Not Using Email Templates…Are You Nuts?
A few entries back, I posted a blog advocating for the use of a consistent, structured process, as well as standardized interactions across your entire sales organization. Today I wanted to take this a little bit further and talk about something very simple. Email templates.
I’ll start by making a bold statement. It is absolutely ridiculous for your salespeople to be writing, composing, or otherwise manually producing more than 20% of their e-mail communications.
Email is perhaps the simplest place to drive automation and standardization within your sales organization. If you are using a sales force automation tool like Salesforce.com, creating email templates is standard functionality.
However, somehow when I go into an organization, I find again and again and again that salespeople seem perfectly content to squander their time writing emails from scratch, and all I can think of to myself is, what a colossal waste of time.
Whether it’s the first attempt, the first interaction, or a follow-up to a cold call, everything should be standardized.
When I say to folks ‘why don’t you write a template?’ or when I’m working with a Client and I say, ‘give me your text and I’ll create a template’, the response is typically something ludicrous such as, ‘well, you know, each one is a little bit different and I like to personalize things’.
Are you serious? Is it beyond your capability to include a section you can personalize?
I’ve got another Client who does a lot of quotes and proposals…too many in my opinion. I ask them, ‘where is the value add in customizing an e-mail that is unlikely to even be read?’ Somebody getting a proposal wants to open up the proposal, see the price, and that is all.
Try this. Walk around your sales floor, talk to your sales people, and find out the percentage of emails they create that are hand-written versus the percentage created from templates.
Now go fix the problem!
You will free up a significant portion of your people’s time, so then make sure they reallocate that time to things that have impact, such as prospecting, closing, doing research, interacting with customers, etc.
By Townsend Wardlaw