Another week, another dozens of really bad prospecting attempts. As I have begun paying more attention to all of these sales attempts, I really have to wonder, are these working on some people? The obvious answer is yes. Yes, some of these seemingly horrible ‘reach outs’ definitely still convert. They just convert at a much lower rate than a well written customized attempt. There are however other variables at play. Some of these attempts are done through automation (email campaign series) or are a copy/paste job by a lower-level employee (LinkedIn DMs). With both of these scenarios, they are playing the numbers game. Even with an embarrassing conversion rate, if you are sending out hundreds a day, you are getting conversions. Could some small tweaks (even on automations) raise the conversion rate significantly? Absolutely. Should everyone be tweaking/improving their ‘reach outs’? In theory, yes. There are however other factors that must be taken into consideration. How much is a new customer worth? Is your offering very niche or appeal to the masses? If the value of a single customer is low and you sell a product that every business needs, it could be argued that the carpet bombing approach is fine. Don’t get me wrong though, some of these ‘reach outs’ are so bad they should not be sent. Even with low new customer value and a massively appealing product, your ‘reach out’ should still NOT be garbage.
Let’s get into it!
Example 1 - Clear my calendar!
The Good: Nothing.
The Bad: 10 am what time zone? It’s not 10 am everywhere.
The Ugly: You see this approach pretty regularly. Where someone is reaching out positioning someone of importance on their end wanting to chat. This approach actually can work but it has to be executed correctly. This was not executing well...at all. In fact, when it’s executed this poorly it has the opposite effect.
Things to include/be cognizant of when taking this approach:
- Who is this person that wants to meet? Name? You have made it clear they are important to you, why are they important to me?
- If you are going to make the blanket ‘I know you are busy’ comment as your opening line, basically creating an objection, you need to overcome it.
- Why do they want to meet? Why should I want to meet? What do you/they/your company do?
- Be careful with titles! Know your audience. In this approach, this person has reached out because their VP of Marketing wants to have a call with our Chief Marketing Officer. This supposed VP of Marketing was however too busy to send an email themself but expected a more senior title to drop what they are doing and agree to meet even though they have no idea who you are, what you want, what your company does, etc.
Example 2: I guess I should quit my job?
The Good: Nada
The Bad: This feels like a multi-level marketing pitch. Using buzz words from a decade ago. Very clear with this approach they are copy/pasting this bad boy into DMs. Does anyone respond to these types of messages?
The Ugly: Even though I am unsure if this is a multi-level marketing scheme or a seller of franchises, I would think that a new customer has to be worth a good bit. If it's the latter, and they are actually selling franchises, someone buying a franchise has to be a nice payday. Rethink your entire approach. This is not 1998 when you actually opened up and responded to all emails.