A Fundamental Misconception About Cold Email
Brief, blunt. Provocative. This message proves the seller researched the client's organization and ties the observation about John's current situation to his decision-making process ... in a way that helps John think about his situation.
Notice: This provocation is not asking for a meeting, nor positioning the seller as credible. The message is not trying to create a sense of urgency or pushing a call-to-action. This message asks a question that doesn't lead John to a conclusion the seller wants. Instead, it asks a question that John needs to be asking himself in the future.
See the difference? This is a "grabber."
The message isn't conversational. It's transactional. John doesn't need to scroll on his mobile device to read it and quickly respond.
This is what works in cold email. Transactions that provoke conversations. Short, pithy messages that stand out by not talking about anything other than the prospect.
The above message isn't accidentally signaling "mass email social selling approach." It avoids recognizing the prospect's:
- recent accomplishment or promotion
- blog article or post
- social media trigger
- decision-making authority
These tactics are working less in cold email. Because everyone is using them. They're cheap and lazy ... and commonplace. Clients are being deluged by long, conversational emails that just plain take too long to read and signal "this person wants a premature meeting."
Instead, provoke the conversation and progress it to a meeting.
Why Conversations Won't Serve You
A sales training company uses the below as a good example of a second paragraph in a cold email. The below paragraph provides relevancy to the target's work life and puts forward an issue the seller believes is of interest to the buyer.
But is this effective lately? Have a look:
"I understand you are overseeing the demand generation strategy, Phil. We've been speaking with a lot of marketers who tell us they are not satisfied with the conversion rate of MQL to opportunity. If you ask them why they point to the skills of the sales team. The ones who conduct training internally say they do a great job training on products and internal systems and processes — they just don't have enough time to cover sales training."