Sofia Wilton is a journalist who writes blogs for Lake B2B related to current affairs. Sofia lives in New York and also writes short stories in her spare time.
Do you use cold emails in your marketing strategies? If not, why not? Get down the article below to know how to start with a cold email list for lead generation.
If you have a raw email list, which is a mixed bag of cold and warm leads - but mostly cold ones, how do you derive engagement from it? If you think it's entirely impossible to nurture a cold list of email leads, think again!
Best Practices for Nurturing a Cold Email List
Before we dig into the top tips to nurture cold leads on your email list, let's understand the essence of lead nurturing. Nurturing a lead is no different than nurturing a relationship with a friend or acquaintance. You attempt to forge and foster a friendship with your prospect by understanding their needs and offer them solutions that add value to their life.
On the field, this translates to starting off the nurturing process by being a giver. Give your subscribers quality content generously without pitching a deal right off the bat. Not sure what we mean? Here’s how you establish initial contact and nurture leads on a cold email list.
Step 1# Finely Segment Your Cold Email List
An email list usually comprises information that goes above and beyond email addresses. For example, you often get the age, occupation, income, location, and other tit-bits of information on prospects. This helps segment your leads into different buckets for pitch personalization.
A successful marketer knows the relevance of segmenting prospects. They understand that pooling all leads, warm or cold, into one campaign doesn’t work. Sure, you cannot reach out to each lead with a personalized pitch, but you can group chunks that belong to the same demographic or occupation.
So, segment subscribers and target them with personalized offerings. Draft as many tailor-made pitches as you need based on your segments. A hyper-personalized approach works exceptionally well on cold email lists as it maximizes your value to them.
Step 2# Don’t Miss Out on Welcoming Your Subscribers
No matter how cold your email list is, you must send out a carefully drafted warm welcome email to all prospects. Manually taking this action is difficult, which is why we recommend automating a welcome message using email marketing software.
Draft a brief welcome email. Why brief? Short copies perform well! Experts say that an ideal email length copy lies between 50 to 125 words. Stay within this range when drafting your welcome email, automate the delivery mechanism, and deliver freebies to gain traction.
Remember that welcome emails have a higher open rate than newsletters. Utilize this attention by offering your subscribers a little extra than just introducing your brand and what you do. Of course, your welcome email will contain these two critical things but slip in the right CTAs and freebies to attract a response from cold leads.
Further, when nurturing contacts from a supposed cold email list, you must provide an easy way for prospects to reach out to you. So, don't forget to give a direct number for calling or a live chat option embedded within your welcome email.
Step 3# Write Compelling Subject Lines for your Emails
What should my subject line convey? How long should it be? Which words should I avoid? The answer to these questions will define your email subject line. But, why is a subject statement critical for nurturing cold leads? Without the right subject, your lead will toss your email in the trash bin. After all, it is the first impression of your brand, and you have to get it right.
Here are a few tips on how to write a subject line that sticks.
First and foremost, make sure it stays within 28 to 50 characters. Why so short? Remember that today a majority of your leads are checking their emails on smartphones. A subject sentence within this character range can be read in one go on a small mobile screen as well as on a laptop.
Once you’ve got the length right, eliminate any filler words that may distract the reader. For instance, don’t waste such precious as well as premium space in writing words like hello and thank you. You can save them for the body. Keep things short, simple and to-the-point. Sure, you can sound witty, but the subject line must tell the reader of what’s to come.
Personalize the subject line as much as you can. For instance, take the recipient’s name along with a deal they are most likely to respond on in the subject sentence.
Last but not least, do not write your email subject line in caps. Sounds like an obvious thing to avoid, but you’d be surprised how many businesses end up making this mistake thinking it’s a way to grab their target audience’s attention.
Remember, good subject lines return great email open rates, and that is a critical step in lead nurturing.
Step 4# Write a High Performing Email
Not sure what we mean? Unfortunately, smartphones have reduced the human attention span shorter than a goldfish. And, consider your cold leads’ span to be the least. To hold their attention, you need to write a highly effective email. Here’s how:
First, figure out the tone of your email body as that will decide on the kind of words you want to use. Do you want to keep things formal or informal? Do you want to use a conversational tone with your audience?
Make sure you use personalized salutations like “Hi John” instead of dear sir/ma’am. This tip is true for both B2B and B2C emails.
The rest of the email body must stay focussed on what the purpose is of sending them email communication. Don’t indulge in small talk or beat around the bush - get to the point stat!
Do not forget to end your email with a CTA or a Call to Action. A CTA button urges your reader to take action. Maybe you want to lead them to your website, or subscribe to your blog, or buy your offering. Whatever it may be, a marketing email without a CTA is a sure fail when it comes to nurturing cold leads.
Step 5# Get the Timing and Frequency Right
Ask the following two questions before sending out marketing emails:
● How often should I send emails to prospects on the list?
● What is the right time to send a marketing email?
Asking these two questions is critical to your campaign's success. Unfortunately, there is no golden average that sums up the send frequency of emails. This, you must figure out through experience and by analyzing your past engagement rates. However, one thing is for certain, sending bulk emails to prospects every day does not work. Avoid this practice at all costs.
Don't go from mailing them every day to mailing them once every two weeks or so. Doing this might lead to a lack of recognition by your leads when you email them the next time. Striking a delicate balance for email frequency will come with time and experience with a particular segment of prospects.
Last but not least, get the timing of your emails right! Sending emails to a cold list late at night or early in the morning will undoubtedly fetch you a sparse response. Your leads might also flag you for spam if you reach out at odd hours. Make sure you set time restrictions at the time of email automation.
Step 6# Don’t Forget to Follow Up
The incidences of unresponsiveness are higher when you’re working with a cold email list, which is why instigating a follow-up email is critical. It is the only way to put yourself back on the radar without sounding pushy. You can either build upon the content you shared over the welcome email or draft an entirely new pitch but keep the branding consistent with the previous email.
Remember that each follow-up email is a golden opportunity to remind your leads about your products and services. You can also share valuable resources like whitepapers, case studies, or blogs along with a product plug-in.
Through blogs, articles, and case studies, try to educate your prospects on a problem they presently face and how your offering solves them. Think of content as an indirect way of approaching your lead’s psyche.
A Quick Recap
Nurturing leads on a cold email list is not starkly different from nurturing prospects on a highly responsive list. In both cases, you need to:
● Segment your cold email list
● Send personalized welcome emails to your subscribers
● Get the timing and frequency right
● Not forget to follow up
While this strategy works almost every time on a cold email list, we recommend running a batch test on a sample set. First, randomly select a chunk of leads from your cold email list, segment them, target them with welcome and follow-up emails and then track the response rate.
Remember, email marketing is a great channel to approach even the coldest of leads. It gives you some premium one-on-one time with your prospects. Leverage this medium using the best practices listed above can turn your cold email list into a highly responsive one.
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