SDRealness Podcast Episode 17 Graphic Horizontal - Cold Email Prospecting for SDRs with Justin Michael from JMM

EPISODE 17: COLD EMAIL PROSPECTING FOR SDRs

Episode 17 Transcript

Greyson: Hello, and welcome to The SDRealness Podcast brought to you by Sales Development Revolution, where we’re talking with sales practitioners about their take on important topics in the space. I’m Greyson Fullbright, and here with me is my co-host, as always, Alex Ellison. 

Alex: How you doing, Greyson?

Greyson: Doing well. I’m excited. This season’s theme so far is See Action, Take Action. We’re really focusing on trying to dive into a specific topic and learn specific tactics from an expert who’s on the ground doing it every day.

And today’s topics is one of my favorites. It’s using cold email as a sales prospecting channel. And joining us is Justin Michael. He’s a growing influencer in the sales space and is the creator of an effective cold prospecting framework called the Justin Michael Method or JMM for short.

Thank you so much for hopping with us hopping on with us today, Justin. 

Justin: Yeah, it’s great to be here. I mean, this method was born out of… I started doing sales training and they said, “Where’s your guide?” Or, you know, “Where’s your course?” And I said, “Can’t I just teach you how to do email and calls?”

And so they’re like, “You need to write something down.” And so I was like, “Okay this is Justin Michael’s Method.” And then we just started calling it the cheat codes because I wrote 20 pages down, like you need a shorter guide. And so that’s kind of where that came from.

And then, fundamentally, I think I took a radically different approach to email and calling. And I know there’s nether regions of like video prospecting and social selling, there’s stuff in there that’s sort of murky, but you’re going to send something digitally or you’re going to do something with your voice.

And I find from a neuroscience perspective, there is a gap there that I’ve uncovered on both thinking like Elon Musk, breaking it down to first principles, understanding like what is the brain doing when it’s reading an email, a digital transmission. And then what is the brain doing when it’s hearing a voice over Zoom or a call?

And if I could reposition from first principles, I was able to come up with almost a growth hack. Now, pundits in the space say don’t use hacks, or you know, he’s got the hacks but it’s something I call it heuristics. It’s what does it represent? So if you can turn these into a fishing rod and not just copy the templates, you’re gonna have a lot of success quickly with it. 

Alex: Mhm. Yeah. And it’ super interesting the way you’ve sort of built this method on that sort of idea and that framework.

Before we dive into that, because I’m really excited to do that part, I just want to sort of lay a foundation here. And just so people listening can understand sort of your idea of what separates the good from the bad when it comes to cold email prospecting.

So, you know, what are you seeing that works well in a more traditional sense and what are you seeing that sort of falls flat that people are doing that sort of prompted you to sort of develop this method? 

Justin: Yes, so just follow the money. Marketing has taken over sales, right? The office of the CMO has more budget than the CIO. And that’s because we have wiziwig platforms. We’re finally at a level of code where you can have really sophisticated marketing automation that you program without ever typing in a line of SQL or having to really understand anything more than drag and drop.

So the problem is marketing loves SEO backlinks and loves organic reach. And so great marketing is multi-paragraph, hitting a lot of SEO keywords. It’s a bulkier thing. What’s great about great marketing copy, it’s longer form, your execs love it, you could turn this in at Harvard or Wharton and be like, “That’s beautiful writing,” right?

The problem is it’s not how human beings talk. If you look at the actual platforms that are doing well, it’s not Microsoft Word. I mean everyone uses Microsoft Word. But what are people excited about? Tick Tock, Snap, Facebook Messenger, WhatsApp, you know, Kik.

I mean, take any population Gen-Z, millennial, they’re not writing three paragraphs, they’re not even leaving voicemails. But then with their most trusted people, they have a couple sentences. But then if we’re going to sell a seven figure product or, you know, if we’re gonna sell $100,000 piece of SaaS, we’re gonna write three paragraphs.

And then here’s the other problem. It’s like, if you’re going on a first date… look, I looked on your Facebook page and I could tell that you love you know, pick one, like, give me something, Harry Styles. So you know, I went on eBay and I got a signed copy of Harry Styles for you. It was only $300. And I thought I’d bring it to our first date.

I mean at this point, yeah, you’ve put in a lot of effort but it’s pretty creepy. It’s kind of like, ah! So these methods teach the rep to be subserviently researching for hours to write this perfect email. I mean paragraph one, we’re going to do this philosophic backflip and in paragraph two we’re going to use this, you know, hostage negotiation. And we’re going to do this and we’re going to use this study from neuroscience.

It’s just it’s a lot of lift and it works and every once awhile prospect will be like it’s beautiful, and then marketing loves it. If marketing loves what you’re doing in sales, we’ve got a problem. Houston, we’ve got a problem!

So let’s look at the brain. If you take three sentences, it takes 3.3 seconds for the brain to read it. Three paragraphs, it’s 13 seconds. So just the long-form nature of this stuff, text is very hard, the brain never gets it.

I have a five-year-old daughter, she’s trying to learn to write. When we get tired at night, we’re reading a book, it gets fuzzy, it tires us out to use our eyes, we can walk out dead tired, look at the stars, look at trees and it’s perfect. There’s no problem if we’re tired to take in that data. We take in visuals 60,000 times faster than words. And then we do all this communication to persuade in words. So it’s broken.

So email is a visual medium. What happens in text is your brain processes a concept into an image and you have this delay. And if you’re very smart and have high IQ, EQ, TQ, you can process that in a nanosecond.

But the minute you start showing pictures… So great product marketing in every SaaS website on Earth has all these cool diagrams and schematics, it’s all visual, but then we go to tell our prospect about it, it’s going to be all these templates.

So I hacked that by staying dead short, if you’re gonna use text, and visual. Moving on to calls one phone call’s worth 261 emails per Chris Beall at ConnectAndSell. I think he knows a bit about this. They do obscene amounts of cold calls, they have a lot of crazy data. He’s probably right.

I mean, us talking on the Zoom or me sending the transcript of this conversation on email, you wouldn’t sit through 30 minutes of transcripts on an email, you’d get bored by minute five and respond be like, “What’s the point of this?”

So, I’m a huge advocate of cold calling. And cold calling is about tone, right? You can have… You can basically say the wrong thing but have a confident tone and it works. But what I isolated in a cold call is that every single system – literally every single system – is “You don’t know me,” or “The reason for my call.”

And what I figured out is you want to get the prospect talking. So I have these power-shift frameworks where all my cold calls is all the prospect talking, which is very weird, because if they’re talking, it’s disarming and they’re more likely to buy.

And so people listen to my cold calls, and it goes like 22 minutes or 15 minutes or 12 minutes in the beginning. I just closed the deal on the first call, using the framework that I’ll share. So I might have gone on a tangent but that’s sort of how I’m disrupting the status quo. And I don’t know, I probably went in a circle there. 

Greyson: No worries! No, yeah. And I think you gave us a lot to work with here because I do want to dive into the process a little more and because we’re kind of sticking with cold email as the focus of this topic, I want to actually ask a two-sided question here when we dive into process.

So I identify cold calling as definitely a major part and a major channel of the Justin Michael Method, but can you share with me where email kind of strategically falls into that cadence or into that journey?

And then when an SDR is trying to write an email, let’s say either they want to kind of strip that Justin Michael Method into their own emails or maybe they just want to adopt the whole process, what does it actually look like to write an email in that way? 

Justin: Yeah, so first of all email is essential. I was involved in a book called Comboprospecting.com where the main mechanic is a call, a voicemail, and an email where they all relate to each other rapidly.

And that’s a lot because of the way a mobile device works. We all have a mobile device. When you call a mobile device, the first thing a prospect does is ignore the call. The first thing they do – if you call enough people – sometimes they pick up the phone.

But if someone calls me and I don’t know it, I just skip it. They leave a voicemail, then it rings a couple more times. I see that but then if they email me – this is the email piece – and refer to the fact they called, okay they tried! Let me go look, let me go listen to the voicemail.

They might add me on LinkedIn, they might refer again, the more blended touches that refer back to each other when you connect them all up like a swarm of bees, people start to go, “Okay maybe this is important.”

And I found this with bill collectors or my mom’s trying to reach me, she’ll leave a voicemail. It’s like, “Oh God,” you know? It’s like, “I’m not gonna check that,” you know? Like I finally filled up my whole voicemail box so that I couldn’t get voicemails and just to just text me or I hear now people leaving a voicemail that says, “I don’t check this please text me, here’s my number,” like begging and then you still get a voicemail! It’s like, ah, you know?

Email’s a critical piece. You can now – to segue into how to do an email – Don’t throw out what you have. I think the systems are great like the Josh Braun system, the Becc Holland system, systems from from Troops, Scott Britton, Bryan Kreuzberger, I’ve read them all, I’ve tried them all.

One thing to do is to AB test links, to compact down and short-form some of those and maybe take a paragraph or sentence or two out of that. Great credit to Josh Braun. He’s got all sorts of systems now, where he’s got compacted texts going. I think there’s a movement for the shorter stuff.

But what you’re trying to do is you’re trying to actually figure out the pain points of the prospect. There’s been this huge focus on personalization. And Jeremy Donovan at SalesLoft has pointed out that over 20% personalized is not statistically better in open or reply rates. I talked to Aaron Ross, he said the same things that over 20% is creepy. What do we get? 80/20 rule. So 20% of the sequence, 20% of the content is personalized.

What is the email really doing? A person is working, they’re not playing. If a person has a P&L, profit and loss, they control budget, they go to work every day. They’re not annoyed with you because they’re doing something fun, they’re playing badminton, you know, and sipping mint juleps and you call them, they’re working! You know what I mean? That’s what I do in my spare time! [Laughs]

So they have jobs to be done, which Braun talks about. They usually have seven slots. Let me give you an example. This lady came to me. She has a million views in Australia, her name is string. And I’ve had 35,000 followers and was only getting 600 views per post. She says, “Look I’m getting a million.” I said, “Woah that’s totally relevant. Let me talk to you and I’ll pay you anything I can to get my hits up.”

It’s a relevant pain that it solves. So the funny thing is the whole industry is personalization, relevance, and timing. And personalization is relevance and relevance is personalization. Finkle is Einhorn, right? If we have to go Ace Ventura.

The truth is that if you don’t hit the business pain, nobody’s interrupting their day for that. If you both love NASCAR and they’re the biggest NASCAR fan in the world, cool! Let’s be friends. Take it to Facebook.

If you can help me figure out how to cut costs right now but still have the same technology ability or if you can help me do the work of 10 or you can free up my time somehow, these are pains and problems. There’s universal… If you can figure one out that’s very specific for the persona that you’ve solved for similar clients, the social proof, you’re going to get in.

So when I write these emails, they’re dead short. And you get 18 words, the subject line and the preview text. The subject line can be one to three words. Jeremy Donovan. The message should be under 250 words. Have a short subject line.

And then on a mobile device, you see it and you have everyone else’s email: Hope you’re doing well, hope you’re doing well, hope you’re doing well, hope you’re doing well, In these uncertain times, COVID-19, COVID-19, COVID, and then mine’s in there and it says, “Growth Acme Corp got a 63%,” and you can see the result of why you should click from the preview pane and it just boom.

Braun’s talking about like, tic tac toe, like X’s and O’s, like a red X, and an O, you know? You see it just pop out. This is subconscious stuff. Nobody will contact me and say, “I noticed you had a shorter email.” It’s like, no one knows why it’s working. So that’s the first step.

You know, I scrape sites, I write sequences for companies all the time. And they pay me sometimes, you know, a fortune for this, a couple grand. They’re like, “Look I’m paying you $100 a word.” I’m like, “Yeah it needs to be painful for you financially. You need to change.”

“Marketing won’t allow me to send this,” good! Go get five meetings for marketing like the SDR team sending 30,000 messages out of sequencer. You go and you do this right with these compacted spears, the short things, you get a few meetings, they’re like, “What is this? How did this work?”

I’m talking manually just sending super short emails that are very punchy, emotionally resonant. So as soon as you shorten it down to a sentence or two, it goes to 80% open rate. It just starts firing through. Everyone’s clicking on it.

Then the problem is the pain and fear because most of, like I said in the beginning, most of sales is controlled by marketing speak. And marketing loves 232% growth, it loves all the results. And the problem is it’s not the way things are sold.

Infomercials understand how things are sold. They do the before after picture, there’s like, “Here’s before Zumba,” you know? Person’s like sluggish and you know, eating fast food, whatever it is. After Zumba they’re just like so fit, vibrant. They show the before and after, like six pack shot, you know?

The problem with marketing is it’s like, you know, people plugged in the marketing automation and they have 600% more leads, “You want a meeting?” There’s no pain, there’s no before or after, there’s no like, you know…

How about, “We were sending thousands of emails with zero response and we had to almost fire our marketing team. Then we plugged in Marketo and the drip scoring is working and we’re getting these results.” He showed it before and after.

So there’s not enough pain and fear and enough storytelling, like left and right brain. Firing off analytical results is a left-brain mechanic and it works for like 1 in 1000. Like if you hit a CFO they’d be like, “It’s amazing. We reduced inventory turns by 14%. Click the email!” But no one else is going to click that email.

That’s why case studies do fundamentally work and social proof if leveraged well works. So the question is how do you do that in three sentences? And that’s where my method really gets into “Brevity is the soul of wit.” Shakespeare. “Simplicity is the ultimate sophistication.” Da Vinci. They might be onto something. Einstein said, “Make it as simple as possible, but not too simple.”

So it is a paradox. Like how do you break it? You need to make it painfully short. Marketing won’t let me send it. You’re there. It’s painful, right? With everything. With everything in this business, if you’re reaching out to a prospect that you’re scared to talk to because they’re too high up, that’s the right prospect.

If you’re sending a message that you feel uncomfortable sending, because of the structure, you’re there. So, you want to be afraid twice. Now you’re going to have success.

Alex: That’s interesting and I think you hit a lot of important points there. But, one of the things I want to sit on – maybe dive into a little bit if you want to – is the idea you said… What was it personalization is relevancy, right? And relevancy is personalization. Did I get that right?

So to me, the difference is the personalization is what will sort of get you in the door. You could put it in the subject line or the first sentence, “Hey big NASCAR fan,” can sometimes work.

But the mistake a lot of people make is they look at that and go, “Okay this email’s personalized. I’m done. Now I can send it,” you know, “Here’s bullet points or whatever template and I go.” Whereas there’s really that, that relevancy side of it that you need to have in order to resonate with the prospect, right? And on a business level.

So the personalization is great, it resonates with them as a person, but if there’s no business need, like you said, let’s go grab a beer, let’s go be friends, but this isn’t the place to have that conversation. So you need to have that relevancy that resonates with their pains, like you said, right?Their needs and the value props that are in place.

So do you have sort of a good way maybe to differentiate to help an SDR out there who’s trying to understand the nuances of personalization and relevancy and how they can use that to their advantage within your method? 

Justin: Yeah so I used to work for LinkedIn. Of course, there was all mention a connection in common, mention an interest in common, and there was this phase one. The problem is the pattern interrupts: everyone has embraced vanilla personalization. And so it’s a trope.

Now here’s another thing. If you interview a million people about their significant other and then you go look at their significant other, it’s never the same. I send out these spear emails myself from Justin Michael Consulting to VPs of sales. I get these responses. “I’d never hire you. This isn’t personalized,” boom! They hate it. And I respond, “You’re responding. You’re responding. I’m getting you to respond.”

What is the system? Like my response rates are off the hook. It’s like you’re actually proving… Like you’re giving me an 80% open, you’re giving me a 30% response rate. And I’m considered this rogue operator because I don’t want to sit there and, you know, talk about the all this personalization stuff where I mean they’ve only gotten…

There’s this word Byzantine from Byzantium. It just means extremely complex levels. There’s 50 ways to personalize an email, there’s eBooks full of personalization, and honest to God, like people have a job. They have work to do. They have a problem. And there are similar problems that your prospects serve and there’s pain and there’s fear and there’s latent pain they didn’t realize they have.

My stuff’s also very trusted advisor. So there’s nuances to this method, right? It’s not as simple as saying we solve this problem for Coke before-after, send it to Pepsi. It’s also, “Hey you’re Pepsi. I know your business is unique. It might be a fit. Its potential.” So I use these weasel words and these tap outs to also create trust to do the 4.2 stars.

There’s a lot of subtlety to the method. I actually give the whole method away for free. Here’s what’s also crazy. I printed this down on PDF, I put it on Reddit, every part of it’s free on Reddit. I’ve now started to implant it in offshore companies. All over the world I’m distributing this method. It’s like fashion, like, you know? Everybody has long hair. I’m going short hair. No, no one has a beard. I have the beard. It’s just giant flink.

What’s hilarious is probably within two to four years as my book comes out is everyone’s gonna go hyper-short, because that’s where all the technology is building. And then I will now dominate with long. Like, I’ll do something else. That’s a pattern interrupt that you’re not expecting.

But the anatomy of email should be to really show the prospect that you understand the challenges, objectives, pains, fears that they’re sitting in. And nailing that with relevance.

Literally someone could come to my door right now and knock on the door, you know, dressed like a ninja in the middle of the day with a sign that says, “I have a way to get you a million hits on LinkedIn,” and I would let them into my house because it’s so relevant. It looks like an intruder. It could be like someone who is like – I don’t know, I’m not gonna have any bias – but they look like they’re breaking and entering, but they have the sign. And it’s relevant.

So I don’t know about personalization. There’s all these tests that say it works, but I’ve tested millions of emails. I took over operations for this company called OutboundWorks and we had all these professionally copywrity things and I chunked it down to super-compacted and the minute that they were hyper-short, it started to convert.

And we had a technology to do demographic, firmographic, psychographic personalization that also improved things. But that was three years ago. And now just about everyone is using that.

Now I know the argument that no one’s personalizing at all. Like I do tear downs. I watch Morgan Ingram do tear downs and people are just writing bad emails. That’s true. But if you’re in a highly contested SaaS space, you have good SDRs on the other side, like people know their stuff, they’re using the same systems.

I’ve sat in the CEOs inbox and watched the emails come in. And I’ve seen a lot of good, really personalized emails. Like they figure out you’re into hiking, they find the local hiking trails, they mention they like… They spin their pitch into like hiking analogies and they do this awesome thing. And it’s artful and like, that’s great.

I still feel like – because of the executives I sell to – like if I’m in an elevator with Mark Cuban, I’m not gonna be talking sports. He’s gonna say, “What do you do?” I’m gonna say, “I’ve developed an email and call framework that aligns with neuroscience that’s seven times more effective than the entire industry, seven million people, and I 500 people have that result.

“Oh okay, that’s interesting. I don’t invest in that, talk to Bill.” That’s it. That’s all I would get with Mark Cuban for real. I’m not going to talk to him about his sports team, you know, I’m not going to talk to him about entrepreneurship. And it’s…

Powerful people have no time for you. And I honestly, I’m the same. If someone calls me up, wants to start talking about jazz. I mean, it’d be cool after hours. And I’m actually really super into jazz, you know, but it’s… How can it help me grow my business? Maybe this is flying in the teeth of a lot of stuff.

I have a lot of… There’s a company right now in Europe that just raised $40 million. And they’re using this stuff. And their SDRs are like, “I didn’t know I was able to write a short email about what it’s about, like just say straight up how I can help you.” They lost the long-form templates, you start sending these spears.

It’s Aaron Ross as it turns out. I’m a disciple of Aaron Ross. Everything Predictable Revenue, everything Aaron Ross is like that’s the baseline. And he has developed his methods, completely revolutionized them for the 2020s. He has a concept of seeds, nets, and spears where he’s just defining inbound, outbound, and word of mouth.

For me, a spear is like a spear. It’s like a tiny, it’s a spear gun versus a, you know, a shotgun. You’re lasering into just what’s the point? You have, you know, one elevator ride with the buyer, what do you really say? I don’t know!

And they and they might push you, “Look we’re about to get off the elevator. How can you help my business? How much money have people made? Give me one example.”

Like what would someone have to know? And that’s the brevity piece. I think if you do that you’re gonna break through and the kind of prospects that convert are not navel-gazing to admire your email capability, they’re interested in the solution. They’re like, “I got to do that. Let’s meet.” That’s what I got. 

Greyson: Yep, I love it. I think you made two really great points throughout kind of talking about your process. And one of them that I wanted to bring up is the fact that like, capturing attention is one part of the puzzle for email, but motivating action is something completely different.

And I totally agree with you that I believe personalization has kind of gone down that track. And you see that a lot with both salespeople and marketers that kind of like over-emphasize the open rates and not really everything else.

Because that’s what personalization is used for. People are like, “Oh no, people are getting used to email. They’re not opening our emails anymore. Let’s put in the work to make them open it.” And now they’ve done that.

But the next step that I think a lot of salespeople are missing – and this is why people like yourselves and other rockstar sellers are cashing in on it – is that next step. It’s one thing to get someone to open an email. I open emails every day. It’s a totally different thing to get someone to actually move forward and take action.

The second piece that I wanted to bring up that you kind of mentioned softly but it’s something I want the audience to know is the importance of testing. In emailing, calling, and anything when it comes to sales, testing is so essential.

And the reason why is because what Justin said: right here, right now, brevity is working. But that does not guarantee it’ll stay. And we have no idea when and if and how it will shift. And so the only way that you can reliably keep up with that is to test, to have that paper trail so that you can clearly see the data behind what you’re doing.

Before we wrap up Justin, I did want to get into some actionable advice or best practices that you would want to leave us with thinking about maybe SDRs in the audience who are trying to improve their game with cold email and really trying to make it a primary way for them to land meetings.

Justin: All right so AB test everything, that’s true. And people have had success with long-form, but if you think about it the first email is short, no links or images, just flat, plain text.

I’m pretty aggressive on the first three days. I send the first email, I leave a voicemail, I bump the second day thoughts, I bump the third day visual. The first three days there’s all sorts of stuff going off. Why? It’s aggressive, it’s assertive, because I’m going to get referred.

If someone hits me up assertively, honestly, it’s just not me. “I’m not interested. Oh actually, my friend does that or my colleague does that.” And so I’m trying to get a quick hit. My stuff is super assertive in the beginning because I just assume that if someone’s a serious buyer, they’ll do me the courtesy of pointing me the route.

So that’s the first tip is not only to AB test everything, analyze brevity, analyze relevance over personalization, and analyze how quickly ,and rapid you can blend your touches and program your automation in the beginning because referrals are gold. I’d love a referral all day.

You know, there’s some scorched earth. I’ve seen some systems that wait on the frequency and then get faster in the end. I’m very assertive in the front. There’s a project called Reggie, which is coming out of Sapper Consulting, we have all these template creators. And I think of all the templates mine is the most assertive. It’s like you’re doing, you know, seven touches in the first three days.

So actionable tips for cold email, try to get under 250 words, three words subject line. Do not use signature panes and links and pictures. Treat LinkedIn the same as email, LinkedIn is email. LinkedIn, everyone else goes to connect and pitch or connect and talk. On LinkedIn, you have to have multiple touches. You have to have imagery. It’s the same, it has alerts, it has an email box, it goes to the email and alerts. So, treat LinkedIn exactly with the mechanics of AB testing that you do for email.

I think I covered it. I love the systems out there. Go to the Josh Braun course. Get into the Becc Holland and courses. AB test the stuff, make it your own. I send all my students into those courses to say, “Now you’ve learned these methods, test those with mine.”

This stuff is like music. If you were learning how to play like Stevie Ray Vaughan on the guitar, you would go study Eric Clapton and Van Halen and right? ven Kurt Cobain, you should check it all out. Every style!

There’s this this thing with emails that it’s like this competition to what system works. I think everybody’s that’s been the game says exactly what you said Greyson is AB test it. Let the data speak. I’ll be wrong all day.

I’ve had people use my system and say, “Hey the other template worked better.” That’s fine. But I’ve had hundreds of people come to me recently and say, “This is revolutionizing the open rates and the success rates,” you know, they’re sending a thousand emails, they’re not getting a meeting, they plug my template in, boom, six meetings. I’ve seen this consistently.

So I have a lot of high confidence. I’m always going to think in a military way. Look at the last thousand things that your competitor sent, do something different. Pattern interrupt, start it with a joke. Write heuristics, what, you know – maybe it’s short – but what’s the content and context? And are you going to stick out? The purple cow, cow, cow, cow, purple cow? What is that? AB test to find how you can stick out, you know?

Alex: Yeah. Yeah. I think that’s great. And I think the music analogy is something that resonated with me, right? You got to go study all the different musicians, right? Learn the different templates, the different methods, the different systems.

And then I would even take that one step further and say if you want to be really good, if you want to be up there, you know, you want to be the next Eric Clapton or what have you, you then have to take it and make it the best for you, right?

You take what you’ve learned from all these different places, you AB test them. You figure out this works, this works, this doesn’t, this doesn’t, let’s take these things, work them into my own style, my own method from all the testing that I’ve done, and boom, there you have it.

That’s now now you have your own system. Now you have your own process that you have full confidence in because you’ve done all the tests and analysis, right? 

Justin: Yeah I mean, I really want to believe because I was a musician for 20 years. My big problem is I was derivative. I got in front of the president of Sony says, “You’re great, but you sound like Seal and Sting and Incubus and these other bands and they didn’t want to sign me.” I even showcased for Jimmy Iovine who signed Dr. Dre and Eminem and Limp Bizkit and he’s super cool guy.

But what this taught me when I went into B2B sales is when I built my own methods and sound system, although I amalgamated a lot, it is alien when you read it, you’re like, “Where did it come from?” Like off the UFO.

Bryan Kreuzberger, huge influence, and then Lee Bartlett in England, huge influence, wrote a book called The Number One Bestseller. Kreuzberger is a little bit of a mystery figure. He had something called Breakthrough Email. His systems have been verified like you see testimonies from Aaron Ross and Marco Barish. He’s still out there if you want to check it out.

What I have done though is I have definitely deeply looked into things like Josh Braun and Becc Holland. I do believe in those systems and methods as well. It is more like music where you want to go out and start to get into the environment of testing things and crack your vertical and your company. It’s linguistics, right?

There’s infinite versions, there’s like 30,000 words in the vocabulary and there’s writing levels and reading levels that there’s no one system, you know? So I have really really struggled to build something that’s truly original. But people are really… This really, it’s so open source like Linux or Linus Torvalds.

Like wait, why are you letting me into your community? And why are you selling my course and pushing people out of your community? Because the value of my community is my interest in a rep who knows me getting better at their job.

So if you can go crush your email not using my system but using Josh Braun’s, I love it. We have Josh Braun come in the community, tear down the email, and have a divergent view. That’s good. Right? Everybody load up the sequencers, load up your Outreach, your SalesLoft, your Xant, your Groove, Apollo, FrontSpin, Reply.IO, I mean there’s 75 of these things. And just let the data speak for you.

What’s bad is to go to best templates dot com, copy and paste, and I think it’s actually unethical to send 30,000 emails with a template with just “Hi first name.” Unfortunately, that’s the bulk.

And now… I was actually yesterday on Facebook in this weird LinkedIn mastermind group and it said, “What’s the safest way to use automation on LinkedIn that’s not considered spam and you won’t have your profile shut down?” It’s like, I won’t mention it. They mentioned like 30 names of companies and like, this is why right now every email on LinkedIn is like, “Hi Justin comma,” and you’re like, “Oh hey!” And you get like waterboarded with automation. So don’t do that. 

Greyson: Love it. Awesome, Justin. So, thank you so much for joining us today to talk about cold email. Before we sign off, where can people find you to learn more about the Justin Michael Method or get in touch with you personally? 

Justin: Yes, so just ping me I’m Justin Michael on LinkedIn, on Twitter, on Reddit, it’s /r/sales or our SalesBorgs salesborg.ai. It’s like cyborg and seller. And, you know, if you’re a student, if you’re a veteran, if you’re out of work, I’ll give you all my materials and access to the community and guides for free.

Otherwise, it’s a dollar one time and people are like, “How could you make any money doing that?” I don’t want to be a dark guru. I mean, people, all the students come in, they practice all the methods and then their bosses hire me to train the company. I do consulting. I train teams, kind of like a John Barrows thing. But yes, I’ll give pretty much give this stuff away for free, salesborg.ai, Justin Michael on LinkedIn or Twitter, and I’m excited to meet you and help you crack this problem.

Greyson: Awesome. Cool. Well, thank you everyone who joined us today. This has been Greyson and Alex for The SDRealness podcast. Until next time, SDRs, keep it real.


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