4 Mistakes 95% of Salespeople Make With Cold Emails

Here at Predictable Revenue, we collect a lot of incoming cold emails and send each other the best and worst examples to discuss. Some of the cold emails I get make it painfully obvious that the salesperson has no idea who I am or what the company I work for does. 

The biggest challenge we all face in B2B outbound sales is reaching the right person. Rather than wasting time, it’s all about using time wisely. This means getting in touch with the right person and not spending time on those who can’t move your offer forward. Your focus should be on the person who can make a buying decision and who knows the value of the service you’re offering. That person will get what you’re saying, becoming a new lead and even a closed sale.


The perfect cold email generates leads, while more haphazard ones will leave you with a declining open rate and in extreme cases, a tarnished reputation. But you’re not the only one missing a great opportunity—95% of salespeople all make the same cold emailing mistakes.

To help you become part of the 5%, we’ve compiled a list of the most common mistakes so you can avoid them and focus on closing your next sale.

Why No One Is Responding

  1. Your email is too long – Remember the person you are trying to reach likely doesn’t have that much spare time in their workday. Along with being in a constant time crunch, their inbox is probably always on the rise. Make it easy for them to scan the email and instantly know within seconds what you are offering—a concise subject line can really help here. Avoid writing anything over 5 sentences. Rather, stick between 2 to 4 sentences and only share the key facts.
  1. Your information is overwhelming – Make reading your message easy. Your product could be amazing, but if you clutter your email and highlight too many value propositions or features, the person reading will be overwhelmed. Be clear and concise and choose the most important things to highlight. Remember, you can switch up your value propositions based on the client—you want to choose messaging that is most applicable to them.
  1. Your focus is you (not them) – The point of cold emailing someone is to convince them to buy your product, right? This means you need to focus on the customer and not yourself. Don’t list the ways your company is amazing; instead, figure out what features would matter most them. Get in their heads. Ask yourself, “What can my company do to make their lives easier? How can my company’s product help them be more productive or increase revenue?” Whatever the answers may be, focus on the value for the customer.
  1. Your tone is overproduced – Make your email authentic. Email templates that look too fancy or overly modern end up just feeling fake and impersonal. The last thing you’d ever want is for someone to consider your email spam. This is why it’s really important to ensure your email feels human, not like something mass-produced.

Tips for Improving Your Cold Emails

Now that you have an understanding of the mistakes to avoid, here are a few ways to ensure that your perfectly crafted cold email gets a response.

  • Be Concise – Keep things as simple as you can. Be concise, clear and effective in order to make things easier for your prospective client. Any excitement or intrigue can instead be put in the subject line of your email, which should aim to capture the reader. Remember this is the first thing that people read so it should stand out to and be actionable enough to encourage the reader to open your email.
  • Be Personal – No one likes talking to a robot, so make sure your tone is casual but still professional. Along with keeping the tone true to you and your company, ensure further personalization by following a “less is more” strategy; since you’re more likely to get your IP address blacklisted if you send too many emails, we recommend sending around 25-50 emails per day per outbound business development person.
  • Be Direct – Make sure you include some sort of enticing call-to-action in your email. Give your readers a reason to respond that makes you stand out from the other emails flooding their inbox.

If you avoid these common mistakes and include the above recommendations, your open rate will grow—and so will your list of leads.

Need help generating more quality sales leads? Let’s talk, book a free discovery call!


4 thoughts on “4 Mistakes 95% of Salespeople Make With Cold Emails

  1. Spot on Sabrina & Alec, great post. You have to put yourself in your prospect’s place-do you think they would take the time to read or respond to your email?

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