Are you looking to improve your sales follow-up? Looking for advice on how to create sales follow-up emails that generate results?
Look, it happens. Despite your first effort, you failed to dazzle a potential lead.
Maybe you missed our previous article on how to craft the perfect sales outreach email for higher response rates.
Our feelings aren’t too badly hurt. We just feel a little like you feel when a prospective client doesn’t read your original email! We’re going to give you another chance with this follow-up email guide! We’re even going to provide follow-up email templates to make your job easier.
Your follow-up is the circle back to an email that may be your final chance, so you have to get it right. Because the hard truth is, most common follow-up emails rarely get a response. Too often, people rely on overused phrases like “Just checking in” or Touching base.”
A successful follow-up email has to be crafty. You got denied at the velvet rope, so you’re going to have to find another way in. So let’s walk around the building and find the back door.
What is a Sales Follow-Up Email?
A follow-up email is a message to an email recipient who has failed to respond to your previous email. These are also sometimes referred to as “circle back emails.” Follow-up emails are a part of any cold email outreach campaign and should be created at the same time as your initial email.
Writing circle back emails simultaneously saves time in the sales process. You haven’t heard back in X number of days? You don’t have to waste time and let the embers get even colder; you have your follow-up email ready to deploy. If you want to suffer less rejection, follow up! Send them a reminder email that you aren’t giving up just yet.
Are Sales Follow-Up Emails Important?
Without question! Prospective clients get tons of emails a day, and your life-changing email may have gotten buried amid the flurry of emails. Should you just let it go, accept that you’ve been ghosted? Not if your goal is to make money. An average of a measly 2% of sales are made during the first point of contact. That means that unless you’re following up, you’re potentially losing 98% of your sales! So yes! follow-up emails are quite important based on tons of statistical cold email data.
An effective follow-up email can put you on the email recipient’s radar and prompt them to take whatever action you desire from them.
Successful email marketing requires not only a product or service a potential client needs but some persistence too. No one likes being ignored, and a fantastic follow-up email can get you back in there with a chance.
How Do You Write A Follow-Up Email for Sales That Gets Responses?
No response? No worries! We are going to fix that. Let’s break down the anatomy of a follow-up email outreach that will turn heads.
1. Start With A Goal
Your goal, of course, is to get the email recipient to open and read your email. But what do you want them to do after that? Schedule a call with you, ask for additional information, direct you to another person? Understand what your overall goal is before you start typing.
Perhaps your email target is someone you met at a networking event, and the two of you had a chat, exchanged information, and sort of vaguely agreed to meet or speak in the future. Hopefully, if this is the case, your initial email hit their in-box no later than the following day. Send a reminder email! Strike while the iron is hot! Or at least while they still kind of, sort of, remember who in the world you are!
If it’s been a hot minute, use this opportunity to catch up with them. Before composing your follow-up email, check out their LinkedIn or search their name and their company name on Google News. Bringing up a recent event can help rekindle the flame.
Need More Info
If you do find out some recent information, ask them about it. This works particularly well if they or their company has had a recent success. Everyone loves to toot their own horn!
Ask for Direction
Sometimes you have bad intel. You didn’t get a response because you sent your original message to the wrong person. If you suspect that was the case, very politely ask to be redirected to the right person.
Share More Info
Maybe your original email garnered no response because it was missing information that would make it relevant to the reader. Now is the time to add it. Are you hosting an event, launching a new product, having a sale? Maybe you were trying to tease them with your first email and were a little too coy.
The Gratitude Email
Did the recipient fail to respond but passed the email along to someone who did? If they did something that helped you out, email them and thank them for their kindness. They weren’t obligated to do it, so a thank you is in order.
2. Craft a Catchy Subject Line for Your Follow-up Email
There is a fine line between a catchy subject line and clickbait. Click baiting is a form of manipulation, and no one likes being manipulated. Keep your subject line short, simple, and straightforward.
If this follow-up email is part of a campaign, there is no need for a different subject line as it will create a new email rather than a thread, further muddying the water.
It goes without saying, but we’re going to say it anyway. Never leave the subject line blank! It looks rushed, sloppy, and unprofessional to a potential customer (And anyone else!).
3. Provide Context
How long was your initial cold email? If you didn’t get a response, maybe too long. Busy people don’t have time to read a lengthy email. Give them an at-a-glance context of what your first email was about.
4. Don’t Forget to Personalize
Look, everyone knows the game. Your target knows they’ve received one of the hundreds of emails you’ve sent out. But people still like to feel special. Always personalize your follow-up emails.
Plenty of people don’t, and it’s a mistake. Don’t overdo it though, keep it professional. You don’t yet have a personal connection to the reader.
5. Deliver Actual Value
When you researched your potential customer base, this person seemed to be a fit, someone who needs what you’re offering. But their lack of response seems to say otherwise. If you’re sure your initial research was correct, you need to drive home that you have something they need.
Check Everything Before Hitting Send
It’s so embarrassing when something in your email doesn’t work, especially if it’s your CTA! Take the extra time to triple-check that your Call To Action links, documents, meeting scheduling software, social media pages, anything that is a clickable link, works!
Follow-Up Email Best Practices
1. Keep It Short & Sweet
Your follow-up email should be shorter than your original email. According to gong follow-up emails with 4 sentences do 15 times better.
2. Be Persistent
You might feel like giving up after getting no response to your initial cold email outreach and one or two follow-ups. Keep at it! Send four follow-ups.
3. Know When to Quit
You must comply if your target unsubscribes or asks you to stop emailing them. It’s the polite thing to do, and if you don’t, you may run afoul of the CAN-SPAM Act and face serious legal consequences.
4. Make It Simple
People don’t like doing hard things. So make things easy for them. Don’t ask them to make any critical decisions (that comes later) or for a big commitment. Give them a single, simple task, ONE CTA, never multiple.
5. Be Honest
Don’t clickbait, and don’t promise or offer things you can’t deliver. There are plenty of scam artists out there; you don’t want to become one or be mistaken for one. It is quite important to keep up with email etiquettes.
What Are the Types of Follow-Up Emails?
Depending on your niche, there are different types of follow-up emails. But generally, most businesses will find the following useful.
- Cold sales outreach follow-ups
- Product promotion follow-ups
- Collaboration follow-ups
- Event-based follow-ups
- Lead magnet follow-ups
Each of those requires a different approach. But don’t worry, we have templates that will help you start following up with prospects in no time.
3 Sales Follow-Up Templates
You sent out a cold sales pitch to your curated email list. You need to follow up for those who didn’t heed your CTA. Here are a few sale email templates to get you started.
Lead Generation Follow-up Email Template
Lead generation emails are used to collect information on potential customers. Your follow-up isn’t exactly a cold email, but it’s close. The recipient has shown some vague interest in your business. Your follow-up email might look like this:
Thank you for expressing interest in our company. I would love the opportunity to provide you with additional information. We can schedule a short call at your convenience below.
I look forward to speaking with you.
Sales Outreach Follow-Up Email Template
Your first sales email didn’t get a response, so your following email is a second bite at the apple.
I’m writing to follow up on my previous email. I haven’t yet heard back and would like to schedule a quick call if you’re interested in how we can help you. If you’re not the correct contact, I’d appreciate it if you would forward this to a more appropriate person.
I appreciate your help, and I look forward to speaking soon.
Warm Sales Follow-up Email Template
This follow-up is appropriate when you have had previous contact with someone, a referral, or meeting a networking or industry event.
It was a pleasure meeting you on Tuesday. I’d love to set up a time for us to speak further. We can schedule a quick call at your convenience below.
I’m looking forward to speaking with you soon!
Bonus: Lead Magnet Follow-Up
You have a potential customer within your grasp! Perhaps they won a giveaway you were offering or signed up for your newsletter. Welcome them as though they’re part of the family that is your business!
We’re glad you’re here. We’ll keep you informed of our weekly offers and specials. You’ll have access to your newest releases before the general public and special discounts.
Be on the lookout for our annual sale, which starts on X; you’ll have early access starting Y!
The X Team
Best Practices for Sending Sales Follow Up Emails
How Many Follow-Up Emails Should You Send?
Depending on the type of business you have, three to seven follow-ups are appropriate, with increasing gaps between each one. There is a fine line between persistence and aggravating spammer.
Your timeline should look something like this:
- Initial email October 11
- First follow up, October 15, four days later
- Second follow up, October 19, another four days later
- Third follow up, October 25th, four business days later
- Fourth follow up, November 1, six days later
What is the Best Time to Send Follow-Up Emails?
What’s the first thing you do when you sit down at your desk to start the workday? Check your email is most people’s answer.
Mornings between 9-12 during the workday are the best times. Avoid Monday mornings, though. Mondays are the busiest days for most people. They will spend that time addressing critical issues, not perusing all of their emails.
It should go without saying, but here I am saying it, don’t send cold or follow-up emails on weekends. It’s rude and intrusive.
Do Follow-Up Emails Have to be Email Law Compliant?
Yes! Otherwise, you go to cyber jail! Not really, but you could face some severe penalties and fines depending on the country. In the US, fines can cost tens of thousands of dollars. All of your emails must comply with the local laws that govern each country of residence for your contacts.
Making Your Follow-Up Emails Compliant with Email Laws
Falling afoul of email laws can mean being reported to the FTC and fines up to $16,000 per email sent! Ooof. Scary, I know, but compliance isn’t that difficult. Always include:
- Introduce yourself
- Give them an opt-out option
- Include your address
- A valid reason for contact
- Privacy & cookies policy
- Identify your email type
To Wrap It All Up
It’s not good enough to send follow-up emails; there is a rhythm, a proper email sequence, and an appropriate type for different people and occasions.
So yes, follow-ups are a lot of work, more work than initial emails, in my opinion. But when you get it right (With Postaga’s help!), the reward can be tremendous. And well worth the effort.
Starting with the email subject line going all the way to your closing, you should show the reader that you have something they need; otherwise, you’re just a pesky sales rep. You should also be warm and make your messages personal to the reader.
Remind the reader who you are, the company you’re from, where you met if you have, and what you can do for them. Always include a clear CTA.
Use the appropriate email template for the situation and the correct sequence and timing of follow-up emails. Too close together, you look pushy, too far apart, and you look disinterested.
Double-check your email addresses first! Maybe you had a bad address. Getting no response after your first email is not unusual. That’s why we provided great follow-up templates!
Yes! But all emails must be personalized. No one wants to feel like they’re being spammed. Postaga can automate personalized follow up emails.
Yay absolutely! 92% of sales teams give up after a single email, but 60% of customers say “No” four times before saying “Yes.” If you’re giving up after one try, you should find another line of work.
Generally around four days after the initial email. Depending on your type of business, three to seven follow-ups are recommended, spaced about four days apart, making sure none of those days falls on a weekend.
As soon as you send the initial email! No email campaign is 100% successful after the first email, so you will have to send follow-ups. Have your next email on deck.
Sometimes! Statistics show that 2% of sales are made on first contact, 3% on the second contact, 5% on the third contact, 10% on the fourth contact, and 80% on the fifth to twelfth contact!
GDPR sets rules for collecting and processing personal information for those living in EU countries. Follow-up emails do not violate GDPR so long as they meet the requirements.
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