SMMA outreach is one of the most challenging but most important aspects of running an agency.
As a beginner, it’s absolutely necessary to engage in cold outreach to set meetings to sign clients.
In this guide, you’ll learn multiple methods of cold outreach, their advantages and disadvantages, and how to carry out cold outreach for your SMMA.
(For more common SMMA terms, consult our Glossary)
Outreach is the method by which you contact leads that you have gathered.
Cold outreach is contacting leads whom you have never spoken to before and has not heard of you or your agency.
There are three primary forms of outreach: cold calling, cold emailing, and cold direct messaging.
Cold calling is one of the most-effective and yet least-popular forms of SMMA outreach.
Because it involves picking up the phone, dialing a number, speaking to someone who doesn’t know you, and convincing to work with you.
For so many people, this is a terrifying prospect but it’s incredibly important to remember that even in the age of the internet and thousands of different methods of outreach, picking up the phone and speaking to a human being is an incredibly effective way to set meetings with clients.
Cold calling also allows you to move quickly from lead-to-lead and establish their interest (or lack of). However, it is also more time consuming than other outreach methods.
In order to start cold calling, you’ll need:
> A Skype account (make sure you verify your number)
> A good pair of headphones and a microphone
Remember: on your cold call, you’re not trying to pitch a service. You’re trying to pitch a meeting where you can sell your service. This is an important distinction.
First, you’ll need to get past the ‘gatekeeper’: in cold-calling, this is the member of staff (often a receptionist) who fields external calls. Their job is to prevent anyone unauthorized from speaking to the person in charge. Ask for the person you’re trying to speak to by name and speak confidently.
Once you’re speaking to the person in charge, let them know that they’re missing something in their marketing efforts, and that you can help.
Explain what you do and how you can help. Then pitch a Zoom Meeting. Explain that in the meeting, you’ll help them improve their marketing and there are no downsides to them agreeing to one. Set up a time and date that works for them, and then send through a calendar invite.
It’s incredibly helpful to use a cold calling script when you first start out. Get the same script given to Agency Incubator students in our free training.
Cold emailing is one of the most preferred methods of cold outreach as it can be done in bulk, and does not involve picking up the phone.
However, cold emailing requires persistence and patience: one-or-two emails are unlikely to yield any results.
> A personalized domain (Learn more about the benefits of personalized domains here)
> A method to track open rates and click-throughs. (Try MailTrack or Snov.io)
> Loom to be able to record your screen
Remember: Just like in cold calling, you’re not trying to pitch your services. You’re trying to book a meeting. Keep your email helpful, friendly, and informal.
The subject line of your email is the most important part. You can have the most perfectly-crafted email but without a compelling subject line, no one will read it. Use pattern-interrupts and include the person’s first name in the subject line to improve opening rates. Track multiple subject lines to determine your winner.
The email should address a specific issue that the business owner has with their marketing, quickly.
Just like in a cold call, invite the business owner to book-in. This time, you can send them to the booking link on your website to choose a time and date that suits them.
Remember to include an authoritative email signature – this is your last chance to convince the reader.
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Although cold messaging is similar to cold emailing, there is an important distinction: cold messaging can take place anywhere, on Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn: or even TikTok.
Cold messaging is also platform-specific, and most useful when you can’t get hold of a business owner’s email address or other contact details.
>A complete and professional-looking profile. It’s a good idea to use a separate profile than the one you use to communicate with friends.
>The account of the person you’re trying to message. You can either message the business directly, or the person who owns it: you can often find this by going to the business profile, and seeing who they follow.
>A template message: you might find this helpful to set-up as a quick-reply message on Instagram, or save it on your notes so you can copy and paste it.
Remember direct messages are more informal: keep the message short, and to the point. A direct message that looks and reads like an email will put people off: you’re trying to portray your outreach as one friendly business owner reaching out to another.
Don’t be afraid to start a dialogue with the business owner: it’s unlikely you’ll get far with a single message. Offer value, respect their time and keep it natural.
Naturally gravitate the conversation to booking in a call: explain that you can answer more questions and share your screen on a Zoom call. Send through your scheduling link.
Watch this video by Iman Gadzhi to find out the best method of SMMA Outreach.