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A/B Testing Your Email Outreach

When designing new email outreach campaigns, it’s easy to fall into old habits and follow the same pattern. After all, isn’t it just easier to make a few tweaks to the templates you’ve been using and hope for the best? Even when we try to come up with new content, we often run a simple search online and copy templates that have worked for other salespeople and marketers.

And this is exactly why we don’t get the amazing results from email outreach that experts talk about or case studies quote.

In short, the only solution to this problem is to be as creative as you can and find what works for your specific target market. Secondly, it’s important to remember that the same templates that you’ve been working with may not work anymore – this can be due to numerous factors like changing trends, more competition, etc.

But it doesn’t end here – no matter how many new templates you create, the only way to know what works best is if you A/B test different variables in your campaign. These include:

      • Your data or sales triggers
      • Subject line
      • Email body
      • Images Or Videos
      • Call To Action (CTAs)

Let’s talk about these variables in detail.

Data/Sales Triggers

For your email outreach to be truly successful, you need two things – to be absolutely sure about your target audience and have the details on your ideal customer profile filled out correctly.

Read: 5 Steps To Identify And Refine Your Ideal Customer Profile

The second is data or more specifically, sales ‘triggers.’

It’s pretty simple – to make an impact on your contacts, you need to have certain information that indicates buying intent or something that can help you form a connection with them.

While this technique is typically used for highly personalized outreach campaigns – or even account based marketing – the fact is that even for bigger lists, you can apply the same concept.

For instance, you can ask your data vendor to provide additional information such as recent hiring, podcasts or posts that the lead has published, a favorite sports or team, etc. The ideas are endless – just think about different ways you can approach the cold lead.

Subject Line And Sender Name

The very first impression of your email outreach is the subject line besides the sender name.

You have a limited amount of space to make an impression and resonate with the recipient – at least enough that your email is opened. No matter how good or convincing your main body is, if your email is not opened because of the subject line, then all your efforts will be in vain.

To avoid this, it’s a good idea to take a look at your past campaigns and analyze what works better. Here are some tips you can start off with:

      • Check if questions work better compared to statements
      • Check if campaigns with the recipient’s company name have a higher open rate
      • Check if campaigns with the recipient’s first name have a better higher and reply rate, etc.

Read: 20 Email Subject Lines For The Best Open Rates

Email Body

Since there are so many templates out there, we’ll keep this one short.

Once your email is opened, you’re past the first hurdle and on to the most difficult objective – to get the person to read through to the end and actually be convinced enough to reply.

Typically, most salespeople start off by highlighting a certain pain point and how their solution can help. This has now become almost one of the rules of cold email outreach in the B2B world. And while it certainly works, there are few other ways to start. For instance, you could use humor or something related to the prospect as your first line – this is where having sales triggers can help.

From our personal experience, a bit of humor as opposed to a strictly professional sounding email works really great for cold outreach. Of course, the approach you take is also dependent on your target audience.

Other than the tone, you should also experiment with the length of the content. Analyze past emails to see if brevity or longer content works.

Images Or Videos

This particular variable is a bit contested – there is a whole debate whether images affect your email deliverability.

In summary, our research and experience has led us to conclude that you have to be careful about including images in your email. This is not to say that you should not – after all, images, gifs, memes and short videos are all a great way of catching your prospect’s eye.

What we mean is that you should avoid adding too many images in one email and also consider the size. If the image is too large, it will probably come across as spam – either way, you’re not likely to get the response you need.

As such, you can test the response of images or videos in your email outreach. Try dividing your list and sending something different to see which image works better for the same audience – or whether they work at all.

Call To Action (CTA)

We don’t need to explain the importance of a call to action. Sufficient to say, it’s the neon, glowing sign that helps guide the prospect to where you want them to go.

For email outreach, most people believe that your first touchpoint should not be selling your product directly. But here’s the thing, what works for others might not work for you. As such, go ahead and hard sell in the first email – you’ll never know if you don’t try.

Remember, the point is to follow the rules and try something out of the box.

Bonus Tip – Test The Best Time

While most salespeople prefer scheduling campaigns around morning time, a benchmarking report by GetResponse highlights that there are actually two slots you could try.

The first is around 10 am (this is when people are settling into their work day) – and the second is around 1 pm (right after lunch, when people are catching up on emails).

Still, the best time depends on your audience – and so, trying out a different time for each campaign is the best way to move forward.

Bottom Line

And that’s it – these are a few variables that you should regularly A/B in your email outreach.

Just remember to keep your objective or aim in mind when creating your campaign and don’t forget to pull in the right data from your vendor – it could really mean the difference to your outreach.

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