Free eBook
Cold Email Outreach
for founders, BDMs и SDRs
85% open rate, 20% reply, 5% lead, 20k decision makers a month.
How we generate $1M+ per year using ONLY Cold Emails.

Author: Andrew Shishkin

Reading time: 15 minutes

April, 2023
Hey there! My name is Andrey, and I'm an IT entrepreneur. Since 2014, I've been involved in online business, and right now, I'm focused on growing my company, Coders Valley ( and, along with several other projects.

My last two projects were in the B2B market, and the best way to attract clients for them turned out to be Cold Email Outreach. It just so happened that over the past 5 years, I had to figure out all the questions related to cold emailing myself and go through all the stages independently because we couldn't find competent people for any amount of money.

There are many email marketers on the market who know how to send emails to a subscriber base (e.g. through MailChimp), but Cold Email Outreach is an entirely different business process. If you send your cold emails via MailChimp, 99% of them will end up in spam because people did not subscribe to your newsletter.

As a result, companies hire SDRs or BDMs who write individual commercial proposals manually. This is a working method and I like it, but it also has two problems:
  1. Firstly, the emails also end up in spam. This is because it depends not on whether you wrote an individual email manually or not, but on the rating of your domain and the combination of "domain + IP".
  2. Secondly, each SDR brings in 5 to 30 leads per month. You need to hire five times more people to get five times more leads. This requires a large staff and budget.
In this guide, I want to share my approach that allows sending cold emails practically without any limitations while maintaining a high open rate (70-90%), reply rate (15-20%), and lead conversion rate (3-5%). We get several hundred warm leads per month from this channel of attraction.
The approach involves the following:
  1. Adhering to all rules and limitations of email providers when sending cold emails,
  2. Understanding whom, when, what, and why we are writing to,
  3. Systematically implementing and scaling the previous two points.

There is no magic or miracle pill here. I read the technical documentation of SMTP providers (Google, Outlook, AOL, Yahoo, etc.), understood their requirements, how they evaluate whether to send your email to spam or inbox, how they fight phishing/scammers/spam, what's important to them, and conducted experiments within the scope of my two projects for five years to see what ends up in spam and what ends up in inbox.

I did this because I realized that advertising is too expensive, no one buys B2B products by clicking on a banner on the internet, and conferences/media/word-of-mouth cannot be systematically scaled. Only increasing the number of emails that reach my target audience's inbox can help me manageably grow revenue.
I simply decided to perfect this channel of attraction because I understood that more emails equal more money. However, "more" doesn't mean spamming. I only write to those who really need and urgently want what I offer right now.
That's why I enriched the technical aspects with my vision of how Cold Outreach should be done on a global level. Because getting into the inbox is only 50% of success. It's much more important whom you are writing to (prospecting) and what you are writing (a strong offer at the right moment).

For example, it's very difficult to convince a company that has been on the market for 10 years to open a new checking account. But your chances significantly increase if you call someone who just opened their company 10 minutes ago and offer to open a checking account without visiting the office and provide free service for a year.

In summary, by reading this guide, you will understand how to get into the inbox and what is important to keep in mind when implementing Cold Outreach in your project. With a large number of warm leads, the only thing that separates you is implementing these strategies and having a strong offer for your customers. So grab a cup of tea or coffee and enjoy the read!
What's important to understand before getting started
You may have different attitudes towards Cold Email Outreach, thinking it's spammy or wrong, and so on. But if you know that your product can help a specific person in a particular company save a lot of money (time), earn or otherwise improve their life - the best thing you can do is to write them an email and find out if it's really the case. See what people are responding to my emails:
Cold Outreach is a process that scales these actions to a certain extent, sometimes very large, but we only write if we understand that there is a reasonable chance that our product will really benefit this person or company.

According to the Apollo service, there are 64 million companies in the world with 249 million employees. For hundreds, thousands, or tens of thousands of them, your product would be the perfect solution today that would improve their lives, help them save or earn.

But there's a problem - they don't know you exist. And all you need to do is establish initial contact with them via email, and then build relationships (online or offline).

You can try to get their attention with very expensive advertising, meet them at conferences, call them, they may stumble upon your blog or Capterra page. But all this is not systematic and manageable enough.
The best thing you can do is to find them among the 249 million people and write them an email. And if they don't respond - write to them on LinkedIn, call them, or even send a paper letter through FedEx, assigning each lead a status in your CRM:
  • Not in process;
  • Replied;
  • Interested;
  • Not interested;
  • Later, etc.
We start with email because it is the most convenient and easily scalable channel (unlike LinkedIn with strict limits on invites). It will be an unsolicited email, but most first emails in the world are unsolicited, somehow people need to get to know each other.

If you do it accurately and correctly, you will always end up in the inbox, and in most cases, you will receive gratitude for your proposal, time for a call, or a reason why it is not relevant to them right now. Generally, responses from leads from cold outreach are often detailed and informative, unlike those from website inquiries from advertising. Here are a few examples of my own:
Simply sending an email is not Cold Outreach.

Writing 300 emails to potential clients is not Cold Outreach or marketing.

Sending 300,000 emails from a dedicated server is spam. It is impossible to know 300,000 people and to assume that they all need your product.
However, companies often send 100-200-300-500 emails per month to potential clients and do not get results. It is strange to expect results from such volumes, unless you are selling immortality pills. There is a real person at the other end of the line, who has their own business, concerns, vacations, sick days, and they are not sitting around waiting for your email all day, even if you know them personally.

Then companies go to the other extreme and start mindlessly writing thousands of emails to anyone and everyone. Their emails quickly end up in spam.

All you need to do is gradually and sensibly increase the top of your funnel (the number of emails sent), while continuing to understand who you are writing to, what will be useful to them, and why.
If your current funnel looks like 500 cold contacts → 15 leads and your business needs 300 leads, then all you need is 10,000 new contacts per month (out of 249 million potential contacts) without sacrificing quality (right emails, right sequences) and avoiding the spam folder.
Now I will tell you how to do it, and I can definitely say that this is the perfect tool for anyone who knows which company and position their customer (ICP) works in. From a $9 Google Chrome extension to agencies with contracts worth hundreds of thousands of dollars and large B2B corporations with contracts worth millions. Everyone has their own emails, touches, and strategies, but this is what works for many.
Most likely, all of you have tried to do this. The tool is not new and has been popular since the first mail providers appeared. However, most companies give up in these three moments:
  • They send several hundred emails and do not get results because conversions do not allow it (the top of the funnel is not wide enough).
  • They send thousands of emails and end up in spam (because people did not sign up for them).
  • They hire SDRs who write manually, everything is fine, but it takes a lot of money to pay the right number of SDRs you need, there is growth, but it is very slow.
My approach is different. If I can write 100 emails and they will land in the inbox, then I can write 20,000 emails that will land in the inbox if there are enough people in the world who need my product.

Everything else is just a detail. Yes, it's not as simple as clicking a few buttons and sending a mass email via MailChimp, but if there are millions of dollars in revenue at stake, I am willing to put in the effort.
Domains, emails, email warm-up, email validation, daily limits, Tracking Domains, spam filters, spam tests, SMTP providers, personalization, touchpoints - all of these things require some work, but the results will be worth it from the first emails.

Let's say you (or your SDR/BDM) are currently sending emails to 1000 companies per month. That's about 45 per day, 5-6 per hour. Most likely, this gives you 30-50 leads, from which 5-10 companies convert into deals. What options do you have for further growth?

  • To work on the email text to increase conversion rates? There are benchmarks for every tool, and if your Cold Email Outreach campaign converts at a rate of 2-3-5% per company, you are doing well.
  • To change the SDR's motivation system to make them work faster? It's physically impossible to find and write emails to more than 6-7 companies per hour, even with automation.
  • To analyze more carefully who we are sending emails to? Then you would have only 500 contacts per month, and you would receive 1.5-2 times fewer leads because people have vacations, sick leave, and many other things, and you can never be sure if what you offer them is relevant.
  • To hire more SDRs? It's a working but complicated option.

In short, all these options are not ideal.

You need a business process that will make your offer visible to 10,000 potential customers who might be interested in working with your company. They will see your offer in their email (and in push notifications), and 2-5% of them will find it relevant and suggest a call.
So, how to do this?
Modern email providers are very smart - they compare the texts of all your emails (for similarity) in an encrypted form, combine your domain and IP, monitor technical headers of emails (to check if you're sending them as a robot), and most importantly, analyze how closely your email behavior matches that of a real person. Therefore, replacing letters with numbers in words, using hidden characters, or 2-3 variables (name, position, company) will NOT help you get into the inbox on a large scale. Everything should look as if 10 real people are writing real emails to their current clients and receiving responses.

Moreover, 10k people are just the beginning - if you want a bigger company, you'll need to write more. Therefore, you need a scalable system with infinite potential (the potential will be the size of your market and your share of it).

What does a system look like in which you write to 10k people a month, but for email providers, it looks like 10 real people writing unique emails to their current clients?
Several domains
The first thing you need to understand is that it's not your email or even your domain that ends up in spam filters, but the combination of "your domain + IP". This is a key point. You may have noticed that your emails start going to spam after sending a certain number of emails per day (exceeding the limit).

If you thought that your email ended up in spam, it's not the case, it's your domain (in conjunction with IP) that ended up in spam. And if you create a new email and continue to write, it will end up in spam even faster, and after a while, new emails will immediately end up in the spam filter of the email provider by default.

Therefore, you cannot just create 10 emails and write 10 times more cold emails. You will need to buy several domains (not to be confused with second-level domains) as if emails are sent from completely different companies. But you DON'T need to create multiple websites, they will all lead to your main website. This is even done by large companies.

1 domain - 1 email.

This is the most important and secret sauce.
Compliance with the daily domain limits
The key here is to not send too many emails per day to avoid getting flagged by spam filters. No company in the world (even a large one) writes 1000 emails a day to new addresses and only gets 50 responses, and email providers understand this. You should follow human limits and plan the necessary number of domains per month.

For example, let's say you understand that you need 100 leads per month and that to do this, you need to write to 3000 companies. You will be writing to CEOs and CTOs, which is 6000 people. You will send one initial email and two follow-up emails.

So, 6000 * 3 = 18,000 emails per month = 100 leads.

The fewer cold emails per day you send, the lower the chance that your domain will "burn out" (this happens during bounce processing and when someone marks your emails as spam) and your emails will start ending up in spam. My recommendation is to not send more than 200 emails per day, preferably less.

Based on these parameters, you can easily calculate how many domains you need to get 100 leads per month while following human email sending limits.
Constant warming up of domains
When you send a lot of cold emails from one domain in a day, you need to mask them among other emails. You need to show the email provider that this domain not only sends a lot of emails, but also receives many responses, engages in long conversations, and marks its emails as "Important".

Domain warming can help us with this. A robot connects to your email and communicates with itself from different emails - writes emails, responds, marks them as important, and puts them in a separate folder (read) so they don't bother you.

You can find these services on Google by searching for "Email Warm Up" and connect your email to them. It costs around $20 per month for one mailbox.
Daily spam tests
Once a day, you need to check if everything is okay with your emails and if they have not ended up in spam filters (otherwise, most of the email campaign will end up in spam). To do this, you need to conduct spam tests, which involve sending 10-15 emails from each of your domains to specific email addresses of an online service, which will automatically notify you where the email ended up (spam or inbox).

If all 10 emails end up in the inbox, the domain can be used for today. If not, continue warming up the domain, but do not use it for email campaigns.

You can find these services by searching for "Email Deliverability Spam Tests" on Google.
Know your Ideal Customer Profile
You should have a clear understanding of your customer segments (and subsegments) and Ideal Customer Profile. You should know who you are writing to, what you are offering, and how much money/time it will bring/save them or otherwise significantly improve their life. If you don't understand this, you can use Cold Outreach for customer discovery and customer development, but in this case, don't increase the volume of emails.

Ideally, you should find the best moment in a person's or company's life when it is worth writing to them. I call this a "trigger" - the reason why we decided to contact this particular company right now.

Triggers can be anything - a change in the CTO, hiring an HR director, attracting investments, attending an event, posting a job vacancy, downloading a certain library, hiring 20 salespeople in a month, or writing a certain phrase on social media. You need to understand what is such a trigger in your business and find a way to learn about it before others (often, this requires partnering with someone or parsing something).

You need to understand that you are not writing to someone just for the sake of it, you are writing to this company at a certain moment because they recently experienced event X or met criteria Y, and you are offering them product P because it will help improve metric Z. You also understand what the person inside this company who pays you money looks like, why they do it, and at what moment.

It is not always possible to find such a trigger, but you should definitely understand who your customer is (region, number of employees, size of a specific department, investments, date of the last round, revenue size, stack, and much more).
A reliable source of prospects
If we are talking about the corporate segment, there are services that aggregate information from LinkedIn and enrich it with additional information from other resources (such as Crunchbase, GitHub, Adzuna, etc.).

Each person in such a database is called a Prospect. The Prospect contains information about the person's name, position, company, email, phone, and a number of other data points. Prospecting, in turn, is the process of searching these databases for companies and decision makers that fit your criteria.

Regardless of how you determine who to write to and who not to write to, you will need to use an up-to-date prospect database. You can find them on Google by searching for B2B leads/contacts/prospects database.
Recipient email validation service
Knowing your ICP, you understand who to write to and have found their email, but if you write to it right away, around 30% of all emails will be non-existent (because validators within prospecting services work poorly), and in response from the mail provider, you will immediately receive a bounce message:
Each bounce lowers your domain rating and you quickly start to end up in spam, so it's important for us to make sure that absolutely all emails we write to are real (not spam traps, not overloaded and abandoned mailboxes, etc.).

To do this, you need to use a third-party prospect validation service. These are online services that deal only with email recipient validation, and therefore they do it much better than prospecting databases and all-in-one services. You upload your list of recipients to them, and they tell you with 99% certainty which mailboxes definitely exist. You can find them on Google by searching for Email Validation Service.
A reliable service for sending emails
It's not recommended to send cold emails through email marketing services (such as MailChimp), as they are likely to end up in spam. However, sending them manually is too time-consuming and expensive. There are many well-known services that automate your sending process, making it look like a live person is sending the emails. The main criteria to consider when choosing such a service are:
  • The ability to send emails with dynamic intervals between them (not every 30 seconds, but to some people after a minute, to others after 6 minutes, etc.);
  • The ability to send emails evenly throughout the day (for example, some large services send all your emails at once during 1.5 hours, which optimizes the load on their servers but burns your domains);
  • The ability to use a Custom Tracking Domain (to track emails with your personal subdomain, rather than a common one);
  • Connection to mail via SMTP instead of Google API;
  • The service should have multiple IPs to send your emails (you can inquire about this in support);
  • The ability to set the sending time according to your desired time zone (which is almost always available).
Strong text
If you have done everything correctly in the previous steps, your email is likely to end up in the inbox because you are not violating the requirements of the email provider. But this does not guarantee warm leads.

The most important element of Cold Email Outreach is how you communicate your value proposition and message to potential customers. You need a separate chain of emails and follow-ups for each customer segment.

Task #1 is to get the email opened, so the subject line should be crafted in a way that makes the recipient want to open it, meaning it should not sound like an advertisement or spam.

Task #2 is to convey within a few seconds (in the first paragraph) why you decided to write to this person (what trigger), how you can help them save money, earn money, or effectively solve a significant issue for them right now (for a CEO, shareholder, and HR, these will be three different problems).

If the first paragraph is read and convincing, you can be sure that the rest of the email will be read to the end.

We only have one shot to persuade the person to continue the conversation with us (not to buy!), so it's best to speak directly, briefly, and to the point, without philosophical musings about the difficulties of existence in their niche.
The best analogy here is targeted advertising. Targeting offers you various audiences to choose from (yoga lovers, location changers, etc.), and you show each of these segments an ad creative (photo, video) that will interest them. In Cold Outreach, it's the same thing, only instead of a social media audience, you have a prospect's database with emails, and instead of ad creative and landing pages, you have the subject and text of your email.
Compliance with writing requirements
In short, the email should be plain text only, without any HTML code. This is not an email campaign, but a Cold Email Outreach. Do not track anything, do not add anything extra (photos, links, etc.), do not use questionable words (cash, money, insurance) and there will be nothing for the email provider to flag. Variables can be used.
Systematic implementation
Detailed instructions and one responsible person who works on it every day. Weekly report to you in a simple form: we wrote to this number of companies, this many responded, some were not interested for these reasons, others were interested - passed on to the sales department.

Does it sound difficult? Only at first glance. When you implement everything and it becomes the daily routine of your company (with checklists, instructions, etc.) - it's not difficult, but very profitable. This is one of the few ways to quickly increase revenue in the era of catastrophically expensive advertising.
  1. You want to write to 10k companies per month and get 500 leads.
  2. You know where to find them and how to determine who and when to write to.
  3. You divide them, for example, into 5 subsegments (by some criteria: industry, revenue, size, etc.).
  4. Write separate emails for each segment. Your emails clearly and specifically communicate the benefits of working with you to the recipient.
  5. Find these segments in prospecting services (databases).
  6. Validate their emails (that they are definitely real).
  7. Send emails from several domains to avoid exceeding the daily limit.
  8. All your domains are well warmed up, they don't just send outgoing emails, thanks to warming up they receive many responses, conversations are held, and your emails are marked as important.
  9. Comply with all technical requirements for the email text.
With proper implementation, this framework allows you to write to 10k or even 50k companies (with varying degrees of complexity) and always land in the inbox and generate leads. By sending emails in this way, 99.9% of your emails will land in the inbox because the email provider has nothing to complain about.
If you buy a new domain, warm it up, and try to send emails using the method I've described here, you'll get an open rate of 70-80% and you won't have to listen to those who say it's impossible anymore.
How do you implement it now?
I have a workshop (2.5 hours) which is a step-by-step guide for someone who knows absolutely nothing about Cold Email Outreach to implement it in their company. This person can be you, your marketer, SDR, BDM, business assistant or whoever you hire for this role. Anyone who is ready to dive in and set up this business process once and for all. Because these are specific actionable steps that just need to be taken and done.
Content of the workshop
  • How to implement and scale all outbound marketing (email, LinkedIn, cold calls, etc.) in your company as a system, not chaos (funnel, CRM, benchmarks, etc.);
  • determining plans for leads/contracts per month (based on this, building a funnel, understanding the volume of mailings, domains);
  • what is a prospect and prospecting;
  • which services are best for finding prospects;
  • how to understand who to write to out of 64 million companies (249 million people) in the world;
  • pros and cons of working with SDRs and without;
  • step-by-step demonstration of selecting filters and creating a prospect list;
  • validating recipient email addresses.
  • We separate recipients by SMTP providers (GSuite, Outlook, etc.);
  • We consider the nuances of working with Outlook recipients;
  • We determine daily limits per domain;
  • We determine the number of domains needed for your goals (using a formula);
  • We purchase domains (what can't be bought, which domain zones to buy, etc.);
  • We set up a redirect to the main domain (using a script and A-record);
  • We create domain emails;
  • We set up DKIM, DMARC, SPF;
  • We choose and configure a service for warming up your domains/mailboxes;
  • We choose and configure a service for sending cold emails with human-like behavior;
  • We connect our emails to the service through SMTP/IMAP;
  • We set up a custom tracking domain to track Open Rates without getting caught in spam filters.
  • Setting up an email chain/follow-up sequence, as well as sending settings (dynamic intervals, send time, etc.);
  • Writing the email text: all the most important human nuances of the subject and email text (what, how, when, and to whom to write from the standpoint of meaning, where to do proofreading and editing);
  • Writing follow-ups;
  • The most important technical nuances of writing the email subject and text, studying text-checking services (whether what you wrote can be sent, whether it violates the provider's rules);
  • What to do if you still want to add links in the email (to the website, trial, demo, Calendly, etc.);
  • Resolving the unsubscribe link issue;
  • How to avoid negativity and the "spam" button;
  • Conducting spam tests: all the nuances of conducting spam tests before launching an outreach campaign (blacklists, spam filters, software for conducting spam tests);
  • Bounces and what to do with them.
  • Configure business processes in the company: how to implement this lead generation machine in your company so that there is a person who works according to the instructions and for whom all of the above is just a daily routine (instructions, daily spam tests, domain management, monitoring responses from leads, etc.);
  • How to properly plan outreach for a month/quarter, because warming up emails takes time, and if the cost of a lead is acceptable, then you need to write more and more;
  • Examples of weekly reporting in the company on Cold Outreach;
  • Calculate Customer Acquisition Cost;
  • Answers to frequently asked questions.
Plus a set of tables that I use myself
  • Template for calculating the number of domains based on the desired number of leads;
  • Template for planning the purchase and warming up of domains;
  • Template for creating your Ideal Customer Profile (ICP);
  • Template for tracking conversions by segments;
  • Template for keeping track of all domains;
  • Template for weekly reporting;
  • Instructions on how to conduct spam tests.
As a result, you or your colleagues, guided by this workshop, will be able to implement it in your company independently and also gain valuable skills for the future.

In any case, it is extremely difficult to find these people on job boards or freelance platforms, but you can start growing expertise within your company today.

After the workshop, you understand that for X leads per month, you need to write Y emails, for which you need Z emails with L limits, and you know how to set them up, warm them up, whom to write to, when to write, what to write, where to get their emails, validate them, and avoid spamming on the volume of Y emails. You understand how to scale this monthly without losing quality.

Who it's for:
  • Those who need a stable flow of low-cost but high-quality leads abroad (yes, it happens);
  • B2B startups that need an easily scalable and stable lead generation channel;
  • B2C startups that know the position of their LPR and the profile of the company they work for;
  • Those who want to learn how to do Cold Email Outreach, as your competitors definitely don't;
  • Startups at the MVP stage that use cold outreach for customer discovery/development (but don't get good responses on LinkedIn);
  • Startups that use cold outreach to attract investment;
  • Those who want to systematize outbound marketing in their company;
  • SDRs and BDMs who want to improve their skills and, as a result, their market value.

You get access to the workshop immediately after payment (video + presentation + tables + instruction for spam tests).

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Cost: $290

If you have any questions about buying the workshop, send a message to LinkedIn.

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