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Cold emailing for a job: 19 tactics and templates

In crazy competition, emailing companies for jobs might be a more effective job-hunting tactic than just applying. 

It takes more time, in return though, you will get more attention to your application, increasing your chances for an interview. Proactively reaching potential employers, you show your soft and hard skills (for positions such as sales and writing). 

There are downsides to the approach too. You’ve probably already experienced that cold emails are often ignored. We are here to explain how to make your endeavors worth the effort.

It makes sense to use the cold emails for jobs tactic if:

  1. Your niche and (or) job is very competitive. It is typically the case for overcrowded markets, juniors, and roles with a low barrier of entry. If you are a data scientist in the web3 industry, you are probably not in this pool :)

  2. You apply to highly competitive positions such as FAANG-type jobs. 

  3. The founder is the only hiring person. They have little time and often don’t review applications on job boards and even their websites. 

  4. You want to speed up the hiring process. If you send a cold email to a hiring manager, you will know faster if you are the person they are looking for. Contacting recruiters and employees will direct more attention to your application.

  5. You have enough time to research and craft messages. 

  6. The company(ies) is your dream opportunity.

Organizing the emailing companies for jobs process

Whom to reach

In case the position has a lot of applicants and the company is really popular, we recommend reaching potential colleagues first. 

Otherwise, head to a hiring manager. 

If you can’t find the right person — start by writing a cold email to a recruiter. 

You can also reach out to several employees at once or if somebody ignores you, proceed with another person.

Unearth the relevant employee to send a cold email for a job

First of all, head to a company website and look for the Team or About us section. There might be roles and contacts. From my experience, though, far from all companies provide detailed info.

In case such section is missing, or you haven’t found the right person in the list. Use the option below. 

Many job seekers use the GetProspect B2B database to safely search for relevant people, their valid professional emails, and other company and employee details. 

What about LinkedIn? It has one main disadvantage — once you start actively searching and reviewing profiles that aren’t your contacts, you are at risk of being blocked. This is one of the reasons our users were actively switching to our database the previous year. 

If the company has up to 100 employees, you will easily find relevant employees for sending a cold email for a job by keyword or position. If there are more employees — read on.

You can also search by contact keywords if you can’t find potential colleagues and a hiring manager. The filter scan employees’ name, position, location, summary, headquarters, industry and might direct you to related roles. 

Companies with 100+ employees have several recruiters, there are a few managers in the department you plan to join. 

We recommend paying attention to who published the job on LinkedIn or other job boards to find the right employees. If there is no data, in your email to an HR manager or recruiter — ask if they are working with the position. Check the cold email for a job template in the last section. 

The task is more challenging in the case of hiring managers. Every company has a unique structure and role naming. You can again ask a recruiter or reach out to potential team members.

Find their contact information

Once you have the names of the employees, you can locate their contact to send emails for jobs. If there is no data on the website, use an email finder to get the correct contacts. 

In case you find the employees in B2B database, you can just click the envelope and get an email. 

If you find the employee name somewhere else, head to the Enrich section and put the person name and company domain name to find email address

Sending cold emails for multiple jobs

In case you plan a large-scale job hunting, it is a good idea to think about automating the process with email outreach tools. For example, you plan to outreach 10-50 companies per day. You may also want to set up automatic follow-ups, given that you don’t get a reply in several days.

Assuming that you are looking for a job quite passively, manual cold emailing for a job will be enough. Let’s say you are able to apply to 5 jobs a week. In this case, you will spend more time setting the automation than simply pasting and sending. 

Collect employer information in one place

If you apply actively, we’d advise you to utilize a tool that will organize all the application process. For example, Teal. It is a kind of CRM for job seekers.

If you cold email for a job a few times a week or month, it will be enough to start with Notion or another knowledge management system. 

How to write an email to a potential employer: general tips

  • Step 1. Research the company
  • Step 2. Research the employee
  • Step 3. Be creative in the subject line and email opener
  • Step 4. Properly structure your cold email for a job

Step 1. Research the company. With more popular positions, you probably should go deeper and with less — scroll through the website will be enough. Besides checking their services and last news, research may also include: 

  • analyzing LinkedIn company profile and their team. E.g. check the churn in relevant departments. 

  • googling mentions on third-party websites. E.g. «getprospect -site:getprospect.com».

  • researching feedback on Reddit and review websites as Capterra and G2.

  • requesting the online product demo.

  • Advanced research to send a cold email for a job: analyzing the market and business model, reading the company annual report. Though it is mostly related to C-level and director roles.

  • Professional research — if you apply for a marketing role you can check how content is performing using Ahrefs. And if you apply for an engineering position, you can check the technologies used

Tip: see technologies used by a company right on their website
Use GetProspect chrome extension to discover company software

Deep analysis allows you discern how you can help (which will leave you out of competition) the company; you will know what questions to ask during the interview process.

Step 2. Research the employee you plan to cold email for a job. Look through their social media profiles — education, work and volunteering experience, groups, likes, comments, posts — to know what they care about. You may uncover commonalities to establish credibility or something you are genuinely excited about to compliment them in an email. 

Step 3. Subject line and email opener. The part is especially important when you apply to highly competitive positions. Such recruiters and hiring managers get tons of messages. You should catch their attention so they will open and read your email. 

Check the subject line and opener tactics for inspiration. The content pieces are prepared for sales cases, but when sending a cold email for a job, you sell yourself, so most of them can be used as a template.

In other cases, you may be just clear: pointing position and one of your achievements or credibility facts. For instance:

«Full-stack developer — MIT Graduate»

«Marketing manager, Ex-Webflow»  

Step 4. Cold email for a job structure. Typical advice is to have a short email. At the same time, if you did great research and have something to say (not fluff!), you can prepare several solid paragraphs of text. 

You will start with the opener to engage the recipient in reading and state what you want from them. Then you will put why you are worth joining the team — bullet points of your most suitable achievements. Explain why you like the company and want to join it. Finish the email again with the main request you mentioned in the beginning. 

Leverage your research above to make your cold email job inquiry sample impossible to ignore. 

Aim to avoid several requests or Call-to-actions per one message. It may confuse the reader. 

How to cold email a hiring manager

  • Tip 1. Base your pitch on what a manager values in work
  • Tip 2. Showcase relevant cases with details you are proud of
  • Tip 3. Reach in less busy hours

Tip 1. Base your pitch on what a manager personally values and finds important in work. You can make assumptions when researching them on the web, and checking their interviews.

Tip 2. Sending a cold email to the hiring manager, showcase a few cases with technical details you are proud of. 

Tip 3. Reach in less busy hours. Hiring managers are engaged with their main tasks during the day and might miss your message. Test various times: early morning, late afternoon, even weekends. For instance, I got a reply from a founder on Saturday.

How to write a cold email for a job to a recruiter

  • Tip 1. Use job description keywords in your pitch
  • Tip 2. Be prepared with a strong career story
  • Tip 3. Ask if they are working with the position
  • Tip 4. Reach them via various mediums

Tip 1. Take the job description, highlight keywords, and use them to describe yourself in your email. They have plenty of resumes and emails, and they aren’t experts in your niche. So they just check if you meet a hiring manager's requirements. 

Tip 2. Don’t underestimate relationships with a recruiter. They will present you to a hiring manager. So when sending a cold email to a recruiter, be prepared with a strong career story and check their social media for personalizing outreach. Moreover, they might be interested in offering you similar opps in the future. 

Tip 3. Ask if they are working with the position. If they direct you to their colleague, mention in a new email that the first recruiter referred you. 

Tip 4. Reach them via various mediums because your message may be lost. At least connect and message on LinkedIn and send an email. 

What to say to a potential employer in an email: templates

  • Position you apply to

  • Your relevant experience

  • Key achievements in numbers

  • Why you want to join their team  

This template is a good fit for outreaching founders and hiring managers. 

More templates of cold email job inquiries

  • Case 1. A company doesn’t have any relevant job opportunities
  • Case 2. You’ve applied for a job
  • Case 3. The job posting is older than two weeks
  • Case 4. Asking employees for referrals

Case 1. A company doesn’t have any relevant job opportunities

You found a dream company that matches your values, you see ways how you can contribute, and you are fascinated with the team members. Let them know you are interested in joining them and show why you might be a fit. 

First, they may haven’t published some roles. Second, starting and maintaining communication with them lets you stay on top of their minds when they scale the team.

How to email a hiring manager:

«Hi! When I stumbled across your {e.g. specific content project}, I was impressed by how you did {this} and {that}. It feels like you value {authenticity} and {fun}. As I also do I decided to reach you about possible ways of being a part of something great as {company name}.

Few words about me:

{bullet points about your main qualitative and quantitative achievements related to the role}

  • X years in the niche

  • X university graduate

  • X years in {top company}

  • Grew traffic by X

  • Increased revenue by X

I attach my resume and portfolio for detailed information.

Would you be open for a networking call next week? So we can get to know each other better and discuss possible collaboration. If you don’t see any ways to work together, just let’s keep in touch.

Regards, {your name}

{your LinkedIn, phone number}»

If, after the cold call email for job opportunities, they refuse to have a chat with you, you can proceed with questions about why you might not be a fit or why they don’t need the role in general. 

In case they are interested in you but don’t plan to scale the team in the near future, try to remain visible to them. You can comment on their posts or share and discuss intriguing industry materials.

Case 2. You’ve applied for a job

You probably remember cases when you were left without any response after your application. It often happens when there are hundreds of qualified applicants. 

Cold email job inquiries can make you more noticeable to a recruiter. While contacting hiring managers directly will help you understand whether you meet their expectations faster and save you weeks. 

Cold emails accompanying job application also allows you to bypass the resume robot screening and being assessed by a real human. Sometimes you can receive rejections just because you don’t put certain keywords or your resume doesn’t fit the required format. 

In addition to the email, connect with them on LinkedIn.  

Job opportunity email template to a hiring manager:

«Hi! I am a fan of your TickTocks / I read your recent article and absolutely agreed with your position {another compliment} :) I saw you are looking for a {position} and would love to work with such a like-minded person! 

Few words about my experience: {key achievements showing why you are a perfect fit}. I have experience in your niche, and I really want to return to the unusual challenges it offers. {other reasons why you want to join the company}

Do you think I might be a fit?

‍Best, {Your Name}.»

Cold email template for a job to a recruiter: 

First email.

«Hi! ‍Would be happy to work with AIESEC alumnus {your commonality, compliment, or any other personalized intro}.

I recently applied for the {position} at {Company}. Are you the right person to reach out to about the role? If it isn’t the case, I would be happy if you direct me to the right person».

Second email. If they respond «yes» go ahead with the second cold email for a job, if they point to another recruiter, contact them with the same content + add the personalization as in the first email above. 

«Cool! I just want to apply more personally. 

Few words about my experience: {key achievements showing why you are a perfect fit + infuse keywords from the job posting}. Furthermore, I think I'd fit right in with the [adjective] culture of the company.

Would be happy to hear about the next hiring step :)

‍Best, {Your Name}.»

Case 3. The job posting is older than 2 weeks

Generally, it doesn’t make sense to apply for a job after 2+ weeks from posting. Most likely, they keep the posting just in case nobody of the top candidates won’t qualify in the end. They also may simply didn’t make it to remove the open position. 

At the same time, if you badly liked the company and the role, you can try reaching out directly to the recruiter or hiring manager. You can skip the application process and cold emailing for a job. It will save you time if they are already made their choice and give you a chance to be the one that will be a more suitable candidate.

Email template to a hiring manager:

«Hi! Have you found somebody for the position? {a few sentences about why you are a perfect fit with numbers and cases} I have a fresh experience with influencers and B2B social media strategies. And also have quite a deep 2-year experience with high-tech topics such as software development and infosec. Here is my resume and portfolio to know more. Regards, {your name}».

Sample cold email for a job to a recruiter:

«Hi! Are you the right person to reach out to about the position? Is the position still open? {key achievements showing why you are a perfect fit + infuse keywords from the job posting}. I have 5 years in the health industry. Led SEO optimization that grew traffic by X. Managed a team of 5. Here is my resume and portfolio to know more. Regards, {your name}» 

Case 4. Asking employees for referrals

Sending a cold email for a job to a potential team member or, ideally, a person in the same role you applied to is worthwhile from several perspectives:

  • First, they are likely less overwhelmed with emails than hiring managers and recruiters. So you have more chances to get a reply and be noticed. 

  • Second, they are motivated to recommend you since they will get a referral bonus. 

  • Third, you can ask questions about the company and job specifics and be more equipped for future interviews

«Hey! I’m planning to join {company name} {department} team. Are you open to having a quick chat about your work there? 

Why you might be interested in having a talk with me: {a few sentences with your best achievements}

If you find me a solid candidate, we can both benefit from your referral :)

Best, {your name}» 

Summary

  • Don’t limit your cold emailing for job efforts to recruiters and hiring managers. Contact other team members to get referrals

  • Leverage sales email tips, as you actually selling yourself

  • Dedicate time to finding the relevant person and their actual emails

  • If you plan active job hunting, set up automated email outreach and have a system of all companies info and statuses

  • Build your message upon company and recipient research

  • Leverage sales email tips, as you actually selling yourself

  • Contact dream companies even if they don’t have roles matching your skillset