Outbound sales is a growth strategy that involves proactively reaching out to leads, rather than waiting for them to find you.
One of the most popular forms of outbound sales is cold email outreach, where the goal is usually to generate warm replies.
But how do you actually convert those warm replies into new revenue?
For most businesses, this requires a meeting.
Scheduling meetings from outbound channels requires much more persistence and personalization than you may be used to. "Outbound" implies that you are contacting people who aren’t familiar with your business, so it will naturally be harder to get them on a call compared to someone who came through a referral channel or Google search.
Remember, you found these people and are trying to engage, they didn't actively search for your solution.
To help with this challenge, we analyzed the results from hundreds of email campaigns and conversation threads and created this checklist. Learn how to take the warm leads that you worked so hard for, and turn them into booked meetings.
- Respond Same Day
- Follow Up Regularly
- Customize your Response
- Match the Tone
- Ask for the Meeting
✅ 1. Respond Same Day
When a prospect says they are interested, respond back to them within the same work day, or within 24 hours at the most. The faster you respond, the more likely they are to stay engaged and convert to a meeting!
Our data shows that the majority of email replies come in between 9 am-11 am in the morning. Try blocking off 30 minutes after this time window each day to check your inbox and respond promptly.
✅ 2. Follow Up Regularly
It’s very common that a prospect will need 2-4 follow-up messages before agreeing to a meeting. Be persistent and check in at regular intervals. Remember, this person took time out of their day to respond to you because something about your pitch was truly interesting to them.
After their initial engagement, keep checking in and sending personalized, value-adding messages. Follow up every day for 4 days, then move to bi-weekly or once a month. If they haven’t say “no”, the door is still open!
✅ 3. Customize your Response
Do research by looking at the prospect’s website and LinkedIn profile. Mentioning custom details like industry experience, the fact that they live in your city, etc. will show that you are genuine and serious about meeting with them.
That being said, make sure to also address the original ask. If a prospect replies asking to see the guide that you offered, send them the guide that you offered! Your campaigns will likely contain different pitches and call-to-actions depending on the strategy, so always make sure to read through the entire conversation thread and reply accordingly.
✅ 4. Match the Tone
When a warm lead comes in, it’s easy to get excited and want to share everything that your business can do. However, if the response is one sentence like “send me pricing” or “do you work with startups?”, focus on writing a simple and direct answer that matches their vibe.
A common mistake here is to send a huge pitch deck or write a lengthy bullet-pointed reply to a prospect when they just aren’t ready, and more importantly, didn’t ask.
The flip side of this is when someone takes the time to send a thoughtful, detailed message or call out something you have in common, like attending the same events or knowing the same people. Make sure to thank them for their time and take the same care when crafting your response. For example, don’t send a generic reply with your booking link to someone that just recalled all the details of the talk you gave at a recent conference.
✅ 5. Ask for the Meeting
This may seem obvious, but in order to schedule meetings with prospects you have to ask for them!
Every email should end with a Yes or No question. Something like “Can I send over a few times to chat next week?” clearly indicates your intentions and what the next action will be. Meanwhile, “Let me know what you think.” is much more vague and puts all the responsibility on the prospect to make the next move.
If your email outreach scripts offer to share resource like how-to guides or case studies, do not assume that a prospect will read your content and book a meeting themselves. When sending them the resource, also explain why they would benefit from meeting with you and ask if they are open to it.
A good practice is to include your calendar link in the body of the email or in your signature to make it as easy as possible for them to schedule.
Outbound sales, particularly cold email, can be quite a rollercoaster ride. Converting your hard-earned warm replies into revenue-generating meetings is no walk in the park, and requires dedication, persistence, and personalization.
The good news is these proven tactics will immediately boost your chances of turning those precious warm leads into actual booked meetings (we've seen it). So, get out there and fill up that calendar! 🚀