Agency New Business-Don’t Send this Email-Part III


Welcome back to Don’t Send this Email!

In our past editions, Part I and Part II, we took real emails we received and broke down why they were ineffective. Really ineffective.

(As in past posts, I’m not naming names of companies or people, not the point of this exercise.)

What is the point?

Always be aware of your audience.

That’s sales email 101, right?

Well, with this email, it started out informally, not a bad thing:

Hey Lee,

Even though big things are cool, smaller projects and campaigns with our partners are the unspoken hero’s that don’t get as much back patting. I wanted to share two recent animated explainer videos with you that could spark some ideas on how we might snap into your upcoming client executions.

The good: It did catch my attention, not like the typical sales emails I get.

The not so good: “Hero’s” shouldn’t have an apostrophe and back patting should have a hyphen.  (Now you’re just being pedantic, Lee.  And kind of a jerk.)

Fair, these are small things, I’ve done them at some point.  But here’s where the email starts to go south for me: how we might snap into your upcoming client executions.

What’s with the “snapping”?  Not a fan. And you may be thinking, what’s the big deal Lee?  More on that shortly.

Also not a fan of “upcoming client executions”.  Here’s where you need to be careful, because maybe we don’t have those types of executions. Then you’ve lost your prospect.

Moving on to the next part of the email:

To give context, we can pull these explainers together in the range of 10-20k roughy depending on the nitty gritty deets.

Now things are stacking up.  We have a typo in “roughy” and need a comma after that as well.  I know, Lee=jerk, but these things are important and they do start to add up.

What I really don’t like is “deets”.  Did this person really just use “deets” in a professional email? (Just in case you don’t know, that’s short for details.)

So now we have “snap” and we have “deets”.

Moving on to the last bit:

No matter what the next “big or small thing” will be, it’s typically gonna be with our partners.

“Gonna”?  Really?

(There’s more, but not necessary to this post.)

In the end, this email is going to be perfectly fine for some prospects, but circling back, you have to be aware of your entire audience.

I still like the fact that the email did get my attention in its style, but overall, stay away from snap and deets and God forbid, gonna.

Counterpoint: Lee-you are old.

Fair. (I’m only 46 though, come on!)

In all seriousness, I get that the way we communicate has changed/is changing, but you can cross a line into smarmy, grating or trying too hard, and you don’t want that.

And look, I just sent an email this week with a typo (“it” was repeated) and that hadn’t happened in a while.  Suffice to say I was not pleased.

I’m all for experimentation and originality in sales emails, in fact, you have to, because your competition is doing the same. But don’t go overboard.

Know that your audience is varied in many ways and try to strike a balance between dry/boring and way too hip.

And proofread, please.  On occasion, send that email to a co-worker for another opinion or just to make sure there are no mistakes.

OK, I’m done, got to go yell at some kids to get off my lawn!

Author: Lee McKnight Jr

I’m the VP of Sales at RSW/US. We specialize in working with services firms to help drive and close new business-if you need help with that, email me at lee@rswus.com. What I actually do: drive sales efforts to bring ad agencies and services firms on board with RSW, create content around successful new business tactics and help drive RSW/US marketing objectives, including social media channels, blog content, webinars, video and speaking engagements. Dig it.