7 Tips For Stellar Sales Prospecting Emails

Better prospecting emails



Everyone is bombarded with emails every day. We receive them from coworkers, we get newsletters from companies you know (or don’t know!), and we receive hundreds of personal or business social media notifications. According to a study from Radicati, business email addresses receive or send an average of 108 emails per day. That’s a LOT of emails. So the real question is: how can you stand out from all those other emails floating around a prospect’s mailbox?

Through all that noise, here are 7 tips to send more effective prospecting emails that will capture your recipient’s attention.

1- Keep it simple and short

In today’s world, most emails are read either when someone is in a rush or on their mobile device. It is crucial to send short and concise emails that can be read in seconds and does not require too much response time. There is an unwritten rule that prospective emails should only be a maximum of 3 to 5 lines. The goal of a prospective email is to generate some sort of engagement from the recipient.

Takeaway: Your email should take no longer than a minute to read and should elicit a quick response from your perspective customer.

2- Be personal

Quick exercise – In your head, sing the birthday song to your mother. Did you include her name? Of course you did! You added her name to a song that is sung by people all around the world because you wanted it to sound more personal. If you receive an email without your name or any other information about that indicates it’s for you, it is often thought that:

  • The sender is rude
  • The sender doesn’t know me
  • It’s automated
  • It’s not important
  • It’s a newsletter
  • You don’t need to reply

Personalizing you email is not complicated. Inside your e-mail you can simply add a little something about the lead: his or her first name, company name, where have you found his or her email, where have you previously met or any other piece of information you have about THIS PARTICULAR person.

Takeaway: Personalized every prospective email with the basic information you have in hand.

3- Have only one question or call to action

I got an email from a well-known SEO SaaS the other day and he was asking me so many redundant questions in the same email.

  • Do you have a SEO expert in-house?
  • Do you track your keywords ranking every day?
  • Are you having a hard time getting results from your SEO initiative?
  • Are you looking for help, now or in the near future?

Whoa Man! All those questions in the first prospective email? I was out of breath and his email went straight in the garbage. Just like if you meet someone in the street, don’t blast them with rapid fire questions without letting the other person talk a little.

Takeaway: Ask only one question or initiate a single call to action within your first email sent to a prospect.

4- Don’t talk about yourself

If you want a reply, don’t talk about you. Ask the prospect what challenges he or she is facing every day, what they need to be more productive at work, if he or she is having the pain that your product will solve. Make sure the company and the prospect are a great fit with your particular product before telling them how great you are. Build a relationship and have a conversation with the prospect in order to narrow down their major pain points and slowly introduce your product.

Takeaway: Avoid talking about yourself for the first prospective email.

5- Be a cool guy, not a pushy salesman

If you want to build a relationship with a prospect, you must work on your approach. Nobody likes to walk into a store and get surrounded by sharks right at the entrance. Be cool, relaxed and don’t feed the pressure. Be an expert in your field and make it look like you are trying to have a discussion around their problem.

Takeaway: Act like an expert just trying to help.

6- Research before emailing

Before contacting a prospect to do business with you, make sure you did your homework and researched who the prospect is and what their official job title is within the company. Otherwise, you will look like you’ve come out of nowhere and you won’t be able to personalized your first email. You don’t need an in-depth analysis, just take a look at his or her Linkedin profile and visit the company’s website.

Takeaway: Take time to understand your recipient’s business to make your email more personal.

7- Avoid using rich HTML templates

Last time you received the email stating you won the 250 billion dollar lotto from a far, far away country, you knew it was a scam. It is the same perception that people get with your fancy html email. You know that it is not a scam, but the recipient is programmed to believe that the email is a mass set-up. Then, there is no rush or even need to answer this email. Use the same kind of email templates you are using from Outlook or Gmail; plain and simple!

Takeaway: Do not send emails using a fancy HTML template.


Every business is different and therefore you must continually try new things and adaptable strategies that will identify what forms of communication work best. Try to follow these 7 guidelines and keep an eye on your rising conversation rate:

  1. Keep your email short and simple to read
  2. Be personal and create a discussion
  3. Ask only one question or to make only one operation
  4. Don’t talk about yourself, your company or what you have to offer
  5. Be funny and not pushy
  6. Do your homework and understand your prospect’s business
  7. Avoid using HTML template

Do you have any other tips for sending a better prospecting email? Write it in the comment section below!

About Jean-Luc Brisebois

I'm the co-founder of Tropical. I'm passionate about startups, growth, metrics, business, corporate culture, wine and I drink a lot of coffee.
  • Geetha Singhee

    One of the key things in sales prospecting is to find a verified business e-mail of the individual, that you are about to reach.

    Our company has made sales reps job’s easier by introducing a new e-mail finding tool – I represent a company, which built a new e-mail finding tool – eMail Prospector .
    Just type in a Name and Company and tool finds the VERIFIED business email
    address in seconds – it does all the hard work for sales professionals.

  • Kei Reyes

    Hi Jean, you have covered pretty much everything still here are few more things which you can add (I am a marketer for AeroLeads https://aeroleads.com, a prospect generation software so I have seen it very closely where people go wrong)

    8. Always have a link to unsubscribe. In fact better use tools like mailchimp (though they need opt-in) or similar services which offer easy unsubscribe links.
    9. Don’t be too eager and do frequent followups. This gives bad reputation to you.
    10. Once the person said, unsubscribe and do not contact him, never contact him again.

  • http://www.leadgibbon.com Shamaila Zahid

    Very well-written Jean! You covered the basic yet often overlooked touch points in sales emails. I wrote on the same topic a couple weeks back, adding the link here incase you want to take a look :D http://www.leadgibbon.com/blog/9-best-cold-email-tips-ever/