6 Proven Tips to Help You Land Your Dream Job with Cold Email

We all have different professional goals that we would like to achieve at some point in our careers. This sentiment applies whether you’re an experienced executive who has worked hard to climb up the company ladder or just fresh out of college or university. So, can a cold email job inquiry sample or template really help you land your dream job?

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Whatever the case, there always comes a point when you will want a change. You might be trying to get your first job, or you may be searching for new opportunities to take your career to the next level.

Either way, the process of landing your dream job can be a long and frustrating one. You have to actually track down the relevant job opening, get the attention of the right people, and make a positive first impression – all before getting a chance to show them what you can do. It sounds pretty scary, right?

The worst part is that most job openings are filled through referrals or personal connections. What does this mean for you? Simply put, you will only be able to apply through online channels. How can you convince potential employers that you are the right person for the job when you have not even met them face to face?

In your case, you will have to take the aggressive approach. And we don’t mean showing up at their office unannounced! The best tool available to you is the cold email. Luckily for you, this method has been proven to work time and time again.

It may seem intrusive and a bit “spammy,” but you can get your dream job by sending strategic cold emails to the right decision-makers. In this case, the goal is to use a cold email to start a meaningful conversation with the recipient.

Doing so could very well lead to a phone call, job interview, and even offer within a very short time. And this does not only apply to people who are looking for traditional office jobs! If you are an entrepreneur or freelancer looking for more clients, the same approach works too.

These days, people get a ton of new emails flooding their inboxes. You have to keep that fact in mind, even before starting off your cold email outreach campaign. This will help you find interesting ways to stand out from the crowd of applicants.

And remember, you only get one chance to make a mind-blowing first impression. Use these six proven tips to help you prepare an awesome cold email and land your dream job:

6 Proven Tips to Help You Land Your Dream Job with Cold Email

Table of Contents

1. Who is the Best Person to Email?

The very first mistake to avoid when going after a new job is sending a cold email to a generic company address. Applying directly to the career page on a company’s website is also a big no-no.

Unless you have tried and failed to contact the right person directly, these should not be your first option. Remember, you are trying to make a great first impression and show that you are driven and proactive. Simply sending off your cold email and hoping the right person sees it hardly does that.

So, your first step must be research. Get all the information you can about the company, its departments, and the various people that run it. Ideally, you want to send your cold email to the HR manager.

But that might also be too general. In some cases, you might find that a different executive is in charge of making hiring decisions for the job role you are after.

And if that doesn’t work, you could take another route and reach out to someone who is in a similar position and could help direct your outreach to the right person. Research will help you narrow this down and pick the best course of action.

LinkedIn is a great place to start. It allows you to browse through potential contacts that already work at your target company. From this, you will get a list of people that you may be able to reach out to.

But once you have this, avoid sending your messages on LinkedIn. That is because most people just don’t read them. Instead, focus on how you can land in their inboxes. Apart from being a more personal approach, it will also give you a higher chance of success.

Okay, so what do you do after you have your list of potential contacts? Do a simple search on Google and see if you can find their social media channels, personal blogs, or websites. But you’re not doing this to stalk them! Your goal is to collect as much useful information as possible to help you craft a very personalized email.

You should also start searching for their email addresses at this point. This could be a huge challenge because people do not usually publicize their personal or direct mails. Simply put, they do not want to get spammed to extinction! But the good news is that there are easy ways to bypass this hurdle.

First, you have to know the address format that your target company uses. This normally falls into three categories:

  • FirstName@companyname.com

  • FirstName.LastName@companyname.com

  • FirstInitialLastName@companyname.com

That’s not to say you may not come across other company email structures. But the most important thing is to ensure that you are using a valid email address. The best way to get anyone’s valid email is by using RooJet. It also allows you to easily add contacts to your cold email campaign, automate your follow ups, and track your cold email successes.

2. Perfect your Subject Line for Cold Email Job Inquiry

A recent study by Fast Company – where they sent out 1,000 cold emails – looked at what makes a great cold email. Is there a formula that you can follow to make sure prospects open, read, and respond to your cold emails? It turns out that there is!

The results of this study show that the effectiveness of a cold email is determined by a combination of subject line and sender name. If you take care of these two aspects, it will do wonders for your open and response rates.

The only thing you can do about the sender name is to make sure that it points to a real person. No busy executive will spend time on emails that come from a generic address. In fact, that is the first evidence of spam in many cases. You should also ensure that it is spelled and capitalized correctly.

But the real test rests on the email subject line. A great subject line for cold email job will capture the prospect’s attention and intrigue them enough to get them to open your email and read more. People are more likely to respond to subject lines that provide value or make them curious to know what is inside.

The goal here is to craft subject lines that are short, creative, and informative. The recipient should know what exactly they are in for when they open your email. Why should a prospect open and read your email? Why should they care? Create a subject line that answers these questions and you will see a marked improvement in your open and response rates.

If you need some inspiration, here are 20 email subject lines that will make your cold email outreach more effective.

3. Find a Relevant Connection to your Prospects

One of the best cold email techniques out there is personalization. Your number one focus throughout any campaign is to optimize each email to a specific prospect. A great way to do this is by using connections.

This could be anything – from sharing the same hometown or a respected mutual contact, to an undying love for cats! Any little tidbit that will make your cold email “warmer” and more relatable is a win in your favor.

Taking time to personalize your cold emails shows the prospect that you have done your homework. This extra effort will also increase your chances of getting a response. Keep an eye out for any shared interests, mutual contacts, or professional societies that will give you something relevant to mention.

Also, keep track of the prospect’s career. Any notable achievements or recent awards can also serve as your way in. With a bit of time and effort on your part, you will find something that will help you genuinely connect with the prospect.

4. Start off with an Elevator Pitch

When writing a cold email, you have to keep it brief and straight to the point. No one has the time or desire to read lengthy emails, especially from people they do not know. Starting off relationships with potential employers by annoying them is hardly a great move!

If you get the prospect to open your cold email, then you have a responsibility to prove your worth immediately. Use an interesting opening line that shows what value you can provide if you are picked for the job. You could also give a clear-cut example that proves why you would be a great fit for the role.

Also, take the time to put yourself in the prospect’s shoes. Try to think like they do, because they are likely asking themselves a few questions as they go through your application. What makes you stand out from the crowd? Why should they select you for the position? Answer these questions and you will be well on the way to your dream job.

5. Focus on your Strengths

Ultimately, you are sending a cold email to apply for a specific job. So it only makes sense to show how you can help improve the target company’s performance. As you are trying to establish a rapport with the prospect, they are most likely only interested in how picking you for the job will benefit the company.

With that in mind, dedicate a significant part of your cold email to prove you’re up for the job. Do you have the relevant experience? If you don’t, what skills do you have that will make them confident that you can do the job? What achievements do you have that will make them trust you enough to join the company?

Make sure that your cold email is tailor-made to show why you are the best choice for the job you’re gunning for. One way to do this is by putting a couple of examples of your most recent projects first.

Just in case that doesn’t have anything to do with the job you’re applying for, don’t link to it. Instead, provide a link to your best work on your website or online portfolio. You could also link to case studies of impressive projects you have done in the past, or more recent client reviews and testimonials.  

The trick here is to find the right balance. Give the prospect just enough information to get them fired up to learn more, but not too much that they will abandon your email halfway through.

6. Always follow up!

Follow up is not just another buzzword that outreach experts use. It is an important part of the cold emailing process that actually works to increase your response rates. That is because sometimes prospects do not respond to even the most carefully crafted cold emails.

Why is that?

Most times, the prospect could simply be busy or have forgotten to get back to you. The point is that you don’t know why. A lack of response does not automatically equate to rejection! So, it only makes sense to keep following up until you get a definite yes or no response.

If you do not get a response to your first cold email within  2 days, send a follow up. Recognize that most of the people you are contacting are very busy with other tasks at work. So, why not give your email a little bump to the top of their inbox?

Send all follow ups as a reply to the original thread. Briefly, ask if the prospect has had a chance to look at your original email. Also, ask if there is anything you can explain further or any more information you need to attach. Your goal here is to be helpful without coming off as nagging for a quick response.

A lot of people fail to land their dream jobs simply because they fail to follow up. Learn more about how to send the perfect follow up cold email here.

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Basic Cold Email Templates

Here are a couple of cold email templates that can get you started on the right foot:

1. Basic cold email job inquiry sample

Hi (Prospect’s First Name),

I found your listing for a (mention job title) on (mention specific website/job board and include a link to the posting) the other day, and I wanted to share with you the (mention similar specific strategy/goal) that I helped develop for (mention previous company/client name).

I helped  (mention previous company’s/client’s name) to develop (mention specific project, service, or product) with (mention any tools/software used). You can check out the finished product here: (include link to relevant example). This has helped them (mention specific result or output, e.g. increase their sales by X%).

I have a solid foundation working in/with (mention relevant specific skills or tools). I’m looking forward to helping (prospect’s company name) deliver even more groundbreaking value to the (mention specific) industry.

Are you available for a quick 15-minute chat on (mention specific date and time)? If not, please let me know and I can work with your schedule.


(Your name).

2. Ask for an introduction

Sometimes you will not be able to get a direct contact to the right hiring decision maker. In that case, you can use this template to ask someone within the same organization for an introduction:

Hi (Prospect’s name),

My name is (your first name) and I’m currently (mention your current position) at (mention current company). I’ve been thinking about taking my career to the next level for a while now, and my research led me to (mention prospect’s company).

I might be wrong but, based on your profile on LinkedIn (or any other relevant site e.g. the company website), it seems like you are the right person to connect to. Or, if you aren’t, maybe you can point me in the right direction?

I’d love to speak to someone at (prospect’s company name) who is in charge of hiring for (mention relevant department/job title).

If that’s you, would you be open to a brief 15-minute call on (mention specific date and time) to discuss how (mention any relevant skills/experience that you have) can help your company (mention specific benefit)?

If not, could you please put me in touch with the right person?

I would really appreciate the help!


(Your name).

3. Follow up after no response

Hi (Prospect’s name),

Just thought I’d follow up and see if you have been able to check my previous email. I know you’re really busy right now at (prospect’s company name) with (mention specific project), so I thought I’d give this email a little bump to the top of your list.

In case you have any questions or need more information, just shoot me an email on the same.


(Your name).

4. Say Thank you after a job interview

Hi (Prospect’s name),

Just wanted to say thank you for taking the time to meet with me this past (mention specific day).

After talking with you and learning more about (the company’s name) (mention specific job title/company department – whatever fits best), I am even more enthusiastic about working at (mention prospect’s company name).

I especially enjoyed hearing about the work you do in (mention specific relevant field) in (mention relevant business/geographical area).

If you have any more questions on my skills and experience, let me know and I would be happy to answer them! In case you need any more examples of my previous work, I’d be open to meeting with you again or following up via email.

Looking forward to hearing from you!


(Your name).

5. Following up after an interview

Hi (Prospect’s name),

You had mentioned that you’re hoping to move forward on the (mention specific job title) position by the end of this month (or mention specific date), so I just wanted to check in with you.

I am very interested in the role, even more so after our last chat. I would love to know what your timeline looks like moving forward.


(Your name).

Cold Email for Jobs: Best Practice

Some people believe that the best time to send out cold emails is when you want to sell something or network. But the truth is that you can use this medium for so much more. Cold emailing works especially well when you are gunning for your dream job.

It is the perfect way to approach a stranger and show them how interested you are in a job that you are both qualified for and passionate about. In such cases, there are three basic rules and best practices to follow that will give your cold emails the best chance of success:

1. Offer something instead of asking for something

Think about this for a second: who would go out of their way to help a virtual stranger land a job? It just doesn’t happen! No one will feel obliged to hand you a job interview just because you sent an email. But they will be thinking about what is in it for them.

If you see a job listing, recognize that the company is trying very hard to fill that position. It isn’t easy to find a great candidate that is also a great fit for the company’s work environment and team culture.

If the listed job is perfect for you and you’re qualified for it, reaching out to the company is helping them solve a problem. So long as you offer value in some way – such as expert knowledge in a certain area, or even a helpful resource – then you are already on the right track.

2. Make it thoughtful and personal

Copy-pasting a generic cover letter from the internet is just not enough! A generic, impersonal approach will not score you any points with stressed hiring managers. You can use the tips highlighted above to make your cold emails sizzling hot.

3. Be respectful, not entitled

Remember, the prospect does not owe you anything – not even their time. Just because you put in a lot of time and effort to write a great cold email does not mean that you are entitled to a response. If you approach this process with a lot of respectfulness and humility, it will be more effective than any display of arrogance ever will!

The Final Word

Cold emailing is a great way to get noticed, put your resume in the right hands, and land your dream job. You just need to be persistent, patient and sprinkle in a dose of humility to be successful.

Do you have any more tips on how to use cold email to get your dream job? We would love to get your take on this in the comments below!

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