7 Best Cold Email Templates (for Effective Sales Outreach) in 2022

When Laura Lopuch, professional writer of cold email templates & sales pitches, first started cold emailing in her career, she sent 25 cold emails every week, but never got a response.

In those three months, she put hours into crafting, editing, and tweaking her cold email campaign to pitch new prospects daily.

But for every cold email she sent, all she got was silence and the gut-wrenching feeling of self-doubt and frustration. This feeling is common with sales reps of all kinds. But just like Laura, most sales reps send cold emails the wrong way.

For instance, you may be:

  • Using gimmicky subject lines
  • Starting the wrong conversations
  • Sending cold emails that focus on you
  • Confusing your prospects with too many CTAs.

Mistakes like these abound when you fail to use an effective, repeatable cold email template. And sadly, you only get one chance with cold emails. Because once the prospect deletes your first email or reports it as spam, you may never be able to pitch them again.

So, how do you stay clear of your prospect’s spam folder?

How do you craft effective cold emails that earn clicks and replies and turn cold prospects into fresh leads and revenue?

The answer is simple. By using our tried and true cold email templates for sales teams & entrepreneurs.

In this guide, you’ll find 7 of the best cold email templates for sales teams to generate leads, close more deals and boost your sales strategy this year. We’ve also included some real-life cold email examples and tips to help you write a winning cold email.

However, there’s one caveat: These templates are only guides. So, you can’t just copy-paste, add your company details and hit send. The success of your cold email outreach depends on your ability to pick the right cold email template for your use case and customize it to suit your prospect.

7 Best Cold Email Templates for Effective Sales Outreach in 2022

  1. Make an Introduction B2B Cold Email Template
  2. Prospect Buying Signal Cold Email Templates
  3. Cold Email Template Offering Something of Value (First)
  4. Referral and Speak to a Decision Maker Cold Email Templates
  5. Direct Selling Cold Email Template
  6. Cold Email Template for Offering a Free Tool or Trial
  7. Cold Email Template to Follow Up (and Close the Sale)

You’ll find a selection of proven templates to help you write powerful cold emails that earn responses.

We’ve also included their goals, when to use them, and why they work. We put hours into creating these emails, and they’re yours to take for free.

1. Make an Introduction B2B Cold Email Template

The goal of this email is to start a conversation with a prospect you believe would find your product/service helpful.

Here’s a proven B2B sales cold email template any salesperson can replicate and increase response rates:

Subject: {name}, happy to connect

Hi {prospect}, I’m {name} the {position you hold} for {your company}.

My company {does X} that {value proposition}.

I thought we might be of interest to you, given XYZ reason (that’s personal to your prospect).

I’d love to hear from you if we sound interesting, even if you’re not in the market right now.

Let me know if you’d like to chat sometime.

{Your name}

Why it works

  • it is to the point,
  • not salesy,
  • personalized and actionable.

You’re not trying to book a phone call or sell the prospect on why your product is the best before meeting them.

Instead, you want to make an intro and kickstart a conversation that keeps you at the top of their mind whenever they’re ready to buy.

The CTA is simple— let me know if you would like to chat. Then, they only have to hit reply.

2. Prospect Buying Signal Cold Email Templates

A buying signal could be a recent business development like funding, a merger, new hiring, job opening, etc. This could also be specific actions like a visit to a particular page on your website, an inquiry on social media, or browsing with high-intent keywords.

Tracking these buying signals can help you plan your outreach to good-fit prospects with the perfect cold email at the right time.

The goal here is to showcase the value your product/service can deliver to your prospect based on their intent signal.

Here’s v1 of these cold email templates for a recent company event:

Subject: {recent event}/{your solution} for {company name}

Hey {prospect}, congrats on {recent} event. I just saw the news on LinkedIn/Forbes.

As an ardent fan of {prospect company} since 2008, I love how you {sincere compliment on something the prospect does to build rapport}. And I’m eager to see how you continue to help {insert their company goal/objective}

While looking at your website, I noticed you’re not doing X.

From my experience working with startups like Y, {business benefit} becomes a priority for {productivity SaaS companies} after {recent event}.

My company, {your company’s name} helps Y organizations like yours solve {specific challenvge} and achieve {specific results your solution delivers}.

Recently, we helped A do B with C. {You can see the case study here}.

I believe that with this {recent event}, {your company} can help you achieve {main benefit that is relevant to the prospect}.

Are you open for a 10-minute call later this week to chat about how {prospect’s company name} can work with {your company}

If yes, you can book time directly on my calendar. {insert calendar link}

Congratulations again,

{name}

Look at how Laura used this template in her email below. It even got her a response the same day.

Laura Lopuch Cold Email Template Example (Screenshot)

Here’s a v2 of this cold email template for a specific action like a visit to your website:

Subject: how secure are your transactions? {Quick question about prospect pain point}

Hi {name},

I see you recently visited {your website} and accessed {this resource} or {took particular action}.

So, I wanted to share some additional resources we have on {pain point}:

• {Resource 1}

• {Resource 2}

I also spent a few minutes on {prospect’s website} to learn how you’re handling {pain point}, and I discovered some opportunities you’ve yet to explore. Like:

• {Opportunity 1}

• {Opportunity 2}

Is this something you need help with?

As a {description of your company}, we help companies like X and Y solve {specific challenges prospect has} and achieve {specific results your solution delivers}.

Our solution has generated happy results like A, B and C for our customers.

Do you have 10 minutes next week for a quick chat on Zoom? I would love to share how we can help you do Z {main benefit}.

If yes, you can book time directly on my calendar. {insert calendar link}

I’m looking forward to chatting with you.

Cheers,

{name}

Why these cold email templates work so well:

  • The personalized subject lines evoke curiosity.
  • This email shows you know the prospect and the things they care about.
  • It’s clear that you genuinely want to help. (Never hurts to warm up a cold email.)
  • The CTA is direct and simple.

3. Cold Email Template Offering Something of Value (First)

B2B buyers are sophisticated buyers—they know if a rep is just trying to close a deal without caring whether it’s actually a good purchase for them. They know most of your sales tactics and won’t easily be coaxed into buying decisions.

Hence, 88% of them will only buy if they see you as a trusted advisor. (source)

And you can use this to your advantage by building trust with your cold emails in the early stage of engagement.

For instance, you can share valuable ideas that can aid the growth of your prospect’s business.

Here’s this cold email template to follow along with:

Subject: {name}, you might find this useful

Hey {prospect},

I just saw your article about X topic on Forbes, and it resonated with me because {something to build rapport}

It motivated me to reach out because {something helpful or valuable that’ll be beneficial to the prospect, e.g., a free resource, a feature on your website, an opportunity they can explore}

As you know, {explain why your free resource will be useful to them}. {Add ideas for implementation, examples of use cases, or results they could get by using the free resource}.

Thanks,

{your name}

Blogger and content marketer, Ryan Robinson, used this “helpful resource” cold email strategy to net a $50,000 deal.

See the exact email he sent using this strategy. 

Ryan Robinson's Cold Email Example (Screenshot)

Here’s another cold email example from B2B content marketing company Omniscient Digital. They always share free strategic advice, content, and keyword ideas in their cold emails. 

Screenshot of Alex Birkett's Cold Email Template Example

Why it works:

  • This cold email is not self-serving. You’re not asking the prospect to hop on a 10 minute call to get something of value. Instead, you’re giving it right away.
  • The recipient doesn’t feel like you’re just trying to sell something to them. You’re offering help without asking for anything.
  • If your valuable offer can produce results or help them solve a problem, it could translate into business for you—as it did for Ryan.

4. Referral and Speak to a Decision Maker Cold Email Templates

A critical element of getting a response to anything is asking the right person—that needs to be a core part of your sales process.

But what when you’re unsure who the right contact for your cold email is?

You reach out to another person at the prospect’s company to ask for a referral. And if you get a response, go ahead and email the decision maker.

Here’s a template to follow:

Subject: {name}, are you the right person for this?

Hey {name},

I’m {your name} and I head the {particular department} at {your company}. We work with {type of companies you work with} to provide {one sentence pitch}.

As we recently launched a new feature that helps marketing teams like yours do X, I imagined it’s something {prospect’s company} would be interested in. So, I’d love to speak to someone from {prospect’s company name} who is responsible for {particular department or key decision}.

Based on your LinkedIn profile {link to profile}, I figured you’d be the appropriate person to connect with or at least point me to the right person.

If you are, can I get 15 minutes on your calendar on {time and date} to share how {your company} can help {prospect’s business} do XYZ with our new product/feature?

If you’re not, can you please point me to the right person?

Thank you,

{name}

With your referral lined up, your email for the decision maker should go like this.

Subject: XYZ suggested I reach out to you

Hey {prospect’s name},

I’m {your name} and I’m with {your company name}. We provide {quick elevator pitch} for {SaaS companies} like you.

We recently launched a new product/feature that could help your team {unique product offering and main benefit}.

Companies like X, Y, and Z (who we’re happy to call our customers) are hitting their monthly revenue goals with {new feature}. Some results they’ve recently achieved with us are:

• {Result 1}

• {Result 2}

• {Result 3}

And, I would also love {prospect company} to enjoy these benefits.

If this sounds interesting, I’d be happy to share more details over a Zoom call and even show you a demo of our product.

Here’s the link to my calendar so you can book a quick call with me at your earliest convenience.

Cheers,

{name}

Why it works

  • The first subject line evokes curiosity, while the second creates an instant connection because it uses a familiar name.
  • It focuses on what’s in it for them, then backs that up with tangible social proof.
  • Asking the prospect to book a call at their convenience shows you’re relinquishing control to them, you’re not pushy, and B2B buyers love that. Rather than trying to cold call them, you ask them to make a micro-commitment.

5. Direct Selling Cold Email Template

At the end of the day, all sales reps want to sell.

And even if direct cold sales emails generally are less effective, they can sometimes be worth experimenting with, especially if you’re selling a lower-priced offer.

However, if you’re using this cold email template, keep this in mind:

  • Timing is everything. The perfect offer and pitch sent to the right prospect in time of need is more likely to receive a response.
  • Proper research is compulsory to ensure your offer aligns with the prospect’s current challenge.
  • From the subject line, you must lead with value.

Our template for this cold sales email uses the AIDA copywriting framework to:

  • Hook the prospect’s attention with the subject line
  • Relate to their interest in the first paragraph
  • Arouse desire by showing how they benefit in the second paragraph
  • Ask the prospect to perform one action—reply.

Subject: {achieve X} at {prospect company} with {your company}

Hey {first name},

I’ve been following up with {prospect company}, and it seems like you’re trying to do X. And {your company} can help do Y for you by Z way {be specific}.

To give you an idea of how we can help solve this problem, I’ve made a 10 second custom video for you. {include something that you’re sure can convince them about your solution}

At {your company}, we provide {service/product} that helps organizations like you achieve {main benefit}.

Can I get a 10 minutes call with you to show you in more detail how {your company} can help {prospect company} achieve {main benefit}?

Would Tuesday at 9 am PT work for you?

(if it won’t, I’m flexible)

Just reply to let me know.

Thank you

{name}

See how professional translation company, Milestone Localization, uses the direct sales approach in their cold email template.

Quick Cold Email Example (Screenshot Example) for Sales Teams

Why it works:

  • It includes personal details like the goal the company is trying to achieve.
  • Despite being promotional, it feels human and personal.
  • Your extra effort showing them how you’ll solve the problem gives you more points.

6. Cold Email Template for Offering a Free Tool or Trial

Let’s say you sell a SaaS tool. In that case, a free trial cold email can help you break the ice with cold prospects and build trust.

It’s hard to turn down a free trial, especially when the product is excellent and the offer is well-timed. This cold email keeps you at the top of the prospect’s mind from the research phase until they’re ready to buy.

Subject: emails not landing in primary inbox? {particular problem prospect is facing}

Hey {prospect},

I came across your post on LinkedIn on {problem they’re facing}, and I wanted to reach out because I believe {your product} can help fix that.

{Our tool} is designed to help companies like you solve this problem so you can focus on {doing what’s most important to them}.

If you’d like to take us for a spin, I’m happy to offer you a personalized 7-day free trial. You’ll get access to all our premium features, including

• Relevant feature 1

• Relevant feature 2

{We just want you to see how we take the stress out of lead generation}

Just click here to start your free trial today. No credit card required.

I know you’ll enjoy our product,

{name}

P.S. Here’s {the link to my calendar} so you can reach out to me if you need help with anything.

Why this email template works so well:

  • A super relevant subject line like this is almost impossible to ignore.
  • The opening line shows you’re listening.
  • The email copy is to the point—no beating around the bush.
  • The low-risk CTA is valuable to the prospect whether or not he responds to you.

7. Cold Email Template to Follow Up (and Close the Sale)

If you sent an initial strong email but haven’t heard back from your prospect, chances are they’re busy. Or your email has gotten lost in the shuffle.

However, following up helps bump your email up their crowded inbox, remind them of you and increase your chance of getting a response.

Ideally, you should follow up with a cold prospect 3-4 times before giving up. And it’s advisable to keep your follow-up emails in the same thread, so it’s easy for your prospect to keep track of the previous message.

The goal of a follow-up email is to remind the recipient of your initial offer and restate your CTA.

So, as you follow up, try to modify each email without changing the message, CTA, and pitch.

Here’s a copy & paste template for cold email follow ups:

Hey {name},

Not to sound creepy, but I see that you read my previous email about {previous email offer}.

Have you thought about my offer? I’m happy to have a quick chat to answer your questions or give you a review of how we can help you do X.

Does 10 am on Thursday or Friday work for you?

Just hit reply, and I’ll set up a quick call.

{name}

Here’s another cold email template for following up:

Hey {name},

I know I’m being persistent, but I really believe {your solution} can help you {prospect company} achieve {X}.

We’ve done XYZ for companies like A B C, and we would love to add you to that list.

Here’s the personalized free trial I mentioned in my previous email. We’d love for you to try our tool for free to see how we can help you close more outbound deals faster.

best

{name}

P.S. I’m an email away if you have any questions or need anything.

Why it works:

  • No response doesn’t mean no. Following up is the only way to determine whether the prospect is still interested.
  • The most successful salespeople are persistent. It shows that you genuinely believe your solution is right for the prospect.

Want to learn more? Check out this ultimate guide to follow-up emails.

Pro tip: Turn your follow-up templates into email sequences and put them on autopilot in Close. It’s free for 14 days.

What Makes a Great Cold Email? 4 Key Aspects of Winning Cold Sales Emails

  1. A subject line that catches the eye
  2. A personalized body copy
  3. A specific call to action
  4. An email signature

Let’s look at each of these cold email components in detail.

1. The Subject Line

Consider this your first impression.

If you make a good one, your prospect will click, read your email, and probably respond. But come across as spammy, weak, or generic, and they’ll hit delete without a thought. Or even report it as spam.

The job of your subject line is to get your email opened. To make sure this happens, keep the following tips in mind:

  • Always Personalize Your Subject Line: How do you capture a stranger’s attention without saying their name or nudging them? It’s almost impossible, right? The same thing happens with your cold email campaign. Personal information like their first name, company, location, recent achievement, mutual connection, or company data can make prospects stop and open your email. Especially when every company is using automation to send out bulk emails, making your outreach a bit more relevant can make your message stand out.
  • Short is Better: Even though long subject lines work fine, research has shown that those with 4-7 words get the most clicks. Also, longer subject lines can become truncated on mobile phones.
Cold Email Reporting Spreadsheet (Example Screenshot)
Source: Marketo
  • Pique Curiosity: “Appointment with Dave at 10”? Invokes curiosity and is more likely to earn clicks than “are you available to meet with me at 10”?
  • Be Authentic: Sounding salesy or making outrageous claims will only make you appear spammy and generic. So, keep it real. You’re not trying to be gimmicky or make a promise you can’t deliver on.

What are the Best Cold Email Subject Lines With Great Open Rates?

  • {prospect company} + {your company}
  • {mutual connection} suggested I reach out
  • {prospect} nice to meet you
  • hey {name} couple quick questions
  • {name}, I think you’ll find this useful
  • congrats on recent event or something significant

Crafting sales email subject lines that earn clicks and improve open rates is both an art and a science we’ve covered extensively on the Close blog. Read our article on sales email subject lines for more examples of email subject lines, tips, and common mistakes to avoid.

Pro tip: Write subject lines in lowercase letters to make them look more personal.

2. The Body Copy

Your email body copy is the most important part of your cold email because it contains your hook, pitch, and ask.

If you successfully get them to click with your subject line, you must hold that attention with your opening line.

So, the question is, how do you do that? It’s simple: be relevant.

Address professional or personal interests of your prospects. Customize your opening line and the rest of your email.

For example, you can start by mentioning a challenge they’re trying to solve or by referencing a hobby that is common to you.

The idea is to send personalized emails that are interesting and relatable.

At this point, the only question in your prospect’s mind is: What’s in it for me? 

So, Instead of rambling about yourself and your company, answer this question immediately by leading with value.

Even if it’s a direct sales cold email, make it about your prospect by wording your offer in a way that translates to benefits.

Also, don’t be afraid to mention specific results you’ll bring your prospect.

Because if you’ve done your research and understand their challenges, you’ll be confident in your solution and offer.

And mirroring this confidence in your cold email is essential as it helps build trust and motivate them to respond.  

Now, when it comes to length, there’s no hard rule on the ideal number of words. But, short, succinct emails are widely appreciated.

Notwithstanding, we’ve seen long, cold emails like this one from Victor Eduoh, a SaaS content strategist, receive a positive response from prospects.

Screenshot of Cold Email Template in Use for Sales Teams (Example of Victor Eduoh)

Side note: Your email should be long enough to convey your message. Prospects will read a long sales email if it’s valuable to them.

The main takeaway is to show respect for your prospect’s time by always staying relevant.  

Another essential element of your email body copy is formatting.

Great formatting is as important as your message. Your prospect won’t see your offer if your email is difficult to read.

So, make it easy for them to find important details and diggest your message by leaning towards short paragraphs and sentences.

Highlight important information you want them to pay attention to. Break up large walls of text with bullet points. Then, use lots of space to create a natural flow that’s easy on the eyes.  

Ideally, your cold email should look and read like a natural conversation between two people. But issues like terrible punctuation and poor spelling can hurt that experience.

So, after writing your email, use a tool like Grammarly to check for grammar and punctuation errors.

Finally, read your email aloud to catch passive voice, vague words, and wordy sentences that do not contribute to the message.

3. The Call-to-Action

This is something email marketing experts have known for a long time: Your cold email should have only one call-to-action, which must be

  • specific
  • actionable, and
  • low risk.

E.g., “just reply to this email,” “click here to access your free trial.”

Don’t ask your recipient to do two things, like looking at your website and sending you a reply. Even worse, don’t ask them to download a PDF or do anything that requires too much effort.

The harder it is for them to execute your CTA, the more likely you won’t get a response. Monitor your reply rates, and if you notice that emails with a particular CTA get a lower response rate, experiment your way to better results.

4. Your Email Signature

Considering that the entire body of your email focuses on helping your prospect, the email signature section is the only opportunity you get to show off.

But, this element of cold emails is still under-utilized by sales experts.

When done right, you can build credibility, promote your company, and convince cold prospects to speak to you.

For instance, look at this email signature from Steli Efti, the CEO at Close.

Steli's Cold Email Templates (Screenshot Example) of Email Signature

Notice how he goes beyond the boring name, phone number, and address to promote Close’s job openings, his book, and content channels. He establishes himself as a credible influencer with clout.

The thumbnail from YouTube is excellent for capturing attention, and the descriptive anchor text inspires the recipient to click.

Email signatures occupy significant real estate in your cold email, and you should use them to shine.

Pro tip: We always recommend using plain text emails void of complex designs and professional colors. They’ll make your cold emails look and feel more personal.

Checklist: Proofread Your B2B Cold Email Templates Before Hitting Send

Now that your sales cold email is ready to go out into the wild, give it one last look before hitting send.  

Scrutinize every part of your cold email to ensure it checks everything on the list below.

This is particularly important because this checklist directly impacts all the metrics you care about—open, response, and conversion rates.

  • Is Your Email Personalized to the Prospect? Sending the same generic email to everyone on your email list shows that you’ve not done your homework. And buyers can tell a broadcast email from a carefully written one. Reference their interest or recent achievement. Let them know you visited their site and follow them on social media. It’ll help you capture their attention quickly and convince them to give you their time.
  • Is Your Offer the Right Fit for the Prospect? Even the best subject line, CTA and email copy won’t mean anything if the offer isn’t relevant to the prospect. It should be evident that you’ve done proper research, know their problem, are confident you can help them, and your offer is right for their situation.
  • Is the Barrier to Response Low? The easier your CTA is, the more likely your prospect will respond.Make sure you state the specific action you want them to take. If you want them to book a time with you, add the link to your calendar. Don’t expect prospects to figure anything out themselves.
  • Endeavor to optimize your cold email outreach by A/B testing your copy, subject lines, and CTA with a tool like Close CRM’s Sent Email Report to maximize open and response rates.

Use Close CRM to Automate Cold Emails, Track Leads, and Close More Deals

Ready to kickstart your cold outreach campaign?

Close can help make the process easy with hands-on lead data, intuitive email sequences, and powerful integrations.

You can track the exact time a prospect opens your email, automate follow-ups, schedule email delivery time, prioritize high intent leads, and so much more.

Get started today with our 14 day free trial, or watch our on-demand demo to see how we make cold emailing easy.

Ryan Robinson
Head of Content at Close. I'm also a blogger, podcaster and (recovering) side project addict at ryrob.com and I write for publications like Fast Company, Forbes, Entrepreneur, Inc, Business Insider and more.

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