Video outreach: how to get prospects and candidates to reply

Why is this article useful for you:

This article will show you:

1. Why video messaging

Video is personal

Video messaging is (very) personal. The receiver actually gets to see your beautiful face :). And not only that, all your verbal and nonverbal communication that comes with it. This immediately creates a bond between you and the receiver which will be much stronger compared to a text message or an email.

You can be (very) creative

The possibilities with video are endless. If you use video to sell your product/service you can actually show your service/product in action. If you use video to convince a potential candidate to have a conversation about a ‘great new opportunity’ you can actually show your office, get the hiring manager involved and/or show the actual product/service/project this person will be working on. Think about all of the good stuff you normally try to cram in an email that you can now show.

There are pitfalls

However there is a pitfall with the ‘endless possibilities’ using video. When you make your video too ‘professional’ and looks more like and Instagram advertisement, the message won’t feel personal and authentic. This will negatively impact your reply rates. Secondly you will spend too much time on crafting a beautiful video which is not necessary. All videos in this article are recorded with the camera of my laptop and with the microphone of my headset.

Video makes you stand out

Video makes you stand out, because the majority of your competition doesn’t use this powerful medium. Again think about how many videos you received last year? That is your opportunity. Think about all those unanswered emails you send that will now get a reaction…

Your reply rate is (much) higher

According to research from Vidyard emails containing a link to a video have a 3X higher reply rate compared to email! People actually answer you when you send a video 😱.

2. What tools to use

Loom

Loom is my personal favourite and is very easy to use. Loom allows you to record a video of yourself, the screen of your computer or a combination of yourself and your computer. Your videos are stored in the cloud and can be shared either by a link or Giphy. Loom’s software allows you to trim your video, add a call to action in your video and chose your thumbnail.

Screenshot of Loom

Vidyard

Vidyard clearly focuses on cold outreach using video and is primarily used as a sales tool. It has the same functionalities as Loom but allows you to personalize your thumbnails with a prospect or candidates name. Great if you want to create a ‘generic’ video but still make it feel personal. The first 5 videos are as well for free but if you want to create more videos you need to pay $15 for an additional 20 videos. Vidyard has more reporting functionalities compared to Loom.

Screenshot of Vidyard

BombBomb

BombBomb software enables you to directly embed your videos in Gmail. Despite its great integration in Gmail it unfortunately doesn’t integrate with Outlook (yet). It works similar to Loom and Vidyard but is more expensive. You pay $29.99 for its most basic subscription plan.

Screenshot of BombBomb

3. How to make a great video

4. My learnings sending hundreds of video messages

Don’t over do it

It took me over 2 hours to send my first short video to a prospect. There was just always something to improve in my video. I didn’t like my tone of voice, my message wasn’t powerful enough, I didn’t like the way I looked on camera etc. etc. Only when I started to get more comfortable recording myself and understanding that it is more important to send your message than spend hours on crafting the perfect message I got more comfortable that good is ‘good enough’.

This happens a lot…

Send a good follow up in text

Make sure to send a good follow up in text. Video is a great way of getting your message across but not every receiver will like it. Your prospect needs to click on your video, be in an environment where he/she can listen to your message, actually watch your video and give you a reply. Often prospects will see your video, don’t have time to watch it and forget about it.

Check for email deliverability

When I just started with video messaging there was one crucial component in my whole strategy that I neglected, and I paid the price… I created personal videos for each potential new client explaining our service with MatcHR.

Actual footage of me analysing the data

Example for BD work

Below is a video I have sent to a prospect. Despite that the video didn’t end with a clear(er) call to action, it did get a positive reply because I clearly did my homework (this was a company selling online soundclips) and it received a positive reply.

Example of a BD video that got a positive reply

Example for a candidate review

Below is an example how you can use video to actually show a candidate that you reviewed his/her LinkedIn profile and explain why he/she would be a great fit for the role you are hiring for. Super personal and will get you a reply for sure.

Candidate profile review

5. How to send personalised videos at scale 🚀

In this section I will show you how you can send videos at scale using one email template and one video!

The template and the video

In July I was invited to speak at Sourcing Summit on video outreach. A week before the actual event I sent all sixty speakers the same email and the same video. Completely automated and super personalised.

The email template
A photo of me with a screenshot of Irina
In red all the personalised items

The process

The steps:

LinkedIn

In order to successfully set up this automation you need to start to collect the LinkedIn URL’s of your prospects in a Google Spreadsheet.

SalesQL

You can collect your prospects LinkedIn URL’s manually or use tools like SalesQL or Phantombuster to scrape your search on LinkedIn and get these links in bulk for you.

Phantombuster

Phantombuster is a software tool that allows you to automate many steps on LinkedIn and also scrape different kinds of information from LinkedIn (next to other social media platforms).

Phantombuster step by step

Click on “connect to LinkedIn”
Make sure your GD sheet is on “Editor” mode
Just click on “Launch”
Under “Files” on the right you can find your download
The CSV file unpacked in Google Drive
You can name your columns any name

Lemlist

Lemlist is an email automation tool that offers great personalisation options to send out personalised emails at scale. You can try Lemlist for free for the first 14 days but in order to send videos you need to switch to their most premium package of $99 per month 💸. Despite the costs I highly recommend to use Lemlist because of its powerful personalisation options.

The email template in Lemlist
The landing page template in Lemlist
Actual footage of me working…

6. The data

If you want to be successful using this method it is important to keep in mind that your message still needs to be relevant for your recipient. You can have all these ‘personalised’ templates and images in your emails but if the video isn’t relevant for your recipient you still won’t get a reply. Even worse the recipient will understand that you automated your message and might think less of your service/company.

Conclusion

Video offers a lot of opportunities to stand out, personalise at scale and improve your conversions on your lead generation activities. However the first step is always the hardest so don’t be afraid get in front of your camera and just do it!

--

--

Get the Medium app

A button that says 'Download on the App Store', and if clicked it will lead you to the iOS App store
A button that says 'Get it on, Google Play', and if clicked it will lead you to the Google Play store
Adriaan Kolff

Adriaan Kolff

Co-founder of MatcHR, investor, entrepreneur. Obsessed with (team) culture and recruitment. Four time Burning Man 🔥 attendee and Ironman 🏊🚴‍♂️🏃.