7 Deadly Sins of Cold Email Writing


7 Deadly Sins of Cold Email Writing

December 1, 2017

Cold emails are your big chance to get your product or service in front of enthusiastic prospects, so you don’t want to blow it on a poorly written email that will get sent straight to the trash. There are plenty of ways you can get creative and express your message and avoid doing these seven things that are detrimental to your campaign.

1. Generalizing

Your recipients want to feel special, like you sought them out individually. While you don’t necessarily need to personalize their email with their hobbies, it’s important to do your homework and use the right words when speaking about their company, like calling them an agency vs. a firm if that’s more applicable to how they identify themselves.

2. Pressuring Your Prospect

There is a time and a place for a breakup email that creates a sense of urgency for your reader to take action, but the first email in a campaign isn’t it. Leave the high-pressure sales tactics out of your first contact and focus on piquing your prospects interest and giving them introductory information.

3. Information Overloading

It’s great that there are so many awesome features of your product or service, and your prospects will be excited to hear about them – just not all at once. Give a few of your most significant details to get them interested, and then save the rest for subsequent emails or conversations. Avoid the temptation to add just one more thing, and one more, and one more. You get the picture, and so will your prospect if you don’t practice the art of restraint when sending your initial email.

4. Failing short on the Call to Action

The call to action is the equivalent to asking a hot guy or girl for their phone number – you don’t want to screw it up. Some of the ways that you can mess up your CTA include being too vague about what the next steps are, giving them too tight a time window to reply, or sounding too salesy instead of asking to start a conversation.

5. Wasting Words

Less is more when it comes to cold emails. Avoid extra filler or unnecessary lead-ins like “In summary,” “I’ll be brief,” or “In other words.” Just say it right the first time and these phrases won’t be needed. Other word wasters include telling them your name (they can see it in your email address) or listing education or credentials that are irrelevant to the topic.

6. Making a Sales Move Too Soon

Subtlety goes a long way in encouraging your recipient to start a conversation. Coming on too strong in the first email is like showing up to a first date with an engagement ring. Making a sales pitch before you’ve even started a dialogue together is too pushy and is a major turn-off for your prospect.

7. Ball-parking Your Stats

Specificity is key in establishing your credibility. A 400% conversion rate doesn’t sound as real as 398.6%. Knock your prospects socks off with accurate statistics that don’t make it look like you’re rounding up or inflating your numbers.


Now that you know what not to do when writing your cold emails, you can drill down and focus on the good stuff. Give your prospects all the juicy information they need without bogging them down or scaring them away, and watch your replies come rolling in.

If you enjoyed this short read, check out our podcast where we talk for 10 minutes on those subjects each week


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