear call to action. When you do this, you’re far more likely to get the response you’re looking for.
Don’t hesitate to follow up!
In sales, it sometimes pays to be a pain in the neck.
This might sound counterintuitive, but it’s totally true. The people who get my attention are often the people who email me all the time. Eventually, you’ll catch me on the right day. When that happens, I’ll respond.
Vidyard regularly sends me sales emails. I always ignored them … until I didn’t. That was the day I realized I wanted video marketing for my sales team, and I wrote the guy back.
I’m not suggesting that you should bother people with incessant emails. I’m only saying that the first email isn’t usually the one that does the trick. When you’ve got a relevant lead who you know actually needs what you sell, don’t be afraid to follow up.
Provide an amazing offer.
A lot of people might see “amazing offer” and immediately think “discount code,” but there’s a lot to be said for providing valuable content and other freebies.
Many of the emails that I actually read are personalized messages that come with free stuff. Spiro has sent me complimentary e-books on topics like sales operations and driving revenue. Those things are relevant to my business. When they’re offered for free, they’re bound to get my attention.
The important thing is to offer relevant content that will solve a problem or make someone’s life better in some way.
I noticed you’re having trouble with X.
We put together a white paper that explains how Y helps with X. You can download it for free from our website.”
For many people, the temptation is to sell whenever possible. Sometimes, the best move is to simply offer free value. When you do this, you’re building trust.
And don’t worry: when you do try to sell this person later, it’ll be that much easier.
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