I had to laugh when I received the email below, in my in box yesterday from a total stranger. I've removed company name and sales rep's name because it's not about who sent it as much as how it was written. Email below, then my quick comments:
Good afternoon Lori,
Mark ______ over at (his company name).
I just wanted to email you to schedule some time. We've been successfully working with other businesses in the area. I'd like to go over what we've done with them as well as share some of the positive feedback we've received. My goal is finding out more about your business and how (his company name) can help you achieve your strategic objectives in 2005. Is Wednesday afternoon good for you or would Thursday morning be better?
Senior Account Executive
(his company name)
My first thought, Mark, is that you are new to sales. You took time to send me a personalized email (probably from a list your company bought, or some web research?) but you sent the most non-compelling email to me - it was a waste of time. In fact, it was so bad that I was compelled to post it on my blog - so we probably won't be doing any business together anytime soon.
I reviewed the email quite a few times and couldn't find anything about it that would make me want to contact you - because it is all about you and how great your company is - plus you have the audacity (or just really poor sales skills) to suggest an "alternate close" for a time to talk - right out of "the Old Way of Selling 101". Mark, (and all other sales people sending emails like this one) - either do better reserach, or find ways to address MY interests and my issues. You are competing with hundreds of other bits of information and distractions - you need to be better, be different, be in tune - or your efforts will not succeed.