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4 Powerful Outbound Sales Tactics for CRE Professionals

This is the fifth and final installment in our series of guides to outbound marketing. This post focuses on email and outbound sales best practices. To recap, this is what else is in this series:

  1. Why Do Emails Go to Spam? Seven factors that cause marketing emails to be flagged as junk.

  2. Why Do Emails Bounce? Diagnose and fix email delivery issues.

  3. What Do Google’s New Email Spam Rules Mean? What we know about the February 2024 Google updates. 

  4. What are SPF, DMARC and DKIM in B2B Email? Best practices for protecting your email domain from being marked as spam.

For this final installment, we’re going to cover best practices for your outbound sales strategy: email workflows, including workflow segmentation, audience segmentation, outbound channels, and measurement.


Segment Your Workflows 

Before you even begin segmentation, you’ve got to establish and define clear objectives and goals. 

We know, we know: Defining objectives and goals can feel tedious, like prepping a room before you paint or slugging through the prologue to a new book. You know the step is necessary, but it’s not the fun part (that is, if you think painting is fun).  

But if you don’t define your goals and objectives, you risk running one large campaign for your entire business, rather than various campaigns with their own target goals, KPIs and messages that you can track and iterate on. 

Three broad types of segmented workflows are nurtures, re-engagements, and upsells.

Segmented nurture workflows

The goal of nurture campaigns is to guide potential customers through the buying process, keeping them engaged and moving them closer to making a purchase decision. This typically starts with a broad audience that generally fits your ideal target customer criteria. Nurture workflows should be helpful, informative, educational and low-friction (in other words, not hard selling).


  • Personalized recommendations based on browsing history and clicks

  • Invitations to subscribe to newsletters, podcasts, vlogs, etc.

  • Topic-based workflows such as blog posts, downloadable guides

  • Sharing industry-related news and events


Segmented re-engagement workflows

Re-engaging with lost/closed deals provides new content to prospects that you’ve either lost or never connected with during the nurture process. Typically, the content is to not replicate content already sent, but to pitch product value differently to see if it can get them to re-engage with you.

  • Personalized “did we lose you” messages

  • Event invitations, especially for lower-funnel prospects

  • Reminders to finish incomplete form fills or CTA actions (similar to cart abandonment in ecommerce but for CRE service providers)

Segmentation for post-purchase engagement and upsell 

Rather than consider the lead-to-sales pipeline to be linear, consider it to be circular or never ending. How can you keep your customers engaged, and what other problems/opportunities can you help them with?

  • Follow-up satisfaction surveys

  • Requests for testimonials, reviews

  • Cross-promoting related services and/or products

  • Seasonal reminders

  • Sharing industry news  

There are other segments to consider, such as inbound marketing (a more targeted campaign than nurture campaigns) and inbound response campaigns to trial or demo requests (where follow-up/response times are critical). Read more: Inbound vs Outbound Leads in CRE Prospecting.

In addition to defining your business goals and creating automation/campaigns around them, it’s also important to understand your target audience’s goals and objectives. If you want to drive engagement, show your target audience that you know who they are and what their needs are. 

Segment Your Audience 

Segment your audience based on relevant criteria such as industry, asset class, market size, job title, and/or other demographics. This allows you to send targeted and personalized messages, increasing the relevance for each recipient. Biscred’s data points make audience segmentation easy: 

  • Asset experience: CRE asset classes include entertainment venues, healthcare and medical facilities, industrial complexes, mixed-use properties, office buildings, and retail, as well as niche classes such as student housing, sustainable energy facilities, parking lots and structures, and data centers. Biscred currently classifies assets into 24 categories.

  • Company industry: In CRE, company industries include providers of services and goods ranging from developers, designers and builders to property managers and operators.

  • Titles and seniority: Biscred’s people data is segmented by seniority (junior, mid-, senior and executive levels) and by job titles. 

  • Company size: The Biscred prospecting platform includes number of contacts and number of properties for most of the 263,000+ companies. 

  • Geographical: Segment your CRE prospect list by region (Midwest, Northeast, etc.), state, or major metropolitan areas and cities.

Oftentimes automation tools have something called “Variables” which allow you to easily customize your content at scale. For example, instead of having every email say “Hi there” you can use a variable for first name like “Hi []” where the automation will automatically populate with the recipient’s first name. Variables can be as simple as a first name, or as complex as adding a note or website link automatically that are unique and relevant to the recipient. Using variables to cater to your audience is a simple yet powerful way to increase your email content’s effectiveness.

Use These Outbound Channels of Connecting 

In addition to email and cold calling, these methods of outbound communication can fit into your marketing automation workflows: 

  • Text messaging

  • Social media outreach, especially LinkedIn for B2B

  • Direct mail (yes, it’s still relevant)  

How you reach out is one thing, another is how your audience will receive your communication. For example, people open and read emails on computers, smaller laptops, tablets and phones. So, not only should your emails be responsive to different size screens, but the content that you link in your messages (for example, landing pages) should also be responsive to various screen sizes.

Frequency of B2B marketing messages

Do your prospects want to hear from you every day (probably not), every-other day, weekly, or some other frequency? There is no prescription for the perfect workflow automation cadence. The only way to know is to test, measure and adjust. 

Your audience’s tolerance to automated messaging frequency varies from business to business, so test what resonates with your audience best. The best marketing automation platforms have built-in reports that include engagement metrics, including Zoho, Hubspot, Salesforce, Marketo and all the major marketing automation platforms.   

But let’s set technology aside for a moment. You know your audience. How often would you want to hear from your business? If the content of your messages are helpful, engaging, unique and even entertaining, you might be open to receiving messages more frequently. If the content of your messages is high-pressure sales, you might alienate your audience quickly! 

Timing of B2B marketing messages 

At a high level, understanding when your audience might have more budget (say at the start of their new fiscal year, or if they announced a new round of funding) can increase your likelihood of receiving a response. Other considerations include seasonality, industry news and events, political, and newsworthy events.

At a more granular level, knowing your audience’s time zone and when they’re most likely to respond will further increase response activity/engagement as well. Again, this is where your marketing automation platform can help you understand what days, for example, more people open emails.

Measure Analytics, Optimization, and Lead Scores

Below are example metrics to follow in general for campaigns that you can use to iterate and optimize your campaigns around. 

Email and text message engagement: 

  • Open rate: How often do recipients open your emails? This could be a testament to how effective your email subject line is as well as the audience it is connecting to. (Most marketing automation platforms allow you to A/B test subject lines, which we recommend.) 

  • Click rate: If you have a link in your email or text message (which you should), are readers interested enough to take it one step further and click/view additional content? 

  • Positive vs. negative response rate: Measure opt-outs, unsubscribes and other signals that your target audience may not be enjoying your messages.  

  • Bounce rate: If you have a nurture campaign directed toward, for example, “executives in property management companies, primarily in the West Coast,” that produces a 10% bounce rate, what does that suggest? In another post in the series, we dive deep into explain soft vs hard bounces. A 10% bounce rate could indicate that you need to revisit your source of contact information, or your content has been flagged and should be reworked. 

Phone call engagement: 

  • Positive answer vs. negative answer: Similar to distinguishing positive vs. negative email responses, capture the type of phone call response so that you can determine what is the appropriate next step. What types of openers generate positive responses, and what type seem to generate the most negative ones?

  • Voicemail vs. invalid phone number: A phone call could be left unanswered, capturing what a rep does when/why a call was unsuccessful will provide insight on what to do with that number. Understanding whether you could or couldn’t leave a voicemail is a key metric, similar to tracking bounce rates for emails. 

Lead scores help track engagement and make actionable recommendations. A lead score is typically a value assigned to a lead based on various criteria that indicate a prospect’s level of engagement, which suggests their potential interest in your business. 

The lead scoring process involves evaluating and assigning points to leads based on things like their interactions, level of engagement, and how well they fit in your ideal customer profile. The specific criteria for lead scoring can vary depending on the business, industry, and target audience, but they are useful variables to incorporate into your marketing automations. 

A few examples of lead scoring: 

  • +1 point for email open

  • +2 points for clicking a link 

  • +5 points for positively responding to a demo request

What’s Next? Text, Learn, and Iterate 

Mastering outbound sales email best practices involves a blend of thoughtful segmentation, precise targeting, and strategic use of various communication channels. By defining clear objectives, segmenting your workflows and audience, and employing tools like Biscred to find and connect with the right audience, you can create personalized, engaging content that resonates with your prospects. Remember to continuously test, measure, and adjust your strategies to optimize performance. Ultimately, a well-crafted, data-driven approach will enhance your outreach efforts, ensuring you connect with the right people at the right time, driving better results for your business.

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