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Saleshandy Cold Email Masterclass

LESSON - 2

Getting Started With Your First Cold Email Outreach

Creating Your Ideal Customer Profile (ICP)​

Ideal Customer Profile, often abbreviated as ICP, is a fictitious group of ideal buyer profiles that will benefit the most from using your solution. This group of buyer profiles is the perfect fit for the solution you’re offering, as they are looking for products like yours in the market.

The Importance Of Having An ICP

Having an ICP directly impacts your business because by using this approach, you are hyper-targeting an audience that is willing to buy your solution. Your business can’t thrive if you target everyone, even in the same niche.

For example, you can’t sell CRM software to a SAAS designer even if your focus target industry is SAAS. If you don’t take the time to list out ICPs, you and your team will put much effort behind prospects who are not interested in your solution.

⚠️Your wrong targeting will need ⮕more effort
⚠️ and generate ⮕ less output (and, in this case, a low response rate)

Having an ICP in place helps your cold email outreach in the following ways:👉 It helps you create loyal customers whose exact problem you are solving.👉 ICPs increase your sales win rate as you target high-value customers and closely understand what they like and don’t. You can align your sales efforts accordingly.👉 Provide quality product feedbacks that help you to make customer-driven decisions.Interesting stats: Organizations that follow the ICP framework have a win rate of at least 68%.

Difference Between ICP And Buyer Persona

Ideal Customer profile

An Ideal Customer Profile is a fictional description of your customers. ICP is a broad perspective of your perfect customer. When you analyze ICP, you consider factors like:

  • Company size
  • Revenue of the company
  • Annual budget of the company
  • Business goals, etc.

Buyer Persona

A buyer persona is a semi-fiction description of your ideal customer. It is an in-depth approach to understanding your customer. While creating a buyer persona, you need to factor in a variety of information:

  • Job title
  • Income 
  • Location
  • Pain points and challenges 
  • Tools they use daily, and more 

Here is an example of an ICP and buyer persona:

How Do You Identify & Create An ICP? (Template Included)

The process of identifying and creating your ICP starts with understanding your existing customers and analyzing your database (if you are using any CRM software).

This is an effective strategy because it helps you discover your customers’ interests and similar behavior patterns.

You can look at some common traits and patterns your existing customers have and lay the foundation for qualities your ICPs should have.

1. Spend Time In Your Current Database 

Your current customers and your database are your goldmines. The more time you spend understanding your existing customers and planning the next set of actions, you will be able to create more focused ICPs. Here are two ways of analyzing your database:

A. Internal Brainstorming 

You can start this process by asking yourself some questions like

  • What specific problem is my product/service solving?
  • Who is the most benefited from the solution?
  • Which sector is repeatedly using our product?

This internal brainstorming of yours will bring clarity from your end. You can dig deep into questions like common pain points, the industry that uses the product most, and more.

B. Analyze Your Competitors

This is a good-to-do practice to understand who your competitors are targeting. You can’t directly extract the information, but you can use social listening, read their resources section to understand the messaging, and, most importantly, look at their CTAs, exit pop-ups, and landing pages.

C. List Down Your Best Customers 

You now need to list down the best customer from your database. The factor that you must consider while listing down your best customers are

  • Customers who keep coming back to using your product
  • Your high-ticket customer
  • The ones who have brought the most referral

D. Connect With Your Best Customers

Your best customers can help you bring the best. The information you get will make your approach more robust and reliable. You can send a simple survey with questions like

  • What challenges did you face before using our product?
  • How did our product help you overcome the challenge?
  • How did you learn about the product?

After these questions are answered, filter out the similarities in each profile. Identify patterns as they will set the foundation for your future customers.

As mentioned earlier, negative feedback is also essential in creating ICPs. While analyzing the good aspect, look for factors/features that your ICPs shouldn’t have. By setting these priorities, you will be able to refine your process.

💪Exercise:  During your analysis, have a rating system like the best fit, good fit, and bad fit.

🥇Best fit – The profile that’s ideal for your solution

🥈Good fit – The profile that is somewhere aligned and can benefit from your solution

🥉Bad fit – The profile that doesn’t match at all

For example, if your product targets B2B top management, then the above process will look like this:

🥇Best fit – Founder, Co-founder, director, and more

🥈Good fit – CEO, CFO Managers, and more

🥉Bad fit- Team lead, employees, HR, and more

4. Format Your Data

Here, you start to format your data to make it more insightful and scannable in one go. You can take a look at the below template to get started.

5. Internal Review And Changes

You can also ask other stakeholders to give feedback on your ICPs. As we know about the changing nature of customers, it is recommended that you periodically update your ICP and make notes of a major shift in patterns.

To simplify this process, you can use this detailed template to fill in your data and segment it to get a clear idea of your ICPs.

 

Get access to this sheet here: ICP template


What To Do After You Have Created Your ICP?

After completing this process, you can start prospecting. Prospecting, in simple words, means identifying & starting your communication with your prospects to generate business.

You can start running a cold email outreach to your prospects. If you don’t have any contact information about your ICPs, you can use a B2B prospecting tool to find the needed information.

These tools help you to find direct contact information without you having to spend hours researching and finding accurate details of your prospects.

Here are some good B2B prospecting tools:

  1. Lusha
  2. LinkedIn Sales Navigator
  3. Zoominfo
  4. ContactOut
  5. Saleshandy Connect

Getting Your Technical Setup Ready For Your First Cold Email Outreach

We would love your cold email outreach to boom and generate lucrative results. 🚀

But before you launch your outreach, you will have to do some groundwork for it to run successfully.

By groundwork, we mean having a proper technical setup. Poor technical setup will put your email deliverability at risk resulting in a low conversion rate.

This section will be technical (it won’t be boring, promise!). Once you get a hold of it, it gets interesting. Here we will cover:
  1. Buying domains and creating email accounts
  2. Purchasing a cold email outreach software 
  3. Ensure the email deliverability setup

Buying Domains And Creating Email Accounts

Buying domains and email accounts are essential for starting your outreach journey. And to make the most of it, it is recommended that you buy secondary domains and email accounts.

A single domain and email account can do much harm, especially when you are looking to send highly successful emails that have a good open rate and replies. They also come in handy when you want to increase your sending volume in the future.

Other than this, email deliverability is the most important reason to have secondary domains and email accounts.

This is because some email providers may flag your emails as spam if they come from a single domain or email account, and if too many of your emails are flagged as spam, your primary domain or account may get blacklisted.

Secondary domains and accounts can help prevent this from happening and increase the likelihood that your emails will be delivered to your intended recipients.

Additionally, using secondary domains and accounts can also make it easier to segment and target your emails, allowing you to tailor your messages to different groups of people and improve their effectiveness.

Here’s an example:

Suppose your primary domain is saleshandy.com. Then your secondary domains can be saleshandyteam.com, saleshandyhq.com, or saleshandy.net.

After understanding the need to buy multiple domains and email accounts, you need to ask yourself: How many prospects do you want to reach out to?

Because the number of prospects will define the number of emails you want to send. If you plan to reach 5000 new prospects, you will need more email accounts and domains compared to 1000 prospects.

Here you can do this simple calculation to get an idea of the number of domains and email accounts you will need.

  1. Number of emails you want to send / 50 = Number of email accounts
  2. Number of email accounts/ 5= Number of domains

Note: Sending 50 emails/per email account daily is recommended to get high email deliverability. It is also a good practice to maintain a 3:2 ratio while sending your outreach. 30 emails are for your cold email outreach, and 20 are for your email warm-up.

(Email warm-up, we will discuss in detail in Lesson 3)

The replies you receive from both campaigns will convey to your ESPs that you’re an authentic sender and not a spammer. Resulting in better email deliverability. And you can connect 3-5 email accounts to keep the domain’s reputation up.

You should not hold on to these numbers very tightly, but keep them in mind so they don’t hinder the performance of your outreach.

Once you know the exact number of domains and email accounts you need, you can go ahead and purchase them. Here are a few things to remember while purchasing your domains and email accounts:

  • Make sure your domain is unique and stands out from your competitors
  • Look for domains that protect your data. Make sure you use trust-worth registrars that won’t misuse your data in any way.
  • Check the email service provider’s sending limit to know if it aligns well with your needs.
  • Look for Email Service providers (ESPs) that support important authentications like SPF and DKIM, which are essential protocols to prove that you are a genuine sender and keep your account safe from spammers.

Here are some suggestions from our end:

✔️Domains – Godaddy and Google

✔️Domain extensions – .com, .net, .co

✔️Email Service Providers  – Google, Microsoft, Zoho

Buying Additional Domains Increases your Deliverability & ROI

We can clearly see that if we try to send the same number of emails (10k in our case) with more number of emails per day and less number of domains per day, the deliverability standards (open rate) and reply rate suffers a lot.

See the difference between revenue generated through 40 domains in comparison with revenue generated through only 2 domains.

After purchasing your domains, you can start creating your email accounts as required. But your email account will need a little more work than just creating them. You will have to make them equipped to send your cold email.

Purchasing A Cold Email Outreach Software

Purchasing a cold email outreach tool is always a good option for scaling and bringing in recurring leads. These tools are designed especially for sending quality cold emails and making the revenue-facing team more productive in their approach.

A good cold emailing tool helps you:

  • Automate your outreach to save your precious time
  • Helps in sending hyper-personalized emails to get more conversions
  • Make your outreach scalable, predictable, and repeatable.

One such tool is Saleshandy.

Saleshandy is a cold email outreach tool that helps professionals like you run successful cold email outreach campaigns (sequences).

You can create your cold email sequence, add prospects, schedule them in a particular time zone, easily send, and analyze the performance of a specific sequence.

Know more about Saleshandy 3.0 🚀 | Complete Product Demo 🗣️

You can simply sign up from here, and explore the platform, so you don’t miss out on making your cold email outreach effective.

Ensure The Email Deliverability Setup

When you have a new email account, you must authenticate it and make it deliverability-friendly. Many cold email campaigns land in the spam folder because of a lack of primary authentication.

⚠️ Lack of email deliverability practices lands your emails in the spam folder.⚠️

Here are the most important email deliverability records that you must authenticate:

  1. SPF (Send Policy Framework) This authentication helps to protect your domain from spammers or against spoofing. SPF helps to attest your identity to the servers. 
  2. DKIM (Domain Keys Identified Mail) This is a signature-based authentication. This protocol transmits your messages using a digital signature to ensure that an authorized domain has sent the email. 
  3. DMARC (Domain-based Message Authentication, Reporting, Conformance) This authentication depends if your email is being authenticated with SPF and DKIM. 
  4. Custom Tracking Domain A custom tracking domain is your unique domain that can track clicks on emails or opens.
  5. Email Warm-up Email warm-up is a process of making your email account ready to send many emails. You start by sending a small number of emails and then ramp up. 

Head over to lesson 3 to learn about each deliverability factor in detail

Writing A Cold Email That Converts

After getting the perfect technical setup, let’s get to the most exciting part of writing your cold emails.

This is the part that needs your utmost attention and focus because you can have everything in place, but if your email is not compelling, it might not give you the desired results.

From Line

The ‘from’ line helps recipients identify the sender of the email. Usually, it consists of the sender’s avatar (profile picture) and their name.The ‘from’ line is one of the first elements visible to recipients making it a prominent text before an email is opened. It is positioned at the top of each email as well, usually in bold letters.
  • Keep it as short as possible 
  • It should instantly recognizable 
  • Ensure your from email is verified
  • Include your first and last name along with your brand to appear more professional. This will appeal to recipients that are interested in the offerings of your company.
  • You could choose something in between, first name and company name to establish a personal and professional connection both.
  • If your brand name is stronger than your name, it is advisable to use that for better engagement.

Preheader Text

An email preheader text usually sums up the emails in one line and is viewed in the inbox. The preheader text is typically next to the subject line.

Your prospects are able to see this text without opening your email. The preheader text should be aligned with your subject line and email content. 

You can communicate your message directly but be careful what you are writing, keeping your ICPs in mind. Keep your preheader text as short as possible. We recommend keeping it between 40 to 130 characters.

The preheader text and subject line should work together to create interest and encourage recipients to open your email. 

Here are a few examples of a good preheader text:

  • Creed from Dunder Mifflin.
  • I found a solution for you. 💡

Subject Line

Your subject line is a small window to show your prospects what they can expect from you and your product. And the subject line is one of the first elements interacting with your ICPs. Make sure you don’t miss out on writing your subject line, and also consider the following factors:

  • Personalize your subject line. Add the first name, company name, city, industry, etc., because personalization improves your open rate by 50%.
  • Make it catchy and enticing. Avoid using generic subject lines.
  • Avoid words like free, offer, hurry up, etc., as they may appear spammy to your ESP.
  • Personalize your subject line. Add the first name, company name, city, industry, etc., because personalization improves your open rate by 50%.
  • Make it catchy and enticing. Avoid using generic subject lines.
  • Avoid words like free, offer, hurry up, etc., as they may appear spammy to your ESP.
Here are a few examples of a good subject line
  • John, we have a plan for you that will work!
  • Alex, I think your brand is missing this. 🤔
  • Let’s work on your email deliverability issue, Lily.
Pro tip:  You can use emojis in your subject line to make it more fun and interactive.

Opening Line

Your opening line’s job is to build curiosity. Since the human attention span is declining, you have little time to build interest. One good way to write an opening line is to conduct research.

You can research about a particular company, industry, or any problem statement. This way, you can lock their interest by directly hitting the nail on the right head.

Some examples of a good opening line

  1. Hey, John, I recently came across your LinkedIn profile and got to know you have been promoted to Sr. Product Designer. Many congratulations, and I believe you will do complete justice to the role. 
  2. Hey, Stanley, I learned from a good friend and our mutual connection, Rachel, that you are looking for a way to manage your daily work to-dos. Is that correct?

Email Content

The goal of your cold email content should be to provide value and make it easy for them to quickly respond to you back in a yes/no.

Your email content shouldn’t be

❌ About you and your achievement.
❌ About your product and how awesome it is.
❌ Creating an image in your prospect’s mind that you are just selling your solution.

Instead, your email content should be

✔️ Focused on building a relationship.
✔️ Empathizing with their problem.
✔️ Ask questions to help them to solve the problem.
✔️ Encouraging them to connect with you.

Writing with your best foot forward, you can go in-depth and helpfully present your product. Personalize your content as much as possible based on your research, use mail merge tags (first name, last name, location, phone number, etc.), avoid using spam-triggering words, and keep your email length around 100 words.

Using Social Proof

Adding social proof in your email has a psychological impact as we tend to relate with others who have had the same or similar experiences.

By sharing social proof in the form of case studies, testimonials, or user-generated content, you are building credibility in the mind of your ICPs. Think about how a review has affected your buying behavior.

Strong social proof can have a long-term impact on your prospect’s mind and eventually lead to building trust.

Call-To-Action (CTA)

One of the most important elements of your cold email will be your Call-To-Action (CTA). Adding multiple CTAs can be tempting, but it leaves room for ambiguity.

Your prospects might feel confused about what exact action you want them to take. Would you like them to download your PDF or connect with them on a Thursday?

You should have one clear CTA that tells your prospect the exact action you want them to take. The main focus of your CTA should be to open a way to build connections and communicate.

Some good examples of CTAs are:

  • Can we connect this Wednesday to discuss this in detail?
  • You can sign-up for our 14-day free trial here.
  • Are you in for a quick call? I will block my calendar accordingly.

Email Length

Your ideal email length should be around 50-100 words. You should avoid big paragraphs but use bullet points wherever necessary, highlight important words/sentences, give spacing between 3 or 4 lines, and make it skimmable.

So, even if your prospect is busy when they receive your email, they can quickly skim through and not miss out on important details.

Email Signature

We have personally noticed professionals missing out on adding email signatures. Your email signature acts as a digital card and helps to build credibility. Generally, an email signature doesn’t need to be long or fancy; it can have simple details like

  • Your Name
  • Your Job Title
  • Your Company Name
  • Your Contact details
  • Your picture (optional)

Let’s apply the best practices with Saleshandy and compare the results