The “Double Opt-In” {Sales Email Strategy}

double-dragonWe’ve stumbled upon a solid new email tactic and wanted to share it with you all. It’s currently producing 2x response rate than our previous methods.

We’re calling it the “double-opt-in cold email”

Before I get to the new idea, let’s start by defining our goal. We want to schedule a meeting, demo or phone call with a cold contact through email. Here’s is how we do it (hint: you’ve probably seen most of these steps except #4)

#1 Crafty subject Line

Be sure to put in some work on this one.  Your goal is two fold: make them open the email and not be annoyed with you. We’ve had success with the following:

  • Reference news that’s occurred with the prospect’s company
  • Reference their product name or feature (one they would definitely know but many wouldn’t)
  • Reference one of their recent tweets (stay away from Facebook references)
  • Reference a group of which they’re associated

You’re looking for anything else that pertains to THEM. Keep it creative, quirky, humorous, or even outlandish. Then tie it into the opening…

#2 Finish your subject as the first line in the body

Give a small reference to why the topic in the subject line caught your attention. Still all about them.

#3 Simple intro and present hypothesis

Let the prospect know you are working to understand them and think you can be of value but aren’t sure (only they would know). The last part is vital because it makes this still all about them (their favorite topic)

#4 The Ask (here’s the opt in part)

Your ask is for permission to email them again. That’s it. Not a phone call, or a face-to-face, but just one more email. You’re looking to get a yes out of them in the simplest way possible. You want them to buy-in to hear from you again so it’s no longer cold a “cold” discussion.

Here’s how it would look. Imagine I’m emailing the Director of Sales at Infusionsoft cold. Here’s what I might send:

Subject: “The Sales Whisperer” <—this is the nickname of Infusionsoft’s top reseller

Bill –

Any product with a reseller this passionate is worth getting behind. Kyle Porter with SalesLoft here. Given your aggressive growth strategies, I’ve got a hypothesis that we can improve your prospectors numbers through our simple list building tool.

Do you mind if I send you 2-3 simple (yes/no) questions in email to explore whether it’s worth your time?


I didn’t go straight for the meeting, I’m incorporating a sort-of ‘double opt-in”. What do you think?

SalesLoft CEO, Kyle Porter. Circle Kyle on Google+!
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2 Responses to “The “Double Opt-In” {Sales Email Strategy}”

  1. Jeff Thomas November 25, 2013 at 11:31 am #

    I like the double opt in strategy but I think the sample email could be improved if instead of offering to send them follow up questions (which require they do work) you offer to send them information they will find valuable (white paper, case study, etc.). Good collateral should trigger questions from them which are much more valuable than asking them questions.

  2. Chris Lusk December 9, 2013 at 11:03 am #

    Great post Kyle, as usual. I really like Jeff’s feedback as well. I am trying both to see what works best.

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