How to warm a cold email list

by Adam Loving on March 22, 2013

I had a quick chat session last week with my friend Darren. He was looking to promote his band’s latest album. He had an old email list, and he wanted to send them an announcement. Warming up a a cold email list (one you haven’t mailed in a while) is tricky. You need to blast them, but you also want to make sure they remember who you are and it doesn’t feel like spam. Below are 3 tips I had for my friend.

Darren: Just launched my CD on bandcamp. I have an ancient email list (just a list of emails) that i’m going to send an announcement to. any suggestions?

me: A couple ideas…

1. Tell a story. “while making song #3, the basement flooded…”,

2. Solicit a response. “Hit reply and let me know what your favorite song is. I may not have time to respond, but I’m dying to know. No need for complete sentences, just reply with the title or track #”

Darren: good one. maybe make a “free cd” contest too of some sort?

me: Yeah, for a random (or best) reply to #2. My 3rd tip is to avoid generic comments like “sorry it’s been so long” or “hope your winter is going well.” Don’t make it obvious you haven’t been staying in touch. You’re a rock star – go entertain them :-)

Darren: really good advice!

me: Another tip is to make it personal, imagine you are writing to just one person that you know well

Darren: I opened a new gmail account for this. do you foresee any issues? i.e., the first email out is to a large bcc?

me: I think Gmail has a pretty small limit (somewhere in the 50-500) unique to emails per day. I use mailchimp, but it is a pain to learn all the steps of sending a templated email the first time.

Darren: ok. thanks!

me: album sounds great btw :-)

Darren: aww, shucks. thanks, sir.

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