Nowadays, the majority of marketers and salespeople believe it is safe to infer that a prospect is indifferent if their email does not receive a response.

Instead of using follow-up emails to encourage a prospect to purchase their product or service, they instead move on to new prospects.

A follow-up email, what is it? In order to seal a deal, a series of emails known as a follow-up emails are typically sent out following a crucial point in the sales funnel.

According to several research, follow-ups increase response rates. According to a study by Iko System, the first email received an 18% response rate, while the fourth email received a 13% response rate. They were shocked to learn that the sixth email in the cycle received a massive 27% response rate! Their conclusions are depicted in the graph below.

A second study showed that sending the same prospect an identical email several times can result in two times as many responses.

Emails sent as follow-ups are successful because they :

  • Assist in fostering gradual trust
  • Raising conversion rates
  • Filter your audience to focus on leads that are actually worth following up on.
  • A source of potential referrals
  • With each interaction, provide the prospect with value.
  • Raises the credibility of your organization
  • Makes you stand apart from your rivals

The sample follow-up email that demonstrates how the sender added value for the prospect is shown below.

Below is the ideal format for your follow-up emails:

  • Subject Line: It’s generally a good idea to keep a follow-up email in the same thread as the original, keeping the subject line the same. So make sure the subject line of your first email is intriguing enough.
  • Welcome
  • Body
  • Closing (CTA)
  • Approving signature

Let me now lead you through the process of creating the ideal follow-up email, which will aid in getting a positive response and help you get closer to closing the business. Setting objectives for your follow-up campaign for cold outreach is essential, just like for any other activity you undertake.

Sending follow-up emails before you begin working on one will allow you to be very clear about your goals and ambitions.

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Six stages for writing a follow-up email

Stage 1: Determine Your Goal & Tell Your Prospect About It

Stage 2: Make Sure the Subject Line of Your First Email Is Attention-Grabbing

Stage 3: Explain the Situation to the Prospect – Opening Line

Stage 4: Strengthen Your Value

Stage 5: Finish by including a call to action.

Stage 6: Automate your follow-up sequence

Stage 1: Determine The Goal of Your Follow-Up Email and Explain It To Your Prospect

If you are unsure of your purpose, don’t send an email!

Determine in advance what you want to achieve with each every follow-up email. Of course, turning a prospect into a paying customer is the main objective. However, it’s possible that won’t happen with the first follow-up email you send; you’ll probably need to do some light grease work.

Your objective(s) can be to schedule a demo, get a prospect to join up for a free trial, organize a meeting, close a transaction, etc. Consider the subsequent action that will move the lead closer to the sales funnel in the lead nurturing process.

Whatever your objective, make sure you state it in the email with clarity. Try to be as explicit as you can; this lets potential customers know that you aren’t wasting their time and that you’re serious about getting their attention. This increases the likelihood that you’ll get the information or reaction you need from them.

For example,

  • {{First_Name}} if you are interested in my idea, let me show you how to benefit from using our product. Plan a free demonstration here: {{add link}}.
  • {{Your organization’s name}}  Recently released
  • {{product name}} may have a significant impact on  {{how it will impact them}}

You could [increase your sales by 10% this quarter] with the aid of {{product name}} ! I was wondering if you would be willing to give it a free trial. 

Going around in circles might not benefit anyone because your leads might be short on time. The email must be brief and easy to read while concentrating on achieving this aim (or actionable). How do you craft a succinct follow-up email? Keep your sentences brief and cut out any unnecessary filler (adjectives, adverbs, conjunctions, etc.)

Stage 2: Make Sure Your First Email's Subject Line Is Catchy

Your email’s subject line should be given greater weight than its body text. The subject line is, after all, one of the first things your prospect looks at.

It’s a good idea to keep all of your follow-ups on the same thread to avoid deliverability issues. Therefore, the most important part of the email is the subject line.

The success or failure of your cold email campaigns may depend on the subject line you use.

According to Harvard Business Review research, recipients delete 47% of all emails because the subject lines are boring! You cannot take a chance with that huge percentage.

Aim to avoid using words that will cause the spam filter to flag your emails as spam and send them to the junk or spam bin. Be especially careful when choosing your subject line because 69% of email recipients classify emails as spam based just on the subject line.

When crafting subject lines, remember these three essential guidelines :

  • Personalise as much as you can! 
  • Be succinct and to the point. 
  • Include interesting inquiries 
  • Keep the length of your subject line optimized at 9 words and 60 characters, especially for mobile readers.
  • Conduct A/B testing.

It’s important to note that, while you can change the subject line of your follow-up, doing so is not recommended because it could cause misunderstanding.Consider using the same subject line throughout all of your emails to guarantee that they get read in sequence. By doing so, it will be clear that this email is a follow-up and that it contains any important details or updates. If you do this, the recipient will be able to understand the message’s purpose and react properly.

Stage 3: Give the prospect background information - Opening Line

Recall how we said earlier that 121 emails on average are received daily by business professionals. Because of this, it is possible that email recipients won’t remember who you are, so it’s critical to include a personal connection, distinctive identification, or shared interest that will provide them context to aid in remembering you.

It is crucial that your opening phrase prompts them to remember you, maybe by calling their attention to your earlier email. They are more likely to reply to someone who has already approached them, even if they cannot recall you.

The last thing you want is to confuse them, so make sure your introductory sentence explains why you are following up.

Here are a few illustrations of strong subject lines (email openers) that you can use to set the scene for your recipient :

  • Hello, “First Name” I saw you read my earlier email. Simply wondering…
  • In relation to the email I wrote a few days ago, I’m getting in touch with you.
  • First Name, I just wanted to follow up quickly to see what you felt about the subject of the email.
  • Have you had a chance to look at my last email?
  • I realize you’re probably busy right now, but I thought you might find this useful. 
  • The First Name, I haven’t heard back from you, but I am confident that the email’s content will yield the outcomes you need.

Beyond this, offer to help your prospect overcome any roadblocks to closing by requesting them to do so. Practice responding to your emails as quickly as you can in order to encourage people to open up to you more (by fostering a sense of trust and confidence). In this section of the email, address any obvious clarifications you feel you can help with.

Stage 4: Strengthen your value

I only wanted to check in with you on the email below, which said “Give value. Add value. Add value. then request business. Garry Vee

Since you receive emails, you are aware of the significance of useful content. You won’t likely bother responding to an email that doesn’t contribute anything to your life.

Your emails are most likely not receiving responses for this reason, which is that they lack value. Never send a follow-up email unless you have something new and valuable to say; you need to prove your value. And don’t forget to use DMARC to check the deliverability of your emails, which uses SPF flattening and/or DKIM identities to confirm the legitimacy of transmitting domains.

‘Generic’ follow-up emails won’t help you either, so avoid them. The entire “touching base” or “catching up” method is outmoded and ineffective; prospects want much more. Each exchange you have with them must be beneficial. Make it worthwhile for them.

Here are some strategies for adding value to your prospect :

  • Share consumer feedback (ideally from a company or industry similar to their own). 
  • Remedies for particular aches and pains 
  • Blog entries, social proof, and e-books
  • How-to manuals and videos 
  • A case study
  • Webinar – Alluring deals & discounts
  • Prolonged no-risk trial

Regardless of how you choose to add value, be sure it is pertinent to them and that they will see it as a benefit. You must motivate your prospects and encourage them to respond in order to start a conversation.

Additionally, you can ask them for their opinions about specific issues. For instance, you could inquire of your lead whether the pricing is acceptable to them. Or what if a feature they require is missing from your product or service? By doing this, you’ll build a strong business relationship and gain insight into your prospect’s thinking, enabling you to better meet their demands.

Stage 5: Finish by including a call to action

Your email must be actionable, making it simple for recipients to respond. And specifically how do you do that? A convincing Call-To-Action (CTA) is added. Under no circumstances neglect your CTAs.

Many follow-up emails have excellent subject lines and content, but since their CTAs are poor, they fail to elicit the intended response.

  • Use these brief suggestions to create a powerful CTA: 
  • A major ask shouldn’t be made right away in the follow-up cycle. Prioritise building trust first.
  • Give potential customers a chance to learn more about you before they agree to a contract.
  • Start with simple requests, like asking for a quick meeting or sharing resources.
  • Don’t allow any room for doubt; be as explicit as you can. Be specific about the next steps you want your prospect to take and avoid seeming ambiguous.
  • Don’t ask for too much or do too much. A burden is not something your prospect wants. Make your CTA (the request) straightforward and easy to understand so that the prospect can 
  • examine it or swiftly reply. For instance, simply respond “yes” and I will share more information with you if you are interested in knowing more about this.

Stage 6: Automate your follow-up sequence

It will be challenging to manually send follow-up emails. Particularly if you have to track each one separately to determine which prospect is truly important. Instead, utilize a platform for cold email automation that enables you to build up automated follow-up cycles.

I advise using SendBuzz, a tool for cold email outreach that lets you design customised follow-up cycles. The software comes with capabilities that will greatly reduce your costs, save you a tonne of time, and increase the success of your follow-ups.

SendBuzz’s Features That Will Help for Follow-up

Some of SendBuzz’s features that will help your follow-up campaign succeed include the following:

  1. Automated Follow-Ups:
    Use SendBuzz to create automatic follow-up sequences, often known as “Email Sequences.” You can choose how many days apart the emails should be sent. Multi-stage sequences can be set up to your preferences, and all information can be customized for each prospect.
  2. Behavior-Based Triggers for Actions
    To save time, organize your follow-up sequence around trigger-based behavior actions. Based on how the prospect responded to the first email in the series, you may decide whether or not to send them the subsequent email. You can specify the action you want to send the subsequent email in response to, whether you want it to be read, opened, or replied to. Even the interval between emails can be chosen.
  3. Combine Tags
    It is impossible to make each follow-up email personalized because there are so many to send. Merge tags are fortunate to exist. By adding merge tags to the compose window, you can easily personalize the text of your emails. Merge tags operate according to the CSV file you load into SendBuzz; the custom field associated with a certain merge tag will appear in the email that is ultimately sent. First name, last name, city, firm name, etc. are examples of common merge tags. Up to 30 custom fields may be imported and utilized as merge tags with SendBuzz.
  4. Email Attachment:
    In your follow-up emails, you can attach files. You can provide as much information as you can about yourself and your business using this function.
    Attaching PDFs, Docs, PPTs, and other sorts of documents is simple. We suggest keeping your email size under 20MB to maintain good email deliverability.
  5. Time Zone
    Your potential customers most likely live in several time zones. To encourage higher open and response rates, follow-ups can be planned according to your prospect’s time zone.
  6. Testing A-B:
    Will every prospect be receptive to and benefit from the email content you are sending? Most likely, it won’t. This is the main justification for A-B testing. To see which material is doing better, SendBuzz lets you create 26 versions for each step in your sequence.
  7. More detailed email analytics
    You may track each step of your follow-up procedure to get complete information. By estimating your prospect’s level of interest, you may optimize your sequence and make data-driven decisions.
  8. Integrated Inbox
    Unified Inbox is a new feature we’ve added to assist you streamline reply management. You don’t have to switch between several inboxes using Unified Inbox to access responses to your cold emails.
    You can now read all of your emails in one location, track all of your replies, and access them all at once, speeding up your response time. Additionally, you can use SendBuzz’s Unified Inbox Bulk selection to gain total control over your inbox and utilize cutting-edge AI filters to classify and order any email replies.
    Your entire follow-up cycle can be automated with SendBuzz, which also increases your response rates.

When should you follow up through email?

The majority of experts advise delaying your first follow-up email for two to three days. Depending on how many follow-up emails you intend to send, you can gradually lengthen the time between each email.

The optimum follow-up sequence for 7 follow-up emails is shown in the chart below (ideally, there should be 7 touch points total, including the first one). In fact, marketing guru Dr. Jeffery Lant advises that in order to successfully break into a market, a prospect must be continuously reached at least seven times.

Example of a Follow-Up Sequence :

Following up on a job application:

Dear [Hiring Manager’s Name],

I wish that you were doing well. I was interested in following up on the application form that I submitted to [Company Name] for the post of [Job Title]. The opportunity pleases my interest considerably, and I would like to appreciate you taking a glance at my application.

I just wanted to find out if the recruitment team for this role has progressed and if there’s anything further I am able to do to improve my application. I would be happy to discuss the queries with you or you may arrange a phone call to discuss the work in detail.

I appreciate your time and hope to talk with you soon.

Best regards, [Your Name]

Following up on a sales proposal:

Dear [Client Name],

I hope all is okay with you. Just wanted to check in regarding the [Product/Service Name] sales proposal I gave to you last week. I want to take a few minutes and check on the proposal which I have sent to you. I understand that you are busy and have a lot of work to do, and I just wanted to make sure that you received the proposal and had a chance to review it.

Please let me know if you have any questions or need more information. I would be happy to schedule a phone call to discuss the proposal in more detail and answer your questions.

Thank you for your time and I look forward to hearing from you soon.

Best regards, [Your Name]

Following up on a meeting:

Dear [Meeting Attendee’s Name],

I hope this email finds you well. I am following up on the meeting we had yesterday regarding [Meeting Topic]. I wanted to make sure that I understood all of the following steps correctly, and if there was anything else I could assist with.

If there are any additional questions or concerns that we did not cover in the meeting, please let me know. I would be happy to schedule another meeting to discuss any further.

Thank you for your time and I look forward to hearing from you soon.

Best regards, [Your Name]

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