What is the Three Baskets Method in short?

PROBLEM: We don’t know the best email leading to guesswork when sending cold emails. However, with account-based sales, we maintain regular touchpoints throughout the year, and we can try ALL THE email ideas, not just rely on single guesses. With cold email sequences, we engage with different types of personalities and tap into various emotions that encourage prospects to book more meetings. We split all the possible emotions into three baskets: hopes, fears, and familiar struggles.

According to HubSpot’s 2024 State of Sales Report, 28 percent of businesses want to target new markets for the year. Companies can achieve this through various activities like multichannel outreach activities.

Have you ever wondered why a particular email message resonates with one person while falling flat with another? The answer lies in the complex tapestry of human psychology and the role emotions play in our decision-making process. Each individual brings a unique set of beliefs, fears, desires, and motivations to the table, which directly influence their response to marketing messages.

Buyer Types

Consider the contrasting behaviors of impulse buyers and risk-averse individuals. Impulse buyers may be more responsive to messages that evoke excitement, curiosity, or the fear of missing out (FOMO). On the other hand, risk-averse individuals may require a more analytical and logical approach, with a focus on addressing potential risks and providing concrete evidence.

Quick-Decision Shopper

Picture someone riding a bike home from work who suddenly wants to buy a car. Without wasting time, this person turns their bike around and goes to the nearest car dealership. At the dealership, the first car they see catches their eye, mainly because of its appealing color.

Caught up in the thrill and joy of the moment, they decide to buy the car on the spot. They stay satisfied with their purchase for the rest of their life.

Detail-Oriented Shopper

On the other hand, think about a person who likes to think things through. This person spends several months researching cars. They fill out many comparison charts, go on a lot of test drives, and ask friends and others who own similar cars for their opinions. Even after buying the car, they might still wonder each day if they chose the best one, constantly looking for signs that they made the right choice.

These two examples illustrate the contrasting approaches that buyers can take when purchasing a used car. While the impulse buyer relies heavily on intuition and the immediate emotional connection with a particular vehicle, the analytical buyer engages in thorough research and analysis to ensure the utmost confidence in their decision.

Understanding these different mindsets is crucial for sales professionals. By tailoring the messaging and approach, you can effectively engage and resonate with individuals across the buyer spectrum, appealing to both the impulsive and analytical sides of their target audience.

Three Baskets Method: Connecting With Buyers Across the Emotional Spectrum

There are thousands of variations of emotions, personality types, and sales formulas that we can explore and combine, but to keep things straightforward, let’s categorize them into three distinct baskets. This process is called the three baskets method where you categorise different people into segments.

Basket 1

With this approach, you emphasize the advantages and rewarding outcomes that your recipients can experience from your service. A straightforward promise remains a classic and effective method, particularly if your solution offers a genuine advantage.

Example headlines for cold emails in this category could be:

  • Seeking [Metric/Performance] Boost?
  • Save [XYZ Amount] on [Business Cost]

Basket 2

Addressing fears in cold emails is highly effective because it taps into recipients’ emotions, captures their attention, and motivates them to take action to alleviate their concerns. Example headlines in this category could be:

  • Avoid [Negative Outcome] by Exploring [Your Solution]!
  • Prevent [Harm/Negative Consequence] and Safeguard Your [Interest/Goal]

Basket 3

By showing understanding and offering support, you’ll build a strong connection with your audience. The key here is to accurately describe the reader’s life and struggles. Email headlines for this category could be:

  • Still Struggling with [Specific Challenge]?
  • Is [Problem] Affecting Your [Aspect of Life]?

A regular mobile screen can only display around five to eight words in a subject line, which is why we encourage using shorter, snappy headlines.

How to Know Which Basket to Use?

You can know which basket to use by analysing the prospect and finding out which category they belong to. Keep in mind these two points when using the three baskets method:

  • Different personality types react differently to various messages.
  • Within one person’s mind, there are various emotional triggers we can tap into, with the magnitude of the response varying. However, we should aim to explore and utilize all available buttons.

In account-based sales, our goal is to build relationships with prospects by reaching out multiple times per year. By using cold email sequences, we have the opportunity to include all the good stuff. Here are two examples:

  1. We can mix all three baskets within one sequence.
  2. Alternatively, we can build an entire campaign focused on one basket and switch it up for the next time.

Building an entire sequence on one emotional angle is a riskier and more advanced method, so we recommend starting by mixing up all the baskets. You can also use cold email follow-ups to keep a steady open communication with clients. This allows for greater flexibility and effectiveness in engaging with your prospects.