Email is one of the primary tools available to B2B salespeople – and is a part of the triad for modern sellers along with a telephone and social media communication system. Let’s put it this way – if sales were a gladiator sport, email would be one of the primary weapons that would be selected by each participant. Therein lies the problem. Everybody is doing it. Decision makers are bombarded each day with hundreds or thousands of emails trying to solicit their attention and their budgets. Before looking any further, here are 4 key stats about the state of email:

These statistics all demonstrate where email is going – use of email is increasing, spam emails are at an all time high, and the success of your email depends on being both personalized and mobile optimized.

This is where social media and social selling come into play. Prospects and customers are leaving trails of personal information and golden nuggets for you to find online. Gone are the days of the spray and pray email template – and in are the days when you tug the emotional heart strings of the buyer with personalized messaging and subject lines.

People buy from those that they like and that they feel comfortable doing business with. Social media gives you the opportunity to find key pieces of information online about your buyers that will both increase the effectiveness of your communications, and also the probability of closing the deal.

I’ll tell you a quick story going back to 2013, we were testing to see which reach outs had the most success and one particular play comes to mind. We had been trying to contact a decision maker with value-added communications targeting their critical business issue via both phone and email. 2 months later – still no response. Finally we went to Twitter and found that this prospect loved the Green Bay Packers and Aaron Rodgers. We then tried the subject line “How about those Packers?” followed by a brief sentence about the upcoming game and then right into our solution with a call to action for a phone call. Within minutes the email was opened and a call was booked. 2 months of trying traditional techniques had failed – and social selling saved the day.

Some friends at Contractually have put together an infographic that outlines 4 key practices for increasing the success of your emails.

What are you waiting for? Start eating your competitor’s lunch – it tastes good!