How to write cold emails that get Results

Should you be reading this article? No matter what the answer to that question is, I know you’re reading anyway. Why? Because I piqued your interest and convinced you to keep your eyeballs on what I’ve written. That’s what you need to do to write a great marketing email – generate interest and convince the reader.

You don’t owe me your time. I have to put an effort to earn it. That’s what cold marketing emails are all about. Before we go into what you should be doing, let’s find out what you shouldn’t be doing.


The whole purpose of sending a cold email is to get your prospect to consider your requests. For the appeal to work, your message has to be persuasive, yet compact.                                                                                                                                                                                                                  The most common mistakes people make while drafting a cold email are-

The Message is Too Lengthy

Time is a precious commodity for each person. Messages which do not get to the point immediately have extremely high chances of not being read.

No Personalization

Adestra’s 2016 State of Digital Personalization report credited a 75% greater email click-through rate to email personalization. However, some people still don’t personalize their messages, putting them behind the curve of what is possible with current cold emailing technology.

Over Personalization

Inserting merge fields in your email is not a replacement for understanding the personalized and individual needs of your prospects. Personalize wisely and moderately. Concentrate more on the requirements of your clients than on inserting unnecessary merge fields.

Asking Too Much In the First Message

Multiple calls-to-action (CTA), pictures, or links to suggested resources, divert prospects and delay, or even prevent them from responding. Your first ask should always be simple and of as low friction possible.


Writing a successful cold email does not have to be complicated. By outlining your ideas and deciding upon a proven template, you can simplify the process, and improve your results.

We will cover templates in a bit, but to have the ability to decide on the perfect one, there are a couple of important pieces of information you might want to keep in mind.


It is highly unwise to ask for sales in your first email itself; you’re there for the long haul, and need to set a strong foundation for a future relationship. Try to keep your message as frank as possible, and offer them more than what you will get, so that you can set a strong base.


  1. Viewing a short video/demo
  2. Sharing a link or resource on social media
  3. Setting up a demo
  4. Requesting a bit of their time for a phone call


Before planning out your cold email strategy, another thing you must know is exactly what specific value you have to offer to the prospect.

To know your value proposition – and also to have the ability to convey it clearly – you need some more information:

  1. What issues do you resolve?
  2. Why is your service or product unique/special?
  3. What makes your business unique/special?
  4. How have you helped customers that are similar to the prospects you are going to email?

Put some serious thought to these questions before you prepare the cold email. Deciding your answers in advance will help you perfectly structure your message, whether you write a customized email or utilize one of seven sample arrangements in the section below.


If you can, try to quantify your value. Mentioning that your past customers have saved 10 hours each week by implementing your solution is significantly more persuasive than simply stating that they saved a great deal of time.


Once you have some idea of what you want to write in your message, it is time to decide on the format of your  email. You can follow your own structure, but it would be easier to test different templates that have proved to be efficient.

Opt for the structure that seems like the best match for your prospects

  • If prospects aren’t likely to have heard of you before, use a layout that captures their attention from the very beginning  (such as AIDA)
  • If you know your prospects have a significant pain point that your product or service solves, the BAB or PAS layouts could be better choices.

Of course, the format of your email entirely depends on what message you have to convey, and how you want to convey it. You can always come back to the drawing board and choose​ ​​different combinations of two or more layouts if a single template doesn’t suit you.

Before After Bridge (BAB)

This structure involves telling your audience the difference between the experiences with and without your product/service.

Before: First you highlight the imperfections of current experience/solution.

After: Then tell them how your solution makes the situation so much better.

Bridge: Define the path how you can go from current situation to the better one through your solution.

Before-After-Bridge (BAB)

Image Source: yesware

Problem Agitate Solve (PAS)

This is similar to the BAB structure but instead of directly telling them about your solution, you amplify its importance by highlighting the frustration and pain caused by the current problem.

Problem: Briefly explain the imperfections/pains your audience is facing.

Agitate: Tell them how horrible it is to be in such a situation.

Solve: Tell them about your product and how it can eliminate all of their issues.

Problem-Agitate-Solve (PAS)

Image Source: yesware

Attention Interest Desire Action (AIDA)

AIDA stands for Attention, Interest, Desire, and Action, and is one of the most used cold emailing techniques.
The idea is to convince the audience they need your service or product through the sheer brilliance of your copywriting.

Attention: The first thing your cold email should do is grab the attention of the person you want to send it to.

Interest: Your message should then pique their interest, such that they become curious about what you have to offer. Stress upon how your offer will benefit them.

Desire: Expand on the advantages of your services to increase their desire for your offer.

Action: Show them how to fulfill this desire by offering up your ask, such as a brief call or demo.

Attention-interest-desire-action (AIDA)

Image Source: yesware

Praise Picture Push (PPP)

This method is about getting into the good books of your prospective client and using the emotion to lead them to your offering.

Praise: Praise your prospect on the achievement of some milestone or significant goal.

Picture: Sneak in the introduction of your offering telling them how it can make their achievements even bigger.

Push: Push to act and give them something to click on.


Image Source: yesware

Share Your Own Resources

If you have helpful content on something that might be interesting or valuable for your audience, share it with them through the email and add call to action on the landing page.


If you are not measuring the success of your email outreach, then you can not make them better.

Some of the most well-known metrics people use in cold email outreach are:

>Open rate

>Link clicks

>Response rate

>Leads generated

>New business generated

All of them are legitimate metrics, but a few are easier to track than others.

If you are completely new to cold emailing, begin with one of the first three metrics. In case you’ve got the resources to devote to more complicated sales analytics tools, then you can begin digging into prospects and new businesses created.

Pick a minimum of one metric to track , as the number you decide to watch will influence the way you structure and test your campaigns.


In order to make your cold emails as effective as possible, you will want to continuously test your messages to improve them based on the metric you have chosen.

Again, we will dive deeper into testing in a different article, and I will show you precisely how to structure a cold email testing campaign for the best outcomes.

But you might find it useful – as you proceed through the course leading up to this – to write notes down on particular components that you would like to test afterwards.

When it is time to really execute your testing campaigns, you will be pleased to have a whole list of possibilities available.


One last question I would like you to always ask yourself  is that the whether or not you are sending your emails to the right people.

Knowing who you are messaging informs everything from the template you choose to the tests you choose to perform. In other words, you can not compose a “good” email if you are sending it to the wrong people.

Tim Soulo of the Ahrefs blog has a good breakdown of those four classes you can email to as part of an influencer outreach : Shark, Big fish, Small fish and Spawn.

I believe that these distinctions apply equally well to sending cold emails:

>Sharks will be the big names in your industry. They are the type of people that you’d kill to have as customers, but since they are so well-known, they are difficult to reach through cold email. You typically require a personal introduction or to do something quite outstanding to get noticed .

>The big fish are the folks, down one tier. They are less famous, but they are still large enough to have an influence on your enterprise. You won’t receive their attention with a template email, but you could still be able to connect with a smartly-worded cold message.

>Small fish are yet another step down. They have value to add to your company as a client, but they might not be quite as rewarding or have a big enough following to refer your product or service to other people.

>Spawn, in this case, will be the bottom feeders, tire-kickers and time-wasters who do not have a budget for you.

Concentrate your efforts on the big and small fish. Save yourself time by skipping sharks and spawn.

We are going to chat about discovering these prospects in another article, but for the time being, having a rough idea of the sort of prospect you’re going to be targeting ought to help you know precisely how to structure and compose a fantastic cold email.