What’s the Goal of a Cold Email?
In our last cast, Jack and I made some distinctions between cold email and spam. In our niche, the line between the two tends to get blurred. While professional, genuine cold email exists in volume, there’s enough poorly milled email marketing out there to give the entire field a bad name.
Still, mindful sales approach always prevails. Now that we know what to do – and not to do – to steer clear of the spam folder’s gravitational pull, let’s go over what cold email is meant to achieve.
To put it simply: the goal of a cold email is to start a conversation.
Of course, the final goal of your project isn’t to have a chit-chat with a potential business partner. Ultimately, you’re trying to get something out of your time, whether you’re looking to build funding, collect data on a new market, or grow your network.
It’s important not to confuse your end goal with the goal of your cold email. Sending the message and setting up a dialogue is only the first step through the door.
If you treat your approach as just that, a small step toward your goal, you’ll find yourself playing the cold email game in exactly the right way.
The opposite applies, too; write a cold approach with a discernible intent to profit, and it’s straight to the spam folder with you.
Relay an Intent to Collaborate
I give this hypothetical: If I was a marketing consultant who helps businesses expand into new markets, and my email approach in no way implies that I’m going for the sale.
I’d write a message like, “Hey Jack. I just helped a similar company expand into Latin America and I noticed that you’re hiring a sales team down there. I wanted to find out if this is something worth considering at your company.”
This message contains a clear intent to collaborate, not to sell. At the very least, my receiver’s first impulse won’t be to report me as a spammer. If the timing is right, it could lead to a meeting, which is exactly what a cold approach is meant to accomplish.
Don’t Jump the Gun
Punctuating an initial approach with a straightforward offer is tempting, and there’s always a chance of it working – a slim, but real one. Still, this is not the fundamental goal of a strategic cold message.
Depending on your position, you might be able to skip a step or two in an email approach. But you can’t skip out on building the receiver’s trust during a sales process.
If your initial outreach leaves them feeling like you’re just another salesperson who views them as a number and dollar sign, you’ll have a hard time reversing that impression later on.
The email example I gave above would be received favorably amid a sea of spam. That’s exactly what you’re after – to be seen as genuine and wholly professional in an unforgiving niche, to stand out as a prospect for a profitable business relationship.
Write With Some Heart
If a cold email is written in a cold manner, you likely won’t be hearing back anytime soon. Instead, inject some heart into the message. Even though it’s just words on a screen, your recipient will know that your approach is honest. Be warm, and let your genuine interest show.
Do that for a while, and watch the conversions flow.