Pandemic or not, it's been a while since we all moved our businesses online, and we want them to thrive there. However, for that to happen, we need people to actually engage with us online and who are willing to contribute to our vision by joining in. Most company’s strategies for reaching out to their customers are rather poor, old-fashioned, and not aligned to current business trends.
Don’t think you are the only one whose outreach emails get deleted almost instantly upon reception. Lots of companies have a generic approach to their outreach strategy which is exactly why the emails they send end up being deleted before even being read. In this blog, we highlight the most common reasons your emails aren’t getting a response.
To maximise the response to your outreach strategy and help you understand what you may have done wrong in the past, we are listing some of the most frequent mistakes businesses make with their outreach strategies and how to fix them:
Suffice to say that researching your target audience is crucial before launching an outreach campaign. Unfortunately, it appears that too many people don’t understand the importance of a personal approach. When someone receives a generic email that relates very little or not at all to their interests, the recipient knows you didn’t spend any time getting to learn about them.
What’s more, opening your emails with “Hello, hope this email finds you well” is an example of what not to do if you want to create a bond with the person you are targeting. They have a name and they want to read it at the top of your email.
Emailing the same template to 100 people and hoping for the best just doesn’t work. And no, this “extra effort” has nothing to do with the new rules of social media in 2021; it’s more about common decency. Think of it this way: if you didn’t make much of an effort to find out about them, why should they make an effort to read your email and respond?
Despite being the first thing your recipient sees before they open the email, most people don’t think twice about the subject line before clicking “send” – and this is where they are wrong. The subject of your email needs to be encouraging and inviting enough to intrigue the recipient to click. Leaving it blank won’t do your open rates any good while putting something generic means you will probably end up in the spam folder. Here are a few examples of generic subject lines:
In creating your subject line, show that you’ve spent time researching their website, using unique phrases and tone of voice, avoiding capitalising (capitalised subject headings are often considered spam), and show the recipient you’re genuine. It might be a challenge to leave a positive impression in just a few words per subject line, but if you’re struggling yourself, a good copywriter can help.
You know what they say – no answer is an answer, so if you didn’t get a reply the first or the second time after reaching out, why send the third, fourth… fifteenth email? Harassing your prospects just doesn’t work. It might have worked a while ago with traditional methods but it sure isn’t working in the digital age. Aside from not replying to your multiple emails, your prospect will likely mark you as “spam”, and you will never get to approach them again.
So, what can you do if you don’t get a reply? Nothing much. Step back, regroup, and see what you are doing wrong. If you are not sure about the quality of emails you are sending out, seek help from those who specialise in the matter; also, check out your (successful) competition, use LinkedIn tools for extended visibility of your brand, rethink and recreate your LinkedIn outreach strategy – do anything and everything except harass your prospects with numerous emails.
If you are successful and your prospect actually opens and reads your email, don’t waste their time - be as straightforward as possible. Make sure you are clear about what you are offering, how that is relevant to their business or life, and why they should pick you out from the competition.
If your email is just a bunch of information that doesn’t seem to offer something specific, you are very likely not to get an answer. While it is understandable that you want to list all of your products straight away, leave that for an in-person meeting. Instead, go the extra mile and focus your outreach strategy on researching your target influencer so that you can offer something that’s actually relevant to them.
The hard truth of the digital era is that people hardly read the emails that interest them, let alone huge blocks of text that aren’t relevant to them. No matter how eager you are to promote your business via email, you can be sure that hardly anyone will be kind enough to read walls of content in their free time. Textual emphasis used in emails is generally fine if it stays within the lines of a pitch that’s specific to the recipient. However, the moment you overuse it, the email becomes diluted, sloppy, and irrelevant.
Instead, choose a more concise approach to sum up the significant benefits of your offer and leave things on a powerful note. Intrigue your recipient so they reply and ask to learn more about your offer. A good outreach strategy is like a good movie trailer – you want to get teased enough to buy the ticket and go to the cinema.
Not being upfront has never been a good look online. In today’s world, you need to be clear - unclear intentions don’t work with your fellow professionals. If you are already contacting a prospect about something, be intentional and clear about what you are offering, what you expect of them, and how you can both benefit from it.
We are all busy and have little time to waste – your transparent approach will be appreciated far more than spam emails saying nothing in way too many words. Also, make sure your brand can speak for itself - a well-designed and constructed brand will encourage potential clients to want to respond to you.
So please fix it. Sloppy content filled with grammatical errors and stylistic blunders will never get a good response. You simply cannot afford to be illiterate in your approach. If you are not a native English speaker you can always sign up for English courses, turn to educational videos to build your brand or hire a native speaker to write the emails – at least until you are fully confident in your writing skills. There’s nothing to be ashamed of – it’s just good business practice.
Outreach is all about building sustainable, long-lasting, and mutually beneficial relationships with customers or other people in your industry. Before deciding to contact someone, take the time to research the person you are contacting and show them you, too, are worth talking to. We hope the above advice helps, and your new outreach strategy is a great success!
by Becky Halls | 25 Jan 22
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