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Humanity Still Rules! And Why It Makes For Better Sales Prospecting Emails


I recently shared my thoughts on voicemail strategies, and how acting like a normal person generates more responses. Good emails follow similar guidelines, but here are a few that are tailored to the written, rather than the spoken word.

Know Your Objective – The purpose of an email is to interest your prospect enough so that you can set up a phone call. Much like your voicemail, keep it short and to the point. Overloading your email with content and attachments is not only a great way to earn yourself a one-way ticket to the Spam folder, but you can also cheat yourself out of a potential lead by giving away too much information. If a prospect thinks they have enough to make an informed decision on their own, they’re not going to want to talk to you further.

Recognize the Format of an Email – I’ve seen numerous prospecting emails begin with “My name is __ and I work in Business Development for XYZ Company.” In this day and age, an “introduction” is completely unnecessary in an email. The majority of email carriers provide recipients with your name before they even open the message. Your name, title, and company are all great pieces of information to include, but keep them in your signature. A sentence announcing them is just a waste of everyone’s time.

Ditch the Pitch! – I said this in my voicemail post as well, but it bears repeating. No one wants to talk to a salesperson. Even salespeople don’t want to talk to salespeople. If your email reads like spam, then that’s what it is, no matter what you have to say in its defense. And even if the Spam filter doesn’t catch it, don’t count on anyone opening it. Prospects respond to straightforwardness, not catchy sales lingo.

Write the Way You Talk – Along the same lines of not wanting to read a sales pitch, no prospect is going to want to read an email that more closely resembles a senior thesis. Prospecting emails need to read conversationally, and being too formal makes you seem stiff and unapproachable. Avoid being too wordy, and save the fifty-cent words for your memoir.

Spelling and Grammar Matter – This might seem to contradict my previous statement, but nothing irritates me more than blatant spelling and grammar mistakes in professional writing. Since you’re sending an email, it’s safe to assume you have internet access. It takes a fraction of a second to type a word or a phrase into a search box to make sure you’re using it the right way, so there’s no excuse to not do it. Think of your email as a resume or cover letter that you’re sending to a prospect. If you don’t care enough to double-check your spelling and grammar, why should they care about anything you have to tell them?

A good prospecting email generates responses, plain and simple. If people are willing to open your email, read it, and send you an answer, you’re already doing something right. Having someone respond with interest takes a little more skill. Keep the tone of your email pleasant and professional, and include just enough information to pique your prospects’ interest. Be approachable and knowledgeable, and people will be happy to talk with you.


Email Guide for Sales Prospecting Success


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About the Author   |   Elizabeth Guerra

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