Cold email lists are an incredibly powerful tool in your marketing arsenal – but only good ones, and you have to warm them up.
It’s not hard to do, but it’s crucial.
If you’ve got a great cold list, congratulations! You’re almost ready to use it. There’s just a few things you should know before you dive in.
Warming up a cold email list is only worth doing if it’s a good list. That means it needs to be sourced from a reputable data provider that aggregates their data instead of scraping it.
Scraped lists are full of email addresses gathered by simply scouring the internet for emails and copying them into a list. Scraped lists are worse than useless – they can be quite harmful.
First of all, there’s not likely to be very many real people on those lists. They’re often nonexistent emails, misspelled, spam traps, honeypots, and generally not real recipients. Sending to a scraped list will generally result in plenty of spam reports, hard bounces and overall damage to your sender score.
Secondly, the real people that are on the list are very likely not your target audience anyway.
All in all, scraped lists aren’t worth your time and effort, and certainly not your money.
Instead, get your cold lists from a reputable data provider who aggregates their contacts. If you’re unsure where to find one of those, drop us a line and we’ll refer you. We partner with a number of excellent providers.
Warming Your IP Address
Once you’ve got a high quality list and you’ve run it through a list verification service, it’s time to send your first campaign to those contacts.
Before you do, though, it’s worth mentioning that your contacts aren’t the only thing you need to warm up.
Let’s say you’ve got a nice, shiny new high-quality list with 100,000 contacts. This is your first time sending to a big list. You load up your list, build your campaign and pull the trigger.
Spam filters look at your IP and say “this address is suddenly sending massive amounts of email at once, this is suspicious behavior” and your sender score takes a hit, your campaign goes right to the junk folder, and you’ve hobbled your email marketing capability.
That’s because when you suddenly and dramatically increase your send volume, your IP address goes from cold to white-hot all at once. You need to build up to that level first.
Start with a much smaller send volume and gradually build up to hitting your full list at once and warm up your IP address.
The first step to warming up those chilly contacts is, of course, a cold campaign. But what should you say?
First, determine what your goal is. Are you trying to go for conversions right away, or do you just want to make them aware of your existence?
As initial contacts go, a brand awareness campaign isn’t a bad idea. If you don’t ask them for anything, and instead just provide a bit of value in your email, that’s a favorable first impression and makes it much more likely that they’ll react favorably when you do ask them to do something.
If you’re going for a more direct ask, like an opt-in conversion, you need to remember that these contacts are cold, which means they have even less of an attention span for your marketing than they would otherwise.
That means you should endeavor to grab their attention right from the outset with a strong subject line that clearly presents what sort of value they’ll get from the contents of your email.
Avoid clickbait subject lines. While it’s tempting to go for something that can compel people to click out of curiosity, if you can’t back up your subject line with legitimate value in your message, you’re just going to annoy your contacts. That’s exactly what you don’t want!
Once you’ve sent your first campaign, you’ll have a few different categories of contacts. You’ll have people who converted, which means they’ve opted in and are headed for your funnel and nurturing workflows.
You’ll have contacts who clicked and/or opened your email, but didn’t convert. A smart move here is to create a separate list for those contacts. That way, you can create campaigns specifically designed for those contacts who’ve at least seen your previous message. This way you can gradually warm them up until they take the conversion plunge.
Of course you’ll also have those who didn’t open your email at all. Treat them as though your next campaign is your first contact with them. It most likely is.
Clickback’s email lead generation software is built from the ground up to let you reach cold B2B contacts and turn them into warm, opted-in leads by sending cold campaigns – safely, securely and reliably. Get your free 1:1 demo today!