Now more than ever, cold outreach campaigns have become an integral part of businesses, helping them survive and thrive in a competitive market.
You need new customers, but you can’t sit around waiting for them to reach out to you on their own. It’s important to put in the legwork, identify your potential customers, connect with them, and give them a reason to convert into buyers.
One of the most crucial aspects of an effective cold outreach campaign is to identify good fit leads to your business. This means the ideal ones who will be genuinely interested in your products and services to solve their pain points or concerns.
With that in mind, here is a comprehensive guide to taking your email and LinkedIn cold outreach game to the next level.
9 cold outreach best practices you should follow
Cold outreach has evolved drastically in the past few years, making it a competitive way to reach out to your potential customers.
However, if you wish to connect and get responses from only A-game leads, you need to have a sound and strategic cold emailing plan. Below are cold emailing best practices you should follow.
1) Put in more effort to find the right prospects
Research is the foundation of cold outreach. It is necessary to find the right prospect and track down key information about them. You need to consider their name, position, and company, as well as analyze the company’s and individual’s interests.
The people you want to target are the decision makers and influencers (not Instagram influencers but people inside the company whose opinion matters when they internally discuss your offer).
Your prospects will often acknowledge the additional effort you invest into personalization and be more interested in what you have to offer.
2) Make sure your copy is on point
Making an outline is an effective way to ensure that you focus on the right topics and include them in your email. Be sure to keep the copy on point and relevant to the specific prospect.
A well-drafted framework can be helpful for reference while crafting the email for the prospect. The idea is to get across your message confidently and clearly. The primary goal is to get your prospects to commit to a meeting with you. Don’t make a sales pitch just yet; instead, explore their pain points and let them know you understand their issues.
3) Ask less, give more
This is one of the more constructive ways of securing clients when it comes to cold outreach. It entails keeping the conversation concise while offering a bona fide benefit (or freebie) to the prospective client.
Remember not to overwhelm them with industry-specific terminology or jargon. Speak clearly and get to the point fast. For example, you could explore their pain points in a few lines and then offer them a quick solution.
Furthermore, you can also offer the freebies in the form of useful resources, guides, pilot projects, and success stories to give your prospects social proof and a sample of how they can benefit from doing business with you.
Irrespective of a product or service, it is sometimes difficult for them to comprehend your offering’s tangible aspects until your prospects get a ‘hands-on’ impression of what it precisely is.
4) Always use a call to action
Your call to action button in the email copy is an essential element for you to persuade the recipient to respond to your message. Therefore, it is imperative to have a prominent, specific, and clear CTA that provides a direct message to the reader.
That way, you help them connect the dots. Make the CTA specific, concise, and summarize it in a straightforward statement. If they are interested in engaging with you, they should know exactly what to do next.
More often than not, CTA is used to invite recipients to schedule a call or a demo, start a trial, or ask questions with a simple email reply.
In the example below from Zendesk, they have used multiple CTAs with impactful language. These words entice the recipients to take the desired action and induce them to click instantly.
5) Polish your subject line
Your cold outreach email is worthless if your prospects don’t open it. It is always best to test different subject lines to increase your email open rates.
Tailoring the subject line to an issue they face, a product they are looking for, or a goal they aspire to achieve, can make a huge difference and entice them to read out your email.
Also, make sure that the subject line is short and understandable. It’s the first interaction that the prospect makes when they see your email. In fact, 47% of the recipients decide to open the email, and 69% mark it as spam, based on the subject line alone.
In order to make a memorable and great impression, it is imperative to test different subject lines.
Find the subject lines that make your email stand out from the rest and increase the chances of your cold emails being read. When possible and appropriate, your subject lines should also convey your authenticity and tease something valuable to the recipient.
6) Personalize each email
Personalization is everything! It is the keystone of an effective email outreach campaign. A generic email copy doesn’t work anymore – you need to customize your message and even the follow-up strategy to the specific addressee.
By adding a tailored intro and subject line, you make your email look more exclusive to the prospect, with concerns and expectations in mind. This can considerably increase both the open and click-through rates as well as the ROI of your cold outreach campaign.
You can refer to the screenshot below for some cold email personalization inspiration. It is an example of a recruiting email, but the principle can be easily adopted by your sales team.
More personalization requires more effort, but it also generates more leads. It is up to you to find a balance between the numbers of email sent out vs their level of personalization.
7) Always follow up
It is absolutely essential to incorporate the personalization aspect in your cold outreach email. The same goes for following up with the potential client.
If you’re doing a bigger cold outreach campaign, a great way to do that is to create a sequence of automated emails to your prospect every few days in order to stay on top of their list. That being said, sending more than two follow ups can be seen as spammy and annoying so it should only be done for a very good reason.
8) It’s a numbers game, play it
When you reach out to your prospects, it’s always good to substantiate your promises and statements with appropriate data provided by credible sources.
In fact, 65% of the prospects believe relevancy adds value to the email message, especially if they want to reach out to C-level executives. Focus on the message you want to communicate, use the facts and figures to support it, and look authoritative.
At the end of the day, cold outreach is a numbers game and you should play it if you can win (ensure a positive ROI).
9) Help yourself with the right software
Doing everybody by hand is great but ain’t nobody got time for that. Use email finders to find the right contact info, use cold emailing tools to manage and track your outreach efforts, and use email verification tools to decrease email bounce rate and improve deliverability.
Cold emailing software tools
An effective strategy is imperative to running a successful cold outreach campaign, and these cold emailing tools can augment its effectiveness:
UpLead is one of the feature-rich cold emailing software tools for B2B contacts. Its extensive database helps you run effective outreach campaigns.
With UpLead, you can find the right email address of the prospects in no time as well as verify it in real-time. This means you don’t ever have to be uncertain about the authenticity of the data you gather. The platform also facilitates email automation that allows you to reach out to leads at appropriate times.
Additionally, you can find the leads with the specific technology tracking feature and get in touch with the relevant ones. All in all, it’s a robust tool for you to enhance your cold email outreach efforts while ensuring accuracy.
GMass is a powerful cold emailing tool that enables you to run successful sales and marketing campaigns directly from your Gmail account. Its mailing merge features have made it a great tool for cold emailing.
Furthermore, you can automate and personalize your email sequences accordingly, which can significantly increase your email open rates. You can also keep an eye on your email deliverability and take plausible actions to improve it.
GMass is an effective tool that can help you provide value to the leads as well as simplify the process of reaching out to prospects.
Mailshake is another great platform that can help you with your cold emailing outreach campaigns. It is an outreach tool that lets you connect with your prospects via email. With it, you can automate your emails and schedule them for specific prospects at suitable times.
Furthermore, Mailshake allows you to easily import and export your contacts, which enables you to keep track of your clients, emails, and interactions with them. It also helps you identify the most promising leads and get you effective results.
How to improve your cold LinkedIn outreach?
Outbound prospecting on LinkedIn is a little different — you can’t directly begin the conversation with a sales pitch. Once your profile is presentable enough, employ the following tactics to improve your LinkedIn presence and make more meaningful connections:
Make sure your info is clearly visible
If your potential customer doesn’t know what you do, your name in the notification bar won’t make them instantly open your message. Therefore, it is vital to keep your profile updated and on point.
The benefits of this are twofold. It will help you navigate the conversation and ultimately make a good sales pitch. Let your profile represent you, and when you request your prospect on LinkedIn to connect with you or send a message, they can have a look at your profile.
Don’t sell straight away, build a relationship
Making a sales pitch directly in your first message is something that can turn your prospects off. If you want to draw in loyal customers, you need to first introduce yourself to the intended leads on LinkedIn.
That being said, keep reiterating that your goal is to develop a connection and begin the conversation rather than pushing your product or service to them. Focus on building a relationship with them, not sales.
Find pain points, provide value, offer service
Before you draft a message and reach out to them on LinkedIn, it is pivotal to be aware of their pain points and concerns in order to address them in an appropriate way. A message tailored to a specific prospect does wonders and will draw their attention.
Furthermore, try to draft your email message in a conversational tone and adjust it to their requirements, needs, problem, and interests. Provide them with some value or give them a reason to respond to your messages.
Consider using LinkedIn sales navigator
It is vital to leverage software solutions to expedite your outreach campaign and get better results. One of those tools is LinkedIn Sales Navigator. It can help you connect with the right prospects, gain key insights, and engage with them.
7 steps you should follow when writing your LinkedIn cold outreach message
You might be interested in starting a conversation with your prospect but don’t know how to initiate it in a compelling way that can help you get a response from them.
Here are seven steps to follow while writing your LinkedIn cold outreach message to ensure that you get the prospect’s attention and make a stronger connection with them.
1) Closely study your prospect’s profile
Finding the right prospect is the cornerstone of your cold LinkedIn outreach campaign. All the rest of your efforts will go in vain if you target someone who may not be interested in your business.
Before you draft a LinkedIn message for your prospect, the first thing you need to do is to look at their profile. It will help you understand the prospect better and find relevant details that will ultimately reflect your message content.
2) Find common connections
Next is to look for if you have any common connections with the potential client. You could leverage that connection in your sales pitch. LinkedIn reported that 87% of B2B leads had a positive impression of the sales executive when somebody in their professional network acquainted them.
3) Find a mutual interest
You should find something of mutual interest to begin the conversation with them. For instance, get to know their interests, goals, hobbies, etc., mention it in your message to make it look exclusive and appealing.
4) Ask questions your prospect cares about
The insights you gathered from your prospect’s profile, use to craft questions that they will be keen to answer. Everybody loves to talk about things that make them feel valued. That way, you can spark a conversation and head in the right direction. Ask your prospects about their achievements, pain points, opportunities, etc., to show that you genuinely care about them.
5) Be short and concise
Don’t think of your LinkedIn messaging as emailing. And you aim to get the addressee to respond to your message. So, keep your message concise and to the point. The greater the length of your message, the fewer chances it has of your prospects will reply.
6) Add a call to action
Make sure to add a solid call to action (CTA). This will augment customer engagement and help you drive more conversions. Your CTA should be compelling and entice the prospect to take the intended action – be it a simple email reply or scheduling of a sales call.
7) Again, don’t forget to follow up
Just reaching out to your prospects on LinkedIn isn’t enough. You also need an effective follow-up strategy. It is essential to contact the lead after sending the message to keep track of their responsiveness and patterns.
You can implement a follow-up sequence across LinkedIn, email, and phone to convert the leads and ultimately drive conversions.
When you reach out to your prospects, it’s imperative to have a strong strategy as your company perception is also at stake. Getting desired results from your cold outreach campaigns don’t have to be a tedious process, whether it’s through LinkedIn or via some other channel.
While there are proper customer acquisition tools for marketers, a well-rounded strategy for cold outreach is a game-changer. You can determine the ideal prospects by reviewing and surveying existing leads and clients.
Implement a few strategies, incorporate cold email tools and best practices into your company’s workflow, and experiment with them to see what works best for you. These techniques can significantly increase the success rate of your cold outreach campaigns.
Will Cannon, the founder of UpLead and Signaturely, places great emphasis on lead generation, customer profiling, email marketing, outreach campaigns, customer acquisition, and retention to generate ROI for businesses. As a sales professional, he considers these aspects as the keystone for driving positive revenue with consistency.