When you are doing outbound marketing, emails are essential.
Regardless of if you are running a cold email campaign, or following up on a direct mail piece, email addresses are essential to outreach.
In the course of my outbound marketing efforts, I have researched thousands of email addresses and tried out various tools for finding them.
Below I have identified my process and the tools that I use to find email addresses.
Method 1 - Search the obvious
There are two places where you can commonly find email addresses that many people fail to look.
The individual's LinkedIn page - On LinkedIn, you will need to click ‘View Contact Info’. If you do this you will see a listing of social media accounts, websites and sometimes an email address. All of this information is optional, so not everyone includes it but sometimes it’s a very easy win.
If they don’t have an email listed, be sure to click through their other links. Sometimes individuals will have emails listed on personal websites or even on their twitter page.
The Company Bio Page - Another obvious, yet often overlooked place to search. Most companies don’t list all of their employees contact information on their site, but every once in awhile you get lucky.
Method 2 - Use Sellhack
There are a variety of tools on the web for searching individuals email addresses. I have tried many of them and Sellhack is by far the best email prospecting tool I have found.
I will admit, it’s not perfect and you will get still get a lot of bounces, but it’s the best tool I have found so far.
It operates as a simple Google Chrome plug-in that lives in the corner of your browser. While you are doing your research on prospects, you simply click the plug-in and a pop-up window appears.
You enter the prospects first name, last name, and company website and Sellhack does the digging for you. It will scour through various sources and methods to come up with an email address for you.
For individuals with company email addresses, this is the most effective method I have found.
You can try out Sellhack for free, and paid accounts are inexpensive starting at $9 per month for 50 prospects. The emails that I am searching are of such high value to me, that I have no problem paying this small monthly fee.
Method 3 - Try the Rapportive Gmail Hack
Before finding Sellhack, this was my go-to method for email research, and I still use it as a fallback.
Sellhack does very well, although sometimes it still doesn’t find what I am looking for.
As a last resort, there is a hack that I use which combines Gmail with a plug-in called Rapportive.
The process is a bit complicated, so instead of trying to write it all out, I am going to defer to this video that taught me the tactic years ago.
Method 4 - Google the prospect
As a final step, Google the prospects name and search around some of the links and see if you can find their contact listed anywhere.
Sometimes, you will find the prospect listed in a trade association or in some sort of director that has their contact information included.
It’s often a long shot, but sometimes it works wonders and opens doors up to new research tools that are specific to the industry you are going after.
For example, I was trying to research contact information for Hollywood directors for a client of mine. Many of these other methods failed because the individuals don’t have company addresses. By running a Google search I came across the Directors Guild of America which has a director of all of its members and their contact information. Gold mine!
Method 5 - Use Getsteward.com
If all of these methods fail, or you just don’t have the time to deal with them, then head over to GetSteward.com.
This is a simple service where they will do the dirty work of finding someone's email address for you for just $1 per email. They do orders both big and small and typically do a great job of getting you quality email addresses.
In addition to asking for a certain individual's contact name, they will also build lists of specific titles at specific types of companies for you.
A few tips for working with Getsteward:
- Give them a maximum size on the order so they don’t come back with more than you want.
- Be very specific with the criteria of what makes someone a good fit and what doesn’t.
- Use the email template I have created to give a project to GetSteward. This will ensure you know exactly what you are getting.
The bottom line
Finding email addresses can take a bit of time, but if you use these methods and tools (in the order presented) then you will find the contacts you are looking for.
But be careful, just because you find someone's email doesn’t mean that they want to hear from you. Don’t be a blanketed spammer and just blast off sales letters to every person you research.
If you are going to do email outreach, make it part of a campaign. Be intentional and build a strategy with it.
If you want to learn the outbound marketing strategies that I have used to land Fortune 500 clients, then sign up for my email course below where I walk you through the entire process.