If you're a freelance writer, there’s no doubt that you need to employ every marketing strategy that you feel has the potential to help you grow your business. One that has become increasingly popular for individuals who want to work completely from home is the cold email marketing strategy. Cold emails or warm emails, as some freelance experts refer to them, are your opportunity to reach out to someone directly over email to initiate the conversation.
While it's very unlikely that you'll be able to book the business entirely from just that one email, and you will ultimately need to get on a phone call, cold and warm emails are a great way to open the door for a successful conversation with someone who may be interested in retaining your services. In order for cold email pitching to work, you must be laser targeted and you have to write amazing pitches.
A copy and place template simply will not work. How many of us have been the recipient of one of those generic emails that you get from an SEO company based in India promising to get you on the first page of Google? Likewise, you don't want your own cold email strategy to come across in this particular manner either. So, you need to have a focused approach that clearly displays the benefits that a client could expect from working directly with you.
The Biggest Cold Email Marketing Mistake: Are You Making It?
One of the biggest mistakes that I see many people make in the cold email pitching world is by focusing too much on themselves and not enough on the client. Certainly, you need to convince the client that you have the skills and the ability to handle their freelance writing project successfully. In fact, the entire purpose of your cold email is to encourage them to get on the phone with you, another chance for them to view your communication skills.
However, when you talk only about yourself, the accolades you've received, the many clients you've had or the outcomes you've been able to achieve as a freelancer, you're missing out on half of the battle.
Clients don't care about you. Let me repeat that because it certainly bears repetition. Clients do not care about you.
They care about your writing ability, but more importantly, they care about your willingness and ability to get them results.
That means that your entire conversation in a cold email needs to be specifically aligned with the kind of outcomes you have achieved for other clients, the benefits other clients have reaped from working directly with you, and what you bring to the table as far as the process.
For example, you might focus on the fact that your work is delivered within 48 hours and is typically error free, you might choose to focus on the fact that thanks to your mad writing skills, one of your clients has been able to experience stories that were shared virally more than 20,000 times.
This has a dual benefit because it positions you as an experienced freelance writer and it also shows the client that you're able to achieve results.
Simply sending in a generic statement that you're a great writer and sharing information that you think supports that, doesn't show the client how your work actually translates to benefits for them.
- Help save them time?
- Bring them more qualified leads?
- Ensure that their customer engagement is higher as a result of highly clickable and interesting articles?
- Take things off their plate completely so that they never have to worry about the freelance process again?
- Do all of the research for them to identify headlines that encourage clicks and open rates?
- All of these are client-based benefits, but far too many people leave them out of their cold emails.
Now to the Good Stuff: A Cold Email Marketing Tool I Love
Now that you know a little bit about the cold email marketing strategy and what you should and shouldn't do to help position yourself for success, I want to dive into one of my favorite tools for cold email marketing.
It's called the HubSpot Sales Generator and it tells you when someone has opened your email.
There's no guarantee that every single person to whom you send a cold email pitch will open your message, read it, or respond to it.
At each stage of that process, people are going to drop off and refuse to take action. Or they simply won’t find enough motivation to take the action.
The chances of their refusal to take action is higher if you send a proposal that's too long, with writing samples that are low quality, or only mention things that are specific to you and not the client in the pitch itself.
While you'll never be able to fully predict whether or not somebody decides to take action based on each email you've sent, the HubSpot email tracker is free and helps you identify who has already opened your message.
In fact, you'll even get a notification if they open your email multiple times. This has serious benefits for a freelancer writer who is using the cold email pitching strategy. One of the most important components of your cold email pitching strategy is actually the follow up and not the initial email itself. You should structure your cold email pitch such that it encourages someone to get in touch with you by scheduling a call or requesting further information as soon as they finish reading the email. But you also want to have a follow up strategy that circles back at them again.
The HubSpot email tracking tool can help you identify situations in which it makes sense to reach out to someone for a follow up because you know they've already opened your message. You can test this system out for free by sending a test email or even one to someone who is not a prospective client for you and see the power of it.
How This Tool Works to Keep You on Top of Your Freelance Writing Cold Email Followups
A little notification will pop up in the corner of your screen notifying you that somebody has opened the email. This is an amazing tool for cold email pitching because while you ultimately want to reply to as many people as possible with a follow up if they have not gotten back to you from your original proposal, knowing who has opened your email and how many times gives you a clear indication of who has moved from a cold email pitch to a warm lead.
Contacting these individuals and asking if you can provide further information or schedule a call with them may be much more warmly received than other situations in which the person probably hasn't even read your first email.
So why wait? Go grab the free version of this email tracking tool today and give it a try. Then use the notifications to prompt you to get back in touch. When someone’s opened your message, you know they’ve seen it. If they have opened your message multiple times, the ball is in your court to follow up!