Explorer's Journal

February 8th, 2018

Once upon a time, sales reps could send a pithy email to an executive and actually get an appointment.

But sales reps overdid a good thing. The number of unsolicited emails sent to executives exploded.

Executives are as likely to respond to one of them today as pigs are to fly. Less likely, in fact.

So how can sales reps use email to their advantage?

By making it personal. An introductory email should open with something personally relevant and specific in the very first line.

Look up the prospect up on LinkedIn and research her organization before you write a word. Use what you learn to create a unique, perhaps insightful, introduction to your email:

– Provide a piece of content you think the executive will value based on her recent social media posts.

– Share a story about one of your customers that directly bears on the prospect’s situation.

– Offer a tactical suggestion based on your observation of how the prospect’s organization does business (its blog can be a good source of insights).

Lastly, whatever you do, avoid standard tactics. Personalization doesn’t mean simply dropping someone’s name in the first sentence. And it doesn’t mean mentions of shared hobbies or favorite vacation spots. It means offering value in the form of insight. Avoid openings that are generic, “cute,” and hackneyed. Be original and specific and to-the-point. It will show the prospect you respect her.