Get more cold email responses by following these rules.

If you have an agency, you sell results. Which is typically hard on the front end. That’s why you have case studies, referrals, and other types of media that prove you can accomplish what you say you can. And all of these can be great ways to get cold email responses.

There is one method to show leads you know what you’re talking about and care enough to point out their mistakes.

In this post, we’ll discuss how to find ripe leads by taking a look at their current ad strategy (or lack there of) and giving them a preview of your expertise and even offer them something that can help — regardless of whether or not they use your services.

Here’s what we’ll be covering:

  1. The Strategy: What it is exactly
  2. The Process: Finding the leads that are ready (including real examples)
  3. The Hook: Creating the resource that will get them interested
  4. The Templates: 4 solid emails that you can send to leads in a sequence

Here’s the Goal: Our hope is that you use this strategy, send these templates, and see more responses to your cold email outreach.

The “Bad Ad” Strategy to Increase Cold Email Responses

Creating funnels and ads is what you (or your staff) do for a living — or at least a side hustle.

If you want to make people perk up and hear what you have to say, call them out on mistakes. Click To Tweet

This means that you come across bad ads all the time, like every single day. Truth is that there are more people who currently need your help than you have the time to actually help. You just have to find the ones who are willing to listen.

One of the best ways to make people perk up and hear what you have to say is to call them out on mistakes. May not sound like it, but it works.

cold email responses

Bad ads can cause several problems.

They have businesses:

  1. Spending money and not getting clients
  2. Not spending money and not getting clients
  3. Or spending money and getting clients — just not knowing where the clients are coming from.

All of these potential problems are great for you (the agency).

In fact, there are several benefits to finding businesses that need help in the ad department:

  • Spending Money: A company with ad spend is trying to increase their business. If you go after small businesses that don’t have the dollars to put into a marketing campaign, it’s likely they can’t afford you. Even if they believed in your abilities.
  • Open to Suggestions: It’s likely that they are willing to talk if you can convince them you know what you’re talking about. No business owner, actively trying to gain customers, will shut out advice from someone who seemingly has the means to increase his/her revenue.
  • Wants Results: Too many marketing firms can’t/won’t track results. Or the owner is DIYing it and doesn’t know how to use pixels and funnels in a way that allows tangible results and a clear view of ROI. Hopefully, you can.

Now, you just have to find the ones who could use your help.

Prospecting — find the man with the problem.” – Ben Friedman

Finding the Low-Hanging Fruit

Hopefully, you have an ideal client profile to help narrow down the field of leads. Here’s a quick example we’ll put together to help us in the tutorial.

  • ABC Digital Marketing
  • Target: Dentists in the Phoenix, AZ area.
  • Specifics: Multiple dentists in office, annual revenue above $3 million
  • Other: The average Adwords CPC is about $11 for variations of “Phoenix Arizona Dentist”.

With these basic firmographics, we’ll be able to sift even further to find those dentists who are actively using online marketing to increase their client base. Narrowing your target market down is really the best way to create a specific resource (next section) that gets the engagement you want to see.

Onto the Ads.

I just did a simple search for local dentists and here’s what popped up. I took one screenshot of the top and another of the bottom ads. Chances are, you know how every ad can be improved. That’s good, but let’s take a quick look anyway.

cold email responses

Every point mentioned in the above ads is cool, but not necessarily the top priority. I did some additional keyword research and found that a few terms have more searches than the generic. They also tell a story of what Phoenicians are looking for in a dentist.

cold email responses

Best dentist, pediatric (kid dentist was also popular), cheap. These are clear indicators of the type of copy locals will respond to in the PPC ads. One of the ads above does mention they are number one and that is the exception, but look at the rest of the text.

Nobody really cares about their dentist being family owned. And $100 off is a bit telling to your prices for middle income families.

cold email responses

Here are some dentists who did a bit better.

cold email responses

I’m seeing things like “$39 Exam”, “Affordable”, and “Payment options”. These dentists (or their marketers) understand the pulse of those using Google to find them. I think I’ve made the point, but others showed “pediatric services”.

Doing this would work for more than just PPC. You could look up a company’s social ads, or even print ads to show them that they can’t obtain or track results nearly as well without your help.

So, Who Should You Email?

More than likely — all of them.

Yep. If they’re advertising already, you should put them on the list (with some scrutiny). If you have previous experience with certain clients in your target that don’t work well, go ahead and weed them out.

But other than that, if they care enough to shell out $10-15 a click — go for it.

cold email responses

Like I said, you can probably see problems with all of these ads. If not the ads, the landing page, if not the landing page, the copy on the page. The list goes on and on.

There are dozens of moving pieces in a well-oiled marketing campaign.

Even if a couple elements are gold, one bad link can break the chain and cause a conversion problem. Click To Tweet

Creating the Hook (aka the Resource to Send in Your Cold Email)

Now that you know who you’re going to email, they’re currently using ads, and the results can likely be improved upon — it’s time for first contact.

It’s crucial that you don’t just hurl and insult their way and expect them to love you.

We don’t just highlight the issue, we carefully (meaning full of care) send them the issue and a solution that will fix the problem if they implemented it.

So, We Just Give Them the Answers?

Uh huh. Give them the right information and let them know you provide the services that yield results. It’s not enough to send an email saying you’re the best PPC company, web design firm, funnel creator, or [insert marketing service here].

Think of it from the other way around. You’re just sending an email that likely has a warning on it now (thanks Google). And you say, “Hey business person. Want some free candy more business?”

We see this all the time and it DOES NOT WORK!

cold email responses

Making the Resource

The thing you send doesn’t have to be too fancy, but it can be. You can do anything from a pdf or blog post; all the way to a video or webinar. You should already have the tips, but here are a few of our favorite ad tips.

  • Boost Posts to Cheaper Regions/Countries: Create an ad and boost it in places where likes/comments/clicks aren’t so expensive. This will give more social proof to certain ads.
  • Try A “No Opt-In” Offer: Sending traffic to a page that just allows them to see your offer without giving their email. Track the pixel on that page and send follow-up ads to warm traffic for opt-in offers.
  • Complex Strategies: Give a few easy ideas, but make sure a lot of the things you suggest may take the help of an expert. Make sure leads understand the strategy, just not how to implement it.

Onto The Templates

These four emails are not stand alone.

All of them are meant to be part of a sequence. Even with all of this pre-work, it takes multiple points of contact to get the maximum cold email responses. These four should be sent over the course of 5-10 business days.

Pro Tip: Add another point of contact into the sequence for even better results. Things like voicemails, calls, or even direct mail can have a huge impact on cold email responses.

Now, here are the four emails in the sequence.

Email 1 – {{.CompanyName}} paid ad mistakes

Hi {{.FirstName}},

I come across paid ad campaigns all the time and they ALWAYS make one of (link*)these 7 mistakes(link*).

Can I share a few tips with you {{.FirstName}}, to ensure your campaigns are better optimized?

(((Email Signature)))

P.S. Not the person to talk to? Let me know! Don’t want me to follow-up with you? You can let me know that too!


Email 2 – Re: {{.CompanyName}} paid ad mistakes

Hi {{.FirstName}}

Saw you folks at {{.CompanyName}} are running some paid ads. Are they converting customers?

I am seeing some things from our checklist that you are doing incorrectly. Have you had a chance to look (link*)at the checklist(link*), {{.FirstName}} ?

(((Email Signature)))

P.S. Let me know if you think it’s best I talk with someone else on your team to share these ideas with!


Email 3 – Re: {{.CompanyName}} paid ad mistakes

Hi {{.FirstName}},

Can I share with you a couple of things you could do better with your paid ads?

This is what I do for a living and it bothers me I haven’t gotten to give you some thoughts on what you could be doing to improve your ad performance for {{.CompanyName}}.

(((Email Signature)))

P.S. Did you get a chance to check out the (link*)7 different mistakes(link*) companies do with their paid ad campaigns? Would love to hear your feedback!


Email 4 – Re: {{.CompanyName}} paid ad mistakes

Hey {{.FirstName}},

I am assuming you feel comfortable with your paid ad campaign performance, so I’ll go ahead and leave you alone 🙂

If you didn’t get a chance though, at least review (link*)the checklist(link*) (it’s free!) to help protect your account from wasted spend.

(((Email Signature)))

P.S. If you’d ever like some personalized recommendations, you can grab a time with me here* (*Link to Calendly or scheduling app).

Recap and Final Thoughts

Here’s a brief synopsis of what we’ve gone over.

  1. Get a list of leads from a target market that you understand using an ideal client profile.
  2. Find out which leads are currently advertising and see where they can improve.
  3. Create an offer with awesome, yet mostly complex tips for them to get better ROI.
  4. Send a series of emails (feeling free to use our templates) along with other methods of contact to ensure the highest rate of response.

This is only one of a couple dozen ways that we plan on writing about in the coming months. If you use this one tactic, it’s likely that you can have a pipeline full of prospects waiting to talk with you within just a few weeks.

What strategies are you implementing to get more cold email responses?

Editors Note:

Want to help contribute to future articles? Have data-backed and tactical advice to share? I’d love to hear from you!

We have over 60,000 monthly readers that would love to see it! Contact us and let's discuss your ideas!

Josh Slone
About Author: Josh Slone
Josh Slone is the Head Content Writer for LeadFuze. Josh writes about lead generation strategies, sales skills, and sales terminology.