How to Write a Cold Email that will burst your sales pipeline?

Created On:
January 31, 2024
Updated On:
February 1, 2024
how to write a cold email that will burst your sales pipeline

The art of crafting a compelling cold email can make all the difference between a stagnant pipeline and a flourishing one. When done right, cold emails have the power to captivate your prospects, pique their interest, and ultimately boost your sales to unimagined heights—for instance, Directsystems(.)io, a lead gen agency, has seen a 5X revenue surge in two months.  

In this comprehensive guide, I will walk you through the five crucial steps of creating a cold email that not only grabs your recipient's attention but also nurtures a genuine connection. From crafting an attention-grabbing subject line to finishing with a compelling call-to-action, I have added the secrets to crafting emails that burst your sales pipeline wide open. There are two ready-to-steal cold email sequences, too. 

Let’s dive in. 

How to Write a Cold Email? [In 5 Steps]

A cold email is an unsolicited email message sent to a recipient without prior contact or permission. It typically aims to initiate a business or professional relationship, introduce a product or service, or convey information to generate interest or engagement.

A good cold email structure consists of five elements:

  • Interesting subject line
  • Engaging opening line
  • Personalized message
  • Clear offer
  • Compelling call-to-action

Let’s get into the details of how to write a cold email. 

Step 1: Craft an Interesting Subject Line

Crafting an interesting subject line for cold emails requires a fine balance between capturing attention and maintaining professionalism. One of the best ways to write a cold email subject line is by addressing a specific pain point or offering a clear solution:

  • "Struggling with high bounce rates? Let me help" 
  • “5 secrets to avoid getting blacklisted”

Personalizing subject lines can help you stand out in a crowded inbox. Incorporating the recipient's name or company can make the email more compelling, such as 

  • "Ross, (problem/pain point you solve for) initiatives for (company name)?" 
  • “Dan, fed up of blacklisted domains?” 

Additionally, instilling a sense of urgency or exclusivity when applicable also works. Example: 

  • "Act Fast: Black Friday Sales Ends in 2 Hours"
  • "Exclusive Invitation: Elevate Your Strategy with Our Limited-Time Offer." 

However, avoid spammy words or excessive punctuation in the subject line to ensure the email isn't flagged. Keep it concise, aiming for brevity while conveying the email's purpose. Experiment with A/B testing to analyze what resonates best with your audience. 

The goal is to spark curiosity, highlight value, and establish credibility. Your subject lines should stand out amid the professional clutter and entice recipients to open and engage with your message.

Here are a few DOs and DON’Ts of writing a subject line for cold emails:

✅ Craft text-based subject lines (30-45 characters, 4-6 words). 

✅ Personalize by addressing recipients or their company. 

✅ Conduct A/B testing for optimal performance. 

✅ Refer to specific pain points for relevance. 

✅ Drop hints about the email content to pique interest. 

✅ Instill a sense of urgency for immediate attention. 

✅ Utilize power words for emotional impact.

❌ Avoid sales-oriented language. 

❌ Refrain from using all caps. 

❌ Steer clear of directly asking for favors. 

❌ Exclude emojis from your messages. 

❌ Minimize special characters and excessive numbers. 

❌ Avoid misleading recipients with false information. 

❌ Refrain from using spam-like words or phrases.

Step 2: Start with an Engaging Opening Line

Opening sentences of emails are far more crucial than people actually stress. Cold email opening lines should be intriguing and relevant enough to ensure the recipient reads the entire message.  

Begin with a personalized greeting, addressing the recipient by name or mentioning their company:

  • Hey Vaibhav
  • Hi Sean

Follow this with a concise and compelling statement that highlights the value or solution you offer. For instance:

  • “I was going through your articles on so-and-so website.”
  • "I noticed [specific achievement or challenge] at [recipient's company], and our innovative [product/service] can help you [desired outcome]." 

Demonstrating knowledge of the recipient's business establishes credibility and relevance. Alternatively, you can pose a thought-provoking question related to their industry or pain points, encouraging them to ponder and engage. 

This approach stimulates curiosity and positions your email as a source of valuable insights. The key is to keep it concise, tailored to the recipient's interests, and focused on how your solution addresses their unique needs, sparking interest and encouraging further exploration of your cold email.

Step 3: Add a Personalized Message in the Email Body

In a typical cold email, the personalized message comes after the opening sentence. Of course, one can always experiment and find other effective ways of crafting a cold email. 

Adding a personalized touch to B2B cold emails is essential for establishing a genuine connection with your recipients. Start by addressing the recipient by their name and mentioning their company to demonstrate a thorough understanding of their business. 

As per industry norms, the personalized message should follow the opening sentence. For example, "I noticed so-and-so about your business. Have you considered the impact of [industry trend] on your [specific aspect of their business]?

It can also be something like this: "Dear [Recipient's Name], I noticed [Company Name]'s commitment to innovation and thought our [Product/Service] could further enhance your operations." 

Tailor your message to align with their industry challenges or specific pain points. For example, "As a [Recipient's Job Title] in the [Recipient's Industry], we understand the challenges of [specific pain point]. Our solution, [Your Product/Service], has successfully addressed similar issues for companies like [Similar Company]." 

If applicable, reference previous interactions or engagements (from social media), showcasing your attention to detail. This level of personalization not only captures attention but also demonstrates a sincere interest in the recipient's needs, increasing the likelihood of engagement and fostering a more meaningful B2B relationship.

Step 4: Make an Offer 

A cold email is incomplete without making a clear offer. After all, the ultimate goal is always sales, even if not directly. However, your offer can’t sound like a sales pitch. It has to be something between making a sales pitch and offering a helping hand. 

To make an offer in B2B cold emails without sounding overly sales-y, focus on emphasizing the value and benefits your product or service brings to the recipient's specific challenges. For example, “With {tool name}, you can (list of how you can solve pain points.”

Frame the offer in a solution-oriented manner, highlighting the outcomes rather than pushing the product. One can also use language that suggests collaboration, such as "We'd love to explore how we can support [Company Name] in achieving its goals." 

This approach positions the offer as a valuable solution rather than a pushy sales pitch, maintaining a customer-centric focus and increasing the likelihood of a positive response.

Step 5: End with a Compelling CTA

A Call-to-Action (CTA) in a B2B cold email is a directive prompting the recipient to take a specific action, guiding them toward the next steps in the sales process. To craft a compelling CTA, be clear and specific about the desired action, using persuasive language that encourages engagement. For instance, "Schedule a demo to explore our solutions" provides a clear next step and emphasizes the value of exploring your offerings. 

The easiest way to add a compelling CTA in a cold email is by asking a simple question at the end, such as:

  • Are you interested in learning more about {tool}?
  • Can I interest you in a call for a brief walkthrough of the tool?
  • Are you available for a call on Tuesday at 3 pm?

Alternatively, one can use CTAs like "Download our whitepaper for in-depth insights" if they are sending value-adding content. 

Tailor the CTA to align with the email's content and the recipient's potential needs, ensuring relevance and value. Moreover, try creating a sense of urgency or exclusivity, as seen in "Secure Your Early Access - Limited Spots Available." This motivates prompt action, increasing the likelihood of a positive response.

Ultimately, a well-crafted CTA not only guides the recipient but also reinforces the email's purpose, driving desired outcomes, especially in the B2B communication process.

Cold Email Sequence Template

A typical email sequence for cold emailing will have 3 to 4 emails, each scheduled in healthy intervals.  

For Sales

A perfect sales cold email sequence should be well-structured, engage the recipient, and convince the recipient to take the desired action. In case of sales, the recipient should sign up or simply buy the product. 

Here’s a proven cold email sequence template for sales. 

Feel free to copy it.

Email 1 

Subject line: Quick Question, {{first_name}}, is inbox management a concern?

{Hi|Hey|Hello} {{first_name}},

Managing multiple mailboxes is challenging, and missed leads can cost you big bucks.

Managing multiple mailboxes is challenging, and missed leads can cost you big bucks.

With Smartlead’s unified master inbox, you can:  

  • Follow up on leads with real-time replies; 
  • Never miss a lead again; reply to all leads from one central hub.
  • No more juggling 20+ mailboxes—focus on closing deals.

{Interested|Curious|Excited} in a 14-day free trial or a 15-minute demo call? Reply with yes. 


P.S.: If this is not relevant to you, just let me know, and I won't follow up.Email 3

Email 2 

{Hi|Hey|Hello} {{first_name}},

{customer-name} cracked the code to 3x more meetings!

With a single subscription, they:

  • managed all leads in 1 place without 100s of logins - saved them 2 inbox managers
  • auto-categorised leads based on their intent
  • assign team members effortlessly within Master Inbox to streamline your team member workflow and boost productivity.

Check out their testimonial here:


Does achieving similar success {interest you|excite you}?

{Interested|Curious|Excited} in a free trial or a 15-min demo call?


P.S.: If this is not relevant to you, just let me know and I won't follow up.

Email 3

{Hi|Hey|Hello} {{first_name}},

Wondering what sets our Master Inbox apart?

  • Respond within 3 minutes for a whopping 4x increase in conversions.
  • Effortlessly handle attachments in one central hub for smoother communication.
  • Seamlessly move leads to new campaigns, ensuring continuous engagement.

This saves you $1000's.

{Interested|Curious|Excited} in a free trial or a 15-min demo call?

You'll be {saving|cutting costs|keeping more in your pocket} by 3x and {booking|scheduling|securing} more meetings than ever!


For Collaboration

An email sequence for collaboration is slightly different than sales. It’s mildly formal and straightforward. 

Here’s a cold email sequence example for collaboration.

Email 1

{Hi|Hey|Hello} {{first_name}},

I hope this message finds you well. 

I'm [Your Name], and I represent [Your Company]. We specialize in [brief service overview]. I'm reaching out to explore potential collaboration between our organizations. 

Would you be available for a quick call this week to discuss further?

Best regards,

[Your Name]

[Your Position]

[Your Company]

Email 2 

{Hi|Hey|Hello} {{first_name}},

I hope my previous email caught your attention. 

I understand you're busy, but I'd appreciate the opportunity to discuss how [Your Company] can benefit [Recipient's Company]. 

Could we schedule a brief call this week? Your insights would be invaluable.


[Your Name]

[Your Position]

[Your Company]

Email 3 

{Hi|Hey|Hello} {{first_name}},

I hope this finds you well. 

I understand your time is valuable, and I appreciate your consideration. If now isn't the right time, may I check back in a few weeks? 

We're keen on exploring potential collaboration opportunities with [Recipient's Company].

Best regards,

[Your Name]

[Your Position]

[Your Company]

Things You Need to Do Before Writing a Cold Email

Writing email copy is one of the baby steps in becoming a cold email marketer or achieving success in cold emailing. In order to achieve the latter, you must have a clear idea about 

  • what do you want to achieve from sending cold emails
  • who do you want to send emails to
  • which tool to use for sending cold emails
  • and a deeper understanding of email infrastructure.

Set Marketing Goals

Setting marketing goals before sending cold emails is crucial for several reasons. Firstly, it provides clarity on the purpose and desired outcomes of the campaign, helping define the target audience, messaging, and overall strategy. Clear goals also enable measurement of campaign success, allowing for data-driven adjustments.

Setting marketing goals facilitates the creation of targeted campaigns by aligning messaging and content with specific objectives. Whether the goal is lead generation, brand awareness, or product promotion, having a defined purpose guides the selection of appropriate recipients and tailors the content to resonate with their needs. This approach increases the relevance of cold emails, making them more likely to capture the audience's attention and elicit a positive response.

Ultimately, aligning cold email campaigns with marketing goals ensures a strategic and purposeful approach, enhancing the effectiveness of outreach efforts and maximizing the potential for achieving desired results.

Create Buyer Personas/ICP

Buyer personas and Ideal Customer Profile (ICP) are crucial tools in understanding and targeting a specific audience. A buyer persona is a detailed representation of a business's ideal customer, encompassing demographics, behaviors, and preferences. ICP, on the other hand, is a broader profile defining the ideal characteristics of the entire target market.

Creating buyer personas and ICP before sending cold emails is vital for precision in outreach. It ensures that messages resonate with the intended audience, increasing the likelihood of engagement. Tailoring campaigns based on these profiles allows marketers to address specific pain points and provide solutions that align with the prospects' needs, enhancing relevance and effectiveness.

By aligning cold email strategies with buyer personas and ICP, marketers can personalize messages, choose appropriate channels, and optimize content. This targeted approach maximizes the impact of campaigns, leading to higher conversion rates and fostering more meaningful connections with potential customers.

Buy a Cold Email Tool

When purchasing a cold email tool for outbound campaigns, it's crucial to streamline the process while ensuring deliverability and efficiency. A good cold emailing software can enhance your email outreach efforts significantly. Here are a few features that you must check before buying a cold emailing tool, and I will tell you why. 

  • Master inbox
  • Unlimited warmups
  • A/b testing
  • Unlimited mailboxes
  • Native integrations
  • Real-time replies

Firstly, a master inbox centralizes all communication in one place, allowing you to manage responses efficiently. Unlimited warm-ups enable gradual email sending to avoid spam filters and build the sender's reputation, which is a must for cold email success. With unlimited mailboxes, you can diversify your email addresses, reducing the risk of blacklisting. 

Native integrations with popular platforms facilitate seamless workflow integration, enhancing productivity. Always check if the tool is offering native integrations with a list-building tool and a CRM. Real-time reply enhances tracking and provides immediate insights into recipient engagement, allowing for timely follow-ups. 

By optimizing these functionalities, businesses can improve their email deliverability, organize communication effectively, and maximize the impact of their outbound campaigns. 

Buying a cold email tool is step 0 in cold emailing. Get the perfect tool before writing your email copy.

Have a Deeper Understanding of Email Infrastructure

A cold email infrastructure refers to the underlying system and resources, including servers, sending domains, and technical configurations, used to support and execute cold email campaigns. It plays a crucial role in ensuring deliverability, tracking, and managing outbound email communications effectively.

Understanding cold email infrastructure is vital before launching campaigns, as it directly impacts deliverability. Clear comprehension helps in configuring sending domains, setting up proper authentication protocols, and optimizing technical aspects, reducing the risk of emails being marked as spam. 

A well-structured infrastructure ensures messages reach recipients' inboxes, enhancing the overall success of the campaign. Ignorance of these technical details may lead to poor deliverability, affecting sender reputation and diminishing the effectiveness of cold email outreach efforts. A strategic approach to infrastructure is essential for maintaining credibility, increasing engagement, and achieving desired outcomes in cold email campaigns.

Click here to download Email Infrastructure - A Smartlead Handbook.


As you start your cold emailing journey to supercharge your sales pipeline, remember that the right tools can be the bridge for remarkable results. Smartlead, with its master inbox, unlimited warm-ups, A/B testing, and real-time replies, is the ultimate solution to streamline your cold emailing campaigns. 

Embrace the power of Smartlead to elevate your outreach efforts and take your sales to new heights. With the right strategy and the right tools, the sky's the limit for your sales pipeline success. Make the smart choice – choose Smartlead.

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Author’s Details

Rajnish Das

Rajnish Das is an in-house writer at SmartWriter and SmartLead. She writes product-oriented, data-driven content for B2B SaaS audiences and educates them on marketing and sales topics. Her expertise includes outbound marketing techniques like cold emailing and LinkedIn outreach.


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Frequently asked questions

General Questions

What is Smartlead's cold email outreach software?

Email automation FAQs- Smartlead

Smartlead's cold email outreach tool helps businesses scale their outreach efforts seamlessly. With unlimited mailboxes, fully automated email warmup functionality, a multi-channel infrastructure, and a user-friendly unibox, it empowers users to manage their entire revenue cycle in one place. Whether you're looking to streamline cold email campaigns with automated email warmups, personalization fields, automated mailbox rotation, easy integrations, and spintax, improve productivity, or enhance scalability with subsequences based on lead’s intentions, automated replies, and full white-label experience, our cold email tool implifies it in a single solution.

How does the "unlimited mailboxes" feature benefit me?

Email automation FAQs- Smartlead

Our "unlimited mailboxes" feature allows you to expand your email communications without restrictions imposed by a mailbox limit. This means you won't be constrained by artificial caps on the number of mailboxes you can connect and use. This feature makes Smartlead the best cold email software and empowers you to reach a wider audience, engage with more potential customers, and manage diverse email campaigns effectively.

What do you mean by "unibox to handle your entire revenue cycle"?

Email automation FAQs- Smartlead

The "unibox" is one of the unique features of Smartlead cold email outreach tool, and it's a game-changer when it comes to managing your revenue cycle. The master inbox or the unibox consolidates all your outreach channels, responses, sales follow-ups, and conversions into one centralized, user-friendly mailbox.

With the "unibox," you gain the ability to:
1. Focus on closing deals: You can now say goodbye to the hassle of logging into multiple mailboxes to search for replies. The "unibox" streamlines your sales communication, allowing you to focus on what matters most—closing deals.

2. Centralized lead management: All your leads are managed from one central location, simplifying lead tracking and response management. This ensures you take advantage of every opportunity and efficiently engage with your prospects.

3. Maintain context: The "unibox" provides a 360-degree view of all your customer messages, allowing you to maintain context and deliver more personalized and effective responses.

How does Smartlead ensure my emails don't land in the spam folder?

Email automation FAQs- Smartlead

Smartlead, the best cold email marketing tool, ensures your emails reach the intended recipients' primary inbox rather than the spam folder. 

Here's how it works:
1. Our "unlimited warmups" feature is designed to build and maintain a healthy sending reputation for your cold email outreach. Instead of sending a large volume of emails all at once, which can trigger spam filters, we gradually ramp up your sending volume. This gradual approach, combined with positive email interactions, helps boost your email deliverability rates.

2. We deploy high-deliverability IP servers specific to each campaign. 

3. The ‘Warmup’ feature replicates humanized email sending patterns, spintax, and smart replies.
4. By establishing a positive sender reputation and gradually increasing the number of sent emails, Smartlead minimizes the risk of your emails being flagged as spam. This way, you can be confident that your messages will consistently land in the primary inbox, increasing the likelihood of engagement and successful communication with your recipients.

Can I integrate Smartlead with other tools I'm using?

Email automation FAQs- Smartlead

Certainly, Smartlead is designed for seamless integration with a wide range of tools and platforms. Smartlead offers integration with HubSpot, Salesforce, Pipedrive, Clay, Listkit, and more. You can leverage webhooks and APIs to integrate the tools you use. Try Now!

Email automation FAQs- Smartlead

What type of businesses sees the most success with Smartlead?

No, there are no limitations on the number of channels you can utilize with Smartlead. Our multi-channel infrastructure is designed to be limitless, allowing you to reach potential customers through multiple avenues without constraints.

This flexibility empowers you to diversify your cold email outreach efforts, connect with your audience through various communication channels, and increase your chances of conversion. Whether email, social media, SMS, or other communication methods, Smartlead's multi-channel capabilities ensure you can choose the channels that best align with your outreach strategy and business goals. This way, you can engage with your prospects effectively and maximize the impact of your email outreach.

Email automation FAQs- Smartlead

Do you provide me with lead sources?

Smartlead distinguishes itself from other cold email outreach software by focusing on limitless scalability and seamless integration. While many similar tools restrict your outreach capabilities, Smartlead offers a different approach.

Here's what makes us uniquely the best cold email software:

1. Unlimited Mailboxes: In contrast to platforms that limit mailbox usage, Smartlead provides unlimited mailboxes. This means you can expand your outreach without any arbitrary constraints.

2. Unique IP Servers: Smartlead offers unique IP servers for every campaign it sends out. 

3. Sender Reputation Protection: Smartlead protects your sender reputation by auto-moving emails from spam folders to the primary inbox. This tool uses unique identifiers to cloak all warmup emails from being recognized by automation parsers. 

4. Automated Warmup: Smartlead’s warmup functionality enhances your sender reputation and improves email deliverability by maintaining humanized email sending patterns and ramping up the sending volume. 

5. Multi-Channel Emphasis: Smartlead places a strong emphasis on multi-channel outreach. You can reach your prospects where they are with the LinkedIn outreach feature.   With Smartlead’s cold email automation software, you're always one step ahead in your outreach efforts, enjoying the freedom to scale your initiatives and seamlessly integrate with other tools—all while maintaining a focus on maximizing the impact of your outreach.

Email automation FAQs- Smartlead

How secure is my data with Smartlead?

Ensuring the security of your data is Smartlead's utmost priority. We implement robust encryption methods and stringent security measures to guarantee the continuous protection of your information. Your data's safety is paramount to us, and we are always dedicated to upholding the highest standards of security.

How can I get started with Smartlead?

Email automation FAQs- Smartlead

Getting started with Smartlead is straightforward! Just head over to our sign-up page and follow our easy step-by-step guide. If you ever have any questions or need assistance, our round-the-clock support team is ready to help, standing by to provide you with any assistance you may require. Sign Up Now!

How can I reach the Smartlead team?

Email automation FAQs- Smartlead

We're here to assist you! You can easily get in touch with our dedicated support team on chat. We strive to provide a response within 24 hours to address any inquiries or concerns you may have.

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