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How to leverage contact list

I am in practice for a few months and want to up the ante on my marketing. 

I have recently set up Google Apps for Business and in the process have consolidated my contacts from various different sources. I have over 600 contacts, most of whom I have met in real life. Others have connected through LinkedIn etc. I've done a lot of networking over the years and I also have quite a few ex-colleagues.

While I would love to add all these names to my newsletter list or send them all a mailshot, this smells like spam to me. I've received plenty of newsletters that I didn't subscribe to and it drives me crazy. However, if someone was to send me a personal email, I wouldn't mind. 600 personal emails would take forever but it may be possible to segment the list and send a slightly different email to each.

I'm doing some research on the best way to write an email like this to capture the recipient's attention, have a clear call to action, not to seem just like any other accountant and not to seem desperate!

Has anyone tried something like this before? Was it successful? I saw from a previous post that someone sent a letter to their 50 closest contacts (Nifty 50) and it worked well. This would be an extension of this to contacts which aren't as close.

Would you consider it spam to receive an email from a contact you met a few years ago?




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22nd Jun 2012 21:19

Do you have a...

Website, or blog, or something with a newsfeed that they could subscribe to?

If your website has a blog, write an interesting article or post for it, one that adds a special offer, or area of expertise, or current accountancy issue/problem that you can solve/legal change - and send out the link? Show that you are up to date in your area of expertise and a reliable source to go to for information and services.

To avoid being spammy, ask your contacts to send you a link to their latest venture/website/online article they have  written? Say something like, I've kept you in mind, so if I can recommend you to anyone jog my memory/update me on anything I can share. Make it a little more professional but still friendly of course.

Be interested in them, and make it short and sweet, if you link to something you have written, with a short interest provoking intro, they wont feel like you just sent them some homework to look at? You can also balance the content of the email to be as much about them as it is about you.

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22nd Jun 2012 22:03

Blogpost Link

Thanks for the ideas @AddsUp2Me. I write a fairly regular blog so I should be able to come up with something.

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26th Jun 2012 13:10

Direct Emailing and Fresh Leads

Hi cardi

I understand how you feel! Starting out is such a delicate time - it's exciting, yet you need an income - and you want to do things in the right way for you. 

Mailchimp offers an excellent service for sending 1:1 personalised emails (i.e. Hi cardi) for sending out 50 to 1,000 or more at a time. It's fairly easy to use - alternatively third parties will do it for you for a small fee - I'll happily put you in touch. 

In addition, timing can make a big difference. If your contacts already have an accountant - there's inertia you have to overcome which will inevitably reduce your success rate. 

One of my businesses offers the Recently Formed service which will tell you which are the new firms near you registering on Companies House each week. You can sign up for a free trial for four weeks here

Best of luck. 

Steve Hales







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26th Jun 2012 15:28


Hi Steve,

I use Mailchimp already for my newsletter and find it great.I hadn't thought about it for simple emails but it would be ideal as it would tell me who opened each email, who clicked on a link etc, so thanks for the reminder.

I am leaning towards segmenting my lists into people I know in a similar way e.g. former colleagues, so the email could be written along similar lines with the most appropriate form of familiarity. Some of the emails will need to be individually written. I've found some examples letters online and I'm going to tailor them as required.

My plan is to send out a few at a time and see what response I get and tailor the next set based on what I learned from the responses.

The main thing is to do it!




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