Outbound domain sales can be an effective means of producing cash flow for your domain portfolio. Rather than simply relying on buyers to come to you, outbound marketing relies on contacting specific potential buyers to try and secure a deal. When it’s performed properly, outbound sales can create business, but it can be a difficult art to master. We have teamed up with @Mike Robertson, Director of Business Development at Fabulous.com to produce a four-part series, giving you a whole host of tips and advice for outbound sales in 2019. With Mike recording domain sales totaling in excess of eight-figures including BTC.com, CBA.com, and Perch.com, he has plenty of advice to share about outbound sales. In part one of our outbound sales series, we’ll be looking at the basics of outbound sales including the email address you should use, your email signature and your CRM. It should be noted that outbound sales should always be undertaken at your own risk. Your Email Address One of the most important initial factors for good outbound sales should be the email address from which you send your targeted emails. Would you be more likely to buy a domain name from [email protected], or [email protected]? A professional custom domain name could be a good way to add legitimacy to your sales emails. Google, for example, offers custom email addresses on custom domains using the Gmail interface for a small monthly fee. As for free email providers such as @gmail.com, @hotmail.com or @yahoo.com, Mike has some basic tips: “Free emails don't instill a lot of authority or trust. If you have to use a free email, I think Gmail is more commonly accepted as a legit email. And if you are doing so, ensure the email address doesn't include hyphens or numbers. Try to make it look as professional as possible.” The Email Signature In conjunction with a professional email address comes the need for an email signature on your sales messages. According to Mike Robertson, “All opening emails should include an email signature. It's an opportunity to build trust and confidence with potential buyers you are approaching.” You have likely received hundreds of emails that contain an email signature, with each signature likely including slightly different content. There are several vital parts to an email signature, as Mike explains, “Mandatory fields I would include are Name, Title, email, phone, website. Other fields I would consider including are a LinkedIn profile and social media links, so long as you keep active and updated profiles on the various platforms.” Email signatures can be created in your email provider, or you can use a third party email signature generator such as WiseStamp or HubSpot Signature Generator. Email Tracking Software Email tracking software, or read receipts, simply allows you to know when one of your emails was opened. Services such as HubSpot or Streak allow users to track a small number of email opens per month, but is it a feature you should consider using? According to Mike: "I've never used email tracking software [...] I can understand the need for email tracking. You can get some pretty cool data, how many emails were opened, who opened the email, how many times they opened the email. If you are playing around with different email subjects and email content, I can see it being important as you can gauge what works and what doesn't." That is a very good point from Mike. If you are beta testing various email subjects and sales emails for read rates and response rates, email trackers can provide helpful data. Of course, email tracking isn't entirely reliable, but data can give you a good indication of what's working and what isn't. CRM Customer relationship management (CRM) software providers are abundant. Salesforce, Zoho and Hubspot are just three of the hundreds of CRM providers. Does a domain investor need one of these? Mike thinks not: "To be honest, I have never used a CRM in all my years of brokering. I'm very old school and use spreadsheets to keep track of prospects. I consider myself to be an organized person and find that I can effectively manage my brokering assignments using spreadsheets. I set reminders for myself on when to perform follow ups and I'll even use physical sticky notes for important notes, a daily reminder that I might need to action something." Whether it's a spreadsheet or a CRM, the message is clear, it's vital to keep track of who you send emails to. -- Part two of our series, released in a couple of weeks, will concentrate on the techniques you could use to find potential buyers, and what you should consider doing before you send any outbound sales emails.