The job market is tough.
In fact, staggering statistics indicate that only 2% of job applicants actually land an interview. With numbers like that, it's obvious that the odds are not in your favor.
However, savvy job hunters don't wait for their dream career to pop up on a job board or hang around waiting for a recruiter to call. Instead, they seek out opportunities on their own volition using the art of cold emailing.
Don't wait to see your dream career posted on a job board and clamor for an interview -- go out and get it with a cold email. Here's how.
Get The Right Contact
Before you attempt to get a foot in the door, make sure it's the right door that you're opening. By this, we mean never guess to whom your email needs to be addressed (or worse -- send several generic emails to various people within the company).
The internet is your friend. If you can't find the name or contact info that you need on the company's website, try LinkedIn. If that fails, Google can help. Worst case scenario, you might have to call the company and ask.
It's worth it -- to be taken seriously, your cold email needs to land in the right inbox.
Nail Your Subject Line
Do not underestimate the importance of a killer subject line. After all -- you could craft the most amazing cold email ever written, but if your contact doesn't open it, well...
If you know even the bare minimum about email marketing, you know that first impressions are key. You need to use that first impression -- in this case, your subject line -- to grab their attention and make an immediate connection.
Brief is best; there isn't room for many characters. So keep it short, but make it personal and creative. Since you're hunting for a job with this particular company, you should also have an understanding of their corporate culture. Tailor your subject line accordingly.
Open your email by making a personal connection with your recipient. Maybe you have a mutual acquaintance or the same alma mater. Find something to add a human touch so that the reader recognizes that it's not a generic email blast.
Next, take three or four sentences to sell yourself. A quick rule of thumb for cold emails: offer versus ask. Offer yourself and your specific skill set to fix a problem their company has. Don't ask them for a job.
Offer specific, relevant examples of your recent work -- include a link or two if you can.
Make sure to keep it brief. It's not a cover letter, and a wall of text likely won't get read.
If you know the company is hiring, you can close by asking for a meetup or an informational interview.
If the company is not currently hiring, be more discreet in your ask. Perhaps suggest a meetup for a cup of coffee.
Sign off with a signature that includes a link to your portfolio or LinkedIn profile.
Don't feel that following up is pushy. Chances are, your recipient is very busy and may easily overlook your email. Following up reflects well on your dedication and sincerity, too.
Wait a week. If you haven't had a response, don't assume you're being blown off. Email again and ask if they have time to connect.
Your Dream Job Might be on the Other End of a Cold Email
Lots of job hunters think sending a cold email is too presumptuous or bold. But, in today's tough job hunting climate, a cold email actually represents a great way to set yourself apart. Use it to your advantage!
Need more job hunting advice? Take a look through our career articles to find more tips and tricks. You might just find that your dream job can be yours in no time!