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Everybody knows that businesses need new inquiries and customers on an ongoing basis, in order to thrive and prosper. But it’s not always easy to develop new contacts, especially if you are selling business to business.
And many people are aware that email is still one of the most effective methods of approaching your prospects and turning them into first warm leads, then customers.
But there’s a catch! The major players in the email marketing world (ie MailChimp) don’t allow you to send cold emails. When using their platform you are required to have a list of contacts who have already opted in to receive your messages.
So how do you go about performing a successful outbound email campaign for cold prospects? (ie people for whom you have their contact email addresses but have had no previous communication with them).
Here’s how you can use tools to automate the process of B2B lead generation using cold emails – providing an overview of what’s involved and how you can utilise these tools for your own purposes.
Cold Email Platforms
There are several companies that offer cold email, including the very popular Reply.io. system.
So what is it you can do with these services?
1) Making & Managing Connections
Sending out messages to people you don’t know – cold prospects – can be a daunting task. Outreach solutions like Reply can make it much easier by finding and validating email addresses, and keeping large sets of data organized. You can import and export data to CSV and even stipulate domains you don’t want to contact by accident.
Having to keep track of the hundreds of emails you’ve sent can lead to setting up a mass of spreadsheets that are simply too unwieldy to use.
Systems like Reply.io look after all the relevant tracking data for you.
This enables you to easily see Open Rates (the % of people you sent the email to that actually opened the message). Plus other useful info such as Click Rates (the % of people who clicked a link you included within the message) and Unsubscribe rates (people who opted out of the mailing).
3) Integration with Existing Systems
Another advantage of some of these systems is you can integrate them with your existing mail provider – such as Gmail. This allows you to write the message in a format you’re familiar with, but still use the sophisticated functionality of Reply.io for sending it out. When you get a response you can handle it directly from your Gmail (or other) email account.
Also, you’ll be able to integrate interested respondents with a CRM system, such as Pipedrive or another service. This enables you to reply to any responses you get from your initial email, using the same system you use for your ongoing CRM.
4) Auto Cadences
You may be familiar with the term ‘autoresponder’ – which is a sequence of emails that are sent to people who sign up for a newsletter or mailing list.
Auto cadences are the equivalent idea for people who don’t respond, whereby they receive their own sequence of emails. This sequence could be made up of two or three gentle reminders that a response is appreciated.
An advantage of using this type of email software is that anyone who responds at any stage in this process is re-categorised within the system itself, such that they are taken out of the auto cadence sequence and can then be put into the CRM sequence to follow up in person.
5) Split Testing
Also known as A/B Testing, this is the process where you can test 2 different messages against each other to determine which one works best for your audience in terms of open rates, responses, etc.
For example Email Content A had a 17% response rate and Email Content B had a 26% response rate.
This allows you to really drill down into the right type message to show to particular groups of people within your target audience.
You can obviously personalize the message you’re sending based on the person’s name. But it gets more interesting when combined with specific information about their personal circumstances or company solutions.
By creating custom variables partial or entire sentences can be customized for the intended recipient. For example, if you are writing to sports enthusiasts then sections of the email can be customized to reflect their personal sports preferences.
Cold email is an incredible tool to develop new relationships and drive outreach programs. But contacting more than a handful of people all at once isn’t easy, and that’s where cold email platforms save the day. Combined with spreadsheets you can import lots of contacts all at once and easily manage them. You’ll be able to personalize each message making it possible to deliver messages that are meaningful to your readers.