By Brooklin Nash

When you hear ‘cold email’, what do you think of? I doubt you get all warm and fuzzy inside. People often think cold calls are annoying at best and deceptive at worst — and they often put cold emails in that category as well.

But that doesn’t have to be the case. Cold emailing isn’t dead, for neither small businesses nor top-performing sales teams. As we’ll see below, there are plenty of reasons to use cold emails. But only if you do it correctly.

Are Your Cold Emails Dead?

You might think cold emails are dead because you’ve only seen bad versions of them. Companies who don’t know what they’re doing will send cold emails that feel like spam. Nobody wins. But if you do cold emailing well, it can pay off.

So how do you know if your emails aren’t effective? Here are some reasons why your campaign may not be working:

  • Your emails are too complicated. Don’t use more than one font and one color. And don’t add any links. You want your lead to be drawn to only one thing — your call-to-action.
  • Your subject line is not compelling. Your subject line is the first impression they have of you, so you have to make it catchy and relevant. For example, one of the best cold-email subject lines is “Quick question.”
  • The beginning of the email isn’t personalized. As we’ll see below, personalization makes a cold email effective. It shows you’ve done your research, meaning the email is likely to be relevant to the recipient.

Why Cold Emailing Is Still Thriving

I can think of three main reasons cold emailing isn’t dead, but rather thriving:

  • The statistics are compelling
  • Personalization works
  • It’s easy to generate leads with LinkedIn Sales Navigator

1. Compelling Stats

As a business owner, you run your company, in large part, by the numbers. So let’s look at the stats that support cold emailing.

The average open rate for business emails is between 14% and 23%, according to both MailChimp and ConstantContact. But with effective cold emailing, you can get double that open rate.

In a cold-email test conducted by Jon Youshaei (founder of EveryVowel) and Shane Snow (co-founder of Contently), they got 45.5% of recipients to open their cold emails.

So, yes, cold emailing can get your foot in the door. Once someone has opened your email, you need the first line to draw them in.

2. Personalization Is Key

Snow writes that the key to a successful campaign is personalization. By making each email specific to the individual, you can get a better response rate.

“Tactics for optimizing sales emails are well and good,” Snow writes. “But they’re not as important as personalized research and sender/sendee fit.”

A study done by Woodpecker supports this ideology. They were able to increase their response rate by 100% just by including the person’s name or company name. The cold emails they sent with a personalized touch got a reply rate of 17%. The emails without personalization got just a 7% reply rate.

You can go even further and reference the person’s career accomplishments and personal interests. But how do you learn more about a potential lead?

3. Get to Know Your Leads with LinkedIn Sales Navigator

You can easily find targeted leads and get to know them using LinkedIn Sales Navigator. This is a premium account type that lets you use advanced searches to find the right people.

You can search for leads by:

  • Industry
  • Location
  • Professional history
  • Keywords
  • How you and the lead are connected on LinkedIn
  • And much more…

This allows you to generate hundreds of leads within minutes. And that means you’re more likely to get opens and responses from them.

In order to email them, you’ll need to export the email addresses of those leads. This can be a somewhat complicated task (or at least require another B2B software tool). But taking this extra step is worth it because LinkedIn’s InMail messaging has limitations that emailing does not.

It is clear, however, that LinkedIn Sales Navigator is a useful way to generate the right leads. From there you can start building your cold email list.

So, is cold email dead? You tell me (and you’d better start thinking about how to incorporate cold email into your outbound marketing and sales efforts). Hopefully this post has swayed you to at least give it a shot.

Featured image by Muhammad Ribkhan from Pixabay