What is a Follow-up Email?

Before we directly dive deep to follow up email strategy, it’s important to know all about follow up email first. 

Follow-up email is a message or series of messages delivered in response to a subscriber’s action. It encourages customers to upgrade to a premium plan rather than a free trial, schedule a business meeting, provide feedback, or purchase other products, and more. 

Numerous successful sales or engagements take more than a dozen “touches” before the transaction is closed.

Why is that? Well,   Nobody seems to be sending follow-up emails. They send a single email to a prospective consumer and then discontinue communication.

Indeed, 70% of sales emails are never sent on the first attempt.

It is important to send follow-up emails to those who do not respond to our initial message if we are to conduct an effective cold email marketing strategy.

Make no apprehensions about sending follow-up emails.

At times, we may believe that follow-ups may enrage and insult our prospective clients. That is also how we felt when we first began sending follow-up emails.

However, this is a rare event in practice. They are generally appreciative, acknowledging your interest in them and praising your efforts.

Bear in mind, though, that excessive follow-up emails are extremely easy to ignore. Certain terms are commonly used excessively, and the mechanical subject lines and wording are readily identifiable.

You do not want to come across as though you are reading lines to prospects. This is just not a revenue-generating follow up email strategy.

You must differentiate yourself from the other follow-up emails. That’s why we have this follow up email strategy for you. 

How to Write a Follow-Up Email in 5 Steps

There are numerous ways to stay in touch with your clients.

You may follow up through phone, mail, or even in person, but email is the most effective approach.

Not only is it simple to transmit, but it also makes monitoring feedback and comments a breeze, plus it’s extensible. Whether you’re following up with a few or thousands of clients, you can do it all with a standard email.

However, how can you write a follow-up email that is effective? Here are the steps:

1 Set context

By beginning your email with a connection to a previous email or contact, you might spark your recipient’s memory. Even if your receiver blanks, they are more likely to respond positively to your follow-up if they are reminded that they have already heard from you.

With the enormous amount of emails that the average person receives these days, it’s critical to add a personal connection, identity, or mutual interest in the message that will create a context for your contact to recall you. This is especially critical if this is your initial follow-up email, if you do not have a close connection with your receiver, or if it has been an extended period of time since your previous communication.

By emphasizing and contextualizing your first contact, email, discussion, or engagement, you may spark their recollection and make it simpler for them to comprehend and reply to your email. Start your email with this background to ensure your recipient understands who you are and why you’re following up – the last thing you want to do is baffle the person (or people) you’re attempting to impress and conduct business with.

Among the openers, you might wish to consider are the following:

  • I’m writing to follow up on an email I wrote last [day that email was sent] on [topic of email].
  • I just got to clarify in and see what you think of [email topic].
  • I apologize if this seems strange, but I saw that you received my earlier email.

2 Set Value

Never write a follow up email without increasing the stakes and establishing your value.

Avoid ineffective follow-ups – those in which you are just ‘touching base’ or ‘catching up’ – that add nothing more than another email to their inbox. At each interaction, add value. Make it worthwhile for them to click, open, and reply.

Organic, natural engagement and follow-up opportunities emerge when you give them something useful as a present, whether it’s a tangible item mailed to them or a seminar, case analysis, templates, or another online resource.

You may simply obtain a number of follow-ups in relation to these value-added offers. Maintain a high standard of quality and relevance for them. You would like to be viewed positively by them.

Without adding value, there is little reason to approach them and much less motivation for them to reply or care.

3 Mention the reason why you’re Emailing

Now is the moment to express your follow-up email’s goal succinctly. You should be upfront about your objectives from the start – this will help you avoid seeming pushy, untrustworthy, ambiguous, or unclear.

For instance, you would not just say, “I’d like to get coffee and discuss what you do.” Rather than that, you should say, “I’d like to have coffee to hear more about how you regularly meet quota since I’ve been having difficulty meeting mine.”

With this degree of clarity, your prospects will feel that you are not wasting their time and will understand why you are requesting their attention – increasing the likelihood that you will receive the information or answer you need from them.

Consider the following strategies for stating the goal of your email succinctly in your follow-up email.

The Most Frequently Used Techniques for Articulating a Purpose:

  • I’d like to ask you to accompany me at [Name of Event], as I believe it would be beneficial for your work at [Company Name].
  • As previously stated, here is a developer [insert link] who I believe may be able to assist you with your company site.
  • It would be fantastic to learn more about [subject], as I’m currently working on a comparable project at [Company Name].

4 Insert a call-to-action

Facilitate the recipient’s response. For instance, if you’re attempting to schedule a meeting, propose a precise day and time (and location, if it’s an in-person meeting).

  • Is Thursday, 2:15 3:10 p.m., a good time for you?
  • Are you the best person to discuss this with? Could you lead me in the proper track if I’m in the wrong position?
  • Simply say ‘yes’ if you’re interested in receiving further information, and I’ll email you a few of brief documents.

Numerous marketers and salespeople make the error of remaining imprecise and unclear. Make your call to action unmistakable and difficult to refuse. What precisely are you requesting of them? Have you included a hyperlink to your website? Inform them in order to obtain the finest results possible.

5 Write a Closure for Your Email

Wrap in a manner that seems comfortable to you and is consistent with your previous encounters with the receiver.

While we have some recommendations below, this section is very personal – as mentioned previously, wrap up any way you feel at ease.

  • Kindly inform me of your thoughts! Kindly notify me if you have any concerns. [Your name] 
  • I eagerly await your response! [Your given name]

When Should you Start Sending Email Follow-ups?

As a standard guide, wait two or three days prior to sending your initial follow-up email. You should then add a few days to the wait time for each successive email following your initial message, especially if you want to send a large number of follow-ups.

You may and should test with the scheduling of subsequent follow-ups, but this timetable is as effective as any unless  it is shown differently. You want to maintain contact without irritating your targets with regular blasts.

Depending on the circumstances, you’ll want to deliver your follow-up at a specific period to ensure that your email stays relevant to your receivers and has the best possible chance of getting opened.

Following are some proposed time periods for delivering follow-up emails that have succeeded in various use situations.

  • Within 24 hours: Express thanks or follow-up following discussions, sales meeting, or interviews.
  • Within 48 hours: Following the submission of critical paperwork (such as a job application or another sort of submission form), or if the purpose for following up was very pressing.
  • Within 1-2 weeks: Follow up on an appointment, after receiving no answer to a job offer, or to verify receipt of an email you require a comment on.
  • Every three months, reconnect with a former contact, inquire about how their life or business has evolved, or hear about a new achievement in their business or personal life.

How Many Follow-up Emails Should you Send?

The second critical factor to examine is the frequency of follow-up emails. Even more so when we consider that 80% of non-routine transactions occur after at least four or five follow-ups.

You must send follow-up emails at least five times, every time providing more time for the receiver to engage.

By extending the time between subsequent follow-up emails, you decrease the risk of going overboard and getting flagged as a spammer.

According to Woodpecker’s study, the best number of follow-ups is two or three. Typically, top achievers send only that. However, even one follow-up email may significantly enhance the efficacy of your campaign. It may even receive a 40% greater response rate than the first email.

Following up, like with cold emailing in general, necessitates extensive individual testing. Numerous variables influence the effectiveness of our cold email marketing, and it is up to us to find what works well for our specific set of prospects.

Steli Efti, for example, notes in his article that the quantity of follow-ups is contingent upon the type of previous engagement you had with a prospect. If we’re attempting to initiate contact with a prospect via cold emails, we should generally limit ourselves to two follow-ups. If we have already initiated contact with a client, we can follow up till we receive a response.

In comparison, Heather Morgan of Salesfolk states in her piece that they sent eight touchpoints to each of the prospective customers during the campaign they ran for Ambition, including a first email and seven follow-ups.

Both methods are backed by the expertise and a track record of success. This demonstrates one thing: there is no one-size-fits-all method for follow-up.

10 Successful Follow up Email Strategies & Best Practices

1 Set the goals you want to achieve

Prior to any of it, it is important that you determine the purpose of the email.

For instance, you may wish to:

  • Acquire additional information or a particular piece of information
  • Convene a meeting
  • Complete a transaction

Everything you really want from a follow-up email will very definitely change with each project you work on, and maybe even between every follow-up message you send.

However, it is critical that you are aware. Never send emails unless you are certain of the outcome you are seeking.

2 Think like a client

Consider the user experience (UX) before to writing or transmitting. It is already a critical component of your business’s success and is on track to become the primary differentiator within the next year or two. More than just a price. More than the actual goods or service.

Consider your follow-up email’s frequency and activity. Forget for a moment what experts advise you must or shouldn’t be doing, and consider the situation only from the customer’s perspective.

Excessive follow-up is vexing. Too little results in a loss of momentum. Strike the appropriate balance for your objectives.

Consider this: What is in it for them? What are their emotions? What kind of encounters are they having? Do I have a cause to follow up (apart from the obvious)?

By asking and answering these sorts of questions, you’ll be able to create a follow-up marketing from the bottom up that’s tailored to them, not to you. And that may mean everything.

All follow-ups are not made equal in terms of approach, therefore let the scenario to define the tone:

When prospects request a meeting or demo, you may be more proactive in meeting their request.

If they have downloaded anything, they have expressed an interest but have not requested to be contacted, therefore you must establish your worth (different drips based on what specifically they downloaded).

When writing cold emails, you must exercise extreme caution because they have made no request of you.

3 Set an automation sequence for your follow up 

Even if you are personally following up with tons of prospects week after week, it is nearly hard to keep on top of the whole process.

In order to create a successful and scalable follow-up email sequence, a sales engagement platform such as Mailshake is important to use.

Incorporate social media and the phone into your outreach cadence if they are not already. If they are, you may include them in your marketing sequences.

4 Use diverse channels

Another important factor that distinguishes individuals who are on top of their follow-up game from others who are simply going with the flow is the use of an omnichannel follow up emai strategy.

Yes, email is the most effective communication tool and the preferred mode of contact in general. However, this does not imply that the other outlets are not worth the time and effort.

Companies who have implemented an omni-channel follow up email strategy experience an increase in yearly revenue of 9.5 percent year-over-year – nearly three times the rate of those that do not – in addition to an increase in customer engagement.

When it comes to recruiting, nurturing, and retention, having an omni-channel experience is essential.

You may also keep in touch through LinkedIn or other social media platforms. Using LeadFuze to identify relevant LinkedIn profiles and social accounts can be very beneficial.
follow up email strategy

5 Personalize Your Follow Ups

Making your clients feel special is essential to the success of your approach, which is why you should utilize customize every single piece of your plan. There are online tools such as Autoklose that  allows you to design your own customization tokens, which helps to take the entire process to the next level. It’s almost the next best thing to a one-on-one email conversation.

6 Make Interesting Subject Lines

Everyone knows that a compelling and catchy subject line is what gets people to open an email. As a result, make use of one-liners, amusing puns, a little controversy, and other such techniques to capture the attention of your intended audience. However, be careful not to over the line and insult someone in the process. 

Finally, it is critical to follow through on your promises – promising something within your subject line just to get readers to click on it while discussing something wholly distinct in your text is a definite way to wind up in spam.

7 Don’t Use Unnecessary Industry Jargon

Never try to dazzle your customers by using high-tech jargon and phrases. Instead, educate them. Try to be as realistic as possible when conversing with them, just as you would with your relatives and friends. 

To do this, you must describe in layman’s words the features and benefits of your service or product, as well as the reasons why it is so incredible. Furthermore, industry jargon will only serve to repel your prospects rather than to draw them closer to you.

8 Focus on one Goal

By providing more than one offer or discussing multiple items, you are diverting your prospects’ focus away from your main message. Consequently, concentrate on a single point and provide a single CTA. 

Don’t overload your email with graphics and links, though, since people don’t enjoy it when they have to puzzle out what you’re trying to get them to do – your story should build up and guide them towards the step you want them to do, rather than the other way around.

9 Know the Art of Letting Go

If a prospect requests to be removed from future follow-up emails, you should erase them as soon as possible. That is a clear indication that they are not interested in your idea, and you will not be able to convince them otherwise no matter how insistent you are. Appreciate them for their attention and on with your life.

10 Be Grateful to Your Prospects

When your prospects react, and no matter what their response is, be sure to express your appreciation for their time. Remember that they are busy professionals who took the time to send a couple of words in response to your email rather than simply ignoring it.


There’s no magic bullet to success in business. It takes hard work, dedication, and consistency. If you follow these 10 Successful Follow up Email Strategy & Best Practices in your digital marketing campaign, the benefits will come back tenfold! So what are you waiting for? Use them freely today and let us know if they helped increase sales or get more leads! 

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Febrina Tanghal
About Author: Febrina Tanghal
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