Anatomy Of The Perfect Email Introduction: 4 Use Cases and 38 Examples To Download!

17 min read

Networking is hard.

Networking online is even harder, whether you’re sending out cold emails or reaching out on social media.

Why?

  1. There’s a lot more competition than there would be at a physical venue or networking event.
  2. The absence of facial expression or body language makes it harder to make a deep connection.

Don’t worry though.

We’ve got a complete checklist for you and 7 email introduction examples that you can download and tweak to fit your company’s needs.

We’ll show you exactly how to stand outstandout from your competition and make a great first impression on your target audience.

Anatomy of an email introduction

  1. Write a compelling subject line that’s not clickbaity
  2. Greet the person appropriately
  3. Be genuine and show empathy
  4. Explain why you’re reaching out
  5. Provide value first
  6. Ask something
  7. Choose an appropriate formality to close the email
  8. Use a simple text signature

Optional 9. the Tim Ferriss technique: make it easy for them to say no

Write the perfect subject line

A great email starts with a great subject line. 

It’s even more important thanthat the opening line of your email.

If your subject line is poor or even mediocre, the recipient won’t open your email.

Let’s look into different subject lines you can use in different situations.

Networking subject lines

The goal of networking introduction emails: start a conversation with someone you admire

The goal of subject lines: getting people to open your emails


“I’d like to interview you 🎤”

Why it works: you’ll see great open rates people are curious and love an opportunity to tell their story (+ emojis tend to stand out in the inbox

Prerequisite: you already know what angle you’d choose if they said yes

Risk: the body of the email does not reassure the lead that the quality of the output would justify the time commitment


“can I ask you a question about {{leadHobbie}}”

Example: can I ask you a question about meditation?

Why it works: people love to talk about what they love

Prerequisite: you’ve done a little bit of research on them and identified stuff they like outside of work (could be a hobby or a book they mentioned on Twitter or Facebook or during an interview for example)

Risk: it won’t work if you’re not genuinely interested in having that conversation (even if you’d like to talk about something else in the long term)


“can I buy you {{leadPerk}}?”

Example: can I buy you Pop-Tarts? 

Why it works: it’s highly personalized

Prerequisite: the lead has shared on social media something that they like and that you can buy (a type of food or a small gadget you can afford for example)

Risk: you’re too generic (“can I buy you lunch?”) or so specific it’s scary (“can I buy you dinner at that place you went to with your ex last year on Valentine’s Day?”)

Sales subject lines

The goal of sales introduction emails: start a conversation with someone who has the potential to pay you to  save them time, help make them money or make them feel good about themselves 

The goal of subject lines: getting people to open your emails


“can I help you {{idealResult}}?”

Example: can I help you close deals faster?  

Why it works: you’reyour promising to deliver something they need

Prerequisite: you’re able to explain the value you’ll provide in so few words the subject line won’t be truncated on mobile

Risk: your value proposition is too weak (“can I help you save $20 a year on electricity”) or vague (“can I help you save time?”)


“{{clientName}} saved {{amount}} thanks to {{yourProduct}}

Example: DHL saved $412,187 in one-quarterone quarter thanks to LaGrowthMachine

Why it works: super-specificsuper specific and impressive results with social proof will grab your reader’s attention (assuming your targeting is good)

Prerequisite: whether it’s saving time or money or making money, you have big results with clients to back you up

Risk: you’re lying or sharing information your client wouldn’t want you to


“Top 3 best {{solutions}}”

Example: Top 3 best email automation software in 2021

Why it works: because you’re promising an answer to a question they’ve asked themselves recently (or were about to ask themselves)

Prerequisite: you’ve segmented your list of leads and know exactly what they’re looking for

Risk: you’re not able to show the value of your solution compared to others and you end up selling them toon the competition!


“Solution for {{benefit}}”

Example: “Solution for more effective lead gen”

Why it works: people who are not 90% happy with their current solution will be curious enough to open the email to learn more 

Prerequisite: your segmentation is good and the person receiving the email has an interest in such a solution

Risk: the body of your email provides no value and you annoy the people who got their hopes up opening the email


“The most honest sales email”

Why it works: it’s intriguing

Prerequisite: the body of your email is honest (otherwise, you might get opens but you won’t get nice replies)

Risk: the body of your email disappoints


“{{Your company name}} 🤝 {{Their company name}}”

Example: Disney 🤝 LaGrowthMachine

Why it works: there’s a little bit of personalization and the emoji captures the attention

Prerequisite: you are sending emails manually or have a list with organization names that you can use to automate your email sequence.

Risk: you didn’t clean the organization names in your list and end up with long names that a human being would never type in full like “SalonCentric – A Subsidiary of L’Oreal USA 🤝 LaGrowthMachine”

Job search subject lines

The goal of job search introduction emails: get a recruiter to call you back 

The goal of subject lines: getting people to open your emails


“I want to work for you for free”

Why it works: it’s an appealing value proposition

Prerequisite: you’re targeting small businesses who can afford to give you a shot (big companies don’t work that way)

Risk: you undersell yourself too much and don’t know when to stop working for free


“you’ve never seen a resume like this”

Why it works: it’s such a bold statement we’re bound to take you up on the challenge and read your job application

Prerequisite: your resume is original and genuinely unique (it could be a smart PDF with a short video for example)

Risk: you over promise and under deliver


“why I ❤️ {{companyName}}”

Example: “why I ❤️ LaGrowthMachine”

Why it works: the emoji grabs the lead’s attention and the subject line invites curiosity

Prerequisite: the body of your email is not bland and generic

Risk: if you’re in an old school industry, A/B test this subject line with a more traditional “why I believe in {{companyName}}’s mission” because emojis rubs some people the wrong way


“why you should schedule a job interview with someone unqualified like me”

Why it works: it’s unexpected and makes people want to know more

Prerequisite: you’re able to explain in one or two short sentences in the body of the email why your inexperience in that particular position is irrelevant

Risk: your arguments in the body of the email are vague (“I’m enthusiastic and a hard worker”) or irrelevant to the company

Link building subject lines

The goal of link building introduction emails: get a third party website to link to your own website

The goal of subject lines: getting people to open your emails


“free infographic for your article on {{topic}}”

Example: free infographic for your article on conversion rate benchmarks”

Why it works: you’re saving them a lot of time and providing them a lot of value because infographics are super powerful (for readers and ranking) but they’re a real hassle to make

Prerequisite: you have a great infographic to offer that links back to one of your articles

Risk: your infographic is poorly designed or not quite the right fit for the article


“broken link on your {{articleName}} article”

Example: “broken link on your LinkedIn sales outreach article”

Why it works: because they’ll want to fix the broken link

Prerequisite: you’ve done some work upfront and identified a broken link on their website

Risk: they don’t care because it’s an old website they’re not updating anymore


“1,800 word guest post on {{topic}} ready to go”

Example: “1,800-word guest post on email introduction examples ready to go”

Why it works: it’s very specific and sounds like they won’t have a lot of work to do to get good content for their website

Prerequisite: you have a relevant guest post ready to go

Risk: you’ve overestimated the quality of your guest post and nobody cares to take it up despite your time investment

Choose the appropriate greeting

The goal of greetings is to get people to read the rest of your email.

Whether it’s formal or informal, generic or original, it needs to be appropriate. 

Some questions to ask yourself when choosing a greeting for your email:

  1. Will it flatter the reader or make them feel warmer inside? 

For example, do they want to be called Doctor or are they happy to feel part of the Sumo-ling family?

  1. Is this person or group of people used to being talked to in a certain way?

There’s nothing wrong with using a fairly formal and generic “Mr. Lastname,” if that’s the way things are in the industry you’re targeting.

  1. Will it shock them and make them dislike me right from the start?

In some countries, a simple “hi Firstname,” or “Hello,” will suffice. In other regions of the world, a more formal “Dear Firstname,” or “Good morning,” will be more appropriate.

If you’re able to create a strong connection right from the start by referencing a title they’re proud of or making them part of an exclusive community, great.

If not, that’s ok too. 

As long as you don’t offend them.

Create empathy & talk about them!

The golden rule: put yourself in their shoes.

When you keep this in mind at all times, everything gets easier.

Sidenote: empathy is not flattery. Flattery can work but it should be used with caution and, frankly, it’ll backfire 90% of the time if it’s not sincere.

Acknowledge their time is precious

You could do this explicitly

  • “I know you’re very busy”
  • “This will be my only email because if I can’t explain in 1 sentence how I can provide value to you, I’m bad at my job and don’t want to waste any more of your time.”
  • “From experience, I know working with freelance writers is hit or miss so I thought I’d save you time and prepared a calendar of articles optimized for SEO I can deliver in the next 12 weeks”

Or implicitly

  • by keeping the message short, or
  • by asking for a really small thing, a yes or no question for example 

Acknowledge they’re important

Some people are busier than others but everyone is important. 

Make sure you tell them you value their opinion and why.

Here are a few examples:

“I really value your opinion since I read The Black Swan but also realize you must get thousands of emails like these so no worries if you can’t find the time to get back to me.”

“Your LinkedIn profile shows you have a lot of experience in CRM automation. I would love your expert opinion on the new features of LaGrowthMachine if you could spare a little bit of time to test drive it while they’re still in beta.”

“I would appreciate it if you could spare 10-15 minutes to give me advice to apply for this position but also realize you have a lot of candidates to interview and would completely understand if that’s not possible.”

Acknowledge their pain point

If you can empathize with their pain, they’ll feel understood. 

If they feel you understand them, they’ll believe you can help them.

For example: 

“I noticed your job offer for a senior dev in React has been up for a few weeks now. Based on the role description, I might have found a couple of suitable profiles for you. Would you be available for a quick chat to discuss them?” 

“Admin work is no fun when it takes over the fun part of your job like creating new products. That’s why we created a new product of our own: now you can take a picture of your receipt and we match it automatically to the expense on your card”   

Question to ask yourself: what’s the one thing I can help this person (or group of people) with?

Pro tip: most people would love the chance to do more fun stuff at work and have more time with their loved ones.

Explain why you are reaching out

If you don’t explain why you’re reaching out, your message will likely be a long ramble that people don’t read.

Taking the time to explain in just a few words why you’re reaching out is good:

  • For the reader, who’ll know if they want to keep on reading, and
  • For you, because it forces you to clarify your goal.

Indeed, it may seem basic but it’s easy to forget each email should have a clear goal: start a conversation, book a demo, or make a purchase for example.

Taking this step seriously will help you get the reader’s attention and write a good call-to-action down the line.

Networking Email Introduction Examples

The goal of networking emails: start a conversation with someone you admire

One surefire way to do that is to get people to sympathize with your situation because they’ve been there before.


Example 1: “I’m struggling to find a publisher and know you experienced something similar when you first started so I thought I’d ask for your advice (but I’ll keep it short and super specific I promise)”

Example 2: “I’ve been trying to learn javaScript with freeCodeCamp but I’m not making any progress anymore. 

Why it works: you’re relatable

Pre-requisite: you’ve done your research and have something in common 

Risk: your ask is too vague and, although the person would like to help you, it would take them way too long to give you a helpful answer

Sales Email Introduction Examples

The goal of sales emails: start a conversation with someone who has the potential to pay you because you’re able to:

  • save them time, 
  • help make them money, or 
  • make them feel good about themselves. 

Depending on who you are addressing and what you have to offer, you can be more or less direct in your approach.

Having said that, most people are very busy and wish they could have more time to finish work projects, spend with their kids, learn to play the guitar, etc.

Unless you’re targeting students or unemployed people, you’ll want to get straight to the point.


I wanted to reach out and ask how everything is going at {{company}}? How is your current {{solution}} working out for you?

Example: I wanted to reach out and ask how everything is going at your company? How is your current invoicing solution working out for you?

Why it works: it’s very specific and the question is simple

Prerequisite: you know exactly how to pitch your product as a solution in 2-3 words

Risk: you’re sending the message to someone who doesn’t know the answer to that question


I help {{industry}} companies with {{elevatorPitch}}. I wanted to learn how you handle this at {{company}} and show you what we’re working on.

For example, I help tech companies with the recruitment of senior developers. I wanted to learn how you handle this and show you what we’re working on.

We help {{contactProfile}} who want to {{improvement}}. I wanted to learn how you handle this at the moment and show you what we’re working on.

For example, We help growth teams who want to automate their lead generation. I wanted to learn how you handle this at the moment and show you what we’re working on.

Why it works: it’s not too pushy and, if they have a problem related to your topic, they’ll be happy to engage in the conversation.

Prerequisite: you’re experienced enough to hold an open, non-scripted conversation with each person if replies come in

Risk: the request is too broad, not specific enough 

Job Search Email Introduction Example

“Working for {{companyName}} as a {{jobTitle}} like you is my dream job so I thought I’d reach out.”

Example: Working for Google as an analyst like you is my dream job so I thought I’d reach out.

Why it works: it’s flattering (although for Google that might not be enough!)

Prerequisite: you’ve done your research

Risk: the flattery is not well received because it feels fake

Link Building Email Introduction Example

“I’ve been reading the {{name}} blog since it first launched in {{year}} and always found it to be helpful for answering my questions around {{topic}} so I thought I’d reach out with a guest post proposal.”

For example: “I’ve been reading the deux.io blog since it first launched in 2012 and always found it to be helpful for answering my questions around growth marketing so I thought I’d reach out with a guest post proposal.” 

Why it works: it’s flattering and you’re coming with value

Prerequisite: you’ve got a guest post or something else of value to offer that’s the right fit for them

Risk: you get the date wrong and look like a lying fool

Provide value first

When you send an email introduction to someone who’s never heard of you before, they’re doing you a favor by simply opening and reading your email. 

As soon as they open your email, you owe them a little bit of their time back.

Better bring value to the table quickly.

Networking example

The goal of networking emails: start a conversation with someone you admire.

To do that, there are a few things you can do to add value upfront.


You could point out a small improvement or fix that person can make on their website or social media profile. 

For example, you could point out a typo or be more original and compare two of their profile pictures on a tool like Photofeeler and show them which one ranked best.


You could tell them about an event they’d be a great speaker for and offer to recommend them to the organizers.

Just make sure it’s clear that you’d do this for free and only if they’re interested of course.

Make it easy for them to say yes.


Based on books they’ve mentioned in the past, share a quote from a book you just read and think they’d like.

Keep the quote short and, if you want to go above and beyond, send them as a gift via Amazon Kindle.

Sales examples

The goal of sales emails: start a conversation with someone who has the potential to pay you because you’re able to:

  • save them time, 
  • help make them money, or 
  • make them feel good about themselves. 

If you can’t convince them you’re able to provide that value for them in just a few words or a well-thought-out image, they’ve got no reason to reply to your email.


“We’ve recently added some new features to our {{solution}} that {{valueAdded}}.”

Example: We’ve recently added some new features to our online banking offer that makes expense reports 5 times faster to complete.

Why it works: it’s specific and promises great value

Prerequisite: you’re able to explain how your product solves a problem in just a few words

Risk: you’re sending this email to people who have no use for this solution and no influence over people who might be interested


“{{impressiveStatistic}}. Here’s a freebie with {{solution}}.”

Example: “By 2030, the US is going to lose $430 billion annually due to low talent retention. Here’s a freebie with 52 ideas to improve your employee retention rate in 2021.”

Why it works: as per Cialdini’s reciprocity principle, people are more likely to do a little something for you, like reply to your email, if you’ve given them a little something first.

Prerequisite: you’ve put together a helpful resource you can present as a gift

Risk: your free content is so good they don’t need to pay for your product 

Link building examples

“Our website has {number}} monthly unique visitors and {{number}} subscribers to our newsletter. Perhaps we could find a way to bring you value too.”

Why it works: you stand out from others who ask for backlinks and rarely offer to reciprocate in any meaningful manner

Prerequisite: you have a website with enough traffic to make it appealing to them

Risk: the content they ask you to promote is a bad fit for you


“I noticed a broken link in your article about lead generation in the sub-section about LinkedIn. We recently wrote a blog post about using LinkedIn for your cold emailing strategy: https://lagrowthmachine.com/blog/how-to-use-linkedin-for-your-cold-emailing-strategy.”

Why it works: you’re helping them out fix a broken link and handing them a solution on a platter

Prerequisite: you’ve identified a broken link and have content to help them fix it

Risk: you spend time helping a website that doesn’t stay on top of broken links, which may be a sign that its domain authority will go down in the not so distant future


“I’d love to give you free access to LaGrowthMachine in exchange. If you’re not familiar with our service, LGM is the leading solution to automate multi-channel outreach campaigns.”

Why it works: who doesn’t love genuinely cool freebies?

Prerequisite: you’re in a position to give something away that they can use

Risk: the value of your gift far outweighs what they can do for you

Include 1 call-to-action & temporality

In some cases, the CTA and temporality are implicit and part of the “explain why you’re reaching out” section of your message.

For instance, when you ask someone “How is your current invoicing solution working out for you?” at the end of a short email, they know what to do.

They’ll either answer, probably fairly quickly, because their invoicing system could be better. 

Or they’ll just ignore your email because they don’t have a problem or they’ve got more pressing matters to attend to.

However, in most cases, you’ll need an explicit call to action at the end of your email. (Placing a CTA in the middle of an email is not nearly as effective)

Networking CTA examples

“Would you be open to sharing a virtual cup of coffee with me between {{specificTime}} and {{laterSpecificTime}} on {{specificDay}}?”

For example: “Would you be open to sharing a virtual cup of coffee with me between 10:00 and 10:15 a.m. on Monday next week?”

Why it works: it’s friendly and very specific, showing you’re likablelikeable and respectful of their time

Prerequisite: you know in what time zone your contact will be next Monday and, if you want to automate the outreach, you’ve put in place a system to propose different times to different leads so you won’t double book yourself in the unlikely event that everyone says yes!

Risk: your contact receives dozens of similar introductory emails every day and simply cannot spare 15 minutes for a complete stranger.

Note – don’t worry about being too specific with the proposed time and date: if they’re up for it but can’t make it then, they’ll tell you.

In any case, it’s much better than adding a link to your Calendly. Indeed, you want your lead to be able to reply with minimal effort. Don’t ask them to go through a 3-4 window booking process with your scheduling tool.


“I’ll be attending {{eventName}} on {{eventDate}}. Do you think we could meet and hang out for an extra 10 minutes after the {{talkName}}?”

For example: “I’ll be attending the Wynter Games on February 25th. Do you think we could meet and hang out for an extra 10 minutes after the Michele Linn talk?

Why it works: it’s easier for them to stay an extra 10 minutes after a talk they’ve already made time for than to find a dedicated time for you in the calendar

Prerequisite: you 80% sure they’ll be there or they’d be interested in attending if they haven’t made plans for it already

Risk: they’ve already got other plans for the rest of the event


“Thanks for signing up to {{yourProductName}. We’ll be in touch in the next few days to help you {{productOnboardingTask}}. In the meantime, I’d love to connect with you on LinkedIn. {{profileLink}}.”

For example: “Thank you for signing up to LaGrowthMachine. We’ll be in touch in the next few days to help you set up your first campaign. In the meantime, I’d love to connect with you on LinkedIn. ADD ME ON LINKEDIN and say hi”

Why it works: it’s low risk for them and possibly flattering if the email’s coming from the CEO of the company

Prerequisite: you have a solution in place like lagrowthmachine.com  to help you integrate new LinkedIn connections and messages to your CRM

Risk: you can’t differentiate between regular LinkedIn connections and LinkedIn connections who are already your customer

Sales CTA examples

The goal of sales emails: start a conversation with someone who has the potential to pay you to  save them time, help make them money or make them feel good about themselves

“Would you be open to a 10-15 minute demo with me on {{specificDay}}?”

For example: “Would you be open to a 10-15 minute demo with me on Thursday?”

Why it works: you’re not asking for too much of their time

Prerequisite: you can wow them in 15 minutes or less

Risk: the body of your email didn’t convince them you’ll provide value


“Could you help me get in touch with the right person?”

Why it works: people don’t mind putting someone else on the hook so much and they might even send a personal introduction email themselves (which is the next best thing after a business introduction from a mutual connection)

Prerequisite: the body reassured them that you won’t waste the decision-maker’s time 

Risk: they don’t know who the decision-maker is and ignore your email instead of telling you so

Link building CTA examples

“I think {{product}} would be a great addition to your {{listName}} list. Would it be possible to appear there?”

For example: “I think LaGrowthMachine would be a great addition to your top 12 growth marketing tools list. Would it be possible to appear there?”

Why it works: it’s easy for them to add an item to their list and it makes their article better (especially if you include a paragraph about your tool so they don’t have to do it) 

Prerequisite: your product is a great fit for their list and you’re able to prove it in a few words

Risk: they’ve gotten so many similar requests they’ve made it a policy to ignore them all


“Would you mind sharing the criteria for featuring an article on your website? Also, whatever we can do in return… just name it.”

Why it works: you’re offering something in return, something almost no one does!

Prerequisite: you’re able to write a quality guest post pretty fast if they say yes

Risk: they ask for something you can’t provide

General Guidelines, Additional Tips & Tricks

1- If you know someone they know, mention it asap

According to the Nielsen Global Trust, 83% of people say they trust the recommendations of friends and family.

Pro tip: even better if you can make an introduction request to that mutual contact and the email comes from them directly

2- Personalize your emails wherever possible, for example

For example, “{{firstName}}, I’d like to interview you [emoji microphone]” instead of “I’d like to interview you [emoji microphone]”

3- Keep it short

Everyone is busy. Don’t ramble.

Think about it… Do YOU read long emails from people you don’t know?

If you answered yes, chances are, you’ve rarely received an email from someone you don’t know ;)

4- Don’t ask a question that’s hard to answer in less than 10 seconds

5- Don’t talk about yourself

This goes hand in hand with “talk about them”.

Download the working sheet 30+ examples applied to 4 use cases

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