How to get big clients for your startup with smart emails

Piotr Zaniewicz in

Blog/IT Lead Generation/How to get big clients for your startup with smart emails

A big B2B client is what most startups want because, among other perks, it’s a great boost for sales. It seems like a titanic task to pull off, but when you’re good at what you do then there’s no reason not to approach enterprise clients.

There are multiple hacks you can use to get your cold emails responded to by desired decision makers. Check out 6 ideas for reaching enterprise decision makers that were previously beyond the reach of your emails.

Start with your native market

Most companies in your portfolio probably come from your native market, so you have past projects to brag about and recipients might recognize the companies you’ve worked with. It’ll also be easier to connect with native executives simply because you speak the same language.

Target high-level executives

Instead of moving up the food chain, target c-level managers upfront. It might be hard to find necessary email contacts, but on the upside you’ll get much more responses from these people because their inboxes are hard to reach, so whoever does that must have a good reason to write. They might refer you to someone else to talk to you, but it’s ok – you’ll get a response if it’s something that an executive wants done.

One of our clients chose to target high-level executives and 20 out of a hundred responsed positively. That’s just from the first email of the first campaign, mind you, when usually the highest response rates are generated by follow-ups.

Target multiple departments

Instead of targeting the highest level manager, you can target different departments too. Various project managers have separate budgets and use whichever service provider they wish, so you can target a group of them in one company.

It might get you multiple clients in one company, and they’ll refer you to more of their colleagues once you deliver the value they need.

Break the ice

Research the company’s portfolio and ask about projects they’ve done. It’s a great ice breaker, even if you don’t reach people that worked on those projects. We see increased response rates when we use this, people are more willing to respond if you’re familiar with what their company does.

This will increase response rates and show that you’re not a spamming salesperson jumping out-of-the-blue, but you do your research and come prepared.


Bold statements

Something you can honestly say about your company that instantly proves how awesome you are. It can be things like:

  • Partnerships: Among our partners you can name SAP, Oracle, IBM and Amazon
  • Size: We are the biggest Ruby On Rails team in the US
  • Awards: Only in 2014, our implementations were awarded 11 times
  • Growth: We’ve grown our team from 100 to 200 in the last 12 months.
  • Valuations: Our clients’ current capitalization exceeds 20 billion dollars.
  • Celebrities: Among our advisors and investors you can find X,Y,Z and A.

A bold statement is kind of like bragging, but it has to be factual and industry-related. Think along these lines – don’t just say “our team is awesome”, but add proof to it, like “our awesome team was awarded by {x} for…”.


Get certified, for instance in the technology you’re using. Enterprise clients appreciate certified specialists and companies, so mentioning that you’re certified in one of your emails will make them trust you a bit more.

The bigger the client, the more they’ll value certifications because enterprises are a formal environment.


Lower commitment

Before you get a $500k deal, you might have to take on a smaller project first to prove your expertise. When you write your emails, indicate that you can provide additional, lower-cost products or services like consultations, reviews, audits, training sessions and ebooks.

It’s much easier to convert someone for a small deal than a $500k project when they don’t know you well.


This is my last email

Be the first one to walk away, classic reverse psychology will do the rest for you. In your last follow-up, break-up with your recipient in a short & sweet way.

“Do you have time for a Skype call” won’t work as the CTA for this email, instead use one to get referred further up the food chain, like “If I’m not writing to the right person, could you refer me to someone in charge of {x}?”.


Be bold

Don’t think you run too small a business to get big clients in B2B. If you don’t mess around, deliver value and assure quality – you’re good enough!

Cold mailing gives you the options of whom to target and what messaging to use. So experiment and iterate along these two lines, and you’ll see that enterprise-sized deals are often just an email away.

Thanks for reading! Check our case studies.

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Piotr Zaniewicz

Founder and CEO at RightHello. Believes that the most important validation of business ideas is to find paying clients. That’s when you know you’re going in the right direction.

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