I’ve previously argued the need to find your Valid Business Reason (VBR), is the reason why the prospect wants to meet with you, not the reason you want to meet with them. You must find that VBR before presuming to ask for a meeting. Today, I’ll go one step further and I’ll give you a cold calling email template.

Close.io recommends 5 guidelines for cold calling email templates. Use the person’s name in the subject line. Make the subject line as specific as possible. If you wonder if it sounds too much like a marketing email, then it does. Experiment with questions in your subject line, and always deliver in your email what you promise in your subject line. Good, but not good enough. The email templates that they offer still sound like stabs in the dark. “Gee, I hope you’re this person. If you’re not, can you pass it along”. I hate those emails myself. I think the people that you’re sending them to hate them, as well. Today I’ll go one step further, and I’ll give you a cold calling email template that works in complex B2B, and if you stick around to the end, I’ll show you how that tactic fits in the context of other tactics in a funnel plan.

Just 3 quick points I want to make to set this up properly. The first one is that a good cold calling email template, or a good cold calling email, frankly, is laser like. You know who they are, that is you know they’re the right person. You know what their issues are, that is you’ve researched them, and you know what they’ll get out of the meeting, rather than what you’ll get out of the meeting, because you’ve thought about it from your perspective. That’s laser like, customer centric focus, or bio-centric focus. Point 2, inject some personality. Don’t make it look like somebody else wrote this email for you, even if they did. We write a lot of email templates for our clients, and we can, but inject some personality. Sound like you’re somebody they want to meet.

Point 3, use references. A lot of sources will tell you that you should maybe make reference to the fact that you see that they’re also connected to so and so. Well, if you’re going to do that, use the reference. Contact that reference and actually ask them to be a reference for you for this meeting. Make mention of it in the email. Don’t just say, “I see you also know Adam”. Do something specific with Adam, and I’ll come to that in a second. There the 3 specific recommendations. Clearly what we actually need is a cold calling email template that forces the sales person to do their homework, to think about the buyer, to inject some personality, and most importantly, to understand and articulate and argue why the prospect needs to meet with the sales person, not why the sales person needs to meet with the prospect. I’ll show you that now.

Here is my cold calling email template. Subject is “Congratulations On The New Role / Partner Led Demand Generation”. “Hi John, firstly, congratulations on the new role. Given your previous role leading partner communications at Microsoft, this partner marketing role seems like a step up that will leverage your industry experience and also your communication skills. Some growth potential for you, too, I’d imagine. I know that Cisco are reinvesting heavily in development of an expanded partner ecosystem in developer applications and foundation technology, and I figure that’s part of why they chose you. No doubt there’s lots on your plate, but I have to imagine that one of your priorities is getting your partners to generate more of their own demand. Easier said than done, right?

As you may know, I’ve helped many companies to build partner led demand generation programs, and I’ve fallen into most of the pot holes at least once. Unless I’m way off here, we should meet at least once. in the very least, I’ll share with you a few of the expensive blind alleys I’ve seen other major vendors waste time in. I may also be able to help beyond that, but we’ll reserve judgement until I’ve learned a little about your priorities. I sent a short note to Aaron Waverley to ask him to confirm that I’m a guy you should meet with early in the time, as I suspect you’ve heard from a few others offering help. I’ll give Allison a buzz in a few days to make a time to meet. Perhaps you could pass this email onto her with instructions on when you’d like us to meet, as I suspect she’s guarding your calendar very jealously. Talk soon, cheers.”

There’s a few keys in that. Don’t just copy/paste the titles. Think about the roles. Secondly, use your references wisely. Don’t just name drop, but actually use the references to refer. Don’t take the low ground, either. You have reputation as someone who adds value, and you should say so in your email. If there’s an assistant who clears emails, mention him or her by name. If there’s not, ask the person that you’re emailing to respond with some times, but frankly, follow them up anyway. I would say at least 6 times. Mention specifics of the previous role or length of time, or any other relevant factor to lead into the why you think that they were chosen, and why you think they should meet. Finally, and absolutely most importantly, find and argue the value that they will get from the meeting, and offer it.

As you know, Funnel Plan is a great way for sales and marketing to identify, and then explain the objectives, strategy, velocity, and tactics that they’re going to use to earn new business. We’re talking today about a specific tactic for making a cold approach to a well targeted prospect. Let’s take a look at that in context. In the beginning, this prospect doesn’t know your name. You know his or hers, they don’t know yours. You’ve got their name and you’ve used the tactics that we’ve already identified to find their name. Now you might enjoin the gatekeeper, that is typically the personal assistant beforehand, and we’re going to leave that tactic in place. Notice what we’ve got here so far. Reach out to new movers and known movers, identify with LinkedIn, and then the VBR to each of the potential role holders in target companies for video, email, call, or letter.

We’re talking today. We’ve got a cold calling email template, so obviously we’re talking about email. The only thing I really want to add here is we need to enjoin the aid of a referral source to make our cold approach less cold. I need to add just one tactic, but I’ve already got some very, if you like, support tactics. Leave a scripted voice mail. What I’m going to do is I’m going to modify that “leave scripted voice mail” with all of the other things that make sense to make the primary tactic work. It’s going to Funnel Plan itself. In our plan, we’re going to take a look at tactics, progression tactics, and as I mentioned, I’m going to modify an existing tactic rather than create a new one. Flip back here, the tactic is called “leave scripted voice mail”, so I’m just going to find that tactic. Here it is, going to edit that.

Make VBR work hard. We’re going to gain a referral, email from a shared contact. We’re going to say call your prospect after the VBR email 6 times, and leave scripted voice mail if unavailable. Scripted voice mail, because you may remember the blog that I did on a great scripted voice mail messages. I’ll leave that in place. Let’s say that, and let’s take a look at the Funnel Plan as it now stands. Let’s take a look now at the PDF. Okay, so let’s take a look at that in the Funnel Plan. Here we have it. It was only a small change. I’ll zoom in a bit more so you can see it. The tactic is a VBR to each potential role holder, et cetera. What we’ve just edited is “make the VBR work hard”. There it is. The change was relatively minor, but it is worth making the point so that everyone who reads the Funnel Plan understands exactly what the flow is supposed to be. That’s it. I hope it helps.

If you’re getting value from these blogs, there’s one small thing that you can do to help me to help you. Send me some emails. Send me an email, I’ll put the URL of the … Excuse me. The email address up here on the screen. Send me an email, and show me some of the great sales emails that you’ve used for a cold call. Or, ones that have been sent to you. Send those to me, and I’ll include those in a future show. Thanks in advance for your help. Until then, may your funnel be full, and always flowing.