Emails are effective and that’s the reason why they are still one of the most effective mediums to communicate with complete strangers in spite of social media dominance. Be warned, however, that not all emails are read. Even if prospects read your emails, they could be trashed, forgotten, or just avoided. How do you break into prospects’ inboxes without coming on too strong? How do you grab your customers’ attention using emails? How do you salute them? What should your copy look like when you send out an email? Here are a few tips to send out cold emails (unsolicited emails):

Solving the salutation conundrum 

More people are online than ever today. Yet, you may not be able to find all contact details for all your customers or clients online. Often, a single Google search should give you at least the name of your customers that you could use for salutation. Sometimes, you might not find the name at all.

If you can find the name of your customer online, start the salutation with the infallible “Dear Mr. Second Name” or a casual “Dear First Name”, depending on how you want to sound like.

For instances where you don’t find names to salute, use “Hi” and then go ahead with the rest of the email copy. It might sound corny, but it still works.

Making an impression

Remember that you are sending in cold emails so the onus is on you to make an impression. The best impression you can make comes with research, fact finding, and doing some “due diligence” or “homework” before sending out emails to prospects. Here are a few samples:

“Hi Mary,

I was reading one of your posts on http://whereveryoufoundthepost.com and I have to admit that the post shook me up. I can relate to your experience with “whatever it was that moved you so much that you took the effort to respond with an email”.  I had to ask you a few questions since “you’ve been there and done that”: 

  • What kind of support did you get before you ventured out on your own to do “whatever Mary did”?
  • What tools or processes would you recommend I use if I wanted to do the same?
  • If you had to do it differently, what would you suggest?

I look forward to hear from you.

P.S: By the way, I work as a marketing manager at X Inc, and I help small businesses find technology solutions to streamline small business marketing processes.


The P.S part is optional since you can also introduce yourself to Mary later on. The idea is to get into the inbox as someone who values the relationship, who takes time out to ask questions that mean well, and you are also someone who does “due diligence”.

That’s big impact emailing. Who are you going to find next?

Getting down to specifics

No one likes cookie-cutter emails with standard copy that’s been copy-pasted. Since you are breaking in cold, clients would like the full story the how, why, what, when, and where. So, start with a story.

  • Give them the whole picture. Explain how you found them: was it online? Did you get their email address from a trade show or a physical event? Did you send the email because one of the customer’s friends recommended that you send an email? Is your target customer a referral from other customers?
  • What the email is about? [No one has the time to read normal, expected emails let alone cold ones coming in from strangers. So make it a point to explain]
  • What should the target recipient (potential customers, in your case) do after reading the email? Where should they go next? What’s your call to action?
  • Is there a time limit to the action you specify or can the target customers take their own time to take action? [Specifying a time limit is a great idea since urgency can help trigger actions. Leave it to indefinite time limits and nothing ever gets done]

We hope that you can use these tips to get through and break into cold emails. If you can, it’s a great way to get new clients, start new relationships, and achieve whatever it is that you set out to do.

What’s your take on cold emails? Do you think you could break in using these tips? Please share your views with us.


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