Look, I’ve been doing this sales thing for a long time, so I've seen firsthand how cutthroat the industry can be. It's no secret that some people use "tricks" or "hacks" that blur the line between being ethical and spammy in an effort to stay ahead of the competition.

However, you need to remember that sales is not just about hitting targets and closing deals (I mean, that’s the ultimate goal!), but it’s also about building lasting relationships with clients.

So in this article, I'm going to share 10 of my top cold email tricks that are not only effective but also ethical.

10 Cold Email Tricks Used by Top Performers

Grab a hot cup of coffee (or a cold beer), and let’s dive right into this!

1) Try Some Roleplay in Your Cold Emails

Roleplay isn't just for spicing up your love life or LARPing - it can also be a highly effective technique for making your cold emails stand out. By taking on an alternate persona, you can add some humor and personality to your message and make a lasting impression on the recipient.

For example, you could pretend to be a detective, journalist, or superhero, or pretend you're in the world of your favorite TV show/movie– depending on the context of your email.

The key is to have fun with it and to make sure that your roleplay is relevant and adds value to your message—bonus points if you’ve done your prospecting right and your target shares the interest.

Here’s what it looks like in action:

Subject: Owl Post for [First Name]!

Greetings [First Name],

I hope this missive finds you well and untroubled by any pesky Nargles. I am [Your Name], a master of divination and ancient magical arts. My tea leaves showed me [Their Company] needs [specific product or service] because of [Pain Points/Challenges]

At [Your Company], we've helped businesses like [Previous Clients] achieve [Desired Outcome].

Our team of experts, like Dumbledore's Army, is ready to take on any challenge. I believe that together, we could create some magic and unlock the full potential of your business.

If you're interested, let's meet at the Three Broomsticks in Hogsmeade for a butterbeer (or we can have a quick chat on the phone like Muggles).


[Your Signature]

Obviously, don’t overdo it, and make sure the recipient will be cool with it. Typically, I’ll try things like these with warm leads who engaged with my funny and meme-ish content in the past.

2) My Fave Cold Email Trick? Leveraging the Tech They’re Using

Personalization is a must for cold emails, and leveraging the technology your prospects are using can make your cold email stand out. By understanding your prospect's tech stack, you can adapt your message to their needs and increase the chances of getting a response.

Here’s an example from Andre Hakal on Twitter– if you work with eCommerce brands, research which email marketing tools they use. If you find that many of them use Klaviyo, for example, use this information to your advantage.

Target those specific brands in your outreach and tailor your message to their use of Klaviyo. It shows you’ve done your research – plus, you can tap into their frustrations with the existing vendor.

3) Targeting the Right Sub-Niche

When it comes to cold emailing, targeting a specific sub-niche can be a game-changer. It allows you to tailor your message to your prospect's unique interests and needs, making it more personalized.

This is another tip I got from Andre. In his example, he talks about a women’s necklace brand, where they can niche down and target millennials.

Regardless of your industry or niche, you can find ways to target specific customers based on demographics, needs, or preferences. What matters is not talking about a generic solution in your cold email, but a specific one that feels tailored to the lead’s niche and requirements.

4) Use Copywriting Techniques to Spice up Your Cold Emails

Copywriting techniques aren't just for clever ads. You can incorporate them into your cold emails to make them more persuasive and effective. Here are a few methods to consider:

  • AIDA: Grab their (A)ttention, spark their (I)nterest, create (D)esire, and end with a clear call-to-(A)ction. This classic formula works like a charm for cold emails.
  • SAS (Star-Arch-Success): Connect with your prospect through a story, show them that you understand their pain points, offer a solution, and demonstrate how your product or service can lead to success.
  • BAB: Take them from where they are (before), show them the possibilities (after), and bridge the gap with your product or service.
  • PAS (Problem-Agitate-Solve): Address their problem, agitate it to make them feel the pain, and then offer a solution that will solve their problem.
  • 4 C's: Write your email to be Clear, Compelling, Concise, and add some evidence or social proof for Credibility. A 5th “C” I’d like to add is to make it Conversational so it’s more relatable.

I’ve already created a resource with templates for most of these, but here’s one for the 4 C’s that isn’t in my big list of killer cold email templates.

4 C’s Cold Email Copywriting Trick

Subject: Increase Your Sales with [Your Product/Service]

Hi [First Name],

Are you struggling to increase your sales and revenue? I understand how frustrating that can be. That's why I wanted to reach out and introduce you to [Your Product/Service], which has helped many businesses like yours.

Clear: Our product/service is designed to [describe the main benefit or solution you offer]. We use [method/technology/strategy] to achieve this goal, which has proven to be effective for businesses like yours.

Compelling: [Give an example or case study of how your product/service helped a similar business. Make it clear why your solution is unique and stands out.]

Concise: I won't take up too much of your time. Our [Product/Service] can be implemented quickly and easily, with minimal disruption to your business.

Credibility: [Mention any awards, recognitions, or endorsements your product/service has received. You can also mention the number of businesses that have successfully used your product/service.]

Let's schedule a quick call to discuss how [Product/Service] can help increase your sales and revenue. Please let me know a date and time that works best for you.

Best regards,

[Your Name]

5) Reel’em in with Emotional Hooks

Have you ever found yourself tearing up while reading a gripping novel? It’s not magic – it’s science. The author used emotional hooks to pull you in and keep you engaged.

But did you know that you can also use this technique in your cold emails to connect with your prospects on a deeper level?

Now, before you dismiss this as some sketchy marketing tactic– let me be clear: we're not talking about making up sob stories to sell snake oil.

Rather, we're talking about using emotional hooks ethically to build trust, establish rapport, and ultimately drive action.

Here are some ways to incorporate emotional hooks into your cold emails:

  • Identify your prospect's pain points and show empathy.
  • Use storytelling to make your message more relatable and memorable.
  • Use social proof to demonstrate how your product or service has helped others like them.
  • Create a sense of urgency by highlighting the consequences of inaction.
  • Offer a solution that addresses their specific needs and desires.

Remember, the goal is not to manipulate your prospects into buying something they don't need or want. Rather, it's about building genuine connections and offering value that solves their problems.

6) The Single Sentence Approach to Cold Email

Have you ever heard the saying: "Less is more"? This is especially true when it comes to cold emailing.

Sometimes, all it takes is a single sentence to get your point across and pique your prospect's interest. The beauty of this approach is that it allows you to be concise while still conveying the value proposition of your product or service.

Here are some examples of winning single-sentence cold emails:

Subject Line: Quick Question, [First Name].

Hey [First Name], we've developed a tool that increases [Desired Outcome] by X%. Want to learn how it works its magic?

Subject Line: [First Name], can I help you with [Problem]?

Hey [First Name], I noticed that you're struggling with [Problem] and wanted to see if there's anything I can do to help.

* This one goes great with a fantastic signature that explains what you do in an actionable way.

Subject Line: [First Name], how do you handle [Challenge]?

Hey [First Name], just wanted to reach out and see how you're handling [Challenge]. Our [Product/Service] might be able to help.

OK, technically, that might be 2 sentences, but you get the point. Make it snappy and straight to the point!

7) Tease the Value

Teasing the value is a technique that involves giving your prospect a hint of what's to come without giving everything away.

You’ll create intrigue and curiosity, encouraging the prospect to keep reading. It's a great way to capture attention and stand out in a crowded inbox.

The key is to keep it short and sweet, focusing on the most compelling benefit of your offering.

Here’s an example of what this cold email trick looks like:

8) Just Send Them a Video

Of course, I love carefully crafting beautiful masterpieces of word art, but let's face it– sometimes, a video can be even better. You showcase your product or service in action – and your face, which helps the prospect connect with you on a more human level.

And if you're hesitant to send the video right away, you can always ask for permission first in your initial email.

Source: Instantly

Plus, there are free products like Loom that you record yourself or your screen. So there’s no reason not to give it a shot and add that extra bit of pizzazz to help your emails stand out!

9) Use the Pattern Interruption Cold Email Trick

"Pattern Interruption" is a technique, typically in cold calls, that involves breaking a person's pattern of thinking or behavior in order to capture their attention and stand out from the crowd.

In cold emails, this can be particularly effective as people are often used to receiving the same kinds of emails day in and day out.

  • Making a joke or pun in the subject line or opening sentence.
  • Using a different format or font to stand out from the usual plain text.
  • Addressing objections before the prospect even has a chance to voice them.
  • Giving compliments or offering praise.
  • Using shock and awe to grab attention.
  • Learning "too much" about your prospect to show that you've done your research.

For example, you could start your email with a joke related to your prospect's industry or interests or something silly like:

“Why did the tomato turn red? Because it saw the salad dressing!”

You can also use emojis, bold or colored text to make certain words or phrases stand out. You could also address potential objections by saying something like, "I know you might be thinking this is too good to be true, but hear me out."

Remember, the goal is to do something unexpected so it breaks the patterns they’re used to.

10) Throw Some Emojis in Your Subject Lines

If you're looking to add some personality and fun to your cold emails, emojis can be a great way to do it. Emojis in subject lines have been shown to increase open rates and catch the recipient's attention. Here are a few tips for using them effectively:

  • Use emojis sparingly: You don't want to overload your subject line with too many emojis, which can look unprofessional and spammy.
  • Make sure the emoji is relevant: Choose an emoji that's related to the content of your email so it doesn't look out of place.
  • Don't use offensive emojis: This one goes without saying, but it's always good to remind yourself to steer clear of any emojis that could be taken the wrong way. (No eggplant emojis – not even if you literally sell eggplants!)
  • Test different emojis: Not all emojis are created equal, so it's a good idea to test out a few different ones to see which ones work best for your audience.

For example, if you're inviting someone to a virtual coffee chat, you could use the ☕️ emoji in your subject line to catch their attention. Or, if you're promoting a summer sale, you could use the 🌞 emoji to create a sense of excitement.

Elevate Your Cold Outreach Game with Cold Email Tricks

Crafting effective cold emails is a skill that takes practice, creativity, and persistence. By using the tips and tricks outlined in this article, you can increase your chances of getting your emails opened, read, and acted upon.

Always remember to be genuine, concise, and respectful of their time.

And if you need help finding verified email addresses, consider using a tool like Findymail. With Findymail, you can focus on crafting killer cold emails while we handle the tedious work of finding accurate email addresses for your target audience.

So, grab your cards, and let’s do some (cold email) magic tricks!