Cold Email

How to Generate Leads Through Cold Email (2024)

author image mailead
Marina Cina
May 28, 2024
min read

Throughout the years, cold emailing has been the backbone to powering digital marketing, offering direct engagements between businesses and their clients and partners. Even as more engaging online platforms like social media take lead, cold emailing has continued being a powerful tool for lead generation. However, 2024 calls for a more reconsidered approach in cold emailing, as businesses must alter their strategies and revamp their ways in the marketing industry to remain competitive. This comprehensive guide will give you an insight of the best strategies for cold email leads, guaranteeing maximum success.

Cold Email: What is it?

We often hear about cold email, but what exactly does it involve?

Cold email is a practice that we use to prospect. It’s simply email prospecting. The objective of cold emailing is to initiate a conversation, create a relationship, with the aim of transforming the recipient into a customer. According to a McKinsey Study, cold email is 40 times more effective when done right than social media.

The Importance of Cold Emailing

Cold emailing is an excellent tool for several reasons. It enables you to reach a wide audience without having to come with an existing contact or intro. This is especially valuable for startups and small businesses looking to expand their customer base rapidly. Well, one of the main advantages with Cold Email is that it's going to be way less expensive than other marketing channels and is one of the most cost-effective tools you can come across.

Moreover, cold emailing gives you a direct line to decision-makers. Unlike social media or content marketing, which often require nurturing leads over time, a well-crafted cold email can spark immediate responses and opportunities.

Key Components of a Cold Email

To make a cold email effective, it should include these essential elements:

  • Personalization: Use the recipient's name and tailor the content to their specific needs or interests.
  • Value Proposition: Clearly state what you offer and how it benefits the recipient.
  • Call to Action (CTA): Encourage the recipient to take a specific action, like scheduling a call or replying to the email.
  • Social Proof: Add testimonials or case studies to build credibility.
  • Professional Tone: Keep the email respectful and professional throughout.

Personalization in Cold Emails

Personalization is key in cold emailing. A generic, mass-produced email is likely to be ignored or marked as spam. Start by researching your recipient. Understand their role, their company, and any specific challenges they might be facing. Use this information to craft a message that speaks directly to their needs.

example of personalized cold email

For example, if you’re emailing a sales manager, mention challenges related to sales targets or lead generation. If you’re contacting a business owner, focus on growth strategies or cost-saving measures.

Crafting a Strong Value Proposition

Your value proposition is the heart of your cold email. It’s what convinces the recipient that you have something worth their time. Make it clear, concise, and focused on the benefits you provide. Avoid vague statements, and highlight specific outcomes or results.

For instance, instead of saying, “We offer lead generation services,” say, “Our lead generation services have helped companies like yours increase their sales by 30% within six months.”

Effective Call to Action

The call to action (CTA) tells the recipient what you want them to do next. A weak or unclear CTA can lead to inaction, so be specific and direct. Common CTAs in cold emails include scheduling a call, attending a webinar, or replying with their availability.

Make your CTA easy to follow. Instead of asking for a meeting, which might seem like a big commitment, ask for a quick call or a response to a simple question.

Building Credibility with Social Proof

Including social proof can significantly boost your cold email’s success. Social proof shows that others have found value in your offering, using testimonials, case studies, or references to well-known clients.

Choose examples relevant to your recipient. If you’re emailing a tech company, include testimonials from other tech companies. If targeting small businesses, share case studies from similar-sized clients.

Maintaining a Professional Tone

A professional tone is crucial in cold emailing. While you want to be personable and friendly, it’s important to maintain formality and respect. Avoid slang, overly casual language, and anything that could seem unprofessional.

Ensure your email is well-written and free of errors. Proofread carefully to catch any typos or grammatical mistakes. A polished, professional email makes a better impression and increases your chances of a positive response.

Why Use Cold Emailing to Generate Sales?

Generate sales with cold email

Cold emailing is a smart way to reach out to potential customers who haven’t interacted with your business before. Here’s why it can be so effective:

Direct and Personal Outreach

Cold emailing lets you communicate directly and personally with prospects. Unlike mass marketing campaigns, cold emails are tailored to each individual, making them more likely to resonate and get a response. By addressing the recipient by name, acknowledging their specific needs or problems, and offering a solution just for them, you can really increase engagement.

Cost-Effective Strategy

Cold emailing is a budget-friendly marketing tactic. You don’t have to spend money on ads, printing, or postage. All it takes is a well-written email and a targeted list of recipients. This makes cold emailing a great option for businesses of any size, from startups to established companies.

High ROI Potential

When done right, cold emailing can deliver a high return on investment (ROI). By reaching out to potential customers who match your ideal customer profile, you can generate quality leads that are more likely to convert into sales. The key is to make sure your emails are relevant, valuable, and compelling.

Building Relationships

Cold emailing isn’t just about making sales; it’s also about building relationships. By providing valuable information and demonstrating your expertise, you can build trust and credibility with your prospects. This can lead to long-term relationships and repeat business, which are essential for sustainable growth.

Importance of Deliverability

Ensuring your emails land in the recipient’s inbox is crucial for cold emailing. Here’s how to achieve better Cold Email Deliverability:

  • Avoid Spam Triggers: Don’t use words and phrases that can trigger spam filters. Stick to clear, professional language.
  • Use a Reputable Email Service Provider: A good email service provider can help ensure your emails get delivered by using authentication protocols and feedback loops with major ISPs.
  • Maintain a Clean Email List: Regularly update your email list to remove invalid or inactive addresses. High bounce rates and low engagement can hurt your sender reputation.
  • Authenticate Your Domain: Use DKIM, SPF, and DMARC to authenticate your email domain. This helps ISPs verify that your emails are legit.
  • Monitor Sender Reputation: Keep an eye on your sender reputation, which is affected by bounce rates, spam complaints, and engagement rates. Use tools like Sender Score to monitor and improve your reputation.
  • Personalization and Relevance: Personalized and relevant emails are more likely to be opened and engaged with, signaling to ISPs that your emails are valuable.

Measuring Success

To see how well your cold emails are performing, track key metrics like open rates, response rates, click-through rates, and conversion rates. Analyzing these metrics can help you understand what’s working and what needs improvement. For example, if your open rates are low, you might need better subject lines. If response rates are low, your email content might need to be more relevant or valuable.

Overcoming Common Challenges

Cold emailing can be tough, with the risk of being seen as spam and the challenge of standing out in crowded inboxes. To overcome these challenges, focus on providing real value, being respectful of the recipient’s time, and continually improving your approach based on feedback and performance data.

Identify Your Ideal Customer Profile (ICP)

Figuring out your Ideal Customer Profile (ICP) is key to a successful cold emailing strategy. An ICP is a detailed description of the perfect customer who benefits most from your product or service and brings significant value to your business. By zeroing in on this group, you can direct your efforts better and increase the chances of successful conversions.

Why Knowing Your ICP Matters

Understanding your ICP helps you create cold email campaigns tailored to the specific needs, challenges, and goals of your best customers. This focused approach makes your messages more relevant and boosts the effectiveness of your outreach.

When you identify your ICP, you can:

  • Increase Conversion Rates: Personalized messages that address specific issues are more likely to resonate and get a response.
  • Use Resources Wisely: Focus your marketing efforts on high-potential prospects, saving time and resources.
  • Retain Customers: By targeting those who truly need and value your product, you're more likely to build long-term relationships.

Steps to Identify Your ICP

  1. Analyze Current Customers: Look at your existing customer base. Identify common traits among your best customers, such as industry, company size, job role, and challenges. Notice patterns in their demographics, behaviors, and needs.
  2. Do Market Research: Gather insights into potential customer segments you haven't reached yet. This might involve looking at competitors, industry trends, and new markets.
  3. Create Detailed Personas: Develop detailed personas for each segment of your ICP. Include specifics like demographics, job titles, responsibilities, pain points, goals, and buying behaviors. The more detailed, the better.
  4. Validate with Data: Use data from customer surveys, feedback, sales data, and website analytics to validate your ICP. Ensure your personas are based on real information.
  5. Refine Continuously: Your ICP will evolve. Regularly update your profiles based on new data, customer feedback, and market changes to stay aligned with customer needs.

Example of an ICP

If you sell a SaaS product for project management, your ICP might look like this:

  • Industry: Technology, Marketing, Consulting
  • Company Size: 50-500 employees
  • Job Titles: Project Manager, Team Lead, Operations Manager
  • Pain Points: Trouble tracking project progress, poor team collaboration, lack of resource management
  • Goals: Increase project efficiency, enhance team communication, reduce project completion times
  • Buying Behavior: Prefers comprehensive demos, looks for customer testimonials, values 24/7 customer support

Crafting Cold Emails for Your ICP

With your ICP defined, you can tailor your cold emails to address their specific needs and challenges. Start by personalizing the email: use the recipient’s name and reference specific details about their company or role. Highlight the value by explaining how your product or service can solve their unique problems and help them achieve their goals. Show relevance by sharing case studies or testimonials from similar companies to build credibility. Finally, engage the recipient with compelling subject lines and content that speaks directly to their needs.

The Art of the Subject Line

Creating a great subject line is crucial for a successful cold email. It's the first thing your recipient notices, and it often determines whether your email gets opened or ignored. Here’s how to master the art of the subject line:

Why the Subject Line Matters

Your subject line makes the first impression. A strong subject line can spark curiosity, show value, and set the tone for your email. In crowded inboxes, standing out is key. A well-crafted subject line can significantly boost open rates, which is the first step to engaging your audience.

Traits of an Effective Subject Line

Clarity is crucial; be clear about why you’re emailing, as ambiguous or misleading subject lines can lead to low open rates or damage your credibility. Relevance matters; make sure the subject line relates to the recipient’s needs or interests. Personalization, such as mentioning the recipient's name or company, can help. Keep it short and to the point with brevity, aiming for 6-10 words or around 50 characters to ensure it displays well on all devices. Create a sense of urgency or importance, but don’t overdo it; phrases like "Last Chance" or "Limited Time Offer" can work if used sparingly. Spark curiosity by hinting at the value or benefits within the email without giving everything away; questions or intriguing statements can be effective. Lastly, highlight the benefit or value to the recipient with a clear value proposition. Make it clear why they should open your email by explaining what’s in it for them.

Examples of Strong Subject Lines

  • “Increase Sales by 30% Now”
  • “John, Transform Your Marketing”
  • “Special Deal on Your Purchase”
  • “Enhance Team Productivity Fast”
  • “Get Your Lead Generation Guide”

Testing and Improving Subject Lines

A/B testing is a great way to see what works best. Try different versions of your subject lines with small segments of your audience to find out which ones get the highest open rates. Pay attention to metrics and refine your approach based on the results.

Common Mistakes to Avoid

Avoid spammy language by steering clear of words and phrases that might trigger spam filters, such as “Free,” “Guaranteed,” or using too many exclamation points. Ensure your subject line accurately reflects the content of your email to avoid misleading claims; misleading subject lines might get high open rates but result in low engagement and trust. Lastly, refrain from overusing caps, as using all caps can seem like shouting and may turn recipients off.

Using Personalization

Personalization in the subject line can greatly improve open rates. Use the recipient’s name, mention their company, or reference a recent interaction. This shows that the email is specifically for them and not just a generic message.

For example:

  • “Sarah, Increase Your Website Traffic Today”
  • “Jim, How We Can Help ABC Corp Succeed”

Writing Effective Cold Emails

how to write an effective cold email

Writing effective cold emails is an art that requires a balance of personalization, value, and clarity. Here’s a comprehensive guide to crafting emails that get responses:

Know Your Audience

Before you start writing, research your recipient. Understand their role, their challenges, and how your product or service can help them. This foundational step ensures your email is relevant and personalized.

Structure Your Email

A well-structured email is easy to read and increases the likelihood of a positive response. Here’s a simple structure to follow:

  1. Subject Line: Craft a compelling subject line that grabs attention.
  2. Greeting: Address the recipient by name.
  3. Introduction: Briefly introduce yourself and your company.
  4. Value Proposition: Explain how you can solve their specific problem.
  5. Call to Action (CTA): Clearly state what you want them to do next.
  6. Signature: Include your contact information.

Personalize Your Message

Generic emails are easy to spot and often ignored. Personalize your message by referencing something specific to the recipient, such as a recent achievement, a shared connection, or a relevant industry trend.

For example:“Hi [Name], I noticed that your company recently [specific achievement]. Congratulations! I believe our [product/service] can help you further [specific benefit].”

Highlight the Value Proposition

Clearly articulate the value you offer. Focus on the benefits and outcomes, not just features. Show the recipient how your solution can address their pain points and improve their business.

For example:“Our software can help streamline your project management process, reducing completion times by up to 30%.”

Keep It Short and Sweet

Respect the recipient’s time by keeping your email concise. Aim for 100-200 words. Be clear and direct, avoiding unnecessary jargon or fluff.

Use a Clear Call to Action

End your email with a clear and specific call to action. Make it easy for the recipient to take the next step, whether it’s scheduling a call, signing up for a demo, or replying to the email.

For example:“Can we schedule a quick 15-minute call next week to discuss how we can help you achieve your goals? Please let me know your availability.”

Proofread and Edit

Before hitting send, proofread your email to ensure it’s free of typos and grammatical errors. A well-written email reflects your professionalism and attention to detail.

Examples of Effective Cold Emails

Example 1:Subject: “Boost Your Sales by 30% with Our Solution”“Hi [Name], I’m [Your Name] from [Company]. I noticed that [Recipient’s Company] is expanding rapidly. Our [product/service] has helped companies like yours increase sales by 30% in just six months. Can we schedule a quick call next week to discuss how we can help you achieve similar results?”

Example 2:Subject: “Quick Tip for Improving Team Productivity”“Hi [Name], I’m [Your Name] from [Company]. I saw your recent article on [specific topic]. Great insights! Our [product/service] can further enhance your team’s productivity by automating [specific task]. Would you be interested in a brief demo?”

Avoiding Landing in Spam

Ensuring your cold emails reach the recipient's inbox and not the spam folder is crucial for successful email outreach. Here are key strategies to help you avoid the spam filter:

Understand Spam Filters

Spam filters analyze incoming emails based on various criteria to determine their legitimacy. Understanding these criteria can help you craft emails that pass through filters successfully. Common factors include email content, sender reputation, and recipient engagement.

Best Practices for Avoiding Spam

  1. Use a Recognizable Sender Name: Use your name and your company’s name in the sender field to build trust and recognition.
  2. Authenticate Your Domain: Implement DKIM, SPF, and DMARC protocols to authenticate your email domain. This signals to ISPs that your emails are legitimate.
  3. Avoid Spam Trigger Words: Words like “Free,” “Buy Now,” and “Discount” can trigger spam filters. Use professional, clear language instead.
  4. Maintain a Clean Email List: Regularly clean your email list to remove invalid or unengaged addresses. High bounce rates and low engagement can harm your sender reputation.
  5. Personalize Your Emails: Personalization reduces the likelihood of your emails being marked as spam. Address recipients by name and tailor content to their specific needs.
  6. Include a Clear Unsubscribe Option: Providing an easy way to unsubscribe reduces spam complaints and shows that you respect recipients’ preferences.
  7. Monitor Sender Reputation: Use tools like Sender Score to monitor and maintain a good sender reputation. High spam complaints or low engagement can negatively impact your reputation.
  8. Optimize Email Content: Keep your email content relevant and valuable. Avoid using all caps, excessive punctuation, and large images with minimal text.

Crafting Engaging Content

Engaging, relevant content reduces the chances of being marked as spam. Here’s how:

  • Provide Value: Ensure your emails offer something valuable to the recipient, whether it’s insights, solutions, or exclusive offers.
  • Be Concise: Keep your emails brief and to the point. Long-winded emails are less likely to be read and more likely to be marked as spam.
  • Use a Professional Tone: Maintain a professional, respectful tone in your emails. Avoid overly casual or salesy language.

Testing and Monitoring

Regularly test your emails before sending them to your full list. Tools like Mail-Tester or SpamAssassin can help you identify potential issues that might cause your emails to be flagged as spam. Monitor your email metrics, such as open rates, click-through rates, and spam complaints, to continuously refine your approach.

What Tool for Cold Emailing?

Choosing the right tool for cold emailing is essential for maximizing your outreach efforts. stands out as an excellent choice due to its comprehensive features and user-friendly interface.

Key Features of

  1. Advanced Personalization: Customize your emails to resonate with each recipient, improving engagement rates.
  2. Automated Sequences: Set up follow-up sequences to maintain consistent communication without manual intervention.
  3. Email Tracking: Gain insights into open rates, click-through rates, and responses to optimize your campaigns.
  4. Deliverability Tools: Ensure your emails reach the inbox with domain authentication, spam checks, and email warm-up features.
  5. User-Friendly Interface: Easily create, manage, and monitor your campaigns, even if you’re new to cold emailing.


Cold emailing is a powerful strategy for generating leads and driving sales when executed correctly. By understanding what cold emailing is, why it’s effective, and how to identify your Ideal Customer Profile (ICP), you can tailor your outreach to be more impactful. Crafting compelling subject lines, writing effective emails, and avoiding spam filters are essential skills that can significantly enhance your email deliverability and engagement rates. Using a specialized tool like can streamline your efforts, offering advanced features for personalization, automation, and analytics. Start optimizing your cold email campaigns today to achieve better results and drive business growth.


1. How can I ensure my cold emails don't land in spam?

To avoid spam filters, use a recognizable sender name, authenticate your domain, avoid spam trigger words, maintain a clean email list, personalize your emails, include a clear unsubscribe option, and monitor your sender reputation.

2. What makes an effective tool for cold emailing? offers advanced personalization, automated sequences, email tracking, deliverability tools, and a user-friendly interface, making it an excellent choice for optimizing cold email campaigns and achieving better results.

3. How do I identify my Ideal Customer Profile (ICP) for cold emailing?

Identify your ICP by analyzing your existing customers, conducting market research, creating detailed personas, validating with data, and continuously refining your profiles. Focus on demographics, job roles, pain points, and goals to tailor your outreach effectively.