In Email, Prospecting

Daimian Thompson, Donald Kelly, LeadFuze, Cold Email

Email is a great form of communication. It allows us to reach out to people on their time without interrupting them like a call would, but the ease of it is the reason more people are doing it. Sales professionals must unravel what works, what’s changing, and what not to do with cold email; why they must zig when everyone else zags.

LeadFuze is a lead generation platform with two important functions: it helps you build a list of leads that match your customer profile, and it provides assistance to help you hone your conversations.

The goal of LeadFuze is to help sales reps and entrepreneurs start more sales conversations.

Understand the purpose

Buyers never buy simply because of email. You’re reaching out to a stranger, so even if you know it’s a good fit, you’re never going to convince them to buy from you with email alone.

The purpose of email is to start a conversation. You cannot go for the meeting too quickly. Sales reps tend to go from 0 to 100 without understanding that they have to earn the right to ask for a meeting.

You cannot sound like a brochure, and you cannot talk all about yourself. Unless you’re famous in your industry, people aren’t going to agree to talk to you just because you’re you.

Once you’ve started the conversation, you can move into your normal sales process, whatever that is. How do you do that?

It sounds cliche, but sales and dating are a lot alike. You’d never walk up to a stranger in a bar and suggest getting married and having lots of kids. The same is true in sales.

It’s not about you. It’s all about them.

Of course you understand your industry; but do you understand theirs? As you’re reading your emails, how many times do you use “I, we, us?” If you are, you’re doing it wrong.

Initiate the conversation

Retail stores must wait for customers to come to them. Sales reps don’t have to.

By the time your customer finds your website, he likely thinks he already knows the answers to all his questions and he has preconceived notions about what he should do.

Be the one to start the conversation.

Begin by looking at your existing customer portfolio to determine who your ideal customer is. Realize, too, that if most of your business exists in one industry, but you don’t like that industry, it’s ok to pursue others.

Send 4 to 5 emails over the course of a few weeks. Keep them short and deliver value.

Email 1: “When I’m talking to VPs in this industry, they generally tell me that they struggle with one of two problems. Which is the biggest problem for you?”

Email 2: (This is not a pitch.) Provide a solution to Pain A from your original email and give a free resource.

Email 3: Provide a solution to Pain B from your original email. Give a free resource.

Email 4: “Is there a problem we haven’t discussed yet? I’d love to discuss it with you to see if I can help you solve it.”

Set realistic expectations

Sales reps tend to diagnose too quickly. We forget that everything worth doing takes time.

We won’t become number one on Google the day after we study SEO. It’s a little like going to the gym: it takes time.

Instead of doing a few hours of cold email one day a week, spread it out over the course of the week. (Again, think of it like going to the gym.)

Keep your pipeline full with a little bit of effort every day. Do simply practices repeatedly. Keep the patterns that work.

When you come into a brand new job, it isn’t lead rich. If it was, the person before you wouldn’t have left.

In the first 90 days, sales reps are a whirlwind of activity. It’s the most productive period in any job.

Because you don’t have any business, you’re completely focused on business development. Once a deal emerges, you stop working on business development because you’d rather be working on the deal.

Sales reps create their own feast or famine cycles because they stop working on lead generation once they see a deal developing. Instead, make it part of your daily calendar.

Use the acronym WIIFM to drive your pitch. When your prospect is listening to your pitch, why should they care? They’ll ask themselves, “What’s in it for me?”

“Cold Email” episode resources

To connect with Damian, email him at Damian@leadfuze.com, or go to the LeadFuze website.

Business development is hard for all sales reps. I recommend the book Stop Selling & Start Leading: How to Make Extraordinary Sales Happen from our sponsors at Wiley because it’s a fantastic blueprint of all the things buyers say they expect from sellers and want from sellers.

I’m offering a free excerpt of the book so you can check it out for yourself.

Check out the Video Jungle podcast, your source for marketing and selling your brand using video. Plan, create and share your way to better content and strategy. Video Jungle offers top-notch, state-of-the-art advice about video.

Email me for more information about our newly launched Sales Podcast Network, designed to provide specialized sales content for sellers of all levels and all industries. You can also email us about our new business development services.

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