There are multiple uses for a cold email platform, from link building, press and public relations outreach, to lead generation. The process and mechanics between the various cases are quite similar. Sales automation tools can help staff improve their B2B outbound sales performance.
One such use of cold email tools is to help facilitate outbound sales automation. This process is commonly referred to as sales development, or demand generation. A good portion of the effort here is spent qualifying leads & prospects as to most effectively leverage the time of the account executives (AE’s), or “closers”. Configuring outbound email automation is a part of B2B outreach for lead generation, and includes setting-up drip sequences. Learn how to build a cold email campaign here, or take my course for more information. Here are the best cold email platforms:
Email Warm-up Tools
Email warm up tools are necessary to use prior to launching your first cold email campaign. They help with maintaining your sender reputation and ensuring that your email address is not flagged as spam. Some are based on IP address, and others are for domains.
Mailwarm is actually a tool to help raise your domain’s & email address’ sender reputation. This is vital for having your emails show up in the recipient’s inbox, and not in their spam folder.
Warmup Inbox is made by Lead Labs. It’s made to help raise your email sending reputation and thus allow for better email delivery overall.
InboxTrack.io can tell you whether your emails are going into the recipient’s inbox, promotions tab, or spam folder.
MailGenius is founded by Jesse Hernandez and Mike Holubowski. Their goal is to help your emails stop landing in spam folders. They have monitoring in place to check various blacklists and to ensure valid SPF & DMARC authentication on your domain.
Unspam.email is a free email testing tool that also has a heat map prediction generated based on your email copy.
GlockApps is a suite of tools to help improve email deliverability.
NeverSpam is from Allegrow (Direct Software Limited) in Glasgow, Scotland. It’s one of the more robust mailwarm alternatives on the market. Their pricing plans range from $18-$70 per user per month.
OutreachBin has warm-up tools as well as cold email sending capabilities. Their all-inclusive pricing model is $39/email per month.
MailReach is an email warm up service that generates positive engagement. Their pricing starts at $39/month.
Mail Merge Tools
Mail Merge comes from the capability to send emails from Microsoft Outlook with various inserted fields like first_name from a Microsoft Excel spreadsheet. A lot of these are available on the Google Workspace Marketplace to be used within Google Sheets & Gmail.
Go Mail Merge (GOMM)
Go Mail Merge (GOMM) was created by Rami Rashid‘s Go Ideal Software in Dallas, Texas. Go Mail Merge is the only Google Workspace add-on that enables you to quickly and easily send personalized emails with custom attachments. While other add-ons complicate dynamic attachments, Go Mail Merge makes them simple. Their pricing offers lifetime subscriptions for $69.99. You can find it on the Google Workspace Marketplace here.
Mailmeteor is a Google Sheets add on for Mail Merge within Gmail. It basically allows you to plan and launch cold email campaigns directly from within Google Sheets.
Gmass offers mail merge within Gmail. It is a cheaper alternative to other outbound cold email tools. It allows for mail merge tags directly from Google Sheets, allowing you to bypass those pesky CSV files.
Cold Email Tools
Outplay is a multi-channel sales engagement platform. Their cold email automation software also includes social outreach (LinkedIn, Twitter), SMS, and phone calls as a part of their cadence mapping system.
Reply.io – which is also launching a new messenger CRM system, is a good sales outreach tool with a really nice reporting interface. It’s just as good as Sendbloom, in my opinion. They’re based in Canada and Ukraine.
The reply.io pricing model is based upon how many contacts you want to send to per month, and whether you want to add team members to your account.
Autobound offers a highly-personalized outreach message composer within its sales intelligence software. I’m a big fan of outbound tools that aid in personalisation. They are primed to become one of the best email outreach tools in America.
Respona is one of the more interesting email outreach tools that I’ve run across. It is a new blogger outreach and link building tool designed to help with search engine optimization and content marketing. Originally used as an internal tool by the Visme team, Payman Taei and Farzad Rashidi have now released this cold email outreach platform to the public. Ivan Escott is their communications manager.
Klenty is a sales engagement platform & email outreach tool. Their cold email software helps automate the process of reaching out to prospects.
Meteor Emails is a free cold email tool developed by Adam Trojańczyk. It was built with Node.Js & Meteor Bootstrap, hence the name. It’s an open source tool to send emails from a Send Grid account.
Interseller is a cold email outreach software platform built by Steven Lu in California. Their focus is on helping recruiters, human resources, and talent scouts find and connect with job candidates. They had an email deliverability test available, which would send out emails to various providers (Outlook, Google, Apple, Yahoo, etc.) to see how they would perform. I got a 95.12% score.
PersistIQ is a sales engagement tool that integrates with Clearbit, Copper CRM, and Scratchpad, with updates your Salesforce pipeline. They have a sync engine, which allows for Bi-Directional Sync with Salesforce. I think that should be standard for all tools & CRM’s, but sadly that’s not always the case. There’s not much information about the company itself on their website.
LemList was made in France. It’s a cold email outreach application that allows you to automatically generate custom personalized images within the emails themselves. “If you disconnect and reconnect your email account in Lemlist, you need to reactivate LemWarm. Even if it is the same email.”
Lemlist’s pricing starts at $29/month for ‘Silver’, which includes 100 emails per day on one account. Their ‘Gold’ plan allows for up to 500 emails per day, along with personalized images, for $49 per month per user.
Mailshake is the latest creation from Sujan Patel, originating from Contentmarketer.io‘s outreach tool. It was first designed for a different type of outreach campaign – link building, where you send out emails to other sites asking if they can please post a link to your website on their page to help with domain authority and SEO. Another use for outreach emails is getting press coverage. So this process can useful for B2C businesses as well, just not for sales. They’re split from Austin, Texas to Australia.
Mailshake used to be one of the cheaper tools on the market, which is to say that you’ll only get what you pay for, as opposed to a high-quality cold email tool like Sendbloom, Reply.io, or SalesLoft, perhaps. They had to turn off link tracking without a custom subdomain because it was causing messages to get flagged as spam, which is something you don’t want to happen in cold email automation marketing.
Mailshake used to cost only $10/month per account, but their prices have since gone up to $29 & $49/month. I had purchased a lifetime deal off of AppSumo, which apparently does not include access to their “Pro” tier of functionality.
Actionable.me seems to believe in personalisation, which is quite important for making sure that your messages appear to be handwritten (or rather hand typed, I suppose).
Wavo is a white-label cold email automation tool designed for lead generation agencies. Anton is their founder. They are in Toronto, Canada.
Honorable Mentions & Other Cold Email Automation Tools
Some software businesses combine multiple functionalities into one suite of products, such as sales prospecting tools, along with cold email outreach capabilities:
- Hunter (just recently added a “campaigns” feature)
MixMax is an email productivity tool that can almost function as a cold email software, due to its capability for users to craft highly customizable outreach messages. There’s a Salesforce integration, and it looks like they’ve raised some funding.
Sendbloom had a beautiful, easy to use interface! It had a direct integration with Salesforce, and was designed for enterprise sales teams. Sendbloom made segmentation easier when drafting new email campaign cadences with different templates and mail merge fields in the cold email copy. It was one of my favorite email outreach tools, but thankfully there are now plenty of sendbloom alternatives in the marketplace.
Sales Beach was one of the first cold email tools that I ever used as a beta tester years ago. While they are no longer trading these days, they were perhaps one of the earliest pioneers in the sales technology software. Their founder, Tim Schwab, is currently an entrepreneurial Sales Leader that advises companies.
Make no mistake, these cold email platforms & outreach tools are essential for B2B Lead Generation & sales enablement. You’ll need to have each one of your sales development representatives to have a seat. Don’t try to pinch pennies! If you have a product that the market values and have a scalable demand generation process, then the cost per seat of the lead generation software shouldn’t be an issue.
A key point to bear in mind when writing cold email templates for outbound sales is that you need to be as direct or succinct as possible. Don’t try to cram too much text into the email itself! If the recipient is smart enough, they will research your firm and perhaps browse your content, perhaps opting-in to your inbound content marketing funnel. Subsequent touches should be intelligent enough to reference any such action. If their timing is off, then don’t worry about them until they become a marketing qualified lead, for example.
This then means that you’ll have to choose cold email marketing software that has an API integration with either your CRM or marketing automation platform, or at least Zapier. You can find a good list of B2B Sales CRM’s here.