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cold calling


Almost everybody I know hates cold phone calling, there is something in the psychology that prevents us putting ourselves in a position where absolute strangers can reject us 99% of the time.

“Cold email calling” is the less confronting and can be a hugely effective option, but unless you follow some simple rules, will still be 99% ineffective. It is just that the email will go to the trash, and you will not have to put up with someone rejecting you verbally.

If you follow these rules, and optimise your emails, their effectiveness will explode.


1. Research the prospect list.


It is easier today than ever before to create and segment your prospect list into finely drawn groups, each having a persona that is likely to respond to specific messaging. Sending an email to a professional chef outlining your Aunt Mabel’s favourite cup cake recipe is unlikely to be read.

Ensure you have a strong value proposition for each persona that you draw, one that feeds into their motivations, problems and fears.


2. Have a compelling subject line.


Your subject line is like a headline in a newspaper, or the cover of a magazine in the newsagent. In a very few words it needs to capture attention and lead you to the next action.

Ask yourself, “would I open this email”

Have a compelling “sub head”

Your first sentence is like the sub headline on that same magazine cover. If you watch what works in your local newsagent, it is often piquing curiosity that works best. Writers of these covers are the cream of direct response writers, so model your emails on the pattern that works for them.


3. It is not about you.


If your email opens with “my name is Fred Nurk from ABC Corp, and we provide the worlds best   Blah Blah product” you have probably already lost them. Instead, you need to spell out exactly how you can help them do their job better.

Be conversational. Write like a peer, someone who understand the challenges and opportunities of your target, and who relates to them. Being “needy” is the best way to lose a reader, even if you think your cause is the best in the world. Avoid weak  terms like “I hope..” and “I just ….”


4. Establish credibility.


Without credibility, you chances of converting are minimal. Providing social proof, data, of some sort is essential. A testimonial from an existing customer can be very effective, but these days, they have to be video, and the individual has to be clearly identified, and identifiable, otherwise you will be suspected of writing it yourself or getting one of your mates to do a video.


5. Create a process.


A cold email rarely creates a sale, at best it can create a warm reception to the follow up. This is the entry to your sales funnel.

There are three parts to a successful email process that recognise the “moments of truth” that occur. First you need the finely drawn persona noted above, second, you need to map the buying journey to be able to identify the points at which you can create interest, and third, you should have a schedule. It is easier to map out a series of posts around a topic, then write them, than it is to sit facing a blank screen trying to think of something to write today. Believe me, I have tried both.

None of this is easy, and it takes time and expertise, but does work. There is never any substitute for experienced, professional writing. It is not the case that everyone who can write a letter and ensure the spelling and grammar is OK can write a good sales letter, it is an art, so you are probably better off getting an artist.