This is What a Crappy Sales Email Looks Like

This is the second in a three-part series: Using Emails to Get More Appointments.

One of my clients asked me to review a sales email they were using with little success.

This is the BEFORE email along with my annotated comments.



Subject: Improving Business Automation (1)

Hi (2) {CustomerName},

I am Jennifer with ABC COMPANY. I’m looking to schedule 10-15 minutes (3) of your time for a brief intro call to learn more about your company and possible automation needs. (4)

ABC COMPANY is a business automation solution (5) that integrates with {Microsoft Dynamics} to improve automation and efficiency (6) in the areas of alerting, report automation, workflow and EDI.

We work directly with customers like yourself to do things like…

  • automate your reporting (schedule, generate and deliver reports automatically)
  • implement business rules to monitor your data and automatically (7) send email or text alerts when rules are triggered
  • reduce paper by electronically routing information for review and approval
  • provide web visibility into your data via mobile or browser based devices

Your time would be greatly appreciated. If you have 15 minutes to explore what MY COMPANY has to offer please let me know what works best on your calendar. (8)

I look forward to your response. (9)




1) Who thinks about ‘improving business automation?’ What does that even mean?

2) Seriously? “Hi?” Are you writing your pen pal?

3) Actually this is not bad. Stating purpose early is important, but a range is a bad way to do this.

4) Sorry but nobody sits around pondering business automation (or the meaning of life for that matter). Trust me, whatever so-called business problem you think you solve, your prospect uses different words to describe their perception of it. More importantly, this is not a needs call and we are unlikely to uncover any need here. Think of email as “virtual networking.” You wouldn’t say something ridiculous like this at a networking event would you? So why do you think it makes sense to put that in an email?

5) Again, however you think about yourself, just accept the reality that your prospect doesn’t use those words

6) Who doesn’t want to improve efficiency and automation? Why not just say we help you lose weight and attract members of the opposite sex? Surely they haven’t heard anything like this before.

7) I get where you are going here and even appreciate the use of bullets to articulate your value proposition, BUT you are saying what you DO, which nobody cares about. What does “what you do” do for them?

8) If? Please? Your politeness is admirable, but it’s not going to get you anywhere.

9) So, it’s their job to figure out what works on their calendar and get back to you? Because they have time for such things…

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