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5 Smart Ways to Warm Up Your Cold Email List

Thomas Griffin
Thomas Griffin

If email subscribers stop opening your messages, you need to take steps to pique their interest.

  • The average return on investment for email marketing campaigns is 4,400%. 
  • Re-engaging your current lead list is a cheaper and more effective way to generate sales. 
  • Split testing can help you pinpoint areas of opportunity in your copy and design. 
  • Properly segmenting your lead list can double your click-through rate. 

Many experts know email marketing is the best way to turn a prospect into a lifelong customer. The ability to connect with consumers through email helps us engage with more potential customers than ever before. Studies show that when done right, a good email campaign generations a staggering 4,400% return on investment

Once you start generating a ton of leads for your business, you're going to notice a significant percentage of those people stop clicking your call to action, don't bother reading your copy, and probably don't even open your emails. Consumers are overstimulated by businesses every day, so you have to keep their attention if you want to stand out from everyone else. 

Here are five clever tricks you can use to reignite interest in consumers that signed up for your email list and stopped opening your messages. 

Use an eye-catching headline.

At a glance, headlines seem like an insignificant factor in the overall performance of your email marketing campaign. In reality, they are one of the deciding factors that determine whether consumers ever open your emails.  

The central focus of sending a newsletter is to provide value and encourage people to take a closer look at your website. After looking at what you're selling, the people who made it this far will likely become customers. If you want more people to fall under this umbrella of consumers, you have to write eye-catching headlines. 

Start email headlines with an action verb and close with a statement that addresses a pain point or piques curiosity. For example, a headline that reads: "Grow your lead list now with these social media marketing tips," will get more opens and engagement than a headline that reads "How to generate leads with social media marketing."

Give them something for free.

It's hard to deny the power of the word free. People are willing to go to extreme lengths to cash in on a gift or discounts, and you can use that information to re-engage your lead list. If your analytics shows that consumers are not interacting with your emails, consider sending out a promotion to your followers that gives 25% off their purchase over the week. 

Make sure your headline matches the urgency of the offer. In our example above, we might start the email headline with "Save Now!" as a way to stop disengaged consumers in their tracks. 

Additionally, if you create online giveaways or social media events on your other platforms, don't forget to let your email subscribers know. If someone was on the fence about revisiting your website, the chance to win something for free could be the incentive they need to open your next email. 

Initiate a drip campaign.

Drip campaigns are an excellent way to bring inactive subscribers back down your sales funnel. If they were interested in your product but changed their minds, you have to give them a reason to reconsider. We suggest sending out an email that addresses common pain points in your industry. 

For example, if you operate an e-commerce storefront that sells gardening supplies, you would want to start your drip campaign with common mistakes people make, the best flowers to grow depending on your climate, and other general topics. Always create copy that introduces the content to your audience, and has a clear call-to-action. 

The path consumers take with your drip campaign will determine which email in the series they receive next. Your goal is to show them why you're an industry expert, built rapport, and eventually turn them into a customer. If you can consistently deliver valuable information, the cold prospect may begin to warm up to your brand. 

After you've had several interactions, you should present a clear call-to-action that encourages the lead to connect with your brand on social media, buy a product, or reserve a ticket for your next webinar. Drip campaigns can also help you segment your subscribers, which is an integral part of keeping customers engaged after they've subscribed to your list. 

Segment your cold leads.

One of the biggest mistakes marketers make when trying to warm up their cold email list is they don't segment their leads. Essentially, list segmentation is the process of grouping your prospects into different categories based on their past behavior. For instance, marketers can separate leads based on the type of products they've bought in the past. 

The primary purpose of segmenting your list is to make your marketing material personal. A survey from The Harris Poll showed that 63% of customers expect personalized marketing offers when they interact with businesses. In other words, you have to predict what kind of content your audience wants to receive based on how they interact with your site. 

You can use personalization marketing to reach your cold prospects. Some businesses use this model to reach out to consumers that haven't responded to an email in over six months, and many times they end up converting a significant percentage of their cold leads. For example, your headline could read, "Did We Say Something Wrong?" Headlines like this are known for catching the attention of readers and could prompt them to open the message. 

The body of your email should let them know you value their service and feedback, and would love to have them back in your community. This is an excellent opportunity to ask if they have any questions or concerns that you could address. Resolving their problem will help build trust and makes it more likely the lead will open future emails. 

Split-test your emails.

Split testing, also known as A/B testing, is a practice where marketers change one aspect of their email or marketing promotion. The goal is to see if the change produces significant results in terms of sales, traffic, or conversion rates. Research shows that when email marketers split test their campaigns, they can see a 100% increase in their open rate. Small changes can result in disengaged customers responding to your emails. 

You can split test every aspect of your email and measure the results. The most common changes include:

  • Headline
  • Call-to-Action (color, placement, text)
  • Body text copy
  • Images, gifs and videos 

It's vital that you only change one aspect of your email at a time. If you change the headline, add a video, and completely rework your CTA, you'll have no idea what change produced the results. Make sure your split test is active long enough to obtain measurable results. Many business owners make a quick decision and don't give the change enough time to produce fair results. 

When you start split testing your campaigns among your cold leads, make sure you take note of how many people open the email and ultimately convert. These two factors will help you determine the success rate of your tests.

You don’t have to deal with a long list of prospects that don't respond to your emails. There are ways to re-engage these consumers without coming off as annoying or overbearing. The key is sending out well-paced messages that consistently catch the attention of your subscribers and provide tangible value once they open your email. 

 

Image Credit: Rawf8/Getty Images
Thomas Griffin
Thomas Griffin,
business.com Writer
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I'm president and CTO of OptinMonster, a powerful lead generation tool that's installed in over 700,000 websites.