Michelle Mckinley is the senior director of growth marketing at CareerArc, a team that offers technology-based social recruiting and outplacement...
So you’ve scoured the internet for specific prospects, crafted the perfect email pitch, and are ready to begin your email outreach link building process. Even after doing everything perfectly up to this point, reality hits, and no one is responding to your emails.
It can feel pretty crushing to invest so much time into your link building campaign and receive zero return on your investment.
Email Prospects at the Right Time
Timing is always an overlooked factor but it is crucial in everything we do.
Looking to apply for a new job? Monday is your best bet. We’ve found that Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday are the best days to contact prospects as those are the most productive days of the week and holidays are often observed on Mondays and Fridays.
The time of day also becomes an essential factor in getting those sought after responses after all your hard work. We send our emails beginning from 6 am PST. By sending them this early in the morning we are able to ensure our emails are ready to be read by our prospects as soon as they get into the office for both east and west coast prospects.
Use your Subject Line Wisely
According to Convince & Convert, 35% of emails are opened by their subject line alone. For subject lines, we usually take two approaches.
- Get straight to the point
- Establish our authority and credibility
By getting straight to the point we are able to eliminate all of the small talk that no one likes anyway and we let prospects know immediately what the email is going to be about.
Some examples of subject lines we have found success with included “Guest Post Opportunity”, “Loved Your Article”, “I Quoted You”. As you can see these subject lines get right down to business with zero fluff attached, which helped us increase our response rates.
The other approach we take is quickly establishing authority and credibility in our subject line to show we have the writing chops to give their audience content that they’ll love to read.
Some examples of these subject lines include “Entrepreneur Featured Writer Wants to Write for You”, “ADP Partner Wants to Guest Blog for You”.
Notice how these subject lines include major publications or large companies that are easily identifiable by name? By piggybacking off of these brands, it helps to put the prospect at ease knowing they’re working with someone who works with credible companies. Now, a quick Google search is all it takes to ensure the email sender is legit.
By establishing this comfort for our prospect they are more likely to open and respond to our emails.
Get Straight to the Point
In the day and age of on-demand content, people’s attention spans have become increasingly short. Your email needs to as straightforward as possible to keep your audience entertained.
Let’s be honest, the longer your email is the less likely people are going to read it. Within the first few sentences, we always let our prospects know who we are and exactly what we’re interested in.
We’re not trying to waste anyone’s time! Make the beginning of your email beneficial for both parties. You’ll see that when you cut to the chase, people will respect that.
Make Your Email Personable
If you want to enhance email outreach link building, you can’t make it seem like you just sent the same email to one hundred people!
On the other hand, you don’t want to write one hundred different handcrafted emails; time is money, right? According to the IDM State of Digital Personalization Report, 82% of marketers reported an increase in open rates through email personalization, while 75% believe it yields higher click-through-rates.
To get the most out of our email outreach, we utilize a software called Pitchbox. This allows us to insert elements such as a recent blog or news post that’s related to their company or inform them about a broken link they can fix on their website. This approach lets them know that you’ve done your homework and catered to the prospect.
Provide Easy Action Items
If you can make the next steps simpler for your prospects, you will see huge improvements in your response rates. For outreach, we always provide several examples of proposed topics that we can write for their blog.
This eliminates the amount of work they have to do on their end and essentially becomes a multiple choice answer of which topic they’d like to pursue.
Now, their response is simple to craft and they can respond to our outreach email in a matter of seconds. These proposed topics also help decrease the amount of back and forth emails that can happen afterward if the prospect is interested in your offering.
Follow Up With Your Prospects
The final part of how to get a prospect to respond to your email is to follow up.
I cannot stress how important this part is. People are often drowning in work and sometimes miss your email. Because of this, it is of the utmost importance that you initiate follow-up emails!
Caution: Make sure you aren’t sending them too often and become pushy and obnoxious.
Here’s the method that we take for follow-up emails at Directive.
- Allow 3-5 days in between emails
- Reiterate the value that they would be receiving from your offer
- Limit follow-ups to no more than two emails
Following up too much may give the impression that you are spamming them.
For this reason, we allow a few days of breathing time in between our follow up emails.
Your follow-up email should be a modified version of your original email that communicates the same message but in a different format. If your original email was 3 paragraphs long, use 2-3 sentences for your follow-up. If your original email was only a few sentences try using multiple paragraphs in your follow-up to convey your message in more detail and elaborate that may resonate with them better.
It is possible that two emails may have fallen through the cracks or that the prospect was just too busy to respond so you can try emailing them one more time.
However, if a prospect hasn’t responded after 3 emails it is more than likely that they do not want to respond to your email. We don’t want to burn any bridges during this process so we usually stop with the follow-ups here so that in the future we can reach out again if we have something else to offer that they may be more interested in.
Link Building Success!
And there you have it, it takes hustle, strategy, and a little wit but that’s how we get prospects to respond to our link building emails. Through this process, we have been able to successfully enhance email outreach link building and increase traffic back to our clients’ websites.
Follow these rules and start getting the responses you’ve been waiting for.