Copywriting Codex: My Embarrassingly Cold, Cold-Email Journey

How’s your week been so far? Sometimes I think I know quite a bit about something, and then I find someone who knows more (there’s always more of those).

My journey with cold email is just one example of many, many I could jaw about. But for today, I’ll be sticking with that one. And sometimes there’s just times I get stuck on a kick (like with all these Codexes I’ve been doing this week).

Let’s get to it.

When I was first seriously learning copy, I was given a short formula to get in touch with people that was basically ID self, ID work, ID my contact info. That was pretty much it. Very simple. Hi I’m X, I do Y, get in touch @ Z.

Which is fine, and I was also taught to personalize everything, to try to get them interested, and to go after niches I was passionate about.

Problem was, for me, despite a pretty good response rate, I ran out of leads pretty quick, without a lot to show for it. And despite using Google, didn’t have any idea where to go to get more in my chosen niches (which were internet marketing and music instruction, one of which I gave up on real quick).

So I was kinda stuck for awhile.

Then I met a dude named Chris who told me that if he tried to market to one of his favorite niches, surfers, that it’d fall flat because that industry isn’t set up the direct-response-we-use-emails-VSLs-sales-letters-and-direct-mail way. Hmm. All right.

He also turned me on to a fairly obvious source of leads I’d already been using (Facebook), and gave me a good tweak or two.

Something else I learned was to warm up people, but I didn’t know a better way to do that at the time. This dude Chris introduced me to the teachings of another dude, Jon, who’s good at cold email, really good…and he’s never read a book on copy in his life (Jon, not Chris).

Anyway, I’m getting into what Jon is teaching, and it’s pretty cool. And from what little I’ve seen so far, it’ll harness my natural quirkiness in a good way.

I do plan to use it, possibly later today actually–a guy contacted me over LinkedIn because he saw that I posted my LinkedIn profile address in an FB group we’re both in. And it looks like he’s a creative director, so that’s good. I’d learned that “Creative Director” is one of the B2B-speak terms for “someone with the dough and schmarts to hire a copywriter.” And LinkedIn has these guys and gals by the metric ton, apparently–that’s another channel I want to get into–LinkedIn. And what’s cool is the same principles that work for email will work for that–it’s just the medium that’s different.

I’ll let you guys know how it goes (that’s part of the perks of signing up here, but I have been forgetting to do these kind of reports lately).

What about you? If you freelance, do you use email or another method to get leads? How has that worked for you? Drop me a line in the comments–I’d love to hear what you’ve been up to.

Tomorrow is Triple F. Be sure to stop by.

Until next time,



About Ty Mall

Thanks for stopping by. I've almost always been interested in writing, among other things. Along with discovering pop culture, I've uncovered a lot about the craft over the past 10 years. And whether you're a fiction writer or email copywriter, I'm here to pass on what I've found out. And have a ton of fun in the process.
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