Cold Email: How to Write to Optimize Reply Rates - SimpleData

How to Write a Cold Email that Beat Your Best Ever Reply Rate

First off, let’s clarity, not all cold email is spam. Unlike a common misconception, cold email can be very useful in driving traffic, generating sales and building interaction.

To differentiate between cold email and spam: cold email is a conversation—a one-to-one interaction between target audience and a business organization—whereas spam is the bulk product email that forces marketing on its prospective buyers.

If you’re looking to reap the rewards from cold email, send out customized emails to prospective buyers—the ones you’ve never known or connected with.

The idea is to hook new audiences and encourage them to react.

The message should sound like you are talking to an individual and not a group of targeted people; this will separate your email from spam and will beat your best ever reply rate.

But, how to write a cold email that receives an optimal positive reply rate?

Well, we have a solution to that problem.

Follow the proven techniques or templates mentioned below while writing a cold email, to get it read or reacted upon. The below-mentioned ways share the same idea i.e. to persuade the reader to read the upcoming sentence until closure. Then, tempt him into following a call-to-action. This idea is a proven recipe to beating the best ever reply rate.

BAB: Before, After, Bridge

This persuasion technique can cast a convincing impression on the reader that encourages him to respond.

It’s all about setting the current situation and its solutions apart, where a reader is encouraged to decide whether he wants change or not. According to behavioral psychologists, the reason why this method works is because human are more likely to respond to pleasure and pain and BAB does exactly that in order to induce readers to respond.

It differentiates between current (painful) and after (pleasurable) scenarios:

Before—Your current stage, or likely stage while dealing with a problem

After—A happy scenario when the problem is solved

Bridge—How you can help them bridge the gap between before and after

You can begin by introducing the reader to their problem; then describe why they need to eliminate it or how things will change when that problem is solved. And at the end, explain how you can help them eliminate that problem with your product/idea/service.

BYAF: But You Are Free

It is noted that if you tell your prospect that they are free to do whatever and also opt out whenever they would like, then it doubles the chances of having them stay. This technique is proven to get a response from them.

When you make a request for call-to-action but also give them a choice to back out, it develops credibility. When you request for CTA and tell them – ‘but you are free’ to do what you like, they are more likely to do what you want (i.e. respond). This method is supported by 42 psychological studies conducted on more than 22,000 people.

For instance, if you want to request the reader to share your content on his social media by clicking a direct link, make sure to tell them that they are free to not do it and you’re glad that they read it this far. It will increase your chances of getting a share.

AIDA: Attraction, Interest, Desire, Action

It’s a proven technique for social media marketing and is equally beneficial for cold emailing.

AIDA stands for:





The basic idea is to hook the potential buyer, deepen his interest, then initiating a desire in him to buy from you and finally luring him to take action. If you plan your email on this technique, your email is more likely to get a reply.

PAS: Problem, Agitate, Solve

PAS is different from BAB; it’s not about differentiating between before and after scenarios. It doesn’t create a happy situation rather deepens the pain to induce CTA. As pain is even more compelling than pleasure and forces a person to react immediately.

Problem—Introduce the problem

Agitate—Tell them how it’s only going to get worse without a solution

Solve—Put your solution forward

Today, people want to avoid problems and unnecessary hassles or burdens.

So instead of showing them a life without problems, PAS focuses only on the problems and how they’re going to get worse day-by-day. Then it offers a solution followed by a CTA.

Triple S

The idea here is to keep the email short, to the point and easy to understand.

Remember, less is more and in a busy day, your prospects won’t have time to know it all in just one email. So pick a brief idea, don’t deviate and keep it simple.

Short—Keep it short (42% reply rate)

Straight-Forward—Get to the point

Simple—Keep it simple

This technique is sure to work, especially if you’re targeting a large group or audience.

As a matter of fact, shorter emails generate a quicker response. So follow the triple S and beat your best response rates.

Now that you know the various proven methods to write a successful cold email, let’s focus on points that you should keep in mind while creating a cold email, no matter which method you follow.

Here’s what to include:

  1. Your subject line should be straight-forward and honest.
  2. Also, include a link to unsubscribe, cold emails aren’t forced.
  3. Present yourself accurately.
  4. Your business address should be present.
  5. Label the main components, like ad or coupon.

Cold emails show potential buyers exactly what they are looking for. Personalized emails help in building interaction and are written to fit individual needs as receivers are more likely to connect with the information that matches their interests. Cold emails are aimed at forging new relationships with potential buyers and connecting with unknown targets.

Here are a few things to keep in mind while writing a personalized email to generate better responses:

Be Smart When Writing A Personalized Cold Mail

Write your cold email in a simple, yet attractive manner

  • Highlighting the key benefits, especially in initial outreach could be the leg-up you need to get a reply from someone who might otherwise ignore you.
  • Check your prospect’s Google, Twitter and public Facebook profiles for shared backgrounds, hobbies, dislikes etc. For a wide group of audience, you can simply check Analytics to find out what interests them.
  • It should appear that you are genuine and professional and have brought the best to them.
  • Try to send your personalized email at a specific time that will have the most impact because your customers might be early morning readers or some might respond on a Friday afternoon.

Optimized Emails Provide Better Conversion Rates

  • Emails should be optimized according to the prospects so that they don’t go unread unlike a few cold emails.
    Author Adam Grant believes that “we bond when we share uncommon commonalities, which allow us to feel that we fit in and stand out in the same time”.Optimized emails help improve the overall effectiveness of an email.
  • The prospect should be clear so that one can optimize the cold emails accordingly with some common ground. Try to make your email unique by optimizing it with what you can because this will make your email more appealing and worth reading.


Include a Clear Call-To-Action For A 52% Reply Rate

  • The main motive of your email should be to build brand awareness. Whatever action you need the reader of your email to perform it should be clearly mentioned within the email and it should be a short as well.A basic example of a CTA would be SPAM because all SPAMs are stuffed with CTAs that urge the user to visit a website.

While writing a personalized cold email, keep the aforementioned tips in mind.

These things will have a huge impact on the readers and will compel them to react. Also, it’s very important to select the persuasion techniques wisely.

Keep your target audience and their interests in mind.

Experiment if you don’t succeed the first time and know what works the best for your business. The right technique might just double the chances of receiving a lead through cold emailing so research well and make the best out of the techniques mentioned above.

By selecting the right technique and keeping the above-stated tips in mind, you can create a cold email that makes for a successful outreach. If done correctly, cold emailing could become your business’s favorite marketing weapon to connect with potential buyers. Just put a little bit of identity and realness into your emails and watch your business grow.


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