The Art of Mastering the Sequence and Content of Engaging Follow-Up Emails
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Email follow-ups are not a new marketing strategy. Still, it continues to deliver some of the best sales results. That doesn’t mean simply launching an email follow-up sequence will increase your response rates and sales, however. There’s an art to creating follow-ups that convert.
In this article, we dive into the best practices that help you create sequences that engage your recipients.
What makes a follow-up email sequence effective?
An effective follow-up email sequence is crucial for maintaining engagement, nurturing relationships, and achieving youultimately r desired outcome- sales, networking, or customer service. Here are key characteristics of a good follow-up email, along with examples of what those sections might look like:
Clarity and Conciseness
Your email should be straightforward and to the point. Avoid unnecessary jargon or lengthy paragraphs. That means clearly stating the purpose of your email as soon as possible and being concise about it. This can increase your reply rates and email deliverability.
Example: “I’m writing to follow up on our discussion about [Product/Service]. I believe it can address your needs in [Specific Area].”
When writing follow-up emails, you should highlight what’s in it for your recipient. Explain how your proposal or product can solve their problem, benefit them, or provide something of value first, like an offer for a free consultation call or e-book.
Example: “Our [Product/Service] has helped others in your industry to [Specific Benefit], and I think it could do the same for you.”
Call to Action (CTA)
Be clear about the next steps. If you’re scheduling a meeting, a phone call, or asking for a response, your CTA should be specific and easy to follow. Only have one call to action, so your recipient isn’t hit by analysis paralysis.
Example: “Would you be available for a quick call next week to discuss this further? Please let me know what time works best for you.”
Tailoring the email to the recipient increases relevance and engagement. Use their name, reference past interactions, and show that you understand their needs or interests.
Use AI if you can. 61% of sales professionals agree that these tools can help you personalize your emails better.
Example: “Hi [Name], I remember you mentioning your interest in our online SLP programs during our last conversation…”
9 best practices when making follow-up emails
To master the art of sequence and content of engaging follow-up emails, there are a few best practices to keep in mind. Here are some of the most effective ways to improve your follow-up emails.
1) Determine an Objective
Before crafting your follow-up email, you must be clear about your objective. If it’s unclear to you, it will definitely not be clear to the recipient. That said, you won’t get the response or result you want.
A well-defined goal helps tailor the email’s content and tone, ensuring that it is directed toward achieving a specific outcome. Having that laser focus makes your email more relevant to the recipient and increases the likelihood of getting the desired response.
Here are some common objectives you can set before sending out a follow-up email sequence:
Requesting Necessary Information
This type of email is sent when you need specific details from the recipient. It focuses on acquiring data, answers, or clarifications that will be crucial for your work or decision-making. The email should be clear about what information you need, why it’s important, and when you need it.
Proposing a Meeting
Reconnecting and Updating
This email sequence aims to re-establish contact with someone you haven’t communicated with in a while. You want to use this objective is you want to catch prospects and old clients up on recent developments and updates or to maintain the relationship.
A ‘Thank You’ email expresses appreciation for the recipient’s work. This could be for their time, assistance, or any other support they provided. The email should be heartfelt and personalized. Acknowledge the recipient’s specific contribution and impact on you or your work.
2) Open With Context
Once you write your email follow-ups, it’s best to begin by providing context. You can reference a previous conversation, meeting, or any relevant interaction with the recipient. Maybe even reminding them of who you are and what company you represent could be enough context.
This approach helps jog the recipient’s memory about who you are and the nature of your previous communications. Contextualizing the conversation in this way helps establish a connection and makes your email more meaningful and engaging for the recipient.
3) Clearly State a Desired Outcome
It’s important that your emails clearly articulate what outcome you want to accomplish with your follow-up email from the onset. Based on your objective— scheduling a meeting, eliciting a response to a query, or advancing a sales process— say it within two to three lines in your email.
Explicitly stating what you expect helps the recipient understand what is being asked of them. Clarity significantly increases the chances of the recipient taking the desired action, as they are not left guessing about the purpose of your email.
4) Give a Quick Compliment and Add Value
5) Make it Easy to Reply With a Yes or No
Design your email so the recipient can easily respond with a simple ‘yes’ or ‘no.’ To do that, try framing your questions or requests clearly and concisely. Reducing the effort needed to respond increases the chances of receiving a reply. This approach respects the recipient’s time and decision-making process, making them more likely to engage with your email.
6) Acknowledge Their Interest
If the recipient has previously shown interest in your product or service, acknowledge this in your follow-up. You want to do this because it will reinforce their interest and demonstrate that you are attentive to their needs and preferences. It creates a sense of progression in your relationship and encourages them to continue the conversation.
7) Show Absolute Belief in Your Product’s Fit for the Prospect
An unwavering belief should be communicated clearly because it shows that you understand their challenges and how your offering can provide a solution. You should express unwavering confidence in how well your product or service fits the recipient’s needs. Confidence can be contagious. It can greatly help persuade the recipient about the value of what you’re offering.
8) Craft a Compelling Subject Line
The subject line is the first thing the recipient sees and determines whether they open the email. Make it intriguing, relevant, and specific to capture their attention. A good subject line can significantly increase the open rate of your email, making it an essential element in the success of your follow-up strategy.
9) Find the Balance of Number of Follow Up Emails
Determining the right number of follow-up emails is crucial. Too few, and you might miss opportunities; too many, and you risk annoying the recipient. The key is finding a balance that keeps you in their mind without intruding. Try A/B testing a few sequences to determine which results will be best. There’s no one-size-fits-all number for follow-up emails. You need to find the number that suits your needs best.
Relationship building is the goal
The goal of an email follow-up isn’t to bug people. Persistence only helps when you’re being helpful. As you create follow-up emails, make it a point to ask yourself, “Would I be pleased or annoyed if I received this email?” You should be building bridges, not burning them. And a good follow-up email sequence could be the key difference-maker for you. Follow the best practices above, and you should start well.