Areeba Khan
Author: Areeba Khan  |  

Areeba is a Writer/Blogger and works as the Content Manager at Botsify - a Chatbot Building Platform. Holds expertise in crafting trending and researched based content.

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Did you know?

  1. 44% of salespeople give up after sending their first follow-up email and not getting a response from their prospects
  2. 22% after sending the second one
  3. 14% after sending their third follow-up email
  4. 12% after the fourth
  5. While 80% of follow-up emails get a successful response on their fifth follow-up email (source: marketing donut)

There is no secret recipe for creating a high-converting email sequence.Neither a guarantee of getting a 100% response rate after reading this guide. But I can help you improve your follow-up emails a lot.

Your prospects could be on your mind every day, it doesn’t apply in reverse. It could be because of the available alternatives with similar or better deals, your prospects forgetting about you or maybe you didn’t follow-up ENOUGH.

Ever wondered why your prospects are not responding to your follow-up emails and seem to be in limbo?

While your email did reach them, they just didn’t bother opening it or clicking on any Call-to-actions given in the email.

As a matter of fact, an average person would check email 74 times a day - which means, your prospects do look at your emails, may even read your subject lines and then decide to either open and respond or ignore and delete it.

Of course, due to the humongous traffic, they receive daily, there should be a good enough reason for them to read your email and perform the action you are expecting them to.

So what is it that just doesn’t resonate with the prospects...  

a. Are you introducing yourself too much?

b. Are you consistently asking them to buy your product or service?

c. Your follow-up emails are more guilt-driven than encouraging?

Don’t stress yourself too much, here are some cool tactics to leverage your follow-up emails convert more often.

Tip #1: Time Your Follow-up Emails Right

If the recipient has decided to respond to your email, there is a 90% chance you will get it within a day or two of sending that very email.

Be proactive and quick once you send an email. The longer you wait to follow-up, the lower the chances of getting a response from your prospects.

Ideally, a 48-hour time window is enough for sending another follow-up email to a prospect.

Most of the follow-up emails that do get the recipient’s attention have a “What’s in it for me?” (WIIFM) element in them.

Meaning, no long intros, no selling your product all throughout the conversation and more telling the prospect why they need it and how it will improve their processes, etc.

Example of an email subject line I created recently

Similar to this: Check out these 1500+ responsive email templates for your follow-up emails.

Tip #2: Catchy Subject Lines are Crucial

What is the first thing that your prospect would see in their inboxes when you send them an email? Your name/company and the subject line.

According to a recent study, subject lines do affect email open rates. Around 47% of your subscribers would open your email if the subject line is catchy and meaningful and 64% simply read your email because you sent it.

But the question is what makes a subject line catchy and effective?

According to Hubspot, a study they conducted using 6.4 million sales follow-up emails they had sent concluded:

  1. A subject line with a sense of urgency gets 10% more open rate.

#Tip - Include words like “tomorrow” or “24 hours” at the beginning of your subject lines.

2.  On the contrary, email subjects with “quick” in the subject line get 17% less open       rate.

#Tip - Be concrete with the times and numbers you use in your email subjects.

3.  Keeping your subjects within the optimum length is important.

Remember, most of your prospects are on their mobile and your ideal subject line would be anywhere between 25-35 characters, including spaces.

#Tip - Your important takeaway should always be at the beginning of the email subject.

For mobile readers, optimize the length of subject lines. Portrait mode shows no more than 35 characters (including spaces). So it’s good to include the important takeaway at the beginning of the subject line.

We have explained writing an engaging subject and copy for follow-up emails here.

Tip 3: Don’t Just Tell, Show!

Another sales email survey HubSpot concluded shows that around 65% of email recipients prefer emails with more images than text. While 35% prefer more text and fewer images.

But none said they like plain text emails…

According to Getvero, adding visuals to your first or follow-up emails can increase the click-through rate by up to 42%.

However, adding irrelevant images/videos is of no use. It’s always important to keep the context of your email in mind.

More importantly, adding relevant alt text will help your reader understand what visuals in the email contain - since multimedia are turned off by default. You can easily setup this field under your images.

Relevant visuals with text are always helpful for a reader to believe what you are promising

So now that you have learned a little something about improving your email sequences, I want you to know how to grow your email lists…

Bonus Tip

Ever thought about your webpage CTA’s being ignored by visitors?

Well, how about chatbots? They can vastly improve user engagement, your response rate, and conversion too.

Chatbots are a lot more personalized and simpler than call to action buttons - they interact more and sell less. You have a lot more room to provide value to a website visitor and generate leads faster with the help of a chatbot as it can slowly gradually build the conversation to the point where a user would want to provide their personal information willingly.

For instance, e-commerce websites can setup follow-up emails on cart abandonment. Then you can even create an entire sequence for a prospect on any given call to action that you want it to perform.

You can also use a chatbot to automate follow-ups, newsletters and deliver just the content to specific customers or prospects that they want to see.

Summing up

You probably already have a strong email marketing game, but upgrading your techniques every now and again will not only help you improve your click-through rate but can help convert leads faster.

At the end of the day, what matters is whether or not your sales email sequence successfully made the recipient do what you asked for.

But the lifespan of an email is too short, the 48 hours post sending out a follow-up will determine its fate.

The best way to ensure that is to follow-up often and smart. That’s our email marketeering mantra… what’s yours?


1) When should I write follow-up emails?

In most cases, you should create follow-up emails after you’ve sent the first email and did not receive any response for a given amount of time (say, 3 days). However, follow-up emails can also be used when you want to touch-base after the initial meeting or reconnect with existing contacts.

2) What are the steps involved in a typical follow-up email sequence in email marketing?

Typically, every marketing email sequence should include these 4 steps:

  • A series of lead nurturing email
  • A sales email with a clear CTA
  • A polite but firm reminder email (2-3 days after the first sales email)
  • A breakup email, to inform about discontinuation of sending further emails (4-5 days after the last email)

3) How can I get my follow-up emails to convert more often?

Here are some effective tactics to leverage your follow-up emails convert more often:

  • Time your follow-up emails right
  • Include a catchy subject line
  • Strike the right balance between images and text

4) What are the common pitfalls to avoid while sending follow-up emails?

There are some common things to keep in mind while sending follow-up emails which will keep your follow-up email from repelling the recipients:

  • Don’t over-introduce yourself, and don’t go on and on about your company, product, or service.
  • Don’t keep pestering them to buy your product or service.
  • Don’t send vague follow-up emails. Example: follow-up emails without a clear CTA.
  • Don’t try to induce guilt in the mind of the recipient. Avoid blame game.