Unsure Whether to Call or Email a Prospect? Ask Yourself These 3 Questions

BY Rachel Cagle
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Does your latest prospect prefer email or phone contact? If they don’t specifically list a certain medium on their LinkedIn or other pages, you’ve no way of knowing. Or do you? HubSpot writer Jeff Hoffman recommends asking yourself these, among other, questions to determine if you should email and/​or call a prospect.

First off, who are you attempting to reach?

Is the prospect a millennial? It’s no secret that this generation thrives in the digital world. Therefore, you should try to reach them via email first. It’s generally the opposite with any generation older than millennials. Also, take their job title into consideration. A Director of Communications is more likely than the Head of IT to want to chat on the phone. More external roles should be contacted via phone while employees with internal roles are likely to be more receptive to email.

Secondly, where does your prospect fall on their company’s totem poll?

If your prospects have upper level positions, your first bet should be to call. Higher ups are more likely to have assistants. These assistants can transfer you directly to the prospect if they’re available, tell you the best time to call back if they’re not, or take a message that they’ll hand directly to the prospect. You will not have this kind of an in with lower level employees. Hoffman points out that you’re more likely to get their voicemail because they’re often traveling or working with teams. And like most professionals, they probably won’t respond to an unknown number. Therefore, email is the more likely medium to get a response from the prospect.

Lastly, when are you trying to contact your prospect?

Hoffman recommends making calls if it’s after 3:00 p.m., especially on Thursdays and Fridays. Later in the workday and workweek is when studies have shown that prospects are most likely to respond to both calls and voicemails. Emails can be sent throughout the day, but should correspond with when meetings begin or let out. This is usually on the hour. So, when the prospect is waiting for the meeting to start or when they’re heading back to their office afterward, they’ll likely be on their phones. That’s when they’ll check their email. As a result, Hoffman says, send your emails 10 minutes before or after the hour.