The “just checking in” sales email isn’t just ineffective -- it’s also selfish.
Reps who send these types of emails aren’t offering any value. They’re trying to force or persuade buyers into replying to their message and making a purchase on the rep’s preferred timeline.
However, in today’s sales world, providing value to a customer throughout their individual buying process is the only way for a rep to close a deal. Hard selling tactics are bad for the buyer, and bad for the rep.
Modern reps are committed to providing guidance, information, and value to buyers whenever they reach out. They know it’s important the prospect sees just as much return on their time as the rep does.
Here are six easy ideas as to how you can provide value with each sales email you send.
1) Attach a piece of content.
The easiest way to provide value to a buyer in a sales email is to include a piece of helpful content. Remember: The goal of an initial sales email is to not try to convert a buyer into a customer instantly, but to give them something that will truly interest them, and get a conversation going.
Spend some time researching the prospect’s company and observing their behavior on social media. Use this knowledge to offer a piece of content specific enough to their interests that they take the time to read it.
2) Reference a mutual connection.
Having a mutual connection in common with a buyer can go a long way. In fact, a prospect is five times more likely to engage with a seller when they share a connection.
Surfacing a common connection is valuable to the buyer because it fosters trust. The buyer can now check with that mutual connection and determine whether or not this is the right product or service for them.
3) Offer a customer review.
Simply put, customers love reviews. How often do you check out Yelp before you make a decision on where to eat? How deep in the reviews do you go? I know I scan for a while, and I’m willing to bet you do too.
Learning what other people are saying about a product or service plays an important role in buying decisions. In fact, 88% of people take online reviews as seriously as they do personal recommendations, according to a study from Bright Local.
It’s clear that reviews are valuable for prospects, so why not send one along in your next email?
4) Send over a case study.
A case study can add instant value to a sales email. If the prospect is in a difficult spot and unsure how to proceed, sharing a story about a customer in a similar situation that describes how they solved their problem can be incredibly helpful.
5) Provide a tactical suggestion.
If you notice an area of weakness in the buyer's business that you think you can help improve, let the prospect know. Offering insights not only strengthens your relationship, but it builds your credibility in their eyes.
6) Just respond.
Simply responding to a question, voicemail, tweet, or email is the easiest way of all to provide value. And keep in mind that you don’t have to give the final answer right away. A simple “I’m looking into this for you” will assure the prospect that you’re on the case.
The value of responding quickly extends beyond solving specific problems. According to Sprout Social, 26% of customers who don’t hear back from a company take to social media to post negative comments. Remember the importance of good reviews? Responding quickly plays a major role in prospects’ perception of your business.
As author Michael Port recently wrote, “Give away so much value that you think you've given too much -- and then give more.”
Sales reps need to understand that the modern buyer is busy and doesn’t have time for “just checking in” emails. Strive to offer buyers an instant ROI with each and every message you send.
Want more tips on writing effective prospecting emails? Check out our sales prospecting email checklist.
Originally published Dec 7, 2015 8:00:00 AM, updated July 28 2017