What’s the first thing that comes to our mind when we think of cold emails in start-up? Prospecting. Lead generation. Finding new customers potentially interested in our product or service. Fair enough. That’s probably the core application of B2B cold emails right now. But we can do more than that. So, what else can we use cold emails for?
1. To get customer interviews
That’s what every start-up should do even before they start to build their product or service. As far as I’m sure you won’t necessarily take my word for that, I’m sure you’ll be interested in Jason Lemkin’s post on the 20 interview rule.
You can meet your interviewees in person, if you’re lucky. You can call them, if they want to talk to you. But you can also start interviewing your target group via email. We’ve done that. It works great if skillfully performed. And it brought us an awful lot of extremely useful information.
And here’s how email interviews helped us build SaaS>>
2. To ask prospects for a review
Ok, so you’ve done your initial research. You know your target group, you know what they struggle with. That’s how you came up with a first version of a solution to their problem. Now it’s time to check if they like what you came up with. So you’re going to show them what you have and ask their opinion.
And that’s another point where cold email fits perfectly as a way to get the reviews. You can ask if your prospects would be interested in a free trial and if they will offer you some help in improving your solution. That’s not only a way to gather a huge amount of valuable feedback, but also to start deeper relations with potential future customers. We’ve done that as well.
3. To ask for expert’s advice
The voice of your target group is most definitely the most valuable feedback. But except for potential users, there are also experts who could give you invaluable advice based on experience. Those are the people who know your type of business. They’ve probably aimed at the same group of prospects as you do right now. In short: they’ve already been there and done that.
Experts are usually hard to reach, but it’s definitely possible to start a conversation with them. At Woodpecker.co, we’ve used cold emails for that as well. The results have been greater than we expected.
Here’s more on how I asked for experts’ opinion in a cold email that got 50% reply rate>>
4. To get new customers
As I mentioned at the very beginning, lead generation and getting new customers seems to be the core use of B2B cold emails nowadays. I’ve described in my previous articles on how to do that step by step. You may be interested in a six-step tutorial to cold email that brings replies from interested prospects.
5. To get influencers for marketing
Now that’s a growth hack absolutely worth trying. I came across this great article on Bidsketch blog some time ago, and I am yet to explore the method myself.
In short, you find popular content in you niche, you find people who made it popular and you reach out to these people with your awesome content on a similar topic yet a slightly different approach or perspective. I’ll report on my own attempts of using this method in the upcoming posts.
6. To start business partnerships
As you’ve taken off with your start-up, you may want to cooperate with different companies, whose solutions are complementary to yours and who aim at the same or at a similar target group. Such cooperation is a mutually beneficial relationship and allows both partners to complement the services they offer to their clients and grow thanks to that.
So you can also reach out to another company who is not necessarily your potential client, but can be an important business partner. And that’s how you can use cold emails to start building your network and open your company for new markets.
What’s in it for you?
All of those actions and processes will shape and boost the development of your business. So of course, the first thing that comes to your mind when you think of B2B cold emails is getting new clients – because it’s the new clients that directly empower your business.
But there are so many things you can do even before getting new clients (and in the meantime) to find the right path for your company and to promote your product or service. And many of them can be done using cold emails.
In this post, I probably mentioned only a few of possible ways to use B2B cold emails – those which we tried ourselves, or are about to try . If you’ve been using cold email outreach for other purposes at your company, or have ideas on how you could use them, please share them in the comments.