Best practice compilation by Susanna Frazier
Verbiage & Tone
● Keep word count to 50-125 for an average response rate of over 50%.
● Write at a 3rd grade level, which have the highest response rates at 53%
when compared with emails written at high school and college level.
● Fully personalize your messaging for a 6x higher transaction rate (open &
responses) than generic emails.
● Appeal to candidate emotion.
○ Some of the strongest emotions for driving engagement include: Amusement, interest,
humor, surprise, happiness, and delight.
● Keep character count to 40.
○ 35% of email recipients open email based solely on the subject line.
● Use your candidate’s name in the subject line.
○ This could increase open rates by as much as 26%.
○ “[FIRSTNAME], This job is better than a Fri PM at [insert popular bar where prospect went to
“[FIRSTNAME], Picture yourself creating [insert a work product from their LinkedIn profile here]
at Universal Music Group
● Include the first name of the recipient in your Greeting.
○ This will increase your open rate by as much as 26%.
● 1st Paragraph: Incorporate “Show Me You Know Me” content.
○ Tell them how you found them, you did your homework, & you know what they work on.
■ “I was researching XYZ_Company and noticed that you XYZ_responsibilities.”
○ Mention any common connections, groups, companies, education, company followers,
■ You’re 21% more likely to get a response from someone who shares a group with you.
■ Referencing a mutual former employer increases response rates by 27%.
■ People who follow your company are 61% more likely to respond.
● 2nd Paragraph: Align ambition & create an information gap.
○ Introduce yourself and why you’re contacting them. Briefly explain why working together
would benefit both sides. Position the candidate into the big picture of your company’s
○ Highlight the Employee Value Proposition.
Greeting & Body
● Create a sense of urgency.
○ Ask for their time over the next 2-3 days.
● Sign-off with “Thanks in advance...”
○ This specific sign-off increases response rates to 66%.
● Use a P.S. as a direct-mail technique - people almost always read it!
○ “P.S. Since you are one of only a few hand-selected candidates for this role, I will be following
up within the next couple days. Whether you are interested or not, please reply back to let us
When to Send
● Send outreach between 9am and 10am local time for the recipient, on a
○ You’re about 12% more likely to get a response at that time of day than on a Friday afternoon.
○ Messages sent on Saturdays are 16% less likely to get a response compared to those sent
earlier in the work week.