Cold email outreach can be challenging. You extend virtual handshakes to people with whom you have no prior relationship in hopes that they’re interested in what you have to offer. You spend time drafting these emails only to have them go unopened, which can be both frustrating and disheartening.
According to MailChimp, open rates can be as low as 15.68% for some industries across the country. That’s a lot of unopened emails. In this article, you’ll find tips to help increase your open rates and to show you how to get cold emails read more often.
7 Tips for Crafting Cold Emails Worth Reading
The secret to learning how to get cold emails read by more people is to think like your message recipients. With every email you write, you should ask yourself:
- Would you open the email?
- Would you continue reading it after the opening lines?
- Would you click through to learn more?
Based on your responses, you’ll be able to identify which parts of your email need more refining. Haven’t drafted that cold email yet? Follow the steps below to start on the right foot.
1. Write a Killer Subject Line
The subject line is the first thing your email recipients see. You have only a few words to grab their attention and entice them to open your message. In general, your email titles should:
- Keep it short
- Make it personal
- Avoid the caps lock button at all costs
One of the best places to find inspiration — should you have trouble writing a subject line — is to check emails that you’ve sent in the past to see which ones have been the most effective.
2. Steer Clear of Spam Filters
You’re likely not trying to spam prospects with outreach email campaigns, but even those with genuine intentions can get caught by spam filters. Following the rules of the CAN-SPAM Act is a great place to start. Today’s filters, however, are flagging emails with perfectly normal words and phrases that most people wouldn’t think of as spammy.
Here are just some things you should avoid:
- Excessive punctuation, like !!! or ???
- Using “click here” too often or including long URLs
- Phrases such as “be amazed” or “earn X dollars a week”
Always pay close attention and consider how your message comes off to your recipients and how it might appear to spam filters.
3. Personalize Your Message
Before worrying about how to get cold emails read, do a little research on your prospects. What you uncover will help you personalize your marketing messages.
Believe it or not, small actions things such as using a prospect’s name or mentioning their company can have a significant impact. Congratulate them on a recent achievement, bring up something from one of their blog posts, or let them know you were impressed by their product launch. Make it about them.
These acts let your prospects know that you’ve done your research, and it shows them that you care about earning their business.
4. Provide Value
Once your recipient opens your email, you want to give them a reason to keep reading.
You don’t have very long to communicate who you are and why you’re contacting them — so get straight to the point. Address their problem and let them know that the solution you provide can help. Make it crystal clear what’s in it for them.
5. Pay Attention to Timing
When they say “timing is everything,” it’s usually about love or maybe even sports — but applies to cold emailing, too.
You might be surprised to learn that the exact time you send your emails has an impact on open
rates, as does the day of the week.
A study exploring social timing found that click rates are highest early in the morning. Emails are much less likely to be opened when you send them during lunchtime or between the hours of 10 PM and 6 AM. Several studies also found that Tuesdays are the optimal day of the week to hit send.
6. Create a Clear Call-to-Action
Your subject line is often what makes the difference between a prospect opening your cold email or sending it to the trash folder. In much the same way, your call-to-action (CTA) can make the difference between that same person clicking through or ignoring the button.
Your CTA is the last chance you have to wow your prospects. Don’t make it bland or forget to put it in. Blow them away with a final statement that lets them know what they need to do, as well as why they need to do it. Make sure that you emphasis the benefit of them taking action right then and there.
7. Review Your Message Before You Hit Send
Don’t hit send immediately. Take some time to proofread what you’ve just written. Check it for grammar and spelling errors. Even minor ones can make you look bad or unprofessional. You can use online tools to help you to catch mistakes that you might miss on your own.
Once you’re happy with your cold email, go ahead and send it. If you like how it turned out, you can always save it as a template for future use.
Don’t Stop With Just One Cold Email
Your work doesn’t stop after sending that first cold email. To have that message reach as many people as possible, you’re going to have to write more emails.
The real final step — one that many people often forget — is to follow up with your prospects after sending them the initial cold email. Even if a person is interested in what you have to offer, they could get busy and forget to reply. A well-timed and well-written follow-up message to remind them that you’re still there can help to boost your chances of getting a reply.
Send at least two to three follow-ups, making sure to give the recipient a little more time between each one. A prospect might not respond to your first touch but might get back to you after you a few emails.
Automate to Boost Cold Email Open and Response Rates
If you’re looking to increase the rate at which your cold emails get opened and read, look to Sharetivity. We’re here to help.
Sharetivity can provide relevant icebreakers for every prospect, as well as personalized messages that encourage recipients to open and respond to your emails. Contact us for more information or download our Chrome extension to get started today.