The Ultimate Guide to Hacking Cold Emails

  1. How to find companies that are relevant to problem you wish to validate?
  2. How to find the relevant persona in that company (name + email)?
  3. How to draft an appealing cold email?
  4. The importance of following up on a cold email.

Lets Go!

1. How to Find Relevant Companies
VC portfolio
Google search results

2. How to Find a Relevant Persona in the Company

Advanced LinkedIn search
The Team

3. How to Find the Persona’s Email Address

Find That Lead
Email Hunter

4. How to Validate an Email Address

Rapportive was able to validate my email address by MailTrack
Rapportive can’t validate email addresses that were not added to the LinkedIn account
  • Google “@domain”. You may find the email address of other employees and match the email format.
  • Try to Google the name and review the results
  • Look for blog posts
  • Look for YouTube videos
  • Look for slideshare slides
  • Look for GitHub projects
  • Look for tweets (see the next section)
  • Try engaging via twitter. Follow the person, commant, Love his tweets. Then try sending a tweet with your ask
  • Try to find another contact in that company
  • If it still doesn’t work — Move on. Look for someone else or for another company

5. How to Draft a Cold Email

  1. Keep it short! No one likes reading long emails from strangers.
  2. Be specific. Explain exactly what are you looking for and what do you want.
  3. Make it personal. Show them that there is a real person behind that email, who made a research and some homework before he reached out.
  1. Subject Line:
  • The more specific and to the point, the better. For example:
    Subject: Node.js remote debugging at [company name]
    will probably work better than
    Subject: Would love your feedback
  • Mentioning the person’s name in the title is also something that worked out well for me (= better response rate). For example:
    Subject: John, maybe [my company name] can solve your [problem]
  • Remember that you’re emailing a person! Try to refer to something they wrote/shared or a speech they made, etc. It shows that you spent some time doing a research and personalized the email, rather than spamming.
  • If you got his/her email address from a referral, this is the place to mention it.
  • You may also want to mention that you’re contacting him/her because you realize they are experts in their domain. Wouldn’t you be curious to read further if someone you don’t know just said you’re an expert? I know I would.

Email Template Example

6. The Importance of Email Tracking

  1. If you don’t have the premium account, you have a limited amount of inmail messages. even with the premium account, you’re limited to ~15 emails
  2. Analytics! If you can measure it, you can improve it.
    Knowing whether the recipient has opened the message you sent, or clicked on a link you added to the message, will help you determine what should be your next step, for example, when to send a follow-up email.

Outlook Tracking Tool — HubSpot Sales

HubSpot Sales tracking
HubSpot Sales template

Gmail Tracking Tools


7. Follow up Email

Follow up Guidelines

  • Email analytics improves follow up results. If you’re able to measure your email performance, then you can do a targeted follow up, because your contacts will be segmented. Those who didn’t open, those who opened but didn’t reply or clicked, etc. A different follow up is required to each segment.
  • The follow up email should be shorter than the original — don’t provide more info and don’t follow up with attachments or links.
  • Personal follow up shows that your email was not a spam. Look for something personal, and use it in the email opening. For example:
    I know you were probably busy at [conference name] last week
  • DON’T CC anyone.

Follow up Templates

8. A/B Test As Much As Possible

  • Send email template to group A
  • Send email template to group B, with ONE modification. It can be a slightly changed subject line, or a completely different one. It can be a different email opening, etc.
  • Measure which variation converted better (open rate / response rate).
  • Repeat


  • Is that an email you would reply to?
  • Would you meet that person? Does he offer something that is worthwhile for you?
  • Did it take you more than 30sec to read it? if so, it’s too long!
  • Is it a personal email? Or can the recipient feel you’re sending the same email to a bunch of other people?
  • Is there a clear ask at the end?

Resources that inspired me

  1. 5 Awful First Sentences That Are Killing Your Outreach EmailsAja Frost, HubSpot
  2. The cold emails that got me meetings at Twitter, LinkedIn and GitHubIris Shoor
  3. 6 Steps to Writing Great Cold Emailsnoah kagan
  4. 6 Common Email Mistakes That Are Ruining Your Follow-Up EmailsElise Musumano, Yesware

PS — I have 2 simple asks for YOU

  1. Did you like this post? Please click the 👏 below to spread the love and help more people find it :)
  2. Check out my website to read more about Product Management and Innovation:



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Tal Atzmon

Tal Atzmon


Passionate Product guy | Innovation Expert | Public Speaker | Entrepreneur. Lives and works @ Tel Aviv, the Startup Nation.