I am working in business development for a consulting firm that provides staff augmentation, technical services, regulatory compliance evaluations and procedure upgrade projects to name a few.
I have a list of people who have worked in my same industry and we have mutual connections but I do not know them directly and in many cases at all.
How do I write a "cold email" that will catch their attention and get a response? In many cases I get nothing in return.
Cold calling is tough. Are these contacts in your local area? Use LinkedIn to find out if they are and if they attend any local events business events on a regular basis. Reach out and ask for help finding “awesome Networking”. I find that people are more willing to share with you to “help” you and if it immediately creates a warm relationship. Then once you determine if you can attend the event(s), ask them if they are going and see if you can meet them there. Once there ask them to introduce you to others. (Networking is one of the most effective ways of avoiding the cold call and working warm leads thoroughly.)
Hey Linda - There are a few secrets to getting your cold email opened and read. Let's start with the subject line.
Subject line suggestions : 1. Only use your mutual connection's name. or 2. Use your prospect's name and the phrase following up. "Lynda - following up..." or 3. Ask an intriguing question. "If your top technician quit, what's your Plan B?"
Make the first paragraph about them based on what you know. Example : I noticed you and I are both connected to Joe Smith. I thought it might make sense to reach out to you being that you are the VP of Staff Augmentation for XYZ Company and have been there for three years. Also noticed you attended Michigan State University. Go Spartans!
Make the 2nd paragraph about how you can help: I'm not sure if you've heard about our company but we fill in the gap in employment when you need it most, keep the government off your back by helping you stay compliant, and handle a lot of the technical stuff so that you can focus on running your business be it short term or permanently.
Make the closing paragraph about what you want to do next: I'd love to schedule some time to talk to you to see how we might work together. What time next Tuesday or Thursday works for you? I'll try you by phone later in case you missed this email.
I'll be happy to get you a free copy of an e-book I wrote on sales prospecting with a bunch more ideas. Just send me LinkedIn connection request at www.linkedin.com/in/ercarpenter.
Hope this helps.
Linda, I am in a role where I consult with manufacturers around the Oklahoma City area and you know as well as I that cold calling, whether in person or through email, is a tough, low yield process. I'd agree with your first responder and add that if you have the liberty to do a LinkedIn search on the people that you are trying to connect with, it can sometimes give you ideas of how to connect with them that means something. You can also use LinkedIn to find people who you know that know the person that you are trying to connect with, if you know what I mean. Cold calling is tough whether by phone, email, or in person, but it is still necessary when other avenues, like connecting through networking are not viable. I don't know if it is practical for you but I find that a good sequence is email (augmented by LinkedIn), and if that does not work a phone call, and if that does not work I just show up as a last effort to at least connect. Of course every situation is different. Good luck!
Linda, I would start out with communications introducing yourself and the common ground that you and your contacts have in common first. Then transition into why you are contacting them (business purpose). I receive a lot of "cold contact" emails daily, and I delete most of them after the first sentence. Grab their attention with a common ground topic, give it a personal touch for each individual - not just a "Hello ____" and don't be afraid to name drop using your mutual contacts. It shows that you are more than just another annoying spammer, marketing hopeful, or, even worse, someone phishing for info or contacts. Make yourself stand out as a person. Not just an email and ask if you can follow up with a phone call. I hope this helps.
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