The average professional sends and receives an average of 121 emails a day. If you’re trying to break through that noise with a sales pitch, it better be a good one.
As the Director of Leadership Recruitment at a leading recruitment firm, I typically leverage my network for outreach. More often than not, someone knows someone, or has worked with a person that can facilitate an introduction.
Even so, finding that “purple unicorn” usually means online sourcing and cold outreach. But how do I get the attention of a VP of Sales with a cold email?
Over the years I’ve developed a few successful methods of breaking through the noise of other sales pitches and getting my emails noticed. While there’s no surefire way to get your emails to convert, these tips should at least increase your chances.
Seven Tips to Break Through the Noise and Get Your Cold Emails Read
- Do Your Research
Before you start writing your email, take a few minutes to find out what you can about the person you’re reaching out to. Have they won any awards? Does their Linkedin say they recently got a promotion? Know who you’re reaching out to and flatter them on their awesome experience. Acknowledge that their experience IS different than the average Joe. If you’re trying to sell something, acknowledge that THEIR company sticks out as a leader in a very crowded space.
- Short and Sweet
Make your email concise and easy to read. Typically people stop reading (or skip to the end) after the second paragraph. Additionally, keep your paragraphs to two or three sentences. People hate reading huge blocks of text. Get to the point and be concise about why you’re reaching out. Senior people see through fluff, so don’t use it.
- Make the Outreach Helpful for Them
Believe it or not, it’s not all about you and your goals. Why say, “I want to talk to you about my social media monitoring platform,” when you could say, “I know your company is very active on social media and a good majority of your following consists of university students. Are you free to chat for 15 minutes about increasing ROI through social community segmentation? ” When recruiting, reiterate that you want to understand what THEIR ideal next step might look like so you can keep your eyes peeled.
- Social Proof
I once received a reply back and eventually placed a VP of Sales by using the subject line “Hi Joe – How do you know Brad Jones?” Good people know good people. Make sure to acknowledge that there are overlaps in your network. This can make your email feel less “spammy”, and more like a friend reaching out with a recommendation.
- Keep It Easy
Don’t be overly corporate. People will replicate the tone that you start with. Make it easy for them to respond quickly with a one liner without too much thought. This will also help set the tone for the relationship you are hoping to build.
- Call To Action
Have a call to action that doesn’t require too much effort. A ten-minute call or coffee meeting with a specific goal is a lot easier to agree to than an ambiguous meeting
Tip – Suggest a couple of times when you’ll be “in the area” and you could swing by their office. Make it easy for them to say yes.
- Subject Line
I always save this to the end. Your subject line is your first (and maybe your only) impression. In many ways, your subject line is more important than the email itself. It’s like the old saying, “If the door to the house doesn’t work, who cares how nice the floors are?”
A subject line should not just be catchy, but it should also be simple, personal, and relevant. I love a question in the subject line. I adore using the person’s name even more.
Do you have any great cold email tips? Let us know in the comments!
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