Think your prospecting emails might be landing in the same folder as those confidential requests from that Nigerian prince?
Take heart, today we’re going to show you seven proven strategies to get your prospecting emails opened and read. Let’s be clear up front though, that we’re talking about direct messages to individual targets, not bulk email blasts to purchased lists. That’s another thing entirely.
To rise above the glut of inbox email, your messages need to be trustworthy, pithy, relevant, and conversational. And if they also spark some emotion, and offer business value, they’ll connect beautifully.
It’s All About Attention
Everyone wants it – family, friends, colleagues, and of course advertisers. In the battle for people’s attention, your first challenge is to make your message stand out from the clutter of the inbox. That starts with your subject line.
Think of the subject line as the door people choose over many other, less alluring options. Why would someone choose your ‘door’ over all the others?
Does it promise something useful or entertaining? Does it strike an emotional chord? Is it easy to understand, enticing, or trustworthy?
According to blogging guru Jon Morrow, it’s the headline – or subject line in email messages – that determines if recipients read further.
The best subject lines tend to be short and pithy — sometimes just 3 or 4 words. A rather amazing example is the subject line “You are not alone”, which, according to Morrow, magnetized a huge number of readers.
Subject lines with emotional resonance typically out perform more neutral ones. One way to spark emotion is with outspoken and honest opinions. Another is with humor. Subject lines that evoke readers’ curiosity will also get more clicks and opens.
And lastly, subject lines addressing people’s hopes and fears related to business challenges also tend to get more attention. What keeps your readers up at night? What goals are they likely to be obsessing over? What might they be worried about? What great news would they love to hear about?
It’s About Them – Not You
It should be clear from all of the above that getting and keeping people’s attention depends on what’s relevant and important to them. Initially, the people you’re writing to won’t care about your company or what you offer — unless it relates to their business, their people, and their situation.
One way to successfully engage readers is by asking questions that are likely to apply to their situation. According to productivity software developer Boomerang, emails that asked 1-3 questions are 50% more likely to get a response than emails asking no questions.
Keep it Simple
To keep people’s attention once they’ve opened your email, make sure the message is concise, clear, conversational, and pertinent by making it easy to read, easy to scan, and easy to remember.
Use shorter sentences with natural, uncomplicated language. It shouldn’t take more than 50 to 100 words to convey your point. Just like with voicemail, people want you to get to the key point quickly and easily.
Be informal. Write your message as though you’re talking to a friend. Engage with your prospects the way you’d like them to respond to you.
Be an early bird. If you schedule your emails to arrive in the early morning, you can be at the top of the email pile when folks arrive at the office. Consider too that people often check their email on their phones, sometimes long before they actually arrive at work.
The more complicated things get, the more we value hacks that can boost efficiency and productivity. Tips and strategies that will help your readers avoid mistakes and problems are also going to be appreciated.
What’s more, when those strategies provide real value, they’ll also help establish your credibility by giving readers a sample of the know-how and insight you’ll bring to them as their agent.
How you present those ideas in your emails makes a difference as well. When they also include questions or invoke curiosity, humor, and emotional resonance, you’ve got a winning email. Consider subject lines and content that promise pertinent business value might ask questions, peak curiosity, and evoke emotion – all at the same time:
- How to save on your upcoming renewal
- What your current agent may not want you to know
- Why consider changing your insurance agent?
- How to tell if your insurance rates are too high
- Things your insurance agent could be doing for you
- Is your insurance agent giving you what you really need?
When you’re vying for people’s attention, sending bland and boring emails won’t accomplish anything. It only takes a little thought and ingenuity to create subject lines and messages that will stand out from the rest and get people to open your ‘door’.