6 Email Prospecting Mistakes and How to Avoid Them

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As a salesperson or manager, you know that email is a crucial part of your sales strategy. Unfortunately, email can be a double-edged sword. When email is used properly, you can see sales skyrocket. However, when email is used poorly, not only can sales suffer, but you can actively turn off your prospects.

Business development relies on electronic communication today – from social media to email newsletters, to one-on-one email connections, sales teams absolutely must know how to master these tools.

The Impact of Making Mistakes in Email Communication

Screwing up your email communication can cost a lot in terms of lost sales. While this can be hard to quantify, just consider – if a better subject line can improve your response rate from 10% to 30%, what could that do to your sales?

Here are some of the potential results of email mistakes:

1. Your Messages Will Be Ignored

Without a good email strategy, you might send out tons of emails that end up being ignored or thrown into the trash. This is, of course, a lot of wasted opportunities as well as wasted effort.

2. People Will Unsubscribe from Your Mailing List

You want to grow your list not shrink it, of course. Making email mistakes ends up in people disengaging from your messages and possibly unsubscribing completely.

3. You Could Annoy or Even Anger People

You don’t want to make your prospect an enemy. Abusing email can end up doing worse than boring people – you could upset them. And that means they will never be your customer.

Using email responsibly and wisely is important in order to be successful as a salesperson today. If you are a sales manager, then you need to make sure that your sales team is using email properly in order to get the best results.

6 Common Mistakes Sales Teams Make in Prospecting via Email

Here are some common mistakes sales teams make when trying to cultivate leads via email messaging.

1. Writing Email Content that Is Too Long

Now, there is no concrete rule on how long an email has to be. Every once in a while, a very long email might be warranted – such as when you are communicating about some important information that needs to be reviewed. However, you are not likely to need to draft a long, three-page email when you are conversing with a prospect.

During the sales process, you really need to keep your emails short and sweet. Answer relevant questions and stay on point. Providing too many details or explaining too many additional features can confused the recipient.  Keep to the topic at hand. Don’t overwhelm your reader with unnecessary details. We’ve seen that emails at 100- 150 words get the higher reply rates than longer emails.

One way to ensure your emails are concise and consistent is to create email templates for various parts of the sales.  Understand the sales messages you want to provide and set up email templates that address these questions. You can even create various templates based on the type of prospect or product you are selling to personalize and provide the most important information.

2. Neglecting to Personalize Your Emails

Once you have set up your email templates to cover a variety of common email situations, there is even more personalization that can be done. Make sure you target your emails to your specific customer.  If you’re sending a lot of emails at once, optimize the time the email is sent based on the user’s behavior.  Mail merge can also be used for subject lines. For example a simple subject like that says “[sales rep’s name] with solutions for [business name]” may get the recipient’s attention and increase open rates. We seen subject lines between 26-50 characters have higher open rate.

 Mail merge isn’t the only way to personalize your emails. Some email solutions will allow you to put engaging content in emails by embedding videos, polls, or slideshows.

Additionally, while email templates are great to save time, adding a single line can help provide some additional info for the customer in question.

3. Forgetting to Include a Direct Next Step

Your sales emails should always end with a clear call to action or next step. This does not need to be overly “salesy” and can be as simple as “Please call me at [phone number] if you have any questions.”

You can also let your prospects know what to expect from you next. For example, you might say at the end of your email: “I will be following up with you next week to see if you have any questions.” Or: “We’ll be sending you a follow-up email in 3 days with more information about X. Please be on the lookout!”

4. Sending Too Many Emails Too Quickly

Some sales people have this strange idea that “more is more.” They bombard and overwhelm their customers with a ton of sales emails in succession – sometimes more than one per day. Even major corporations often fall into this trap.

This might work on occasion for certain customers, where they may not be reading all their emails and only “catch” an email promotion here and there. But, in the long run, you are likely to get more people to unsubscribe from your list. At a minimum, space your emails out by 2-3 days.

Use email tracking and analytics to find out just how much your emails (along with frequency) are really resonating.

5. Failing to Follow Up

Failing to follow up is probably the number 1 mistake you can make as a sales person. Setting up automatic email reminders to help nudge a response and prevent it from falling through the cracks.

6. Not Delivering Value

Emails are more likely to be read and responded to if they deliver value to the client. So, consider providing a series of informational emails that aren’t meant to directly sell, but hook the client in with something useful. Email sequences make this easy to do. 

Make Email Work for You, Not Against You

As a salesperson, you want email to work for you, not against you. By being mindful about your email use, and taking advantage of the best email technologies, email can be a friend. The better you get at email prospecting, the more sales you will ultimately close. And, your customers will also be happier because of your great customer service. This is a win/win all around!

Try Mixmax for Free

Ready to use email to your advantage? Give Mixmax a try and harness the power of personalized sequences, per-recipient email tracking, and many other features. You’ll see improved productivity and more conversions. Affordable, user-based pricing makes Mixmax a low-risk, high-reward option for scaling your sales, success and recruiting teams and ensuring standardized customer processes.

Start your risk-free trial of Mixmax today.

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Written By

Daniel Lee

Daniel Lee

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