Oftentimes when it comes to email prospecting, we focus too much on the numbers and not enough on relationships. In an article addressing this very topic, HubSpot hits the nail on the head: “Shame on us. While technology and metrics are extremely valuable sales tools, relationship skills are still what builds businesses.” Hubspot points out the common mistake that salespeople make: copying and pasting the same content into yet another email and sending it without a second thought.
How can we go back to building relationships instead of spamming people?
Here are a few ways:
- Read the prospect’s content. Another Hubspot article explains the art of reading “30 articles in 30 minutes.” What does this mean? Well, it involves time. But the time you spend researching your prospective customer is valuable, as it allows you to approach them in a more personal way than a general, spammy email. How do you do it? Try reading a blog post or article that the prospect wrote, and react to it. Send them an email saying you enjoyed their post and offer your services as a gentle suggestion for what they might be looking for.
- Don’t limit the customer’s options for response. This is a valuable tip we can learn Imagine Business Development’s article on B2B prospecting: “When prospecting, it’s important to enable your prospect to move forward in whatever means they prefer. If the only options are to call you or respond to your email, you’ll lose a lot of opportunities.” Understandably, a prospect might fear taking the time to make a connection with you, especially when they are not familiar with your company or what you do. Imagine Business Development emphasizes the importance of including links to content that you have published that align with what you’re selling.
- Keep your email short and sweet. Don’t give the prospect with a lengthy email; he or she will be overwhelmed and most likely not patient enough to read the entire thing. KLA Group suggests sending emails with no more than 175 words and kept to no more than three paragraphs. Remember that your prospect is flooded with emails and busy.
- Coming off the short and sweet point, keep the question simple, and limit yourself to one question. Tropical reminds us that it can be overwhelming when we receive an email with multiple questions.
- And finally, avoid spammy subjects and introductions. For example, avoid the email subject “Good Afternoon” or opening your email with “Hi, my name is…” Those will almost certainly be deleted (and you should avoid talking about yourself when possible)! It’s also important to make sure that your email doesn’t end up in your prospect’s spam filter. Check out HubSpot’s list of email spam trigger words here.
In summary, the most important thing you can do when starting a relationship with a prospect is to be personable, helpful, and straightforward (but not pushy!).