This year the average businessman will send and receive 131 emails per day. While it’s a powerful tool, email causes an insurmountable amount of stress in our lives.
In Sales, email is still the most efficient way to communicate with our prospects, opportunities and customers. As we send and receive more emails than ever, we need to take stock of what we’re sending out and ensure that every email is optimized for a response. In our last post, we outlined the four pro-tips for prospecting emails, but now we’re taking it one step further on the nitty-gritty of writing emails that ensure a response from your busy prospects.
1. Know the Latest Email Stats
Very few Salespeople know how to effectively email busy people—prospects receive a bunch of emails every day that they either read, delete, archive, forward to the right person, mark as spam, and if you’re lucky, a reply.
Before sending out your next email, know your audience on a wider level. Let’s consider the follow statistics provided by Convince and Convert:
- 21% of email recipients report email as Spam, even if they know it isn’t
- 35% of email recipients open email based on the subject line alone
- 35% of professionals check email on a mobile device
- 80% of social network members have received unsolicited email or invites
What can we decipher from these statistics? It tells us that our prospects are mobile, busier than ever and have less time than we expected for unsolicited sales pitches and emails. For our emails to make to the elusive “reply” zone, we need to get to know our audience.
2. Know Your Audience
It’s time for us Salespeople to take personalization seriously. Don’t cut corners to get your email activity numbers up, because your engagement rate is suffering.
Instead, take the time to research your email recipient and build a repertoire of information around them: who they are, what they care about, common interests, if they have a pet, what their responsibilities are at their company, etc. Today’s buyers want a great experience, and getting a full picture of who your prospect is will help your email response rate.
To take personalization to the next level, if you haven’t implemented #SocialSelling into your sales strategy, doing so will save you time in the future. Think about it: you’ll have all the data points, interests, pain points, etc—all the information you’d need to write a hyper-personalized email to your prospect.
3. APV: Always Provide Value
Whether it’s through a subject line or the email content, there is one thing you must do: APV (Always Provide Value). Sometimes we fall into the trap of overthinking things. Subject lines and email content is hard. But to overcome those challenges, we need to ask ourselves instead, “What value is being added if I send this email?”
As modern Salespeople we should be thinking less in terms of always be closing and more along the lines of always provide value. The key to today’s Sales is earning trust and becoming an advisor—we can’t do any of that until we provide value. So, the question now is what exactly is value?
Value is information that helps prospects better understand either their industry, role, competitive landscape, business, etc. You can provide value by sending content such as an article, interview Q&A, infographic, video, GIF, eBook, etc. that resonates with a prospect’s pain points.
APV Pro-Tip: Don’t pitch your product, instead pitch personalized value.
4. Avoid the Delete Button by Being Human
At the end of the day, prospects are receiving emails from strangers, even if they’re checking their inboxes 77 times per day. When we get a notification of a new email, here’s the thought process going on in our head:
- Who is emailing me?
- What do they want?
- I have no time.
It’s seems as though email has devolved from being a great communication tool to a game of “How to Avoid the Delete Button.” But don’t be discouraged just yet. You’re a human, not a sales bot. Don’t be afraid of letting some of your professional personality show through your tone and voice of your email.
Remember all that Social Selling data points you amassed? Here’s where you use it, when playing the delete button game.
5. Spend the Same Amount of Time Editing as Writing
So you’ve spent all that time crafting the most well researched, concise, human, engaging email, now what? Well I have some writerly advice for you: it’s time to ruthlessly edit.
There’s no magical word count to the perfect email. But, you should spend an equal amount of time editing your email as you spent writing it. Editing is key to keeping emails concise and on point. Your prospects are busy and you’ll never get a response if you craft a 1,200 word email, even if it’s hyper-personalized.
6. Have a Easy to Read Email Signature
This one seems obvious, but there are so many fancy email signatures floating around with a ton links, GIFs, logos, awards, etc. Just like your subject line and email content, your email signature should be simple.
Your email signature should have the basics:
- First Name, Last Name
- Contact info: email, phone number
- Link: Company site or Blog
- Company Logo
7. Tout It
Your best bet in knowing if your prospect viewed your email is through an email tracking tool like ToutApp. Once you’ve done your research, readied your subject line, edited your email content and tightened up your signature—all that work shouldn’t go to waste. Remember to Tout It.