Sahil Bloom

Sahil Bloom

15-10-2022

12:29

One cold email can completely change your life. Here’s how to write a great one:

I’ve sent and received a lot of cold emails. What I've learned: Cold email conversion is never an accident. The features of a great cold email: • Hits the Inbox • Short & Sweet • Personalized • Social Proof • Create Value • Clear CTA In this thread, I'll cover each:

Hits the Inbox The first step: Your email has to hit the person's inbox. If you don't know their email, that's the first hurdle to jump. Start by doing some digging on Twitter, LinkedIn, the company website, and Google to see if you can surface a working email address.

If you can't find it, make an educated guess. A few to try: [first name] @ [company] . com [first initial] [last name] @ [company] . com [first name] . [last name] @ [company] . com [last name] @ [company] . com The data shows those cover >80% of emails—I like those odds!

You also need the person to open the email. With subject lines, go direct or go creative. A few ideas: [Credentials] looking for perspectives on [goal] [Mutual] said we should connect! Seeking your advice on [goal] There's no perfect subject line. Experiment broadly.

Short & Sweet If you're sending a cold email, remember that the person receiving it probably gets a ton of these. They don't have time—or energy—to read through long, wordy notes. Keep it short and sweet. Use hard enters to space out text to make it more optically inviting.

Personalized No one likes a generic email—it'll get auto-deleted 99% of the time. When sending a cold email, the personal touches can make all the difference. Your goal is to make it clear that you didn't send out hundreds of the same note!

A few ideas for personalization: (1) Reference a book that you've heard them talk about in the past. (2) Mention a podcast they were on and something you specifically learned from it. (3) Highlight an article you read about them in. Any of these will make your note stand out.

Social Proof Infuse your credentials or some form of social proof—i.e. reasons the person should take you seriously. Don't be humble here. What have you done or created that is interesting or notable? Who has engaged? Show them they would be crazy to ignore your email.

Create Value The foundational rule: Create value, receive value. If you create value for the person you’re emailing, they are much more likely to engage. What can you do to save them time or reduce their stress? It can be small—a little goes a long way.

A few ideas for creating value: (1) If you're pitching a service, create a mock-up of what you'd do for the person and include a screenshot in the email. (2) If you're trying to get an interview, include a doc breaking down your first 100 days in the role. Get creative.

Clear CTA Every successful cold email has a very clear call-to-action. It has to be specific and succinct. Use hard enters to make sure it stands alone in the body. Consider bolding it. It should be effortless to find and understand the ask. Be bold, but don't overreach.

Now that we’ve covered the key features, let's look at a few examples of successful cold emails. I'll deconstruct why they worked (using the key features we just covered):

Email from @david_perell to @tylercowen ✅ Personalized ✅ Social Proof ✅ Clear CTA Amazing email—that led to some amazing things. The personal touches at the beginning show clear effort. Tons of social proof (Neil deGrasse Tyson, Seth Godin). Clear CTA and plan of attack.

Email to Evan Spiegel ✅ Short & Sweet ✅ Social Proof ✅ Clear CTA Brilliant example of effective brevity. Any high school junior who has done this much and is bold enough to make this ask deserves to be taken seriously.

Email to @gaganbiyani ✅ Personalized ✅ Create Value This was a candidate looking for a role at Maven. He created a landing page sketching out his perspectives on their current design. Gagan tweeted it and it ultimately led to the designer landing a job at @mercury.

Cold emails changed my life—they can change yours too. The key features: • Hits the Inbox • Short & Sweet • Personalized • Social Proof • Create Value • Clear CTA I guarantee these will improve the conversion of your efforts. Follow me @SahilBloom for more like this!

If there’s enough interest, I’ll plan to write a deeper Cold Email Guide (with some templates and ideas) in an upcoming newsletter. If you’re interested, let me know with a RT/reply and join 125K+ others below to receive it.

If you’ve had a great cold email or outreach success story, I’d love to hear it! Please share. The number of successful people who had their first break as the result of a cold outreach consistently blows me away. Inspiring!



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