My job is selling technology. Actually I'm more of a translator. I sell technology to other businesses and that's where things get weird. There is a bewildering array of tech out there and unfortunately many companies think technology sells itself and the value that the technology delivers should be obvious. Wrong. That's where I come in. I said I was a translator. My job is to translate techno babble into value that customers understand. This blog share my adventures with high tech sales. Selling high tech is fun so come join me on my sales journey!

Tuesday 21 May 2013

Do you desire to amaze your babe tonight?

Did the headline work?

I was browsing through emails in my junk folder to see what is needed to grab my attention. One of the challenges of lead generation is grabbing the limited attention of strangers.  I love looking and analysing failure - it's possible to learn from others mistakes.

At least this junk mail headline achieved that goal.  Why? It asked me a question and signalled to a deeper human desire yet I didn't bother opening it - it is afterall spam. 

The approach I use when sending unsolicited emails is to be specific and on-target. That takes time and effort. The recipient knows this isn't some automated message - it clearly is a message that has been hand crafted and personally written by me.

That being said, the subject title can be all that is between my lovingly crafted message and their attention.

In today's information overload world, everyone has attention deficit disorder.  If I make it past the first few words of an unsolicted email, something like "I want...." is enough for me to hit the delete button.  I don't care what you want...."what's in it for me". Why should I bother reading any further.

So what tactics do I use to improve the success rate of people reading my unsolicited emails and even better replying?

Firstly the subject title. I opt for some word which has relevance and meaning to the person - it takes time to research that person but usually the information is out there on the web. If you don't have a keyword, the a cryptic or ambiguous title is something which you can use to arouse curiosity.  Questions can be effective but the challenge here is that questions like "Do you desire to amaze your babe tonight?" can position the message as junk rather than a hand crafted personal message.

Now to the subject body. Again asking a question right at the beginning can be dangerous "Would you like to double your sales ?".  Sure I would love to double my sales yet this position the email  as generic fluff.  If however my email said "I noticed that you attended xyz event - did you get a chance to listen to abc's talk on def ?" is far more specific and relevant for this person - it can't be junk as you're revealing information which is personal to them.

The purpose of an unsolicited email is to establish some kind of dialogue. Don't tell them your life story. I aim to keep the email short - 4-6 lines of text max.  I also aim  to end with a question which they feel they should answer.  I've also experimented with wording where I ask them direct closed question and say "If the answer is no, please delete this email".  It sends a clear message that I have a very clear target and they are not it. I doubt many people get unsolicited emails asking them to delete it so my approach is unusual - I often get a reply saying "we have xyz but not abc" so the tactic is effective at soliciting a response.

I'm always keen to improve my approach so would love to heard what works for you. 


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