Tune in to WII FM!

Some background before I start my rant:

I work for a mid-size telecommunications company who specialize in two-way communications and sophisticated communication systems. If that didn’t bore you and you have an interest in what we do, check us out by going to  westcan-acs.com (shameless plug complete).

The point being, it is not difficult, nor time-consuming to find Westcan or find me online. I am willing to bet that after a Google search and no more than 10 mouse clicks, someone is able to find out a significant amount about the company and it’s people.

I received this email last week (I have altered people and company names to protect the guilty):

Hi Chris,

I’m writing in hopes of finding the appropriate person who handles Customer Success and the post-sale customer relationship. If it makes sense to talk, let me know how your calendar looks this week.

Backscratcher 5000 is an application that provides a 360-degree view of every customer. This data sheet (link removed) explains how our product works.

  • First, we collect disparate data sources (contract, sales, product usage, NPS/survey, support tickets, etc) into one central location.
  • Then, with a little big data magic, we gauge the health of your customers and reveal actionable insights.
  • Finally, we use proactive alerts and built-in workflow management to improve retention and reveal up-sell opportunities.

If you are the appropriate person to speak with, what does your calendar look like? 

If not, who do you recommend I talk to?

Ronald McDonald

p.s. more info on our 5 modules (link removed)


Actually, that’s a lie. I didn’t delete the email immediately. I forwarded it to my sales team with the following note:

Example of a BAD prospecting email…

  • Displays no knowledge of our business
  • Talks only about them
  • Uses “industry” terms and terminology I know nothing about
  • Asks if I’m the right person
  • No defined call to action
  • But, most importantly when I read it, it fails to answer the question: What’s in it for me??? (WIIFM)

And then I proceeded to draft this post…

If Ronald McDonald had taken 5 minutes to do some background research on Westcan and on me, this email could be phrased and delivered more effectively. In fact, given the right message, I may have taken action that does not involve the delete button on my keyboard.

So please, do me a favour. Whenever you prospect, make sure your audience (reader, in this case) can clearly answer the question: “What’s in it for me?”

If your message can’t convey that; don’t bother hitting send.

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