November 18th, 2013

Lead Nurturing and Prospecting emails that Make Me Scratch My Head and Go Hmmm….

prospecting-and-lead-nurturing

Lead Nurturing and Prospecting emails that Make Me Scratch My Head and Go Hmmm….

It seems I hit a nerve with my blog post Is Email on Life Support as a Sales Effectiveness Tool. It has become one of our most popular, and it continues to generate conversation and discussion on social media.

As sales and marketing professionals, we have seen the declining effectiveness of email for prospecting, lead generation, and lead nurturing. Yet, it remains a necessary tool in our arsenal.

As SVP of marketing at Richardson, I get my fair share of sales calls, and I receive quite a number of lead nurturing and  follow-up emails after I download a white paper or article. I don’t always open the emails, or spend much time with them if I do click to open, because I usually only want the download. But if something interesting catches my eye, I read on. The lesson here for marketers is the need to target and engage prospects from the get-go, starting with the email “Subject” line, then quickly leading into the right message and value statement.

Here are a few real-life examples of lead nurturing and prospecting emails I received that didn’t deserve to be opened, but once read, just had me scratching my head and saying “Hmmmm…. “

“I found you through Google search engine. Did you see my last email? I am writing you today to remind you about our SEO capabilities.”

Really? You found us through a search engine and you want to sell me on your search engine capabilitiesHmmmm….

“I’m hoping to talk with you about doing some telemarketing for Richardson Group.  I know your business is complex, but we can actually do it better than you and at a much lower cost than your internal team can.”

So let me get this straight. Your team of untrained professionals is going to be able to sell Richardson’s complex services over the phone better than our own team? Hmmmm….

“I have sent you a couple of emails but have not heard back from you. I wanted to call you to follow up but you seem to be on the “Do Not Call” list. Would it be OK to call you?

No, it’s not OK, that’s why I’m on the list. Now what do you say? Hmmmm….

“Hi James, is there 10 minutes we could have a call in the coming weeks?”

I know we are all trying to cut the amount of text down, but this was the entire email. I have no idea who he was or what he wanted. Hmmmm…..

“Hi {first name}, I sent you an email but I did not receive a response from you. I’m curious if you have read my previous email and want to take this initiative further.

Dear Salesperson First Name – I have no real idea who your company is or what they provide. How well did you really prepare for this prospecting email? Hmmmm….

“Hi, Follow up on my last email, just wanted check with you if you got a chance to review my lasts email.

Huh… I have to respond to this person? Please make sure you proofread your emails. Hmmmm….

“I am sorry to bother you, but would you mind referring me to the person in charge of your sales training? We are a leading sales training company and would like to train your team. Thanks for the help and have a great day!

I am sorry, but do you know Richardson? Did you research us at all? Look us up on LinkedIn? Anything? I actually received a call from this person as well. He was very surprised when I told him what Richardson does. Hmmmm….

I have been in this industry a long time. Because of this, I tend to hold sales professionals to a higher standard than most when it comes to communicating, prospecting, and lead nurturing. I may be a harsh judge, but I rank 70%-80% of the emails I receive as below average in sales effectiveness.

While marketing automation products provide the tools for mass communication, they’re not smart enough to make sure those communications are effective or even well written.

It’s up to you to target the appropriate prospect, develop a message that delivers value and insight, write an email that engages the reader, proofread that email for any mistakes, and test the technology to make sure it works as intended.

Don’t treat prospecting and lead nurturing as just a box to check in your strategic marketing plan. You need a well thought-out process if you have any hopes of making a good impression on the prospect and driving action. You may not receive a response the first few times, but if you’ve done your homework and have the right combination of target/message/value/timing, you just might begin to see your own email inbox fill with responses.

Need to Jump Start Your Next Sales Meeting? Add a Richardson Selling with Insights® Workshop. Click here to find out how!

selling-with-inisghts-workshop-valuestory

About The Author: James A. Brodo

Jim Brodo is Senior Vice President of Marketing at Richardson. Jim brings over a decade experience to this position with Richardson, where he oversees all marketing and communications efforts for the organization including SEO, SEM, planning, public relations, advertising, lead nurturing, and brand strategy. Jim is currently focused on updating the corporate identity, especially through the use of organic SEO and SEM tactics. He spearheaded the implementation of professional social networking strategies, launch of the new website, updated messaging, and marketing materials. In addition, Jim is credited for creating a content marketing syndication strategy that focuses on adding value to clients and prospects. As the leader of the corporate marketing operations, Jim aims to strengthen Richardson’s brand as the top sales training company in the industry.

On Social media:
Twitter | LinkedIn | Facebook
James A. Brodo

6 Responses to “Lead Nurturing and Prospecting emails that Make Me Scratch My Head and Go Hmmm….”

  1. November 18, 2013 at 11:22 am, Mark Gibson said:

    Hi jim,
    Good post, I get 5-10 of these a day. I resell HubSpot and get at least 10 offers helping me to SEO my Website a week. Ditto people offering to blog for me or wanting to guest post. When I reply to the guest posters asking them to show me an example of thought leading stuff they have written in the sales and marketing domain the line goes silent. Lots of activity, little result.
    I will drop by your tent at Dreamforce.

    Mark

    [REPLY]

  2. November 18, 2013 at 11:22 am, Mark Gibson said:

    Hi jim,
    Good post, I get 5-10 of these a day. I resell HubSpot and get at least 10 offers helping me to SEO my Website a week. Ditto people offering to blog for me or wanting to guest post. When I reply to the guest posters asking them to show me an example of thought leading stuff they have written in the sales and marketing domain the line goes silent. Lots of activity, little result.
    I will drop by your tent at Dreamforce.

    Mark

    [REPLY]

  3. November 18, 2013 at 11:32 am, Andy Moorhouse said:

    Great post Made me chuckle! I received an email today selling “turnkey solutions” that would “augment revenue…” I still have no idea what they actually do.

    [REPLY]

    • James A. Brodo

      November 18, 2013 at 11:41 am, James A. Brodo said:

      Thanks Andy. I am thinking about doing a March Madness pool for lead nurturing and prospecting emails. Send some of your more “interesting” ones to me at jim.brodo@richardson.com.

      [REPLY]

  4. November 20, 2013 at 9:29 am, Kari Lehman said:

    Found myself giggling at this one. Thanks for the morning humor!!

    [REPLY]

  5. November 26, 2013 at 3:36 pm, Kelley Robertson said:

    And people wonder why they struggle to connect with decision makers.

    [REPLY]

Leave a Reply

Previous Post:

»

Next Post:

»

HE Blog Directory Business Blogs best blog sites