Those that embark on their entrepreneurial journey are inevitably confronted with the challenge of commercial prospecting.
For small businesses, limited budgets often require that marketing is done in-house.
Though lead qualification and outreach can be a tedious, time-consuming task.
From identifying contacts to gathering emails, from researching them and coming up with personalized approaches to implementing commercial pipelines. It’s a lot of work to just stay on top of your outreach.
Before, it was necessary to invest in expensive lead generation: a service outside the reach of many entrepreneurs who lacked the technical skills associated with automating email campaigns on their own.
Today, all of that has changed! It is now possible for entrepreneurs to automate the most tedious of tasks — including commercial prospection — from the get-go, and with little technical knowledge required. Let’s see how:
As you begin your e-marketing journey, a key first step is investing in Linkedin premium’s Linkedin Sales Navigator tool. This will help you create high-quality lists for targeting.
The objective is to regroup professionals which correspond to your target demographic.
This will allow you to address the right message to the right people and craft highly personalized emails.
Research your target audience before you reach out! Don’t forget to establish a detailed ‘persona’ with pertinent criteria: this will help you craft pertinent lists.
When creating your list, you will have multiple filters at your disposal, for example:
- Key words
- Geographic zone
- Employees of a specific firm
- Job title
- Years of experience
Collecting contact information with Phantombuster and Dropcontact
Before you can start cold-emailing your leads, there are two more important automation tasks.
The first is collecting public information from the profiles you managed to compile with Linkedin Sales Navigator.
To do so, there’s an awesome tool called Phantombuster !
This marketing automation tool may seem complicated at first (“data extraction” sounds very technical) but it is actually very easy to use thanks to helpful instructions and a highly intuitive user-interface.
With Phantombuster, you can automate the collection of public data on the majority of business-related websites such as Linkedin, Facebook and even Yellow Pages. For the purposes of this article, we’ll show you the feature that we use the most which is called, “LinkedIn Search To Lemlist Workflow”.
To fully automate the campaign, we recommend connecting the four tools: Linkedin, Phantombuster, Dropcontact and Lemlist. When used together, it is possible to automatically collect public data, supplement and transfer it to Lemlist.
Sounds daunting? Don’t panic! Let’s go over the process, step by step:
Linkedin session cookies
- You must give Phantombuster access to your Linkedin. This is necessary so that the tool can connect with your account and perform the search that you’ll initiate later on. To do so, simply download the Google Chrome Phantombuster extension and then connect to your Linkedin page in the same navigator. Next, just click “Connect to LinkedIn” and it will automatically begin using your LinkedIn identification cookies.
- For those who are more cautious, you can manually retrieve your own identification cookie (li_at) by opening the developer menu in your navigator while on Linkedin.
- Perform your search and copy the Linkedin URL of the results page.
Lemlist API key
- Enter the API key that Lemlist has provided you. For this step, you’ll need a Lemlist account. More information on Lemlist below.
Lemlist Campaign name
- Enter the campaign name that you’ve created in Lemlist so that Phantombuster can connect the contacts with the corresponding campaign.
Dropcontact API key
- Dropcontact is the tool that will allow you to enrich your Phantombuster data with email addresses. Don’t worry, Dropcontact is GDPR compliant so only professional emails will be added. You can sign up for Dropcontact here! This great tool offers 100 free credits for your first campaign.
Next, it’s highly recommended that you check the box, “Invite the lead to join your connections” which will permit you to add your prospect as a connection on Linkedin prior to the campaign (so they know who you are before the first email!)
You can also check the box “Save the profile picture and take a screenshot of the page” to enrich your emailing campaigns with images. This is a great way to put a face to a name, even during automation.
Emailing with Lemlist
What’s Lemlist? Only one of the best European cold emailing tools out there. This French platform will help you nail your next campaign, trust us.
Lemlist is a tool with highly personalizable scenarios for cold-emailing. You’ll see in the following example how you can automatically set up emails with personalized textual variables but also photos and videos!One common worry when it comes to email automation is that you’ll end up in your lead’s spam folder. Guess what? This tool simulates human behavior to boost your open rate, click rate and response rate. It also has special features that allow you to send test emails to other Lemlist users prior to launching your campaigns. As each email reaches its target, the reputation of your domain is improved (so you won’t be marked as spam) and the test phase allows you to confirm the deliverability of your emails before the campaign goes live. Cool, right?
Integration with your CRM, Axonaut
You’re so close to having a fine-tuned lead generating machine that does both quantity and quality. For the finishing touch, consider connecting Axonaut with your email automation using Zapier.
Zapier is a tool that will allow you to manipulate the API of almost any website without having to code. So you can connect the API of Lemlist with Axonaut’s in just a few clicks.
For example, you can tell Zapier to trigger the creation of a new contact in Axonaut whenever a mail has been opened, or clicked. This is an awesome integration because the company information (all of that data from Linkedin, Phantombuster, etc.) will be added to your contact directory.
You can also tell Zapier to automatically trigger the creation of a new opportunity in your sales pipeline whenever a contact responds to your mail.
These kinds of integrations will help you stay organized — even when performing mass outreach — and maximize the value you’re getting out of each campaign.
We’ve made the following automations in Axonaut possible with Zapier:
- Create a new contact
- Generate an invoice
- Generate a quote
- Create an event
- Create an opportunity
- Create a ticket
- Create a product
- Create a new Supplier contact
- Create a new Company contact
- Generate a receipt
- Research a company
- Research an employee
- Find a quote
- Find a company
Hopefully this article will help you nail your next email campaign, so you can save time on outreach and focus on your core business.
Once it’s set up, all you have to do is continuously improve your Lemlist stats! Try and challenge yourself: boosting those open and response rates little by little is always a good goal.
Technical tips and tricks
- Consider syncing your email with Axonaut so that the email exchanges you have will appear directly in the CRM contact files.
- Set up your Lemlist account to optimize your deliverability rates: take advantage of their ‘Warm up’ tests but also the personalized tracking features available for your domain.
- Keep GDPR in mind, be sure to vet the tools you use.
- Don’t forget the limitations on Linkedin searches, here are recommendations from Phantom.
- Standard LinkedIn account : 10 searches x 5 profiles per day.
- Premium LinkedIn account : 10 searches x 10 profiles per day.
- Take advantage of Linkedin’s boolean search criteria:
- AND : Combine two variables
- OR : Choose between two variables
- NOT : Exclude a variable
- Quotation marks : Search an exact phrase
- Parentheses : To perform a complex query, you can combine variables using parentheses.