The Outbound Audit: Simplicity Takes Our Emails From Cold to Gold

One of the first things we stress to new RevBoss clients is that our outbound process is highly iterative. 

Sometimes we rake in the leads with our very first email, but more often, we rake in insights that make our next campaign even better.

Let’s take a quick look at where we started for one of our agency clients (we’ll call them Sterling Cooper for fun) and how we brought their lead rate up from 0.15% to 0.72%.

Take One

In the beginning, we take a lot of cues about what’s important to a prospect from our client.

Sometimes that results in a common outbound pitfall — we try to hit so many highlights that we overcomplicate the message.

Here was our original copy for Sterling Cooper’s outreach, sent to founders/CEOs and marketing, branding, and creative titles.

Sterling Cooper’s original campaign wasn’t a total bust. They got a lead from it, and the reply rate was 1.61%. But we knew we had plenty of room for improvement.

How We Made It Better

We started by moving Sterling Cooper’s credibility to the forefront of the message. 

The brands they’ve helped are well-known names in their target market, and waiting until the end of the message to mention them was a wasted opportunity to grab the prospect’s attention.

We also ditched the buzzwords (data-driven, innovative, sustainable, missional marketing). We found we were able to say a lot more in fewer words when the all-but-meaningless ones were stripped out.

We simplified the introduction. Instead of calling Sterling Cooper “a team of data-driven content strategists and growth marketers,” we called them what they are: a digital marketing agency.

We rethought and restated our reason for reaching out. Initially, we tried to establish a connection with the prospect based on company values, which in this case, was too tenuous.

The message felt much more relevant when we called out the prospect’s specific vertical and tied it back to the client’s experience in the industry.

Last but not least, we tightened up the offer. 

While leading the social conversation and amplifying impact is undoubtedly important to some of the prospects we contacted, it’s not their primary job function, which made the email unlikely to survive a 3-second skim.

In our updated messaging, we stuck with a concrete example to demonstrate not only what Sterling Cooper’s services are, but what kind of results they achieve (an extra, subtle layer of credibility).

The Updated Version

Here is the message we ended up with:

This time around, the messaging clearly hit its mark. By the end of the campaign, the client saw a 2.08% reply rate and almost 5x the original lead rate.

And it’s worth noting that when we refined our prospecting strategy, the results got even better.

We ran a separate but similar version of messaging to speak directly to the mindset and goals of a founder/CEO instead of lumping them in with marketing titles, and it reached a lead rate of 2.52%.

In the end, it was a simpler approach and an effort to establish trust sooner that led to such a major spike in Sterling Cooper’s campaign performance.

Need An Honest Outbound Partner?

Our outbound email campaigns are informed by years of experience building sales pipelines for companies with a desire for steady growth. Schedule a call with us to find out how we can help you win more clients.