Killer Tips to Create Successful Follow-Up Emails

Killer Tips to Create Successful Follow-Up Emails

Do you ever wonder why prospects don’t respond to your touch base emails? All the emails and follow-up emails you send seems to be in limbo. It’s even more bewildering when you know they look at your emails, but just ignore. A study reveals an average worker checks email 74 times a day, which reiterates the fact that prospects do check your emails, or at the least your subject lines, before deciding to respond or delete. With the humongous email traffic prospects receive in a day, chances of them reading your email is very low.

So, here’s a thought. Why do prospects not respond to your emails? Or I would like to put it this way, what’s in your email that is not resonating with the prospects? Most pertinent reasons could be:

  • You eat away their time to introduce ‘your’ business
  • You bother them to buy ‘your’ product or service
  • You send follow-ups, making them feel ‘guilty’ by not responding to you

There’s a 90% likelihood that you’ll get a response within a day or two if the recipient is going to reply. You need to address the element of – WIIFM – ‘What’s in it for me?’ in your emails. Sometimes, even though you incorporate WIIFM element, you don’t seem to get enough responses. This is when you pull out your ‘follow up’ strategy which could turn out to be that crucial factor setting you apart from your competition.

Below are some of the statistics on follow-ups which can be very interesting to note:;

  • 44% of sales people give up after one “no”
  • 22% give up after two “nos”
  • 14% give up after three “nos”
  • 12% give up after four “nos”
  • 80% of sales require 5 follow up attempts

So, it means the more you wait for a response, the fewer chances you have received one. It’s good to be proactive. Once you send the email, expect a response within an hour or maximum up to 48hrs, if you haven’t received a response within a day or two, it’s time you sent a follow-up email. You can include one or more of the following follow up email tips in framing you’re follow up emails.

Engaging subject lines

Subject lines absolutely affect the email open rates. According to research, it’s found that 64% of subscribers say they are likely to read your email because of who it’s from, and 47% of email recipients open an email based on the subject line.

Engaging subject lines

Hubspot conducted a study in 2014 using 6.4million emails sent by its sales team and learned a few things on subject lines that impact on email open rates:

  • Use concrete numbers and times. Emails with “Quick” in the subject line were opened 17% less than those without.
  • Create a sense of urgency by using “tomorrow.” Emails with”Tomorrow” in the subject line were opened 10% more than those without.

For mobile readers, optimize the length of subject lines. Portrait mode shows not more than 35 characters (including spaces). So it’s good to include the important matter at the beginning of the subject line.

Add visuals

Adding a visual can increase your click-through rate by 42%. Another supporting survey by HubSpot shows that 65% of respondents prefer emails that contain mostly images vs. 35% who prefer mostly text.

It’s important to match your image with the email content. Also, since images are turned off by default, it’s good to add relevant alt texts to them. This text shows up even if your image is not displayed. Most email marketing services let you easily fill this field for your images.

Create brief Follow-up Emails

The size of your email plays a significant role in the deliverability of the email.

  • Email should not exceed 50 to 70 KB – V12 Group
  • Email size be limited to 125 KB – Responsys
  • Email on Acid’s spam reporting, which was tested against 23 of the most popular spam filters, found that sending a file size between 15KB-100KB is good.

Run A/B testing on various file sizes, and check which one suits your business model.

Personalized Emails

More than 20% of marketing emails never make it to a subscriber’s inbox due to bulk sending without any personalization. That’s one in five emails! Experian tested personalization, by including customer’s name in the subject line has boosted open rates by 29.3%. Across the industries, this small change has affected the open rates as much as 41.8%. Another report says personalization can increase open rates by 26%.


Add call-to-actions

Are your call-to-actions scoring the actions they were actually meant for? Interesting facts regarding CTAs include that using the appropriate words, size, color, and font mentioned earlier, emails have the best results within the 1st hour after delivery. Also, it is identified that the best days of emailing are Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Thursdays. If you are following up on your first mailers, then Thursdays are ideal. Weekends are the worst days of email.

Call to actions

The readers’ top engagement times for opening emails include 8 a.m. – 10 a.m. and 3 p.m. – 4 p.m. can increase their average open rates and CTR by 6%.


If your emails include grammatical mistakes, misused words, poorly written sentences, and typographical errors, your email messages very well might sound unprofessional. People form impressions about your level of intelligence, based on how you write. Also, what you write is recorded forever, so if you type ‘50% discount’ instead of ‘15% discount’, you might as well be prepared for the loss. So, it’s critical to proofread your emails before clicking ‘send’.

Include signature

A strong email signature is attention-getting and also professional. It cannot be more flashy nor too bland. Adding a signature to your emails gives the authentication increase your click rates to as much as 127%. Instead of ‘Buy now’ you can try ‘Get your pink Maybelline lipstick now’. You can run A/B testing to understand the change in the click-through rates, with the change in the CTAs.

Send emails at right times

It is imperative to understand the time of sending your follow-up emails. As men and credibility to the reader. Limit your signature to 3-4 lines of text. You can even add social media profile links to your signature, especially LinkedIn which is a professional network.


The lifespan of an email is very short, if you had not received a response within a day, it’s likely that you are being ignored. So, it can be really tricky to decide on when and how to send a follow-up email to people who have already ignored your first email. Your mantra should be to receive a response from the customer and prioritize your responses accordingly.

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Lizia is a content writer for Agile CRM, an all-in-one CRM for small and medium businesses. She brings about 6 years of experience in the IT industry working in various market research roles. She can be found covering articles on digital marketing and CRM majorly. She loves spending time with family, watches talk shows and enjoys her everyday life.

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