We are all looking for the silver bullet. Sales people have been sending prospecting emails for decades, so there must be a messaging template that works effectively across all industries right?
We're sorry to disappoint, but that's not the case. There are certainly an abundance of templates available, but no prospecting email template will be perfect for every industry and every prospect. While this can be frustrating, it also presents a unique opportunity for sales people.
If you follow these general best practices for writing great prospecting emails, you can craft messages that resonate with each prospect and differentiate you as a sales person. For this reason, it behooves you to cater each email to individual prospects. Each industry and every company faces unique challenges. As a salesperson, it is our responsibility to be educated on those differences. We need to incorporate these differences into our messaging in order to write great prospecting emails.
According to research by SalesLoft, personalization consistently delivers positive outcomes. As their research points out, be mindful of the amount of time you are spending on writing unique emails per prospect. There is diminishing return on time invested personalizing, but logic and data both prove that you should not rely on templates and mass email merges to get your prospects’ attention.
Why is personalization so effective? Why should you stop relying on templates to contact your sales prospects?
Its What Prospects Expect
According to a 2018 Trends-In-Personalization research report by Evergage, 9 out of 10 marketers state that customers and prospects expect a personalized experience throughout the customer lifecycle. And why wouldn’t they? Prospects are well aware that their LinkedIn profiles are available to the public. Business leaders are not shy about using social media to post about a recent conference or company trip. Businesses also frequently post publicly about acquisitions and expected trends.
If valuable, unique information about prospects and their companies is publicly available on the internet, salespeople need to take advantage. Business leaders don’t have time to fill you in on information that can be easily found with a quick google search. Modern prospects expect salespeople to be armed with information and prospecting emails are a great way to showcase that knowledge.
The research report by Evergage also revealed another important statistic. Only 12% of Marketers are “extremely” or “very” satisfied with their level of personalization. This means that as salespeople, we have plenty of opportunity to stand above the crowd when sending out prospecting emails. We can rise above vendor noise by researching and personalizing, not by relying on templates to do our jobs for us.
Research Is The Only Way to Add Value
Almost all sellers today are aware that the modern buyer is different. The availability of online content and the growth of social media have made B2B buyers more informed than ever. According to an Accenture study, 94% of B2B buyers conduct online research at some point in the buying process.
As a result, sales people need to be able to deliver value to prospects during every interaction from the very start. Prospects already have access to information; they need sales professionals to ask thought provoking questions and offer insightful analysis on the market.
This means that your prospecting emails need to be insightful and thought provoking enough to make a business leader curious. Asking good questions and providing valuable insights means you know something substantial about your prospect and their business. You can’t prove that you have done your homework if you rely on templates to conduct your prospecting.
Personalization Creates a Human Connection
This is a cliché among B2B sales professionals but it’s very important to remember: businesses don’t buy from other businesses. People at businesses buy from people at other businesses. Despite the looming rise of AI technology, sales is still a very human endeavor.
Did your prospect post about how proud they are to celebrate their 10-year anniversary with a company? Bring it up in your prospecting note! Congratulate them and tell them what a remarkable achievement that is. It will make them curious about your email and more willing to listen to what you have to say.
You can’t write an email with that level of nuance if you rely on templates. You will never be able to reap the benefits of making a human connection with someone if you treat them like a number on a list.
There are statistically validated best practices you can follow to send effective prospecting emails across all industries. However, none of those proven best practices suggest that you should rely on templates.
Do your homework and personalize the prospecting emails you send. It’s the only way to make a human connection and prove to your prospect that you are capable of adding value to their business. Stop relying on templates because that’s what your future customer wants you to do and that alone, is reason enough.