Nobody likes to open their email or social inboxes to messages that lack a personalized human touch. It’s one of those things that make us feel like we’re nothing more than a new paid invoice to a brand.


According to Markempa, “Empathy-based marketing is about walking in your customer’s shoes to understand their experience and how we can better help them get what they want.” Now, more than ever, empathy-based marketing is a must. It takes just 3 minutes to run some quick research on cold leads that could lead to a reply-worthy message. Here's how to get started.

1. Know Who Will Read Your Message & Understand Their Driving Factors

You want to understand who’s likely going to be the first or only person to intercept your message.This way, you can better gauge what to say to motivate them to respond. If you’re reaching out to bigger brands or public figures, know your message is likely being read by a team member. If that’s the case, team members want to look good in front of their bosses. What can you offer their boss that will make the team member feel like they’ve discovered a needle in a haystack? People should always feel like they just discovered something really cool in their inbox.

2. Write a Killer Subject Line and First Sentence

Email or not, every message has a subject line. In an email, it's the clearly marked subject line text box. But on social media this is the first sentence which appears as preview text in people's inboxes. The goal here is to create curiosity. Lead with a friendly hello addressing the recipient by their name (if possible). Follow this with a brief summary of your offer, and then move into the body of the message.

3. Keep Your Intro Brief

Nobody knows who you are yet. They don’t care for your multi-paragraph intro on who you are and all the awards you've won. Don’t take it personally because it's not. Keep it simple and sum up who you are in one or two sentences. Once you’ve invited the intended recipient onto a more formal conversation, you can elaborate more on these details.

4. Get to the Point

Why should they care to keep reading? After a brief intro, we advise transitioning into the most interesting details about why you’re reaching out. This is where you want to plant the seeds of what’s possible if they were to further explore your offer. Remember, it’s not about what’s in it for you — it’s what you can do for them. Don’t write from a self-serving place.

5. Assume They Say Yes & Give Clear Next Steps

Be confident and assume they’ll move forward. Give the reader clear next steps on what they should do if they want to move forward. You don’t want to promise them a bunch of amazing things and then have them feel confused on how they can proceed. Don’t make your potential customers do all the work. The goal is to make the process seamless for them. The next steps can be anything from just replying to the email or scheduling a call from a Calendly link included in the initial message. Whatever the next steps look like for you, be clear about them and keep them simple.

6. Go Easy on Pleasantries

Value people’s time — we’re all busy, and we all want to get to the point as quickly as possible, but we still want to be treated with human warmth. It feels more genuine that way. Rather than overdoing it and leading with too much fluff, leave this kind of sentence for a nice and warm wrap-up of the message to end things on a feel-good note.

Putting It All Together

Below is a sample message created for a pretend scenario where we are reaching out to someone interesting to host on an IG live.

Hi John,

I watched your last YouTube video on content marketing tips for SaaS brands! My name is Diana and I'm head of content for VEED.  We’d love to have you on an IG live to share about this topic. If you’re interested, please let me know by next week.

We have three available live video slots for this month and would love to have you be part of them. You can schedule yours via the Calendly link here when you’re ready.

I hope you’re having an amazing start to your week and look forward to hearing from you.

Cheers,
Diana Briceno


Did you see how I put all the steps together here? I lead with a hook, give some details on who we are, and go back into the offer. Also, note how we created a little healthy urgency by giving the reader an expiration date to the offer.

So, to recap, here are all six steps in a bullet-pointed list. Feel free to copy and paste this into a note for reference.

  1. Know Who Will Read Your Message & Understand Their Driving Factors
  2. Write a Killer Subject Line or First Sentence
  3. Keep Your Intro Brief
  4. Get to the Point
  5. Assume They Say Yes & Give Clear Next Steps
  6. Go Easy on Pleasantries

Next time you do your cold messaging, you can refer to these steps as a template for your message structure. Don’t forget to have a professional email signature with links to your website and social accounts so the reader can learn more about you too. Now get out there and build some relationships!