Mass Email Marketing Does Not Work Anymore: Strategies For Modern Email Prospecting

There was a time when thrice a week I would craft an email that I would send out to all of the leads in my CRM that I did not rate High.  I used a Low – Medium – High rating system to organize my inbound leads and generated enough appointments through this tactic to consistently fill the top of my pipeline.  My emails all offered 2 things, 1 – a piece of valuable content, 2 – a request for an appointment.

I tested different titles and some emails worked better than others, but overall, if I sent out enough emails, I would generate enough appointments.  Seemingly overnigh this tactic stopped working.   You can view my lead grading system here.


Hi there,

Do you remember seeing FAQ sections on websites? Occasionally you still do, but for the most part they have disappeared.

This is because the job of a website is to answer a researcher or prospect’s questions. If you set-up your website in a way to answer your prospect’s questions, you will increase sales. Check out this New York Times article on why.

We offer a complimentary Website Content Assessment. When would be a good time to walk through your site?

Let me know what works best.


There are many potential contributing factors to the extinction of the effectiveness of mass email in my sales process, but after this stopped working, I turned to Google Canned Responses to reach out to my leads.  My canned responses were mainly generic, but carried more of an individual focus than the mass emails.  This helped to ease the pain of filling the top of my funnel, but was largely ineffective.  Since realizing this ineffectiveness, I have fully shifted my email prospecting tactics to unique and tailored emails that follow a format I will share at the bottom of this post.

Have You Ever Been Mass Emailed?

Have you ever noticed 2 identical signatures in an introductory email or your name written in the lower case?

Likely, you have.  An internet user typically trades their email address for access to premium content, to use free tools, to purchase things or to subscribe to a blog.  Once you make this trade you are essentially opening your inbox to receive future communications from an organization.  When making a trade with a B2B organization, you are essentially becoming a lead for their sales team.

From here you may receive a phone call, but you will almost certainly receive an email.  These follow-up emails are the types of email I am talking about.  In many cases, people who trade their contact information for premium content or tools end up on the other side of a sales process.  Do you want to avoid this?  Or at least know when you are being Mass emailed? If so, try these 2 tactics.  They will act as key indicators to tell you every time you are being emailed in Mass.

  • Use all lowercase letters when you fill out a form, that way, if your name is being auto-generated in a Mass email you will know because your name will be in the lower case in your email
  • Use Gmail’s Instant Disposable Gmail address feature.  This allows to track all email that you receive that are related to filling out forms.  This will also help you identify if your email address has been sold.

The Number 1 Reason That Sales Reps And Organizations Mass Email Prospects

Mass emailing isn’t evil or tactless.  It’s a method to identify the hottest prospects, as quickly as possible and with scale for an organization.  The number reason that sales reps and organizations mass email prospects… well, it’s because for the last decade, you’ve been responding.  And now you don’t want to anymore.  No longer is your name in the body of an email enough to earn a response.  Your company name..nope.  If you put the information into the form field, it’s not enough for us to simply spit that back at you.

What Does The Consumer Want?

I believe firmly that in the next decade the consumer will want to self-opt in to any conversation with a sales rep.  This means requesting sales contact, or some other direct, hand raising, please call me immediately type of offer.  As humans strive towards perfect information the consumer will continue to have access to enormous resources and transparency from organizations.  A questions for another day, is what does that mean for the tradition and art of sales?  What personality types will be the most successful salespeople in the future?

As for today, what does the consumer want?

The consumer wants tailored information, focused on their business, not your brand, they want value.  Always offer to set up an appointment, but you must be focused on everything you can gather about their needs, wants and challenges.  Then position where you can offer value and how you would like to engage, whether it is an introduction to another person in their company or to book an appointment.  When providing value always make sure to be clear and ask for what you want.  If you were speaking to someone at a bar, had complimented them, asked them questions and engaged them, would you cut yourself short and not ask for their number?

A Modern Approach To Your First Prospecting Email

(First Name),

You did an excellent job speaking at the recent 21st Century B2B Marketing event, you have great understanding of social business.  Do you see social business working being effective in B2C?

I had a few ideas on how it could work in B2C that are related to your recent book. (which I read) I help B2C SMB’s  use the internet to bring their business to the national market.

What is the easiet way to get 10 minutes on your calendar Thursday to share with you how our market expertise can be mutually benefircial?


People have learned to block radio ads, commercials, newspaper ads and banners, has email joined this list and become old school interruptive outbound marketing?  I think so.  Use this alternative approach to reach out to your new leads and prospects and see your connect rates increase.

This article was originally published at, by author John Sherer.

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