Sales Outreach To Warm Prospects: Steps You Need To Follow

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Your sales outreach campaign is going to be a fundamental aspect of your Sales Training, and while we want some of it to be automated we want to make sure that the email templates you’re sending are doing the most for you.

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For your first warm outreach email to your prospects, I would suggest following these guidelines to boost your chances of getting a reply:

  • Keep it short: People don’t have much time to read, let alone respond to your email. Aim for no more than three to five sentences in your initial message.
  • Open strong: Mention a common professional connection or interest, offer congratulations on a new job or award, or send a relevant piece of content. You may use Social Media to help with your research.
  • Offer a compelling value proposition: Distill the value of your product into one sentence.
  • Include a call to action: What action do you want your prospect to take next? Ask a specific question or give them instructions on how to follow up.
  • Sound like a real person: Remember, people want to connect with other people. Buyers are much more inclined to answer an email that says "Hey prospect, did you have a chance to check the whitepaper I sent? Let me know!” than one saying “Dear Mr. Prospect, I would like to cordially invite you for a brief demonstration of our product. Sincerely, Mr. Salesman.”
  • Choose a relevant subject line: Don't slap on a completely irrelevant subject line.

In your follow-up, you want to show that you have a legitimate reason for connecting back. “Just checking in," or “Wanted to follow up.” is not sufficient of an opener, as it doesn’t convey sufficient importance to your message.

Here are four great reasons I would use for your follow-up, that will present you with value and make your conversation welcome:

  • Re-emphasize business value: It’s all about what you can do for them. Find a different way to show value. Talk to a different pain point.
  • Offer insights: Share a different perspective on their problems or a novel idea for how they can reach their goals.
  • Educate: Not every follow up should be a pitch. Instead, offer a piece of valuable content, like a whitepaper, ebook, or webinar recording.
  • Share news: Why do you think social media is so addictive? People don’t want to miss out. Follow up with news in your industry, product updates, or news about their competitors.

If you’re not receiving a response after some time, the lead may not be dead still, but just require a few more follow-ups.

A short and simple e-mail will notify your prospect of your presence again, and allow you to further evaluate their interest in your product.

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This is a very simple example that I would use:

Hey [First name],

Are you still interested in [Your solution]?

Cheers,

[Your name]

And that’s it. All it needs to be is a quick reminder, and many people will reach back to thank you for reaching out, politely decline your offer, but either way you are receiving valuable answers to learn about the status of the lead.

Set Up Your Campaigns

This part is where you give a voice and tone to each of your campaign touchpoints.

Set up different campaigns for various segments of your list. The more you can segment your list, the better your chances for a reply.

If you have a large list, start A/B testing different aspects of your campaign to find the best outreach plan. Here are a few suggested variables to test:

  • Number of touches
  • Time between touches
  • Subject lines
  • Social media mix
  • Calls to action
  • Top-down vs. bottom-up approach
  • Language and tone

Giving your leads different points of outreach to consider (without boring them with excessive details, that is) will cement your position in your sector of business.

Add Your Leads

Once the interest of a lead has been successfully gauged, it is time to start importing them into your appropriate campaigns. The right platform can allow you to position your leads appropriately into your existing campaigns without the need to create new plans specifically tailored to them.

Just make sure not to double-dip, having the same lead in multiple campaigns will send conflicting messages and is a very visible sign of disorganisation.

Launch Your Campaign

We’re at the finish line! Make one final pass through your list and templates to ensure there are no missing variables -- then hit send.

Analyze and Adjust

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After evaluating the initial interest and success of your campaign, take a step back and see what’s working and what isn’t.

Hubspot’s Campaign Data Analysis tool can help you figure out what points you may need to touch on or rethink, if they’re not working. Subsequent campaigns after your first will give you additional benchmarks in order to compare how each touchpoint and campaign is performing.

If you haven’t started yet, don’t worry. Start tracking now so you can run a data-driven prospecting campaign.

A cautionary note: Beware of “industry averages,” which are often inflated. Companies sharing benchmarks are usually those doing well. Furthermore, many of these companies are much further along in their testing programs. So, aspire to benchmark numbers but don’t be held captive by them.

While learning about your competition can be valuable to give yourself a timeline and goals, your company is your own company, and your circumstances won’t be the exact same of those that preceded you.

What you want to ensure is that you’re working smarter, not harder, and use the time you are saving to further evaluate your strategy in order to improve in your sales training. More volume isn’t always better, and your outreach may simply need better insight on what aspects of your contact and content are getting the most traction.

Either way, make sure that you don’t give up too soon, and learn from each subsequent iteration of your campaigns. Your ability to iterate and try new tactics will be the determining factor in order to improve on your sales cadence.

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David McMahon

I wrestle with marketing technology so you don't have to. I'm a certified HubSpot Partner providing lead generation, inbound marketing, HubSpot, Google Ads, SEO, social media, marketing, and sales integration services. With 20+ years of experience in marketing and computer integration.

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