Applying to jobs through the company page or job board online portal often feels like you are sending your resume into the ether. A lot of people feel like they can’t avoid this because they don’t “know anyone in the industry.” While warm leads and referrals are helpful for the job search, you should not underestimate the power of a cold email to the right person.
So, how do you find the right person to email?
Step 1: Find a company you are interested in
If you love a company, would love to work there, or you use their product, reach out. These should be the first on your list. You can also check out conferences that you are interested in and see who was giving talks that interested you. What companies are they working for? If your list is too short, search for competitors of companies and of job postings that you really like.
Step 2: Figure out who you should contact
Once you’ve figured out the companies you love, look at their websites to find the names of the people on the team you are interested in. You might be able to determine who the hiring manager is based on their bios or roles. If there is not a team page on the company website, search on LinkedIn for the role within the company and find some members of the team. Try to decide the hiring manager from their experience and what they do at the company.
Take a look at the person’s online profile and see if you can find something that relates to you, your interests, or your work. Maybe they gave a talk on a topic that you researched in school or they have a blog about their love of dogs. These connections can help warm up a cold email and give them a reason to take a second look.
Step 3: Know how to search for their contact info
There are tools that you can use to find people’s email addresses, like Clearbit, which is a free Chrome extension that allows you to search for people and/or companies right from your inbox. It also provides personal information about the person so you can know more about them before you email them.
You can also try using AeroLeads, which is another Chrome extension that finds business email addresses and phone numbers from LinkedIn, AngelList, and similar sites. The service is free, but it also has paid options that come with additional features, like importing, exporting, and transporting contact lists. The paid packages also come with less limitations on number of users and leads.
Another tool that can be helpful for finding email addresses is LeadFinder. You can also use LinkedIn to find out people’s first & last names and then guess at their email addresses using these likely combinations:
You can test your guesses in email address verification services like Hunter and Email Checker. These services scrape the Internet to make sure that the email address you’ve guessed is valid so you know you’re going to reach a real person.
Once you have the hiring manager’s email address, you need to write a great cold email to get their attention.
Pathrise is a career accelerator that works with students and young professionals 1-on-1 so they can land their dream job in tech. With these tips and guidance, we’ve seen up to 3x as many responses to cold emails.
If you want to work with any of our advisors 1-on-1 to get help with your cold emails or with any other aspect of the job search, become a Pathrise fellow.