When conducting an outreach campaign, there are a huge array of factors that can determine your success or not. It is a carefully planned and balanced task. If one element does not meet the necessary standards then it is just a waste of time.
One part of the puzzle is getting your value proposition in front of the right person. It is imperative that you find the correct email address to contact. Outreach is a delicate balance and getting the wrong email address can make or break the success of your campaign.
Luckily, there are quite a few tools available which can dramatically improve your chances of attaining the right email address.
There are a few tools available to us, I have been through most of them, I won’t list them all here. Instead, I will go through my process step by step as this usually provides the best results in the shortest time-frame.
I am a big fan of Email Hunter. It is a browser extension that scans a website looking for any mention of an email address. While this is at work, you can do yourself as this plugin saves you the time and effort that you can input into sending more outreach emails. Highly recommended.
My first port of call is always Voila Norbert. This is a great first step and they also have a handy browser plugin that is worthwhile downloading.
Just signup for an account, the free version as a limited amount of free credits so it is worth testing out before you commit to a paid version. Input the person’s name and the websites root URL and click the big green button.
Voilanorbert.com has a pretty good success rate, but if it does not find what you are looking for or you want a completely free option, try one of the methods below.
Distilled’s Email Permutator & MailTester
One of the most valuable weapons in my arsenal is the Google Doc created by Distilled. Just follow this link, and save yourself a copy. This is a brilliantly simple but effective tool. If you know the name of the contact and their domain, the Google Doc will give you a whole host of different variations that the email could be.
Just out of experience, the most common variations are:
Once you have saved a copy for yourself, enter the name of the person you are targeting. Keep this Google Doc open as we will use it in conjunction MailTester.
The reason why this method is lower down on my list is that it can be labour intensive and time-consuming. As you can see from the Google Doc, there are a lot of email variations that you need to check.
Head over to MailTester, please ignore the 90’s website, I have found this to be the most reliable mail testing tool available to us at the moment.
Start copying and pasting the email variations into the Mail Tester search box and the tool will check to see if the email address is valid. If everything turns green, we can have a winner.
If the email address does not exist on the server, MailTester.com will return a red error message.
Some servers do refuse a mailbox check, as you can see in the below image with the email address name being highlighted in yellow. If you find yourself in this positions, the mail tester method will not work for you.
Advanced Twitter Search
People sometimes give out their email on Twitter. However, they will often try to mask it by messing with the format, for example:
adam (at) adamvowles (dot) co.uk
Head over to Twitters Advanced Search. Enter in ‘(at) (dot)’ into the ‘All these words box and enter the targets Twitter handle into the ‘From these accounts’ section.
If they have given out their username on Twitter it should be yours now.