Make Your Brand Voice Stand Out
In today’s crowded business world, brand awareness is a constant struggle. The big guys might have the budget to run expensive marketing campaigns just to build awareness of their brand…but the big guys don’t need it, since people already know who they are. In the meantime, small business struggles to get our names out there, and it’s not getting any easier. But what if you could use outreach emails to help build brand recognition and get your name out there in a crowded marketplace?
What are outreach emails? Simply enough, they are cold emails we send to people to attempt to connect with them. They might be an attempt to establish a collaboration or partnership, or reach out to an influencer, or earn press coverage. And all of these are tactics that are devastatingly effective in the brand recognition arena.
Let’s look at some ideas for how you can increase brand awareness through email!
It’s A Numbers Game
Cold emails can be tough. It’s a numbers game; some people will ignore you, or give you a flat no. However, a numbers game isn’t won by spam. You’ve got to be persistent and keep trying to make connections, yes, but you also need to maximize your chances for each email to have an impact. That means crafting each email with meticulous zeal. It means using best practices and data-driven insights to make your email irresistible. It means having the fortitude to keep trying even if you don’t get immediate results, but continually fine-tuning your approach.
Only 8.5% of outreach emails get a response. Most of them are ignored or deleted. However, follow-ups significantly improve response rates (we’ll get back to this later, it’s important.)
Follow Up To Win
We cannot emphasize the power of persistence enough. People are busy. They get interrupted while handling email. They get overwhelmed by the volume of email they’re receiving (the average office worker receives 121 emails every day!) Whatever the reason is. sending one email just isn’t enough to reach most people. Sending one or two follow ups can boost response rates by as much as 65%! Follow-up emails work.
Thing is, it’s hard enough to send cold emails, and follow up emails are even harder. Maybe you feel like it would be bothering the recipient. Maybe it’s tough to keep track of who you’ve followed up with when. The solution? Automate it.
Setting an email follow up tool can automate follow ups for you. For example, Follow up Fred is an extension for Gmail that allows you to automate a personalized follow up message. The tool will continue to send follow ups automatically until you receive a response. You can set your own timing to send aggressively or just once every few days, and the integrated dashboard tracks open rates and click through rates. This tool is a huge force multiplier; you can focus on reaching and engaging people and let automation keep trying to get in touch with them so you can work your magic.
That being said, if they are getting your emails all along, repetitive ‘did you see my email?’ follow ups are just going to be annoying. It’s safe to assume you’ll have to send a follow-up or two, so put some thought into how to craft them. Use follow-ups to both nudge them to read the original and add extra context. If each follow-up builds additional value, it increases your odds of getting a positive response.
Email Multiple Contacts
Especially for B2B marketers, sometimes you’re reaching out to an individual because they represent an organization you want to reach out to. Thing is, especially with cold email, that may not be the right person, or there may be others more willing to listen.
The biggest difference maker in outreach email is following up, but the second biggest difference maker is reaching out to multiple contacts. When you combine the two, your success rate goes way up. So don’t email one person in an organization and write the whole org off; do some research and identify a few people who might be in a position to hear you out. (Note: don’t spam everyone in the company directory, obviously. Target a few individuals who you believe would be the right connections.)
Personalization Makes Perfect
No one wants a form letter. Sure, copy-and-pasting an email a hundred times is quick and easy, but it’s also not going to get many responses or get people excited to work with you. Making each recipient feel like you’re reaching out to them specifically incentivizes them to reply.
Adding personalization to your subject line can increase your response rate by up to 33%! Why? As stated before, inboxes are crowded. A strong subject line and use of personalization helps you stand out amongst many emails in someone’s inbox. Which of these subject lines would you be more likely to open:
A: ‘Better SEO results’
B: ‘Let Us Show You How We Can Improve Acme Used Birdhouses SEO by 71%!’
Almost everyone would be more likely to click B. Unless the recipient doesn’t actually work for Acme Used Birdhouses so definitely make sure you’ve got good data.
Body copy is also an important area to personalize. Using the recipient’s name instead of a generic ‘hi’ tells them that you at least cared enough to reach out to them individually instead of spammed form letters. The most effective is to write a customized email that references their particular circumstances. You can still use a template; let’s face it, crafting dozens of emails from scratch is a time sink. However, a good outreach email template will allow you to tailor the body copy to the recipient.
More Outreach Email Best Practices
Here’s a few items about outreach emails:
- Emails with longer subject lines get more responses, so long as they’re descriptive and relevant. People don’t have time to read every email, so taking the time to provide a descriptive subject line shows respect for their time.
- Wednesday is the best day to send outreach emails, although any weekday is good. (Saturday is the worst day. Go ahead and take that day off.)
- Providing some social proof can really help your response rates: links to your social media pages can increase your response rate by up to 10%! The strongest benefits come from Twitter, Instagram, or LinkedIn; a Facebook link doesn’t help you much.
- Use the inverted pyramid: People aren’t going to read your whole email if it doesn’t build value from the get-go, so put the most important information first, and ruthlessly excise irrelevant information.
Above all else, keep the faith. It might be frustrating if you send 100 emails out in your first week and only get one or two replies, but statistics is a fickle mistress. The next week you might send the same number of emails out and get twenty replies. Just keep in mind that if you’re doing the right things and sticking to the plan (and doing your follow-ups!), outreach email is a great way to increase brand awareness. So get those outreach emails sent and let the whole world know about your brand!