If you’re starting out as a copywriter, cold emails can be a way to sign up new clients.
But it can also be more than a little frustrating.
Because let’s face it, most of us don’t want to be bothered with unsolicited emails.
Most go unanswered.
However… done right, they can work.
Here’s what you need to know…
A few months ago, I landed my biggest client ever (multi-multi million $) with a cold email.
I sent this particular one to the president of the company.
I went right to the top for a few reasons:
- I had nothing to lose. All he could say was no. Or nothing.
- Marketing departments are usually too busy to read cold emails, let alone respond to them. And they may be threatened by an outsider like me.
- If the president liked what I had to say, he’d hand my email down to someone in marketing. And they wouldn’t be able to ignore it then… which is exactly what happened.
While I can’t reveal any specific details of the company, here’s what I did and why it worked…
1. I USED AND WAS FAMILIAR WITH THE PRODUCT
I loved the product and the overall fun vibe of the company. I knew what they produced. I subscribed and read their emails and…
2. I FOUND A GAP IN THEIR MESSAGING
When I went to the company website, the messaging was not in line with their product. It was bland compared to the copy on the product packaging. Ah ha! So then…
3. I DID MY RESEARCH
I found out the company was growing at a phenomenal rate. Like crazy pants. So I thought they may be open to my help. I had stats on the company and read news stories about them. I probably knew more about them than most of the employees.
4. I KEPT THE TONE CONVERSATIONAL – AND USED HUMOR
I opened with a real-life situation involving their product. I wove in stats about the company, including a few that required some digging. It was clear I knew a lot about them.
5. I ASKED FOR A MEETING
To be honest, I didn’t expect much. I had fun writing the email and knew it was good.
I held my breath and hit send.
The president of the company didn’t respond at first, not surprisingly. But after one follow-up, he wrote back.
He wanted to meet with me and his marketing director!
We set up a meeting with his team.
Bottom line: I now write some of their promotional emails.
In a nutshell, take time to do it right and you CAN make cold emails work for you. At the very least, use them as another arrow in your quiver amongst the other tactics (re: networking).
At worst, they won’t respond at all. Or they’ll respond with a no-thanks, but “we’ll keep you in mind.” That’s also happened.
To review, here’s how to increase your chances of landing a cold pitch:
- Be familiar with the product or service. If it’s a service, sign up and go through their funnel. Create a swipe file of all the emails you get.
- Find a gap you can fill. Make a suggestion – without being insulting, obviously. “Hey, this looks great but I noticed X…” Then offer to help them with that.
- Research the company. Throw a few stats into the pitch so they know you looked into them
- Keep the tone conversational. Write as if you were talking to a friend, telling them about something cool.
- Ask for a meeting or if they’d like more info.
- Lastly, follow up at least once. Maybe twice, but not more than that. If they were interested they’d say so at that point.
If you’re sending cold pitches without luck, try this approach and see what happens.
How’s your cold pitch game? Will you try these tips with your next one?
Other posts you may enjoy:
3 (more) Myth-Busting Email Marketing Beliefs
3 Ways to Create a Compelling Opening Hook
How to Write Emails that Engage Like Gangbusters
Let me know in the comments below… and please share this with friends who may be interested in learning about copywriting.
P.S. I’m still available for free mini copy reviews! Send your URL and a sentence or two about your business goals to me at email@example.com and I’ll send you a quick video critique.