Here is a situation you probably experienced a number of times. You are working tirelessly to generate new leads, create the best prospecting strategy, write the perfect outreach email. You send the emails expecting high response rates but there is no answer. Do not lose your hope. It’s time to get familiar with the effectiveness of follow-up emails.
Statistics suggest that only 24% of sales emails are opened but just 20% of leads are followed up. In fact, a campaign with just 1 follow-up mail can convert 22% more prospects. This means there is a massive loss of potential opportunities. Also, it tells us that the fear of seeming annoying to prospects or getting rejected can discourage further contact.
Another reason why follow-up emails aren’t getting the respect they deserve is the fact that marketers spend most of the time creating first impression emails and not focusing enough on persistent methods of contact.
So, how should you start?
When to Write Follow-Up Emails?
In most scenarios, you will create follow-up emails after you’ve sent the first outreach email and it resulted in no response. However, follow-up emails can also be useful when you want to check in after the first meeting or reconnect with existing clients.
Best Time to Send Follow-Up Emails
Even if most emails get opened the first day they are received, you should wait at least 3 days before sending a follow-up. Do not make the mistake of not giving them enough time to respond.
There are many studies that tell us what day is best for receiving an email response. Several studies have suggested that Tuesday and Thursday give best results with other weekdays not being far behind. A Hubspot report is in favor of Tuesday and concludes that sending emails on weekends is a bad strategy and you should avoid it.
When it comes to the optimal time of day to send a follow-up email, many agree it should be between 10 AM and 11 AM in the recipients’ own time zones. On the other hand, the worst time for opening emails is 12 PM.
How Many Follow-Up Emails Should You Send?
The frequency of follow up emails is the next important consideration. Especially when we know that 80% of non-routine sales occur only after at least five follow-ups.
You should send follow up emails a minimum of five times, each time giving the recipient more time to respond.
By prolonging the time before the next follow-up email, you reduce the chance of overdoing it and being marked as a spammer.
You can make a plan and structure follow-up emails something like this:
Follow up 1 on day 3
Follow up 2 on day 7
Follow up 3 on day 14
Follow up 4 on day 30
Follow up 5 on day 60
Multichannel approach gives the best results
Some sales reps may feel uncomfortable making a phone call in order to follow up. However, your leads receive so many emails so it is easier to ignore yours.
This is where the omnichannel approach comes in handy. By using a combination of emails, phone calls and social media outreach you increase the chances of getting a response.
When making a follow-up call you can give immediate answers to any questions. Since phone calls are more personal, you can use the opportunity to remind the potential client of your first email and explain why you are calling. The winning formula of follow-up calls is to be polite, professional and persistent.
Social media profiles give us many options to get in touch with leads. You can send direct messages, add comments and tags. Once you open a line of communication, you can engage with your clients’ posts and resources without being intrusive.
How to Write a Follow-Up Email?
The subject line is the first thing your potential client sees before opening an email. It is not enough to create a compelling subject line for a cold email but to write an equally impressive one for a follow-up.
You should write direct and sharp subject lines that clearly show your intention. This means your subject line must provide key information – the goal you are trying to achieve. When it feels natural, use the recipient’s name in the email subject line. Also, ask a question that can only be answered by reading the entire email.
Regarding our next step
It’s not late to get started
Do you mind providing me with feedback?
Here’s the link I promised you
You can read more about effective subject lines in our blog post. (link to new blog post)
Email openers should mention the initial email and remind clients you already contacted them before. In case you already met with the client, make sure they understand who you are.
Examples of effective follow-up email openers:
Last time we spoke…
It was nice to meet you at…
I left you a voicemail but wanted to send this email as well.
I wanted to follow up on an email I sent last week.
Have you had the chance to look at my previous proposal?
In case you missed my email last week…
Your colleague suggested that I reach out to you…
Explain Your Intention
Once you’ve introduced yourself and made sure the client realizes you already made contact once before, try to summarize why you are emailing them. Do not make the assumption they remember your previous email. Create the same message just in a different format.
In order to create a compelling follow-up email, you should identify your main goals and make the effort to explain the primary objectives of your email. For example, you might want the client to provide you with specific information or update you on a certain matter. Your objective can be to set a meeting, get the client to participate in your study, test your product or get familiar with your service. Follow-up emails can be great for reconnecting with existing clients or getting feedback.
Finally, when portraying your intention in a follow-up, keep it short and sweet.
I have a product that will be perfect for you.
Here is a link to my resource:
Are you interested in a free trial month?
I would like to invite you to an event we are hosting…
Call To Action
It is more likely for the client to answer if you provide them with a specific offer. You can propose time and date for a meeting or a call, or ask for a different person to get in touch with if your lead isn’t the right one for your offer.
If you keep sending follow-up emails without getting a response, align your calls to action with each email you send.
When would be a good time for you to discuss this in person?
How about a 5-minute call on Tuesday or Wednesday 10 AM?
Here’s the link to my calendar, feel free to make an appointment:
Avoid Common Mistakes
- Know when to let go. If your prospects ask you to remove them from further follow-up emails, do it immediately. It gives a clear message they are not interested in your proposal and you won’t change their mind no matter how persistent you are. Thank them for their time and move on.
- Create a new email thread for each follow-up. This will make sure your email doesn’t get marked as spam so easily. Also, with each new email, you will leave the impression of starting from scratch and the client might feel less uncomfortable by not responding sooner. New threads make more room for experimenting with different subject lines and calls to action.
- Don’t send passive-aggressive emails. Even after 5 follow-up emails you should be as polite as if it was the first one. Sending frustrated emails will only decrease your chances to get a response. Don’t take it personally and keep a positive tone.
Create Your Follow-Up Campaign With Autoklose
Autoklose makes it easy to schedule and monitor the follow-up process.
Step one: Add Campaign Info
Once you create a campaign, select follow-up dates and hours.
Step two: Choose Recipients
Step three: Choose Templates
You can write your own follow-up email or use one of the Autoklose templates that are customizable and can be personalized.
Step four: Customize Email Sequence
Add as many follow-ups as you need and create a sending interval. Schedule these high converting emails and monitor the results.
The integrated calendar gives you the option to allow your clients to book a meeting, making it easy for them to take your pitch to the next level.
Follow-Up Email Templates By Autoklose
How about that teaming up?
Hi (First Name),
Have you had a chance to think about my idea? Both our companies could benefit from this synergy. We could expand our customer bases and increase profit.
What do you say?
Let’s have a meeting and come up with some strategies. Here’s the link to my calendar, so feel free to make an appointment:
Hope to hear from you soon,
Persistence is my middle name
Hi (First Name),
I’m not ready to give up just yet because I believe that we could achieve some great things together.
Our call will take up only 15 minutes of your time, so let’s talk and see if we can work something out.
Here’s the link to my calendar, so find a time slot that suits you:
I respect your time. You should too
Dear (First Name),
I just want to check how you’re doing and whether you had the time to take a look at our new [feature/features]. I know that must be super busy, and that’s exactly what [your product] can help you with! The whole idea behind the latest feature upgrade is to help business professionals like you work less and achieve more.
Here’s the link with all the details: [link to new features]
All the best,
Do we need anything else?
Hi (First Name),
As you know, we did everything previously agreed upon. This means that we:
1) say what you accomplished
2) say what you accomplished
3) say what you accomplished
Is there anything else that you need us to do before we move on to the next step this week?