How to Get a Response and What to Do Next….
First impressions are important. Unfortunately, when it comes to reaching the unreachable we often have to make a first impression via email. The good news is there are a few things that you can do in advance to make sure that initial outreach email is airtight and worth responding to. Reading Time: 3 minutes
So you’ve managed to get an email contact for Tim Ferriss, Elon Musk, Richard Branson… who ever your ‘unreachable’ happens to be and you’re ready to pull the trigger and write your initial outreach email. Before you even begin make sure that email is…
Well researched and highly personalized.
Direct and to the point.
As short as it can be.
You need to show them right away that you’ve done your homework, that you have a clear ask or an offer and that’s why you’re looking to connect, and that you respect their time immensely. Getting your message in front of someone, isn’t difficult. Getting them emotionally hooked and eliciting a response from them, is.
Here’s how to write an email that will get a response and what to do next…
How to Write Your Initial Outreach Email:
A well crafted initial outreach email needs to hit these 5 key points: Intro, Context, Social Proof, Clear Ask, and Call to Action….
Somewhat self-explanatory but you need to introduce yourself in a clear and succinct way. If you haven’t heard it yet, check out Episode 4 of the podcast: Ditch the Pitch with Clay Hebert and craft your perfect six word introduction, “I help ________ to ________.”
Next you need to include a brief account of why you’re reaching out to them specifically as opposed to someone else. What is it about them in particular or the work that they do that captured your attention. Perhaps you heard that they’re currently writing a book or planning a big event. What is it that has connected you to them and inspired you to reach out in the hopes that the two of you might connect?
- A Clear offer or Ask:
Having a clear offer or ask is the key to getting a response, but let me give you a word of advice: Whether it’s an offer or an ask it really should be a give. If you want to connect with someone, if you’re looking to develop and maintain a relationship with them, you have to have something to offer.
The first time you reach out to an unreachable celebrity, business leader, or VIP, should be with an offer to serve them somehow. What’s your skill set, biggest asset, or greatest strength? How can you use your expertise to help them achieve the goal that they’re currently focused on?
“I am reaching out because I have experience with ___________ and I want to help you ___________ by ______________.”
- Social Proof:
Include past portfolio pieces or small wins that you can leverage to demonstrate your value with regards to the services you’re offering. This is important not only because you want to demonstrate your credibility, but you also want to highlight the other people that you’ve worked with and the positive outcomes you helped them to achieve using your skill set and expertise. So be sure to link to the best examples of your past work showcasing what you’re offering to do for them.
- A Call to Action:
It can be as simple as “If this opportunity is of interest, please let me know and I can follow up with some additional details” or “If that sounds like something you are interested in, why don’t we have quick 15 minute call and I can go over the details with you..” Your call to action is what will ultimately illicit a response so be sure to end with a no-pressure, no-strings attached call to action that communicates what the next step would be.
As you write your initial outreach, keep in mind..
Keep it short and don’t give everything all at once…
If you don’t include all of the information you have on hand in your initial outreach email then you have a reason to reach out with further follow ups in the future. Positioning that initial email in such a way where you’re not showing all your cards gives you the ability to shoot a second or third email and provide a little additional info, which is a great excuse to email again if you don’t get a response the first time.
This is where tracking tools can be really important. If you know that your email has been opened but you didn’t get a response, you can restructure the email with additional info and write to them again.
Don’t assume that just because they didn’t write back they weren’t interested. These people are busy and sometimes things get lost in the shuffle. It doesn’t hurt to continue to follow up and having additional info to include each time you do is a perfect excuse to do so.
Prepare for rejection…
Plan response to virtually every objection they may have in advance of sending that first email. Not only will this help you create an initial offer that’s airtight, but it will also give you a way to counter a rejection should that be how they respond initially. For example, a few common objections are…
“Unfortunately I am not focusing any of my energy on this at the moment…”
“What makes your product or service different than XYZ?”
“How did you get my email address?”
Plan your answers in advance and you arm yourself with the ability to turn rejection into an opportunity to continue the conversation. When you get a rejection you have two options: you can Divert It or Dismiss It.
You can divert it by turning it back around on them. Two of my favorite examples are asking… “Under what circumstances could we make this work?” or “Under what circumstances would you say yes?”
You can dismiss it by simply continuing to follow up with your offer every so often. Now, I don’t mean you should continue to email them every week or every month. But circling back every 4-6 months never hurts because you just never know, circumstances change and at some point it’s very likely that a no will turn into a yes.
And finally, my last piece of advice for emailing the unreachable is this: Never take no from someone who can’t give you a yes. If you’re reaching out to gatekeepers and the response is a rejection do not give up. More often than not they’re not equipped to give you a yes and they’re just doing what they do best… guarding access to the person you really want to reach.
Keep trying because a little bit of luck, a lot of chutzpah, and a genuine desire to serve and add value to their lives will go a long way.
Hear more strategies for Reaching the Unreachable in this episode of Community Made….