5 Instant Fixes for Your Struggling Cold Email Campaigns

Created On
October 13, 2023
Instant Fixes for Your Struggling Cold Email Campaigns

No matter how much you prepare, cold emails are like shooting in the dark sometimes. After all, you are sending emails to people who have probably never heard of you or your product. 

This is why cold email campaigns have a high chances of performing below your expectations. The good part is you’re not the only one struggling.

FYI, on average, only 8.5% of emails get replies. The rest of the cold emails are ignored in inboxes or spam folders. 

But you’ve nothing to worry about. There are instant fixes that can save your struggling cold email campaigns. 

Let’s dive in.

#1 Crosscheck Your Lead List

When your cold email campaign isn't doing well, it often comes down to one simple thing: you might be reaching out to the wrong people

It can cause a bunch of problems, like high bounce rates and low response rates. 

Imagine you're trying to sell your SaaS product, and you email the HR—that's not helpful at all. So, before sending out any more emails, ensure they're going to the right people who match your ideal customer profile. Mention their company and role to show you've done your homework.

But, again, knowing your ICP is just the start. What's even more crucial is to spot "buyer signals." These signals show that someone might be ready to buy what you're selling. To boost your campaign, reach out to leads who are showing these signals, like experiencing the problems your product can solve.

In a nutshell, the first thing to do to rescue your struggling cold email campaign is to check if you're emailing the right people interested in your offering. By confirming your email list and targeting the right crowd, you're giving your campaign an instant boost.

#2 Audit Email Content 

Cold email campaigns often perform poorly due to common content mistakes that trigger spam filters, create disinterest, or appear overly salesy. 

To revamp your outreach strategy, it's essential to scrutinize your email content. Here's a checklist of issues that might plague your emails:

  • Spam-triggering Subject Lines: Ensure your subject lines are not overly promotional, vague, or deceptive. Instead, craft subject lines that pique curiosity or address specific pain points.
    For instance:
    Generic ❌      "Amazing SaaS Solution Inside"
    Improved✅   "{Competitor} achieved 60% reply rate with our SaaS tool"

  • Generic Opening Lines: Steer clear of clichéd openers like "I hope this email finds you well." Start with something more engaging and tailored to your audience. Try:
    Generic ❌     "I wanted to introduce our product."
    Improved✅   "I noticed your expertise in SaaS, and I have a unique proposition for you."
  • Lengthy, Sales-y Email Body: Avoid bombarding recipients with a laundry list of product features and benefits. Instead, focus on initiating a genuine conversation. Ask a question or share a relevant insight.
  • Lack of Personalization: Generic emails that don't address the recipient by name or reference their specific needs can turn prospects off.
  • Overuse of Buzzwords: Too many buzzwords and jargon can make your email sound insincere and automated.
  • Image-Based Content: If you are targeting a B2B audience, never send image-based emails. Always go with plain text. 

Here’s an example of a cold email template:

Hi [Recipient's Name],

I've been following your work in the SaaS industry and noticed your knack for effective outreach. Our tool can help you personalize outreach at scale without spending hours in manual research. 

Interested in a quick demo to see how?

Best regards,

[Your Name]

#3 Optimize Send Timing

Timing is everything for cold email campaigns. The reason behind your struggling email campaigns can be the wrong send timing. 

Statistics say cold emails perform the best when sent on Mondays and Tuesdays between 1 to 3 pm.

But it might not work for everybody. For instance, if your target audience isn’t office goers, sending emails on Mondays and Tuesdays may not work the best. 

So, let's talk about how you can the best send timing for your cold email campaigns.

  • Know Your Audience: First things first, get to know your audience. Think about where they are, what they're up to, and their daily habits and change your campaign send timing accordingly. 
  • Tools Are Your Friends: Tools like Smartlead can be a real game-changer. They let you conduct A/B tests, which are like trial and error sessions to refine your timing. 
  • Experiment a Bit: Don't be afraid to mix things up. Try sending your emails at different times and on different days. See when your audience is most active and engaged. Smartlead and similar tools will give you valuable insights to help you make the right call.

By getting your timing right, you increase the chances of your emails being seen and acted upon. It's all about connecting with your audience when they're most receptive. So, go ahead and fine-tune your email send timing, and watch your cold email campaign's performance soar.

#4 Follow Up

Why do most cold email campaigns underperform? 

One major reason is the absence of follow-up emails. You might have crafted a killer subject line and a captivating opening, but sometimes, all your prospects need a nudge – or several.

Picture this: Nearly 80% of sales occur after the fifth follow-up email. That's right, your initial email might not work wonders, and that's perfectly normal. It's often the persistence in follow-ups that can transform your campaign's performance.

Understanding the importance of follow-ups is crucial. It might take more than five emails to get a response. Don't be disheartened if your first attempt falls on deaf ears. Keep those follow-ups coming.

But, how? 

When launching your cold email campaign, don't leave the follow-ups to chance. Create a well-thought-out email sequence with 4 to 5 follow-up emails. You can easily manage this with a tool like Smartlead, which allows you to schedule a series of follow-up emails right within your campaign sequence.

For an even more potent impact, use templates and consider crafting sub-sequences for behavior-based email sequences with Smartlead. By tailoring your follow-ups to your recipients' actions and responses, you can significantly boost your campaign's efficacy.

Note: Always stop sending emails to recipients who want to unsubscribe.

#5 Run a Technical Check-Up

While your cold email campaign's success largely depends on your outreach strategy and messaging, overlooking the technical aspects can result in low reply and high bounce rates. 

Here's a checklist of technical aspects that can fix your cold email campaign:

Custom Domain Tracking

Cross-check if you’ve correctly set up custom domain tracking for your campaign mailboxes. If not, it may result in inaccurate data tracking of your ongoing campaign and show you miscalculated analytics. 

Mind Your Links

The number of links within your email copy matters. An excessive amount can raise red flags with spam filters, potentially relegating your messages to the dreaded spam folder.

So, if your campaign isn’t bringing results, check the number of links in the email. 

Check SPF/DKIM/DMARC Protocols

These abbreviations stand for Implement Sender Policy Framework (SPF), DomainKeys Identified Mail (DKIM), and Domain-based Message Authentication, Reporting, and Conformance (DMARC). 

These protocols authenticate your emails, confirming their legitimacy and reducing the chances of them being marked as spam.

So, always always check these protocols. 

Check for Blacklisting

It's crucial to verify that your domain hasn't been blacklisted in the past. Various online tools are available to help you with this. If your domain is found on a blacklist, take immediate steps to resolve the issue before sending any more emails.

Read UCEPROTECTL3 Blacklist to learn why your IP/domain has been blacklisted and its possible solution. 

Caution with Self-Sending

Avoid sending emails from your own address to the same email domain. For example, sending an email from "you@yourdomain.com" to "you@yourdomain.com" may trigger spam filters. Instead, use alternative email addresses for testing and outreach.

A comprehensive technical check-up can fix your cold email campaign instantly.


if you're struggling with your cold email campaigns, the five instant fixes discussed above can help you turn the tide. However, before implementing these strategies, I strongly recommend running a technical check-up on your campaign to uncover and resolve any hidden issues.

In case you're battling deliverability problems, try Smartlead. It’s built focusing on cold email deliverability.

Plus, with Smartlead, the founder and customer support team are always one step forward to help you out with ANY challenges regarding cold email campaigns.  

Sounds too good to be true? Check out this review. 

What’s a Rich Text element?

The rich text element allows you to create and format headings, paragraphs, blockquotes, images, and video all in one place instead of having to add and format them individually. Just double-click and easily create content.

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Static and dynamic content editing

A rich text element can be used with static or dynamic content. For static content, just drop it into any page and begin editing. For dynamic content, add a rich text field to any collection and then connect a rich text element to that field in the settings panel. Voila!

How to customize formatting for each rich text

Headings, paragraphs, blockquotes, figures, images, and figure captions can all be styled after a class is added to the rich text element using the "When inside of" nested selector system.

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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Active leads are the contacts you upload in Smartlead, similar to contacts in HubSpot; if you upload 1000 leads to a campaign, they are considered 1000 active leads. If you upload similar leads to a new campaign, they are not considered a “new active lead” as they already exist in our system.

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Do you offer guides and articles on succeeding with cold emails?

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Absolutely, one of our most popular guides can be found right here. It's been used by a large percentage of users to go from zero to cold emailing experts. Covering all topics from email infrastructure to copywriting and lead sourcing.

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