Personalization at Scale: An Outbound Email Strategy
By Carly Gail
When you’re writing a cold outreach email (or sending a cold Linkedin message), your task may seem simple -- but it can actually be very difficult. Response rates are low, and decision makers’ inboxes are flooded with canned, generic sales messages from hundreds of other people trying to get their attention.
It may seem like a hopeless endeavor, but you can use the market’s overall disregard for personalization to your advantage - not only with what you say but also with how you say it.
At Crystal, we advocate for a more personalized approach. Personalization at scale is an outbound strategy that helps you:
Get the attention of a new prospect that you’ve never met.
Instantly earn their trust and build rapport.
Increase your chances of a response.
Attain higher conversion rates
This isn’t a silver bullet, but a new mindset for cold outreach. Once you view people through the lens of their personality, rather than some assumptions about their job title or other general attributes, you’ll start creating your own mental models and systems to improve as you go.
How different personality types like to interact via email
The Crystal Personality Map (which is rooted in DISC) can tell us the basics about each personality type’s email preferences:
D personalities want emails to be brief, to-the-point, and as efficient as possible. Be careful not to include a surplus of detail or open-ended questions.
I personalities want emails to be casual, expressive, and relational. Avoid being too serious or focusing on facts and figures.
S personalities want emails to be warm, trustworthy, and friendly. Be consistent in using a kind, encouraging tone, and try not to be forceful or overly direct.
C personalities want emails to be detailed, informative, and accurate. Take the time to understand their reasoning for decisions by asking them questions, but do not skip over important information or involve emotion.
How to compose an email that will resonate with prospects
When formulating an email, it is most important to consider three factors:
What do they want? Why do they want it? How do they want to interact?
Though understanding all three aspects of the interaction sounds difficult, Crystal’s Personality AI makes it easier than ever to effectively appeal to others, even in a form as brief– and usually impersonal– as email.
Step 1: The Subject Line
The subject line is arguably one of the most important parts of an email. It’s your chance to make a sparkling first impression within the mountainous pile of uninteresting jargon in the modern buyer’s inbox.
Subject Line Tips
Focus on an enticing, straight-to-the-point message.
How [Company] will fit your strategy
Opt for a quick message about creative, new ideas.
New product to help leaders communicate
Try something more subtle and friendly.
Discussing next steps
Provide an interesting fact, as long as it is later supported with data.
[Company]: features, benefits, and cost
Step 2: The Greeting
While it may seem like a trivial personal preference, your opening is one of the easiest but most impactful parts of your email to tailor.
Skip the pleasantries
Be casual and relational
Be friendly, yet formal
Skip the pleasantries
Step 3: The Introduction
Different personality types have vastly different preferences for how you begin your message body. This is often one of the most significant “shifts” for people to make away from their natural style when tailoring an email.
Get right into the value you can provide, skipping any kind of personal introduction.
We offer a service that can cut legal costs for small and mid-sized businesses by 25-50%.
Help them connect the dots - it may be mutual connections, interests, or anything else that may link you together.
I asked Melissa Taylor who would be the best person to talk to, and she said to reach out to you!
Introduce yourself formally so they know information like who you are, where you work, and/or where you are.
My name is Daniel, and I work for MetaZine, a software platform for online magazine publishers like yourself.
Specify precisely why you are contacting them before you get into any further detail.
I’m writing to find out if we can help you reduce your legal expenses.
Step 4: The Body
In general, personalities north on the DISC map prefer shorter emails and those in the south prefer longer ones. However, there are many additional nuances to consider:
Keep it high level, use concise language, and keep the email to 3 sentences or less.
This will fit into your overall goals by…
Use casual language, express a little bit of emotion, and ask open questions.
Lots of people love this feature…
Include past experience, appeals to authority, and any other external references that can increase your credibility.
Here’s how it’s helped other people in the past…
Meet their skepticism with data to prove your point and back up any claim you make with external sources.
Here is some information to help you make your decision…
Step 5: Call to Action
Every outreach email you write should have a specific call to action - the thing you want your prospect to do in response. By asking the reader a question or giving them a direction, you’re helping to ensure a response. Below is a breakdown of how each personality types prefer calls to action in an email.
Ask for permission to take an action, rather than requesting that they give you some of their time.
Are you available at 2 pm to discuss?
Suggest a real-world activity without pressure to make a decision
I’d love to chat with you and answer any questions you have about the product. Let me know what your next week looks like.
Get them to take a baby step towards your desired outcome, but keep it in the email and don’t ask for too much.
Are you interested in new partnerships like this? If so, let’s talk next week.
Ask them to answer a question (particularly an interesting or challenging question) via email, as they are much more likely to respond in writing than over the phone.
What’s one thing you would change about your current QA process?
Step 6: The Closing
Your email closing doesn’t matter as much as the opening, but it’s an area to potentially slip up - people often have strong preferences and pet peeves for how others close their emails.
Don’t even bother with a formal closing - just end with your name.
End with a genuine expression of gratefulness or excitement.
Looking forward to speaking,
End formally and with sincerity.
Be formal or concise and avoid too much emotional expression.
How Can I Tell My Prospect’s Personality...Before We’ve Met?
Use the Crystal Chrome Extension to gather insights about your prospect’s personality, including what communication style is most likely to resonate before you send the first email. Whether you need to build personal rapport, request meeting times, negotiate, collaborate, or pitch a sale, you can start guessing less and sending emails more confidently.