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Sell Training? Here Are 5 Steps To The Perfect Sales Email

As social distancing measures are lifted, your sales and marketing function needs to be operating effectively and efficiently in order to get your courses filled. From attracting new business to nurturing existing clients, you need to find the message that resonates with your prospects. It's never been more important to use both empathy and authority in your communications in order to build trust and show you care.

There is a great deal of research out there on how to craft the perfect Sales email. Not surprisingly, a lot of this research overlaps and studies suggest there's 4 distinct areas you should both consider and remember for every email you write:

  • An enticing subject
  • KISS
  • Drop the formality
  • Use insight


  • Consider incentives

An enticing subject

As many as 47% of emails are opened based on the subject alone.

Nothing else matters if your prospect doesn't open the email in the first place. From my own experience, there’s 3 powerful keywords I want you to remember that will help to send your open rates skyward.

Scarcity – Nothing drives buyer behaviour quite like scarcity. If you’ve had X signups in X hours, shout about it! If you’re super busy, let prospects know! Discounts and promotions with cut offs are great ways to encourage immediate action.

“WOW – 90% full in 24 hours”

Curiosity – If you give too much away in the subject…what’s the point in opening it? Sometimes it’s good to arouse curiosity, or even be intentionally cryptic. HubSpot have a great article on this.

“How's next week looking?"

Personal – Simply by including the first name of the recipient in an email subject line can increase the click-through rate by up to 22.5%. More stats on this here.

“Dave, let’s talk training!”

There's a number of other things you can try like including the mention of a video in the title which has proven results. There’s even research to say including emoji’s in your subject can increase open rates by up to 45%. Crazy.


“Keep it simple, stupid”

I’ve fallen into this trap more times than you could count. You think paragraphs of words detailing the extent of your training offering is going to entice people.

It’s not.

In this modern world of over-stimulation, busy schedules and short attention spans, you need to be direct. Your prospects don’t need to know what socks your trainer is going to be wearing on the day, they need to know quite simply:

  • What it is you’re offering
  • Why they should attend

It’s completely different if someone has asked for further information about your offering – that is a prompt for detail. Otherwise, KISS!

One other thing you MUST include is a Call to Action (CTA). This is all about prompting an immediate response. Whether it's to arrange a call, click a link, a direct reply or something else - make it known what you want from them!

Drop the formality

It's all about conversational and casual

It’s been ingrained in us since we sent across our very first curriculum vitae to an employer back in the day. It was expected that we should show the highest level of formality and politeness when sending an email, particularly to people we haven't met.

The reality, is that people much prefer a laid back approach. This article from Entrepreneur says formal emails are actually far more likely to get deleted.

Being formal is common in early exchanges before rapport has been built. It's worth asking, if every email you're sending sounds formal, how strong is your relationship with the client?

Use insight

In a world of increasing competition, those templated, spammy emails have to go. Every single one of your prospects has a different challenge, different business objective, different budget and different requirements from you as a training organisation. For each of them to receive the same message trying to hook them in is nothing short of lazy and will not yield the results you seek.

So what’s the solution?

I’m not saying never  to use templates, after all, 75% of the emails we send are never read. You could be wasting a great deal of time by crafting a personal novel for each client. But try to use atleast one piece of insight unique to each client. This could be a follow up from a previous exchange, a compliment on an award or achievement, a comment some content they’ve posted or even something personal from their Linkedin profile.

Consider Incentives

A great way to drive demand for your training is to bring something new to the table. Particularly if you're facing increased competition, it's imperative you use all the tools in your arsenal, including but not limited to:

Discounts & Promotions

Devaluing your offering should be used with caution. That said, there’s a number of ways you can go about this. Perhaps offering retaining discounts, offering incentives for group bookings or new course promotions. The benefits of this is amplified if you’re using an eCommerce tool where delegates can input a discount code in the shopping basket. Self-serve success!


This could include things like access to an online content library or a learner portal, 1-to-1 coaching, printed certification, accommodation etc.

It's a fantastic way to offer something your competitors aren’t. Far too many providers offer a single day training session with all the course information digested in one day, with minimal or non-existent communication pre or post-course.

Taster sessions

This can be as simple or as complex as you like. A simple tactic could be to record a training session and piece the best bits together for social sharing and promotion. More advanced taster sessions could involve bite size snippets that trainers deliver for free and even share some course material. Sales Geek are great at this. They provide so much value to their social following, without asking for anything in return. It works a treat.

So what does this look like when you bring it together?

it managers guide to software- report writing

Perhaps, a little something like this…

Subject: “Such an engaging, informative session. Loved it”


Firstly, a congratulations on winning a customer service award last week – well deserved I’m sure!

You may recall that I trained your staff on a 3-day IOSH course towards the end of last year. In fact, the subject of this email is what this relates to, it was some lovely feedback one of your staff left me!

My reason for contacting you NAME is that we’ve introduced a brand-new NEBOSH course, and I remembered you enquiring about the possibility to come back and retain with us.

We’d be delighted to come to your site and upskill your team. We’ve found ourselves busier than ever of late, but we’ve got a couple of options for availability.

When would be suitable for us to discuss this on a call? Would the 20th July work? Or would 15th August be better?

Look forward to hearing from you.

What do you see as the biggest improvement you can make to your sales emails? Let us know in the comments below.

Learn more about promoting your training courses with the Beginners Guide to Content Marketing. 

download the beginners guide to content marketing

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