8 Tips on Amazing Cold Emails for Recruiting [+Bonus Template]

November 30, 2021

    Cold emails for recruiting - it can be scary at best, and at worst, a complete waste of time. A great cold email outreach strategy is essential for a recruiter and can set you a thousand miles apart from mediocrity.

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    With hundreds of emails vying for candidate and client attention, there is a good chance your emails may never even be read, let alone responded to.

    On average, less than 10% of cold emails ever get a reply. To increase the chances of getting a reply, your emails need to stand out and make a great first impression!

    How are you meant to stand out and grab your dream candidates’ attention?

    Your recruitment email needs to stand out for all the right reasons, so there’s not a chance the recipient could ignore it.

    Table of Contents


    • The AIDA model which stands for attention, interest, desire, action, is an effective structure that can result in wonders for cold recruiting emails by getting high response rates.
    • For an amazing cold email for recruiting creating an email copy outline, writing compelling subject lines, finding the candidate’s information, personalizing outreach, keeping emails brief, including a clear CTA, utilizing the power of email signature, and establishing a follow-up strategy is crucial.
    • Automation, transparency, and email relevancy are critical to getting a response in 2021.

    Framework For Great Recruiting Cold Emails

    Recruiting agencies are quickly adopting the “quality over quantity” approach for their email outreach efforts in the recruitment process.

    Bulk emails are being swapped out for emails that are well researched and personalized for each recipient, highlighting their past work, projects, and how it is connected to the outreach email.

    One tool, in particular, is helping recruiters write better email content: the AIDA model.

    What Is The AIDA Model?

    The AIDA funnel demonstrates a four-step process of outreach that successfully leads to conversions. This formula has also had great success as an effective structure for cold recruiting emails that get high response rates.

    AIDA model

    The AIDA acronym stands for Attention, Interest, Desire, and Action.


    The first step is to get the reader’s attention. This can be done by way of a relevant subject and email opening line.


    Once you’ve got your reader’s attention, the next step is to pique their interest. This can be done by offering data or social proof that supports your opening statement


    Next, spark desire by telling your reader about the benefits that you can offer them and why they are important to them/ their business.


    Finally, once the desire to work with you is aroused, this must be transferred into a clear call to action. Let your reader know what the next steps are and prompt for a response.

    8 Tips On Amazing Cold Emails For Recruiting

    You can go through this eight-step process to give yourself enough ammunition to turn run-of-the-mill emails into high-converting ones.

    Create An Email Copy Outline

    To start off, you need to get your email outline right. Cold emails are by design, notorious for cookie-cutter outlines. And this is where most companies fail to attract the right talent.

    Your cold emails need to be precise, relevant, and unique. One way to write a good email is to know how not to write it.

    While creating an outline for email, it is important to have fleshed-out answers to these questions:

    • Who is this email for?
    • What is the purpose/goal of sending the email?
    • Do the emails need attachments?
    • What writing tone should be used?
    • What is the best CTA and where should it be placed?
    • How to start/end the emails?

    The purpose of the outline is to allow companies to automate and scale recruitment strategies. But it should still leave enough room to improvise the copy depending on context and the information available.

    Write Compelling Subject Lines

    Most people only look at the subject lines of the emails to decide whether to delete or open them. Job seekers are no different.

    It’s not uncommon for active and passive job seekers to receive hundreds of recruitment emails each day. The only way they can keep the inbox tidy is by deleting the emails that don’t add value to their lives.

    When you’re writing a subject line, put yourself in the recipient’s shoes and see what lines you wouldn’t click at all. Misleading and long sentences are precisely the two things you need to avoid when it comes to writing cold emails.

    It’s important to spend a good bit of time and effort ironing out the subject line. In general, it has to be short, ideally 4-6 words, punchy, and loaded with value.

    Along with perfecting the subject line, you should also write a preheader text that provides more information about the email. A lot of recruiters miss the free space so this should be your opportunity to stand out.

    Find The Candidate’s Info & Research Their Background

    Research plays a key part in practically every aspect of marketing. Recruitment in 2021 can be made better by infusing marketing elements to cater to the right talent pool.

    It’s not just the job seekers who have to find the hiring manager’s email address. Recruiters must also deeply research the candidates and go over the information that might be useful for the job.

    This can be previous roles and companies, qualifications, and career goals. LinkedIn is where talented professionals discuss jobs, careers, and personal lives. You can make connections and even join LinkedIn groups to see what your ideal candidates are up to.

    LinkedIn InMails are a great way to warm up cold candidates but the sheer volume of undercooked and spam messages by recruiters often drive professionals off the platform.

    LinkedIn, however, is not the only option.

    Techies are available in GitHub and Stack Overflow, writers are sharing ideas in Medium, designers are using Pinterest and Instagram to showcase their art. Social media channels and even portfolio websites are goldmines of information that you can use in your outreach campaign.

    Apart from social media and portfolio websites, there’s another channel for effective communication – emails. But it’s not always easy to find the correct email addresses of candidates. With proper tools, recruiters can find the right people faster.

    But people often change jobs and forget to update their email addresses. They might even stop checking their old inbox. That’s why you also need to verify email addresses to make sure you’re not emailing inactive addresses.

    An email list full of irrelevant addresses will increase your bounce rate, and drag down your deliverability and reputation score. You can use a service like VerifyBee to clean your email list easily.

    Personalize Your outreach

    Now that you have enough information about your targeted candidates, it’s time to put the knowledge into action. Approach your recruitment emails the way you write a cold pitch.

    Candidates love to be seen. Always address them by their name at the start of the email and immediately establish a personal connection to show what’s in it for them.

    Email personalization is critical in outreach campaigns. A detailed cold email must give all the information the recipient needs to make a decision.

    Keep Your Email Brief And On Point

    It’s not just the personal connection that seals a deal. The email should be easy to read, offer only the relevant information, and more importantly, tell the candidate what to do after reading an email.

    Depending on their career trajectory and position, job seekers either want enriching opportunities, financial benefits, or both. The email should offer all these details.

    The sender shouldn’t also drag recruitment emails too long with unrelated information. Job applications are often lengthy. As a result, 60% of job seekers give up filling up applications midway. This pattern is true for cold emails as well.

    Excess information in recruitment emails makes it hard to find the important parts for busy professionals.

    That’s why recruiters should distill it down to a few key points and drive home the importance of the email.

    You can embed graphics or a video on email banners to showcase company culture and provide a bit more details about the role without cluttering the email body.

    Include A Clear CTA

    When you’re cold-emailing candidates, you must remember that the person doesn’t know you, the company, or the role yet. The email will give all the necessary information for the first time, and the information must flow naturally.

    Contradictory or multiple CTAs are confusing and it shows that you haven’t done your homework. Candidates are less likely to go ahead when the lack of effort is visible from the recruiter’s end.

    That’s why it’s important to stick to a single CTA. If you have a separate job board that you want them to apply for, only add that link. If you want them to directly reply to your email, mention only that.

    One CTA shows your clarity of thought and helps candidates navigate through the next process. That one CTA should be straight and to the point in a way that makes it easy for the candidate to respond.

    Utilize The Power Of Email Signature

    Email signature in a recruitment email tells a lot in a short space. Including an official signature is important because:

    • Email signature offers a name that can be searched online by the candidate to verify legitimacy. It instantly creates reliability and is far better than using an unidentifiable sales rep persona.
    • An email signature can be used to link company vision and other details. Candidates can check the links to know more about the role, and company culture.
    • A huge number of emails go to the spam folder every day and recruitment emails are also part of it. Including an official email signature is one way to avoid getting flagged for spam by the recipient.
    • You can create custom professional-looking email signatures using tools like Signature Ninja to stand out among recruiters.

    Establish A Follow-Up Strategy

    Far too many recruiters miss out on talent after not getting a reply the first time. Professionals are busy and it’s easy to miss an email.

    Cold emails are not expected to generate a 100% response rate but they can be seen as a part of the warm-up process to fetch a response from the candidate later.

    Ideally, you’ll want to follow up with 3-4 emails before accepting the fact that the candidate is not interested in the opportunity.

    2021 Trends For Recruitment Cold Emails

    With 2021 coming to an end, we noticed a few cold email trends in recruiting that you have to take note of.


    It’s a common thing now to have a robot communicate with a candidate. At least during the initial stages. Whether you are creating an email-AI or crafting a simple bot, remember that the rules and ideas remain relevant for their communication programming.


    Candidates don’t hesitate to put their experience out there. And they have so many channels and so many ways to be heard nowadays. Warm connections over email may be shared between candidates. And a cold-hearted rejection email can make its way to candidates’ social media feeds.

    Email remains relevant

    For the next years, Email will remain the main communication channel in sourcing and recruiting. Yet, it is going to change with more automation, dynamic content, and more features. Adapting the fundamentals of human interaction to new tech is key for making the best candidates open your emails.

    Cold Recruiting Email Template

    Here’s a basic recruiting cold email template for you to get started.

    SUBJECT: Quick call

    Hi [FIRST NAME],

    Hope you’re having a great [DAY OF WEEK]!

    My name is [YOUR NAME] and I work on the talent acquisition team here at [YOUR COMPANY].

    I was on the hunt for some great [CANDIDATE JOB TITLE] talent in [CITY] earlier this week when I came across your profile. You have a great background — I am a big fan of [CANDIDATE JOB TITLE] from [CANDIDATE COMPANY].

    I know [CANDIDATE COMPANY] is a great organization and that you may not be actively looking for something new at the moment. But, if you’re open to hearing more about [YOUR COMPANY], I think you’ll be impressed with what we have to offer.

    If I don’t hear back from you here, I’ll plan to try giving you a quick call around lunchtime on [DAY]. Of course, if there’s a time that works better for your schedule, shoot me a quick reply and I’ll happily accommodate.

    Looking forward to speaking with you!

    Final Thoughts

    As difficult as sending a cold recruiting email can be, it’s a vital part of the recruitment process.

    Most recruitment cold emails are uninspiring and impersonal, which actually allows you to stand out and attract ideal candidates with a well-thought-out cold email strategy.

    By following the 8-step process we outlined, you’ll be able to craft cold emails that job seekers love to read and respond to.

    Looking for a tool focused on cold emailing that can help you bring better results for your recruiting emails? Schedule a demo today to set up multi-step sequences and send emails based on established timelines or triggers.

    Article written by Esrat S.
    Send emails that land in your prospect's inbox and get replies. Automate your emails, convert more prospects and grow your business
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