Technology has drastically reduced print media. OTT platforms have reduced television consumption. If there’s one marketing method that has stood tall even amidst newer options popping up – it’s email marketing.
We still use emails to stay in touch with our business contacts and many brands have effectively capitalized on this. And to manage these thousands of emails, various tools have cropped up. Defined as a sales engagement platform, these tools not only send mass emails but help one to manage their contacts.
And of course, the process would not be complete without a detailed analytics report regarding user engagement and mail reception! Today, we’re looking at one such tool.
What is Reply.io?
Reply.io is a sales engagement platform that allows you to manage hundreds of emails and contacts. You can send emails over multiple channels, follow up on them and nurture your leads to increase conversion rates. Moreover, it allows seamless integration with various CRMs for easy contact management.
As a tool, Reply.io is extremely useful and effective. Not only does it have an excellent UI but the learning curve is quite shallow. One can easily master it in a few days. Using their extensions, one can source contacts directly from LinkedIn.
The platform can send broadcasts over Whatsapp, LinkedIn, email and more. Reply.io even offers voice calling features so you can call up contacts with an automated and interactive message.
One can even look at the Reply.io platform itself to see how they have implemented various conversion strategies across their domain. The basic functions one can perform with Reply.io are as follows:
- Manage contacts, import, or follow up on them from various sites.
- Send mass messages over multiple channels
- Semi-automate repetitive tasks
- Send out voice-recorded calls
- Get analytics for each campaign
- Integrate with Zapier, Pipedrive, Salesforce and more
Other than this, Reply.io offers many options and customizations for each.
If you’ve singled out Reply.io as the tool of your choice, then you’ve come to the right place. In this article, we’re going to talk you through how to use the platform and set up an effective email outreach program!
Setting Up and Onboarding
Like any cold emailing automation, Reply.io uses your existing service provider to send emails. To log in, one must have a corporate ID (Gmail or otherwise). After that, Reply.io offers options for selecting your email provider as shown below:
If you are using a client other than Gmail, Outlook and Exchange, you will have to set it up manually. The information required are SMTP & IMAP details. Once done, you are going to see something like this. Welcome to the Reply.io dashboard!
You can choose to add your teammates at this point. Reply.io has an extremely clean and impressive UI. And our favorite thing is the help icon to the right. You will receive messages from the team from time to time, however, they appear as short pop-ups to the right that disappears in seconds.
You can always access them later by clicking on them. But for the most part, the icon remains unobtrusive and does not hinder work.
You can also use this icon to share feedback, see the Reply.io roadmap or search common queries.
Apart from this, one can find educational videos under the Support section on top (which will open in a new tab). The Reply.io roadmap is a series of features that have been implemented, are being planned or in progress.
Building a Sequence
A sequence refers to a list of email sequences that will be sent to the customers. The sequence set-up is extremely easy and one of Reply.io’s strong features. Here, you can choose from Reply.io’s existing template or choose to create your own.
Reply.io offers 11 different templates for different needs. These are:
- For sending to trial customers
- Sequence for cold emailing
- For inbound leads
- Mails for job recruiting
- Educational content and sign-ups
- Showing demo to customers (multi-channel)
- Demo emails with no show
- Multichannel cold emailing
Here, we’re looking at the sequence for a job recruitment campaign. You can see the first three steps have been set up as emails. At any step, you can add another message by clicking the icons at the bottom for the supported platform. You can send two types of messages at the same time by clicking on “Add Variant”.
Here, you can modify the timing or trigger between each sequence. Reply.io only offers a delay trigger which means you can only change the time between each email. The other option is to make the email sending automatic/ manual.
Steps can be deleted by pressing the delete icon to the left. A single sequence can contain a combination of calls, messages and emails. If you’re using the custom step option, you have the option to save the sequence as a template for future use.
Writing a Message
To add a new email or message in a sequence, you can click on the email icon at the bottom or click on the big red plus sign towards the right. This is going to open up the writing space. The email writing space is shown below:
You can select the message type from the top.
The panel on the right displays some basic SEO stats. Variables and their code are available under the variable tab. The Improve with GPT-3 option. GPT or Generative Pre-trained Transformer is an AI model that has undergoes language training to copy human speech. It can help you to improve your copy.
Reply.io has multiple templates that you can choose from:
However, these options are only available for emails. The writing space for LinkedIn Connect or even regular messaging offers a single screen with no SEO predictions.
At any point, you can integrate Zapier and move some of the action offboard. The delay to be set here is “Wait for action from Zapier”.
One can also choose to add multiple messages across different platforms in a single step. However, you cannot do this for an existing stage. You will have to delete and create a new one where you select multiple options.
If you are working on a completely new template, then this is the screen you will see. From here on, you can keep adding steps as in the earlier template style.
The different types of tasks you can schedule are:
- Whatsapp message
- View Profile
Scheduling A Sequence
Once you have completed the steps for setting up a sequence, you can schedule the send-outs. By clicking on next, you will automatically be taken o step 2 which is scheduling. Schedule essentially refers to the timings during which your sequence will be active and emails sent out.
The default schedule set up is between Monday to Friday, the entire day.
However, you can choose to create your own schedule by clicking on the “Create a New Schedule” option. What appears is a screen with the days on the left axis and timings on the right axis.
By checking the checkboxes, you can make those days active, You can use the tiny arrow on the bottom right corner to expand or contract the timing bar. By pressing down on your mouse, you can shift the position of the hours. If you are not comfortable with this, you can use the “Plus” icon to the right to manually enter a range.
After this, you can add people to the sequence you want or skip this step for later. Finally, you will reach the General Settings Page as shown. Here, you can set up a cap on the total number of emails sent out per day, set up a delay between emails and enable or disable link tracking.
Moreover, there are other options regarding how Reply.io should manage the replies, calls and other tasks. Let’s take a look at call handling. Here, we have the option to make it manual or automatic or set up an email cap after which the person is to be called.
You can choose to terminate the sequence after a successful call. Similarly, for replies, you can choose to mark a prospect as completed and remove them from the list.
Setting Up Cloud Calls
One can specifically access the in-built cloud caller by paying an extra 20 USD per month. The call rates will have to be paid separately. For US and Canada only, Reply.io allows “hiring” a phone number for 1 USD per month.
The calls can be set up as manual or automatic.
Reply.io has an impressive calling screen where one can simultaneously take down notes for every prospect. The caller can also mark the caller as being a successful convert or as being an opt-out. They have the option to remove them from the sequence at that stage if needed. Calls can be recorded and shared between team members.
You can request the call function by going to Settings > Calls.
Here, we’re looking at the smaller features and functions Reply.io offers.
You can add contacts from a CSV file or perform manual entries under the “People” section. If you are importing from a CSV file, then first you need to upload the CSV file.
Once this is done, Reply will open a new dialogue box and ask you to map the attributes. To the left are the CSV file fields and to the right are Reply fields. If the names are different, you can use this box to send the right attributes to the right header.
Finally, you can select a list within which you want all the items to be imported or create a new list at this step. Reply has an option that allows you to check the new imports with existing contacts to skip any that already exists.
Another option is the “Detect Time Zone” option. This looks for whether the contact’s country or location information is available in the fields and uses this to save their timezone. If you later schedule a sequence that will send messages based on the time zone, Reply will use this information.
Once all this is done, you can click on import and finally Reply will show you a report of the contact skipped, updated or faced errors.
The Settings page allows you to blacklist certain domains and websites and access an API key.
The “Templates” section offers all the different in-built and team-added templates.
You can check out each template in detail by clicking on it. This opens a secondary panel on the right where the entire mail is displayed. You can open it in a temporary editor by clicking on the “Copy Text” option. The editor is the same one that opens when you are writing an email.
To the left, the selected email success rate is displayed, namely the opens and the replies it has garnered.
The Reports option is also present on the top of a frozen tab at all times. You can choose to check reports of emails, calls, tasks and team performances separately. The stats displayed include:
- Number of messages sent
- Delivery rate
- Open rate
- Reply rate
- Bounce rate
- Not reached
At the base, you will see a graph that shows the rates for each by the day.
The top tab also includes an integration feature. This opens up the options for all available native integrations. Reply has its own Chrome extension that opens up a panel on the right which allows you to look up contacts and email on LinkedIn, Salesforce and other software.
There is also a Gmail extension available called Name2Email. Name2Email helps you search out the email of your client by entering their name and domain.
Adding integrations is as easy as clicking on “Connect” and logging in to your new account.
ESPs often set up limits to the total number of emails sent out from an ID per day. While you can connect Reply with multiple email IDs, you can set a cap on the emails sent out and the delay between them. You can set this up while scheduling a sequence or do it separately from the settings tab.
All you need to do is go to Settings > Email Account > Click on chosen account > Safety Settings.
Outlook specifically imposes a limit of 30 emails per minute. Once the limit is set, it will override all sequences that the email is connected with.
Finally, let’s take a look at the pricing options offered by Reply. There are three different pricing stacks offers for individuals.
Each of these has a different emailing and sequence capacity but only allows one user.
For businesses, Reply offers three stacks. In all of these users get unlimited contacts and multiple users. Reply offers on-call support at all levels. In fact, they even call up new trial-version members.
Finally, there is the customized agency stack.
Overall, Reply is an extremely easy platform to use.
The sequence creation system is extremely fast.
One can easily set up limits and edit mails. Reply.io is slightly more expensive than other similar cold emailing platforms available. And accessing the cloud calling feature adds an extra 20 USD on top.
Live chat support is always available for even lower-tier packages during working hours.
The Chrome extensions make it very easy to use across platforms like LinkedIn. The email writing editor is also excellent with all variable codes clearly displayed. The SEO guides one away from the spammy text.
We’d highly recommend it, and hope you found this guide helpful!