Sending emails is not difficult, but sending cold emails is, especially if you’re aiming to turn a recipient into a keen responder. In this guide, we’ll explore the nuances of cold email campaigns that resonate, turning your email account into a bridge for genuine business connections.
Best tips for cold emailing in 2024
#1 Incorporate storytelling elements
Let’s face it, not many get excited about opening a cold email.
It’s like finding a flyer on your car windshield – you didn’t ask for it, and it’s often going to end up in the recycle bin. But what if that flyer had a little story on it? Something that made you smile, nod, or even think, ‘Hey, that’s about me!’ That’s the magic of storytelling in cold emails.
Start your email with a brief, captivating story that relates to your product or service. Do it to engage the reader’s imagination and emotions, and make your message more memorable. An AI story generator can assist in creating captivating narratives that hold your customers’ interests from beginning to end.
Example: Mention someone who faced the same challenges as your reader and found a happy ending with your product. That’s how you turn selling products into sharing journey. And who doesn’t love a good story?
#2 Use psychological triggers
Ever noticed how you’re more likely to grab that last piece of cake at a party just because it’s the last one? That’s the scarcity principle at work, and it’s not just about cake. In the world of marketing emails, playing a bit of hard to get can actually work wonders. It’s about creating a ‘now or never’ vibe with phrases like ‘limited time offer’ or ‘only a few spots left.’ It makes people think, ‘I better jump on this before it’s gone!’
Then there’s the principle of reciprocity. It’s like when someone gives you a surprise gift, and you can’t wait to return the favor. In your emails, give your readers something valuable – maybe a free e-book, a discount code, or an exclusive tip – without asking for anything in return. It’s like saying, ‘Hey, here’s a gift from us to you, no strings attached.’ People appreciate the gesture, and it subtly nudges them to engage more with your brand.
Example: Picture an email that says, ‘We’re giving our first 50 subscribers a special 20% discount – just our way of saying thanks!’ It’s a double whammy of scarcity and reciprocity, making your readers feel special and a bit eager to grab the opportunity.
#3 Employ the Zeigarnik effect
Ever started watching a TV show and just couldn’t stop? That’s the Zeigarnik Effect in action – we remember things better if they’re unfinished. Now, imagine using this trick in your cold emails. Instead of rambling on and giving away everything upfront, why not leave a cliffhanger?
Start with a compelling subject line that hints at an intriguing story or a solution to a specific pain point. In the body of your email, begin narrating a story or presenting an idea related to your target audience’s needs. But here’s the kicker: don’t finish it. Instead, propose a brief call or a follow-up email to ‘reveal the ending.’
Example: Say your email starts with, ‘We found a unique strategy that boosted our client’s search engine rankings by 300%…’ and then, right before you spill the beans, you add, ‘I’d love to share more about this on a quick call. How about next Tuesday?’
This approach not only hooks your prospect’s attention but also creates a natural segue for follow-ups. It’s a refreshing change from the same old cold email template, and it keeps your target audience eager to learn more. Plus, it’s a great way to avoid the dreaded spam folders and make your cold outreach emails stand out.
#4 Leverage unusual formatting
In the world of cold emailing, standing out is half the battle. Your target audience is bombarded with generic messages daily, so why not shake things up a bit? Experimenting with unconventional formats can be a game-changer. Think beyond the standard cold email template and get creative.
How about starting your email with a short, catchy poem addressing your prospect’s main pain point? It’s unexpected, memorable, and can break the ice in a delightful way. Or consider crafting a mini-script, like a dialogue between two characters discussing a problem that your service solves. This not only entertains but also illustrates your value proposition in a narrative form.
Interactive elements can also add a spark to your cold email outreach. Imagine embedding a simple, interactive quiz or a clickable puzzle related to your service. It engages your recipient on a personal level, making your cold outreach more of a two-way conversation than a one-sided pitch.
Example: Your email could start with, ‘Roses are red, violets are blue, inefficiency stinks, and we have the solution for you.’ Follow this with a brief, playful script or an interactive element that leads to your call to action.
#5 Incorporate multimedia elements
Let’s be honest, most cold emails get about as much attention as a flyer handed out on a busy street. But what if your cold email was more like a personal invitation to an exclusive event? That’s where multimedia elements come in. Adding an engaging video or an interactive infographic can transform your cold email from a forgettable text into an engaging experience.
Start with a catchy subject line that hints at the multimedia content, like ‘Watch How We Solved a Major Pain Point!’ This piques curiosity right away. In the body of your email, embed a short, compelling video that addresses a specific pain point or showcases a success story. Videos are great for building a connection – they’re like a face-to-face conversation in a digital format.
Interactive infographics are another powerful tool. They’re not just visually appealing; they invite your potential client to engage with the content. Imagine an infographic that lets the viewer click through different statistics about how your service has helped others in their industry.
Example: Your email could include a video testimonial from a satisfied customer, followed by an interactive infographic showing the results they achieved. End with a clear call to action, inviting the recipient to learn more or schedule a follow-up.
#6 Use hypothetical scenarios
Pose a thought-provoking, hypothetical situation related to your service or product. This can stimulate the reader’s imagination and help them envision the value of what you’re offering.
Using hypothetical scenarios in your cold email campaigns can be a powerful way to engage your recipients and help them see the value of your product or service. Here’s a strategy to incorporate this technique effectively:
Imagine opening a cold email and instead of the usual ‘I’m writing to tell you about…’ you find a scenario that instantly grabs your attention. This is the power of using hypothetical scenarios in your cold emails. It’s about painting a picture in the reader’s mind, one where they can clearly see the benefits of what you’re offering.
Start with a subject line that teases the scenario, something like ‘What if you could double your leads overnight?’ This kind of catchy subject line sparks curiosity right from the get-go. In the email body, craft a scenario that addresses a specific pain point your target audience faces.
For instance, ‘Imagine it’s Monday morning, and your email account is flooded with twice as many qualified leads as usual, all thanks to our new email marketing tool.’
This highlights the potential benefits of your product or service but also engages the reader’s imagination, making your message more memorable. It’s a refreshing change from the rambling cold emails that often fill up inboxes.
Example: ‘Picture this: Your sales team uses our cold email software, and the response rates skyrocket. Gone are the days of sending follow-ups into the void. Now, each follow-up is part of a strategic email sequence, designed to resonate with your target prospects.’
End with a clear call to action (CTA), inviting the reader to explore how they can turn this hypothetical scenario into reality. This could be a prompt to schedule a brief call, request more information, or even check out a demo.
#7 Apply the principle of exclusivity
Make the recipient feel like they are part of a select group. This could be through offering them a first look at a new product or an invitation to an exclusive event.
Applying the principle of exclusivity in your cold email campaigns can significantly enhance their effectiveness by making recipients feel special and valued.
When writing cold emails, imagine you’re not just sending out another piece of digital communication, but rather an exclusive invitation. The principle of exclusivity is about making each recipient feel like they’re being let in on a secret or given a VIP pass. This approach can transform your cold email from just another message in their inbox to a golden ticket.
Start with a subject line that creates a sense of exclusivity, such as ‘An Exclusive Offer for [Company Name]’ or ‘You’re Invited to a Select Group.’ This immediately sets your email apart and piques interest.
In the email body, emphasize that the offer or information you’re presenting is not just a generic message, but something specially tailored for them or a select few.
For instance, you could write, ‘We’re reaching out to a handpicked group of industry leaders, and [Prospect’s Company] is on our list.’ This not only flatters the recipient but also provides social proof, enhancing the perceived value of your offer when you write cold emails.
Example: ‘As a valued leader in [industry], we want to give you a first look at our latest [product/service]. Your insights would be invaluable, and we’re excited to offer you this sneak peek before it goes public.’
End with a call to action that reinforces this exclusivity, like an invitation to an early access program or a one-to-one demo session. Remember, the goal is to make the recipient feel that responding to your email gives them an advantage, something they won’t want to miss.
#8 Integrate cross-channel references
This strategy involves weaving in mentions of content or discussions from other channels, like a social media post or a blog article, that your recipient might find intriguing. It’s a subtle yet effective way to demonstrate your active presence across multiple channels and to create a more dynamic and interconnected communication experience.
Imagine your cold email as a bridge connecting the recipient not just to your message, but to a broader conversation happening in their industry. Start your email with a reference that resonates with their interests or recent activities.
For example, ‘I noticed your insightful comment on our latest LinkedIn post about [topic],’ or ‘Your tweet about [subject] perfectly aligns with our recent blog post.’
In the body of your email, delve deeper into how this connection is relevant to them. Highlight how your product or service ties into the ideas or challenges they’ve expressed on these platforms.
For instance, ‘Your thoughts on [topic] on Twitter sparked a discussion in our team. It aligns closely with what we’ve been working on, and I believe you’ll find our upcoming [product/service] particularly relevant.’
This approach not only shows that you’re paying attention to their digital footprint but also positions your message within a larger context, making it more meaningful and engaging. It’s not just about your product or service; it’s about contributing to a conversation they are already a part of.
Conclude with a call to action that invites them to continue this cross-channel dialogue. Suggest a follow-up where you can delve deeper into the discussion or offer them exclusive access to content that complements the conversation.
For example, ‘I’d love to share more insights on this topic with you. Let’s schedule a call, or perhaps you’d be interested in our upcoming webinar that expands on this very subject.’
By integrating cross-channel references, your cold email becomes more than just a standalone message; it becomes a key part of a larger, ongoing conversation, making your recipient feel more engaged and connected.
#9 Personalize with unusual data points
Elevating personalization in your cold emails involves going beyond the basic use of the recipient’s name. It’s about showcasing your attention to detail by referencing unique and specific data points about them or their company. This approach demonstrates that you’ve invested time in understanding their unique situation, setting your message apart from the standard, formulaic communications.
Begin your email with a striking piece of information that shows you’ve done more than just a cursory glance at their profile.
For example, ‘I was impressed by your company’s innovative approach to [specific project or achievement],’ or ‘Your recent interview in [publication] provided some fascinating insights into [topic].’
In the body of the email, tie this unique data point back to how your product or service can address a specific need or interest they have.
For instance, ‘Given your company’s focus on [specific area], our [product/service] seems perfectly aligned to help you [achieve a specific goal or solve a problem].’
This level of personalization makes the recipient feel seen and understood on a deeper level. It’s not just about acknowledging their presence; it’s about recognizing their achievements, challenges, and aspirations. This can significantly increase the relevance of your message and the likelihood of engagement.
Conclude with a call to action that feels equally personalized. Instead of a generic invitation, tailor it to reflect the unique aspect you’ve highlighted.
For example, ‘I’d love to discuss how we can contribute to the innovative work you’re doing in [specific area]. Would [date/time] work for a brief call?’
#10 End with an open-ended question
Concluding your cold emails with an open-ended question is a strategic move that can shift the dynamic from a one-sided pitch to a two-way conversation. This approach is particularly effective in avoiding the pitfalls of rambling cold emails that fail to engage. It’s about inviting a response, sparking curiosity, and initiating a dialogue, rather than aggressively pushing for a sale.
Craft your email to build towards this question naturally. Avoid the common trap of cold emails that sound like a cold call in written form. Instead, focus on creating a personalized message that addresses the recipient’s specific pain points or interests, as mentioned earlier in your email. This sets the stage for a question that feels relevant and thoughtful.
In your email signature, include social media links and other contact information, reinforcing the idea that you’re open to communication on various platforms. This not only adds a professional touch to your email but also provides the recipient with different ways to engage with you.
As you approach the end of your email, steer clear of automated follow-ups or generic email sequences. Instead, pose a question that relates directly to something specific you’ve discussed in the email.
For example, ‘In your experience, what’s been the most challenging aspect of [specific pain point or business strategy]?’ or ‘How does your team currently handle [a specific process or issue] in your sales process?’
This kind of open-ended question does more than just solicit a response; it invites the recipient to share their insights and experiences, making them feel valued and understood. It’s a departure from the same email template used by every sales rep, offering a more one-to-one email experience.
#11 Craft a compelling email subject line for cold email campaigns
The power of a successful cold email campaign often hinges on the first thing the recipient sees: the email subject line. A well-crafted subject line is the gateway to ensuring your email gets opened and read. It’s a critical element in a good cold email strategy, distinguishing your message from the plethora of unsolicited emails flooding inboxes daily.
Start by avoiding subject lines that sound like a generic sales pitch or cold calling script. You can use generative AI to help you with sample ideas. The goal is to capture interest without sounding like every other cold email.
Phrases like ‘rambling cold emails suck’ or ‘cold emails fail’ can be turned into intriguing subject lines that stand out, such as ‘Tired of Rambling Emails? Ours Gets to the Point’ or ‘Where Most Cold Emails Fail, We Succeed.’
Your subject line should resonate with the right person – the intended recipient. It’s not just about sending the same message to the same group; it’s about crafting a subject line that speaks directly to the recipient’s needs or interests.
For instance, ‘Unlocking Potential: A Tailored Strategy for [Recipient’s Company]’ or ‘Your Insights Needed: Exclusive Opportunity.’
Incorporating a good subject line into your email campaign can significantly increase the chances of a positive response. It’s the first step in ensuring your follow-up emails and automated follow-ups are relevant and welcomed, rather than ignored.
Remember to keep your subject lines concise yet impactful. They should give a hint of what’s to come in the email, enticing the recipient to read further. This is where your creativity in sending cold emails can truly shine. Use tools like Google Sheets to track the performance of different subject lines, refining your approach based on what resonates most with potential customers.
Key takeaways on cold email tips
- Personalize your own cold emails with unique data points to demonstrate genuine interest and research.
- Replace traditional cold calls with thought-provoking, open-ended questions in emails to encourage dialogue.
- Use a professional email signature in all correspondence to enhance credibility and provide easy contact access.
- Automate follow-ups strategically, ensuring they are timely and relevant to the recipient’s interests and responses.
- Develop a follow-up sequence that feels personalized rather than generic, fostering ongoing engagement.
- Craft relevant emails that resonate with the recipient’s current challenges and interests, avoiding one-size-fits-all content.
- Customize email templates to maintain consistency and professionalism, while allowing room for personalization in each message.
Conclusion on cold email tips
Mastering cold email communication involves a blend of personalization, strategic follow-ups, and engaging content. By focusing on relevance and genuine connection, your cold emails can transform from mere outreach into valuable conversations.
FAQ on sending cold emails
How do you successfully cold email?
To succeed in cold emailing, personalize each email to address the recipient’s specific pain points. Use a clear, concise subject line and provide social proof to build credibility. Include a call to action (CTA) for a brief call or follow-up, and always use a professional email signature for authenticity.
How do you write a catchy cold email?
Writing a catchy cold email involves crafting a compelling subject line that piques interest. Focus on the recipient’s needs, highlighting how your solution addresses their pain points. Keep the content concise and include a clear CTA. Use an engaging tone and provide social proof to enhance credibility.
Is cold emailing illegal?
Cold emailing is not illegal, but it must comply with email marketing regulations like the CAN-SPAM Act. This includes providing a clear way to unsubscribe and avoiding misleading information. Ensure your cold email campaigns respect these guidelines to maintain legality and professionalism.
Is it OK to cold email?
Yes, it’s okay to cold email as part of a business strategy, provided you adhere to email marketing laws and best practices. Ensure your emails are targeted, relevant, and offer value to the recipient. Respect their response (or lack thereof) and include an easy opt-out option.
What not to say in a cold email?
In a cold email, avoid overly salesy language, making false promises, or being too informal. Don’t address irrelevant pain points or use a generic, impersonal approach. Rambling cold emails with no clear purpose or CTA should also be avoided.
How long should a cold email be?
A cold email should be concise, ideally between 50 to 150 words. It needs to be long enough to convey your message and value proposition clearly but brief enough to maintain the recipient’s interest. Focus on clarity and brevity to improve response rates.
How do I cold email a startup?
When cold emailing a startup, tailor your message to their unique challenges and goals. Mention your understanding of the startup ecosystem and how your service or product can specifically aid their growth. Use a direct, enthusiastic tone and propose a brief call or meeting to discuss further. Include your company name and a professional email signature for credibility.