Cold email templates to slide into someone's inbox

Nobody is replying to me! It's probably because your cold emails sound like sales pitches even if they're framed in terms of benefits. Here are fresh approaches to show what your product can do for them.

Written by: Sapphire Li, BA

Communications specialist, 8+ years writing and copywriting for companies
Don't mind me, just sliding into your inbox
Table of contents

Template: share interesting info from using your product or service

Subject: These influencers already follow North Star
Hey {First name},
Great engagement on your recent influencer collabs!1 I ran your audience through our system and found a few other influencers who follow you or left a comment:2
・@username - 23,589 followers, 5.7% engagement
・@username - 9568 followers, 3.8% engagement
・@username - 10,567 followers, 5.2% engagement
I find campaigns with influencers who are already familiar with your product work really well.3
Can we jump on a quick 10-min chat so I can show you how I did this?4
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1.   Mention something recent they did related to your product or service to open the conversation.

2.   Share something valuable for them from using your product or service.

3.   Explain briefly why it's interesting or valuable. They probably already know so no need for a lot of detail, this is just to make it an instant aha.

4.   Ask for a quick call with the allure they'll learn something interesting.

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Template: reach out to companies who use a product that's complimentary to yours

You can find companies that use complimentary products with BuiltWith, which shows what tech stack websites use. You can also find these companies on product review sites like Capterra and G2.

For example, if your product is an email address finder and verifier, it may be interesting to a company that uses prospecting software.

Subject: How I found your email address
Hey {First name},
I saw that you use Outreach for prospecting.1
You might find Hunter useful as well. It shows you the email format a company uses so you can easily figure out someone's email address. You can verify it as well to make sure it's correct.2
In fact, this is how I was able to reach out to you 🙂3
Hunter find email address
Whose email are you Sherlock Holmes-ing? Let us do the work for you (50 free searches every month):
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1.   Mention that you saw they use a product that's complimentary to yours, to open the conversation with the reason why you connected with them.

2.   Explain in a non-salesy way what they would get out of using your product.

3.   Show how your product works in a screenshot.

4.   After piquing their curiosity, simply ask them to give your product a try.

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Template: show how your product works

Subject: How I sent you this email
Hey {First name},
I saw that you do a lot of cold email outreach.1
Wondering, are you piggybacking on Google's high deliverability? I find this makes it much more likely your email will land in someone's primary inbox.2
You can do this with GMass.3
It pulls the info from a spreadsheet and sends the emails from your Google account.4
This is what I used to send you this email 🙂
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1.   Say why you're reaching out to them to open the conversation.

2.   Ask if they're doing something your product helps with and explain the biggest benefit this offers.

3.   Mention this is what your product does and simply link to it. The goal is to pique their curiosity to check it out without a sales pitch turning them off.

4.   Explain very briefly how your product works.

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Template: reach out to users who were negatively affected by changes in a competitor's product

Subject: Alvo just acquired Trellis, what this means for you
Hey {First name},
As you may have heard, Alvo acquired Trellis,1 which might affect the direction of the product.2 Just wanted to share another option with you.
Swell has everything you're used to such as:
・Toggle between views for each project: board, list, calendar or timeline
・Flexible inline formatting options such as headers, inserted images and doc previews
Plus these features to make it easier for your team:
・Native iOS and Android apps with real-time data sync
・Slack integration with customizable reminders such as overdue tasks assigned to others
If this sounds interesting, here's a demo account with projects and tasks you can play around with:
Let me know what you think.
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1.   Simply share the news that a product they use got acquired by another company and link to it, so they can read more about it if they haven't heard or want to learn more.

2.   Mention in soft terms why this might be a cause for concern, so you don't seem like you're catastrophizing to pitch your product.

3.   Mention a few key features of your competitor that your product also has to show what they're used to would be there if they switch.

4.   List a few useful features your product has that your competitors don't to show them the advantage of switching.

5.   It would be ideal if you can link to a demo account so they can see instantly what they can do with your product, or if one isn't available, a short demo video.

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Template: reach out to a potential customer by asking them for feedback

You can put your product in front of a potential customer by asking for feedback from someone who you think would get a lot of value out of it.

Subject: Your brutally honest feedback?
Hey {First name},
I've been a subscriber for ages, congrats on growing such a dedicated audience.1
So...I built an email marketing platform. I know, "do we really need another one?!" But having worked with emails day in, day out, I added some useful features nobody else has.2

・ Ability to change the links after the email is sent.
・ Universal snippets you can add to emails to change this content (like footers) in all triggered emails at once.
・ See the pages the links in each email go to in preview windows on one page, to easily check if they're correct.
Can we hop on a call so I can show you for some brutally honest feedback?4
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1.   Lead with how you know them to open up the conversation and something they did related to your product to set up talking about it.

2.   Mention what makes it interesting or different. Be careful to not make it sound like a sales pitch, this is just to show them why it would be cool to give your product a try.

3.   List a few interesting features your product has.

4.   Simply ask them if you can show it to them for some feedback. The wording brutally honest feedback is important here, because people tend to be more willing to share their opinions knowing you're truly open to it, positive or negative.

Like this approach? Here's another example of an ask for feedback email from Marketing Examples.

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This is how Ilya, the CEO of Datanyze, cold emailed Ben Sardella when he built Datanyze. Ilya asked Ben for feedback and Ben not only became Datanyze's first customer, he later joined as a co-founder.

Looking for advice
Kyle from GrowthBadger's link building emailIlya  <[email protected]>
to Ben

Hey Ben,

I'm a first time entrepreneur and I just started to build my product. I'm looking for experts in this space and several of my friends pointed in your direction. So I was hoping you could give me your feedback before I spent too much time building something that nobody wants :)

Here's my idea I have a crawler that crawls millions of websites daily and can see who started a free trial with Mixpanel Instantly. Do you think Information like that would be valuable for somebody like KISSmetrics or I just wasting my time here?

Thanks in advance!
- ilya

Does cold email still work?

Short answer: mostly no.

Long answer: mostly no?
But you're sharing cold email templates!

The truth is, most cold emails don't really work. They're often ignored or worse, they can make you look bad for sending spammy emails.

This is because the prevailing advice about cold email, talking about your benefits, doesn't really work.

First, it's because many people describe the benefits of their product, service or offer like this:
·  synergetic partnership opportunity
·  more effective content mix
·  send you a no-obligation report

Even if they're talking about benefits, they still sound like a typical corporate pitch.

Second, most people are not taking the time to personalize the cold email beyond the name and company to show what their product or service can do for a prospect's specific business goals or needs.

Let's take 'more effective content mix' for example.
Showing what this AI software could do for Art of Say could be sharing a few great template ideas they generated based on our existing ones.

Sharing a few personalized ideas or examples to show prospects exactly how they can use your product or service for their business is key to breaking through their skepticism and getting a reply. If your email hasn't set up an immediate aha and prospects have to think a bit and imagine the possibilities from your generic benefits, they won't, they'll just move on.

Yes, personalizing ideas for each prospect is a lot more work. This is why we recommend using cold emails for high lifetime value prospects, such as enterprise customers, investors, long-term clients and more so the return on investment is worth it.

For lower lifetime value prospects, you can consider targeted ads, newsletter placements, influencer collabs and more to reach the right audience. These options might seem more expensive than cold emailing, which is why cold email is so appealing, but there's no point in sending tons of minimally personalized cold emails to have few responses and poor results.

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