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Nov 28, 2021

New Vendor cold email template

Time to read: 4 min

If you are a new vendor you are going to spend a lot of time cold emailing:

  • Government officers who you hope will become customers
  • People at government contracting companies who you hope will become teammates

So let's talk about what makes for a good cold email.

What is success for a cold email? Let's be clear, you are not going to win work, get a new customer, or find a company willing to partner with you based on this email.  The purpose of this email is to get the other person to start a dialogue with you, and ideally to take a call/meeting with you.

What goes into your first email?

After sending literally thousands of these emails here's what we've learned:

Things that INCREASE your chances of getting a meeting: Things that DECREASE your chances of getting a meeting:
  • Make the reader feel unique.  Why are you interested in them specifically?
  • Make the reader feel special. Ask them for their opinion, guidance, wisdom etc
  • Make a connection.  How are you related?
  • Show you've done your homework. Demonstrate that you've invested time into them before you ask them to invest time into you
  • If there is even a whiff of sales.  If people think you are trying to sell to them. And everyone assumes you are trying to sell to them
  • If they think you are going to take a lot of them time.
  • If it takes more than 2 minutes to read your email


Example email requesting input on the business you are considering starting:

Subject line: I'm leaving (whatever you are doing now) and considering starting a (the service or product you are considering) government contracting business. I would appreciate your input


Hello XXX,

I am considering starting a (Your product or service) business and I found you when I was searching for influencers in the market.  After researching the market, and customer/ vendor landscapes and comparing what I found to my skills and work experience I think there is a gap in the (your hypothesis for what you will provide and why you are different/better than alternatives in the market) space.

Before leaving (you current job) I am hoping to validate some of my assumptions and get input from people who know the market better than I, so if you have 15 minutes to provide feedback on my business concept I would appreciate it.



Why this email works:

  1. It is clear that you are interested in their opinion, not trying to sell to them.  
  2. You make them feel good, you searched for experts and found them
  3. You've done your homework
  4. You aren't asking for much time: You have a point of view on what the answer is and just want help with a couple follow on questions.
  5. I think this email works well for companies and government

THE CATCH: This email works because you are not trying to sell.  So in your first meeting or two YOU CAN NOT SELL.  If you bait and switch the people you've reached out to will feel abused and will probably never work with you.  So build the relationship, and let sales opportunities come naturally .

Topics: Government Contracting