Cold Email Case Study - Soundjuice
Cold email when done right can be one of the most effective acquisition channels. So let me start with what I’ve seen work, what I think could work, and what I’m not really sure would work or not.
Successful use cases (based on work I’ve done):
- B2B lead gen (i.e. SaaS business looking to introduce its product to businesses who could potentially become customers of the product)
- UGC / survey data (i.e. When I was building a travel email series we collected tons of responses sending people to Typeforms to submit content around destinations we were going to feature)
- Influencer outreach (i.e. Connecting influencers to relevant brands)
- Newsletter signups (i.e. Great way to drive traffic to landing pages that try to convince users to “opt-in”)
Ones I think could work but haven't tried:
- Promoting virtual summits (free ones would be easy and paid ones would probably be doable)
- Promoting IRL (in real life) events (acquiring data based on locations)
- Promoting podcasts (matching people based off interests to potential podcasts they may like)
Ones I'm not sure about:
- Driving straight ecom sales (convincing consumers to purchase from brands they may or may not be familiar with).
Once again, all of the examples referenced above are all from a cold email perspective. At Boundless Labs a bulk of the work we do is working with e-commerce brands to turn their “opt-in” email subscribers into first time customers, and current customers into repeat buyers. So the process of emailing consumers and selling to them is extremely successful once someone already knows about your brand and has agreed to receive messages from your brand.
Now onto the case study I wanted to share.
Back in the day (about 2 and 1/2 years ago) I had an Instagram growth tool for musicians called Soundjuice (which was acquired and folded into the acquiring brand) that helped musicians grow their Instagram following to ultimately promote their music and build an audience.
The number one way (and frankly only way outside of client referrals) we drove new customers was through cold email. Social networks are a great way to identify what interests individuals have, so we aggregated data from social networks that told us what specific users have an interest in music, and are in-fact musicians themselves. And from there we sent them personalized emails introducing them to our brand. We explained to them who we were, why our tool was better than others, and how it would help them increase their audience.
From the outreach we performed, we were averaging open rates over 50% and CTR’s ranging from 10%-15%. We ended up figuring out that for every 100 people we emailed, we’d covert 4 of them into customers (paying around $20 per month).
At this point we were off to the races since we had our funnel built and it was just a matter of getting more people into it. Because at 1,000 emails sent, that meant we’d convert 40 of them to customers. At 10,000 emails sent, that meant we’d have 400 customers.
In-summary, here’s how cold email works at a high-level in the example I gave:
Step 1 = Identify your ideal user (in our case it was musicians)
Step 2 = Figure out how you can aggregate this data from social media or find the right data partners who can provide you with a list of prospects
Step 3 = Setup your email infrastructure that’ll allow you to send emails that hit peoples inbox (most cold emails go to spam, not as easy as it sounds and no don’t go use something like MailChimp)
Step 4 = Create content (including subject line + email body)
Step 5 = Begin sending emails to the folks on your list (start small so you have a chance to see how your email content performs)
Step 6 = Test and iterate on the subject line and email body you’re sending to optimize for more opens, clicks, and replies.
Step 7 = Scale!
Hope this provides some insight into the cold email process at a high-level. If you have any questions about anything mentioned here, please reach out to me directly, my email is firstname.lastname@example.org. My LinkedIn profile for reference, click here.
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