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7 Painful Lessons I Learned From Cold Emailing 943 Companies

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Forster Perelsztejn
Marketing Advisor

If you're looking for a humbling experience, try cold emailing. Even if you do it well and get results, it's a thankless job. In world full of spam, setting your focus less than 100% on your prospect is useless. Here's what I learned.

That being said, cold emailing is still widely used in most industries, with varying degrees of success. If you're learning how to do this correctly, save yourselves some blunders.

1. Nobody cares about your product

I'm sorry, I know it hurts.

But to be fair, you don't care about the people cold emailing you either.

The point is, you need to make your email about your prospect. Not about you, or your product.

If you're going to disrupt their day, you need to make it worth their while.

So, how do you do that?

Grab their attention

This might seem counterintuitive but don't introduce yourself.

Seriously, they don't know you, they don't care about you, and your name is already in the email anyway. Unless you're an authority and your name speaks for itself, don't introduce yourself.

Instead, grab their attention by mentioning something about their company. For example: "Congratulations on opening your new store!" or "It was great meeting you last year at the conference!" are great ways to catch a prospect's eye.

Cut to the chase

They're busy, so get right to it.

Don't even tell them "I know you're busy", you'd be wasting 5 words. Also, you're not asking for a favor, you want to solve something for them.

Let them know why you're writing, and why they're the right person to discuss that with you (unless it's obvious).

Don't mention your product just yet, tell when what you want to help them with, not what you want to sell them.

No one likes to be sold to.

Give clear and quantifiable benefits

You can't get them interested if you're being vague about what you're offering. Quantify it as much as you can.


"I saw 2 things on your website you should improve to get more conversions"

"We can help cut your accounting costs by 35%"

"I can help your pages rank 1st on SERPs in just 2 weeks."

Show some credentials

Even if you manage to keep them reading until this point, they still don't know you. And since they don't care, they're not gonna give you their time—or their money—because you sound nice.

You need to give them a reason to believe that you can actually help them. The best way to do that is by using social proof. Drop the names of some happy customers. The more relevant to them the better. Or write a line or two about a successful project they might relate to.

Have a clear call to action

If you're interrupting their day, you'd better make it easy for them to further the interaction.

Everything you've written up until this point is designed to get them to take action. Whether it is to respond to your email, click a link, download a document, your goal is to get them to act.

There are 3 things you need to keep in mind here:

- Only have 1 call to action. Each email needs to be focused on 1 specific goal. Why? Because if you ask too much, you're going to lose them. Also, you can only design content towards one goal at a time. One funnel can't lead into 2 buckets.

- Make it clear. Your prospect should immediately know what you expect from them. Make it clear and to the point.

- Make it easy to act on. If you want to set up a call, suggest some timeslots. If you want them to download something, send a direct link to the file. If you need information, send a form they can easily fill out.

This is not about you. It's all about them.

Don't want to miss out on the other lessons?

 Click here to read the full article on our Rooftop blog.

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