How to Send a Ton of Personal-Looking Emails Automatically

Nat Eliason
Sep 2, 2015 · 4 min read

When you’re promoting a new article, book, or anything else and want a bunch of people to help you out, it pays to email them and ask.

BUT emailing a bunch of people at once looks lazy (I ignore most emails I’m CC’d on) and it’s impersonal.

At the same time though… you don’t want to write 50 emails that are basically the same.

You can use a template with a service like Yesware, but that’s limited. You still have to do tons of manual entry.

Here’s the trick I figured out to send a ton of personal emails automatically.

Step One: Join Zapier

If you’re not already a Zapier user, go sign up. Good job, that was step one.

Step Two: Make an Email Template

Now, make a template for all of the personal sounding emails you’re going to send.

Leave place-markers for where the personalized info is going to go. For example:


I saw your post on ARTICLE and really enjoyed it :)

I just published something else you might like about automating your email outreach using Zapier. Here’s a link if you’re interested:

Have a great day!


Alright, template down, now step three…

Step Three: Make a Spreadsheet

Now you need a spreadsheet with all of their names, email addresses, and whatever other personal info you want to include. In this case that’s just the article.

The spreadsheet has to be formatted like this or it won’t work. You need clear headers for each column, and at least one example in each column. For example:

If you want to copy that spreadsheet, here’s a link.

The “SEND?” column is what we’ll use to tell Zapier to send the emails. Make them all “n” or whatever you want for “no” for now.

Step Four: Make Your “Zap”

A “Zap” is what Zapier calls its integrations. You’ll be making one to send all the emails.

First, go to this Zap editor and click “Use this Zap.”

Hit continue at the prompt, we already did that.

Set up your Google Docs account if you haven’t:

Select your spreadsheet, the worksheet (probably sheet 1), and then select the “send” column as your trigger.

Next, you’ll set up your Gmail account:

And then you can set up the email!

For “To” select the “email” column from docs.

Then in the Subject and Body you can put whatever you want, based on the other fields you have.

Now you can save and finish, and then test out your Zap!

I’d recommend testing it on yourself first, just to make sure everything is working. If it is, then you can go ahead and trigger all the emails to send.

All you have to do to trigger them is go back to your spreadsheet and change all the “n” entries into anything else (I usually change them to “y”).

This will trigger the Zap since it’s an “update to the spreadsheet row,” and all your emails will send!

That was easy :)

I’ve used this method to email dozens of people immediately when something launches (say, on ProductHunt).

What will you use it for?

Nat does Marketing for SumoMe. Get more awesomeness from him here.

Published in Startups, Wanderlust, and Life Hacking


The Startup

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Nat Eliason

Written by

Founder of Growth Machine, writer on all things interesting at, and co-host of the“Made You Think” podcast.

The Startup

Medium's largest active publication, followed by +565K people. Follow to join our community.

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