Step-By-Step Guide To Cold Email Outreach Campaign Automation

Andy Cabasso

March 15th

We all know that automation tools can help us save time on repetitive tasks.

automation cover image

That’s particularly true of email outreach, with research from GetResponse and Smart Insights revealing that email automation is used by 64% of marketers — more than any other automation technique. 

automation techniques used

But using email automation is one thing; leveraging the full benefits is a whole other kettle of fish.

Just 5% of marketers describe themselves as automation experts, while 62% say they’re only at a basic, moderate, or intermediate level.

Ready to take your automation game to the next level?

Then let’s dive into our step-by-step guide on how to automate cold email outreach campaigns.

Basic Cold Email Automation Guide

Before we dive into the advanced stuff, let’s take a look at how the average sales team runs cold email campaigns.

This approach works — to an extent.

It’s definitely more efficient than doing everything manually.

But there are plenty of scopes to improve it by combining automation and outsourcing.

straight outta automation

Automating Your Prospecting

According to HubSpot, salespeople rate building prospect lists as the most challenging part of the sales process.

Unfortunately, it’s also absolutely integral to running an effective email outreach campaign.

While you can streamline this key task by outsourcing prospecting to a virtual assistant (VA), your sales professionals still need to lay the groundwork.

They need to figure out what messaging your ideal prospect wants to hear.

That’ll help you identify the custom field information required to craft highly personalized messages that resonate with your target audience.

And they need to track down the online directories from which your VAs can pull lists of prospect names and companies.

Ideally, these directories will be packed with the key details you need to turn those prospects into qualified leads.

Write Personalized Messages In Intro Lines

“Advanced” personalized emails — that is, those containing more sophisticated custom snippets than just {} or {} — enjoy more than 2X the response rate of non-personalized emails, according to research from Woodpecker.

For that reason, your sales team should consider writing personalized email opening lines in advance before adding automated elements.

Hire & Train Virtual Assistants

Virtual assistants are an essential element of effective sales email automation.

Not only should they do a lot of the legwork when it comes to building prospect lists, but they can also take control of managing your CRM.

Which means your sales team can spend more time speaking to qualified leads and closing deals.

There are lots of platforms you can use to hire VAs, such as:

  • Fiverr
  • Upwork
  • Virtalent

When searching for new virtual assistants, ensure they have strong English language skills.

Once you’ve found the right candidate, you can train them on the intricacies of your CRM system.

Run Your Cold Email Campaigns

Before you build your cold email drip campaigns, you first need to manually segment your audience into groups with shared characteristics or interests.

According to Mailchimp, segmented email campaigns achieve:

  • 11% more unique opens
  • 14% higher open rates
  • 101% more clicks

Then you’ll want to connect your email automation software to your CRM via API or Zapier.

Just be aware that CRM platforms and Zapier don’t come cheap.

How To Fully Automate Your Outreach Campaigns

So those are the basics of email automation.

But what does advanced automation look like?

can be better automation meme

Believe it or not, you can actually automate your entire sales outreach campaign with Postaga in just seven simple steps.

Even better, just two of those steps require any manual effort on your part — and you only need to perform those tasks once.

1. Create Your Customer Persona

A customer persona is a data- and research-driven description of your ideal target audience.

It works hand in hand with your ideal client profile, which defines the characteristics of the types of organizations you’re trying to reach.

When you have a clear understanding of your perfect customer, your VAs can focus their prospecting, resulting in more qualified leads — and more positive conversations for your sales team.

Unfortunately, as it stands, this isn’t a part of the sales process that can be automated.

But it needn’t be a labor-intensive manual task.

It’s possible to gather all the information you need to build an accurate, meaningful target persona by:

  • Analyzing your email lists and client database to understand who your best leads are and where they come from
  • Gathering feedback from your sales team on the types of prospects they feel are most likely to buy from you
  • Interviewing your existing customers to learn how they found you and what they love about your product or service
  • Using lead magnet download forms to capture information on lead characteristics, such as their industry, job title, and company size

2. Find Relevant Businesses

Now you know what sort of prospects you’re looking for, so it’s time to go out and (metaphorically) grab them!

Rather than leaving this resource-heavy task in the hands of virtual assistants, let Postaga do all the hard work.

Our AI Campaign Generator is a powerful tool that automatically analyzes your site to identify dozens of high-converting campaign ideas.

sales campaign suggestions

Then choose the campaign you want Postaga to run, and choose the domains that you want to reach out to.

Leave Postaga to automatically grab contacts and verified emails for those domains.

Then use our Outreach Assistant to crawl the internet for useful snippets of information to include in your outreach emails.

email template automation

From a single platform, you can easily automate eight essential cold emailing processes:

  1. Lead scraping
  2. Email address collection
  3. Designated targeting
  4. Email verification
  5. Bad email removal
  6. Personalized pre-templates
  7. Advanced email personalization
  8. Automatic follow-up emails

3. Create A Highly Segmented List

Generic cold email templates won’t engage your audience.

But it’s hard (or even impossible) to craft compelling email copy unless your mailing lists are highly segmented.

Chances are, during the persona research stage, you identified multiple customer personas.

divide and conquer marketing meme cat email outreach

Each of those personas should be treated as a unique segment with its own messaging, based on specific goals, needs, and pain points.

For instance, at Postaga, we know our email automation software appeals to a couple different audiences, including:

  • Sales professionals who want to automate their sales outreach
  • SEO teams who want to build backlinks
  • Businesses that want to get press coverage

It wouldn’t make sense to target our sales persona with a cold outreach email about how Postaga simplifies the skyscraper link-building process.

And we wouldn’t send our SEO audience a campaign about lead nurturing.

Of course, there are any number of ways to cut and slice your email lists.

For instance, you might segment by:

  • Revenue
  • Pain points
  • Website domain rating
  • Number of connections
  • Geographic location
  • Company size

4. Add More Personalization To Your Emails

We’ve seen how Postaga can support you with the early stages of crafting personalized messages.

But it can do a whole lot more than that.

Postaga is capable of scraping corporate social media profiles and personal LinkedIn and Twitter account to give you the juicy tidbits of information needed to craft engaging opening lines.

Has your prospect just earned a promotion? Shared a blog post? Connected with someone in your network? Postaga can find out, giving you the ammo to hook in your email recipient and ensure they keep reading.

Not only that, but our cold email tool also pulls in article snippets from around the web, helping you create highly personalized sales and link-building emails from the comfort of the Postaga dashboard.

That means there’s no need to waste time researching and managing CSVs for personalization.

Sounds good, right?

5. Set Up Automated Follow-Up Email Sequences

According to Backlinko, emailing the same prospect multiple times leads to 2X more responses.

But following up with each recipient individually takes a ton of time, so you’ll definitely want to schedule automated follow-ups.

Chances are, the copy in your follow-up emails will be less personalized than the original email in the sequence.

However, you can still personalize messages for different audience segments.

For instance, warmer leads — those that align closest with your customer persona — might receive “warmer” follow-ups geared toward geared driving more immediate action, while colder leads might be sent more follow-up emails to give them more opportunities to reply.

Flexibility is baked into Postaga’s cold email outreach campaigns, allowing you to edit the number of days between each follow-up.

One of our own recent sales email sequences — powered by our own cold email software, of course — used the following timings:

  1. October 11: Initial email
  2. October 15: First follow-up email
  3. October 19: Second follow-up email
  4. October 25: Third follow-up email, sent after four more working days
  5. November 1: Fourth follow-up email
  6. November 8: Final follow-up email

6. Create Automated Scheduled Campaigns

By this point, you’ve built the fundamentals of a single automated cold outreach campaign.

law firms sales leads

But what if I told you that you could use this foundational work to schedule literally months of additional sales and marketing campaigns?

For instance, you could duplicate your first campaign to target prospects in different geographic areas:

  • Month #1: Law firms in Los Angeles
  • Month #2: Law firms in Chicago
  • Month #3: Law firms in San Diego
  • Month #4: Law firms in Dallas
scheduling campaigns

In one simple step, you’ve saved yourself hours or days of campaign planning and scheduling.

7. Outsource CRM Management

This step can technically be automated, but instead of email automation tools, you’ll need some good old-fashioned human labor.

Hire and train a virtual assistant (or several assistants) and train them in the dark arts of lead nurturing and lead management within Postaga.

As an added benefit here, you won’t need to shell out for Zapier to connect to your CRM, because Postaga has a built-in CRM system.

So we don’t just save you a ton of time — we save you money, too!

Email Outreach Automation On Steroids With Postaga

Having spelled out the process of advanced cold outreach automation using Postaga, let’s deep dive into how Postaga streamlines the whole outreach process:

WorkflowStep Without AutomationAutomated Outreach with PostagaAutomation Explanation
Create customer personasManualManualJust do it once for your business.
Find directoriesManualAutomatedNo time wasted researching directories. Postaga has a built-in prospecting mechanism.
Need LinkedIn Sales NavigatorManualAutomatedNot necessary. Postaga automatically collects LinkedIn data.
Need to scrape directoriesManualAutomatedPostaga scrapes live data automatically. However, you can always further enrich your data.
Need to scrape email addressesManualAutomatedYou need Hunter to collect emails manually. Postaga automatically does that without an additional subscription.
Email verificationManualAutomatedYou need ZeroBounce to verify emails manually. Postaga automatically does that without an additional subscription.
Designation targetingManualAutomatedYou need to manually filter and collect email addresses. Postaga automatically does that.
Remove bad emailsManualAutomatedYou need to manually remove bad, spam trap emails. Postaga automatically removes them for you, reducing your workload.
Segment prospectsManualAutomatedYou can segment your prospects by Ahrefs DR, geographic location, and more, resulting in a smoother workflow.
PersonalizationManualSemi-AutomatedPersonalization requires research. Postaga’s built-in templates pull in most information you need to personalize your email.
Craft opening lineManualSemi-AutomatedPostaga displays article snippets in your dashboard to make it easy.
Warm-up emailsManualAutomatedYou need Warmup Inbox to avoid the spam folder. Postaga automatically does that without an additional subscription.
Setup campaignSemi-AutomatedAutomatedPostaga has AI that automatically gets you started with a campaign in a few clicks.
Scrape social profilesManualAutomatedFinding social profiles of prospects can take a bunch of time, but Postaga does it automatically.
Email trackingSemi-AutomatedAutomatedNot every outreach tool has email tracking, but Postaga does have a built-in email tracking feature.
Add to CRMSemi-AutomatedAutomatedMost email outreach tools don’t have a CRM. But Postaga does, so there’s no need to pay for Salesforce or HubSpot.
Lead nurturingManualManualIt is pure manual work. But it can also be “automated” with VAs.
Lead managementManualManualAgain, this is a manual task, but it can also be “automated” with VAs.
Automated reportingManualAutomatedUpcoming API will create reports automatically.
Podcast outreachManualAutomatedYou need Sparktoro to find podcast opportunities. Postaga automatically does that without an additional subscription.
Digital PR prospectingManualAutomatedYou need Buzzsumo to find journalists. Postaga automatically does that without an additional subscription.
Link-buildingManualAutomatedYou need Pitchbox to build a link. Postaga automatically does that without an additional subscription.

To Wrap It All Up

Email automation is meant to be easy.

ended bad automation

And it’s meant to save you lots of time and money.

Yet so many email automation tools make things needlessly expensive by requiring multiple additional subscriptions.

Or they force you to keep doing lots of manual work, meaning you don’t enjoy the full benefits of automation.

Postaga isn’t like that.

From AI-powered campaign generation to smart, automated personalization, we do (pretty much) everything for you.

That frees you up to do something more valuable.

Like paying more attention to hot leads, analyzing data to optimize campaign performance, and reaching out to prospects in new markets.

Or maybe drinking piña coladas on a beach — we can’t tell you what to do with all that extra free time.

Ready to experience the joys of cold email automation with Postaga?

Sign up for a free 14-day trial right now.

We won’t even ask for your credit card information, so what are you waiting for?

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