When you’re an early-stage company (like us at Whaly), everything is complex: you have low/little resources, you’re under high timing pressure, and of course, you don’t know the best campaign strategies to implement.

One thing does not change: outbound is an essential part of your business. When you have relatively low inbound marketing (which is usually the case in the early stages), it may be the easiest and most effective way to get more leads. 

You will first need to figure out all the classic steps before making it efficient like targeting the right people, and extracting and validating emails (that can be done automatically with LaGrowthMachine 😻) before getting to the execution part.

To know what is performing best, in terms of MQL (Marketing Qualified Leads), the measurement of your campaigns’ success can become cumbersome. 

Over time, we all have experienced different setups, trying to understand what campaigns were generating the best leads over time. 

This is a quick retro about our first campaigns, what we experienced, what failed, and most importantly, how measuring it allowed us to improve the conversion rate by 30% in 10 days!

So how do we do this? Well, a good way of doing this is to make your whole cold email process as light as possible on 3 things: audience, timeline, and messaging. And then measure everything.

Find your audience

Maximizing your outbound is about one key thing: targeting the right audience

Believe me, everything else is P2.

If the audience you’re addressing is really in need of your product/service, the channel, message & tone will not have that much of an impact. 

When you target the wrong one (like I did when I started using LaGrowthMachine 🤦‍♂️), you damage your brand and waste a lot of resources!

And when someone replies to you with a short “not a fit for me, please remove my email from your list”, it hurts.

When we (at Whaly) started our first outreach campaigns, we were unsure about the exact targeting (ideal customer profile and buying persona). So we wanted to try many things to help us refine that.

This was a huge mistake and a waste of time (and money 💰).

A good quick and easy strategy is to try 2 campaigns over a week, with the goal to target 2 ICP (ideal customer profile = types of companies) and one persona.

A good ICP is precise and should include criteria like # of employees, market/industry, geography, internal organization…that makes your product or services really relevant. 

For us, we noticed that the % of tech employees was important, as Whaly helps non-technical teams build their analysis by themselves: we save developers and data teams a lot of time by making business teams autonomous. Therefore, we create more value for companies who are low on engineering resources or want to focus all of them on product development.

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Short timeline = quicker experiments

An ideal timeline for an experiment is one week with two campaigns so that you can compare the ROI. People tend to get back to you quickly by email or LinkedIn, so launch your tests ASAP, with 3-5 campaigns.

This way, you can measure the ROI of your campaigns after just 10 days: you keep the campaign that gets the best results in terms of replies or sales. Ditch the second one and replace it with a new campaign. 

A short timeline reduces your risk of wasting a lot of time before knowing your campaign does not work.

Make the messaging personal

Cold emailing is about getting replies and meetings booked, not selling your product.

Nobody cares about your product ← read that again

Because there are tons of products or services that are extremely similar to yours, especially for prospects who are not experts like you.

A good message talks 20% about you (product or service) and 80% about your target. 

Try to make it personal.

People can smell a hundred miles away when you’ve written your email like a robot. 

A good way of knowing if you made it personal is to read your email out loud and ask yourself “does this sound like a human?”. Do the work, try to close the gap between you and your prospects.

Measure and Track everything

Measuring can be a tough thing. The first experiment is easy. When you start iterating and launching many campaigns it can be bloody messy.

After 3 months of campaigns, I felt like I didn’t know what was working and what was not. A good measurement mechanism is to leverage your marketing automation integration with your CRM.

With LaGrowthMachine, you can connect Pipedrive, Hubspot natively, and almost any other CRM using the Zapier integration. 

Once your account is connected to your CRM, you can keep track of conversion rates and iterate on experiments much faster.

The ideal for lead generation is to analyze cohorts & conversion rates with your CRM. 

They allow you to analyze the level of conversion rates per week and make it super easy to take action on your campaigns over time. 

Another key measure is to compare the quality of leads you generate.

For instance, going beyond the simple MQL analysis by checking what campaigns (and audiences) are generating the best number of closed deals.

For us, one target audience was generating less MQL but the closing rates were super high. It would have been near impossible to understand that without compiling the data in our CRM.

Of course, we measured everything with Whaly, both LaGrowthMachine campaigns MQL impacts and conversion rates of every deal. 

In a nutshell, Whaly is the platform to centralize your scattered data and build metrics on top of it. It is the one-stop-shop for 

  • Get a complete view of your lead gen campaigns on the number of qualified leads generated by reconciling your lead gen tool and your CRM ( (e.g. LaGrowthMachine, Salesforce, Hubspot, etc.) 
  • Building cohort analysis and drill in each campaign to leverage what is working best and repeat it over time
  • Share your analysis with your whole team for your different retros and OKRs

In Whaly, you can map your campaign logs with your CRM.

So whether you want to reconcile data based on campaign names, dates, or emails, custom integrations always work.

Once you have that, you can start digging deeper into channels and messaging.

Conclusion

In short: we’ve improved our outreach campaign performance by following those 4 simple steps:

  1. Experiment with a low number of campaigns at first: two campaigns is a good way of comparing performance
  2. A short timeline makes iteration faster (~ one week of campaign and a couple of days of measurement)
  3. Make the messaging personal, do not sound like a robot
  4. Measure and track your performance across all your tools