Three Email Templates That Prevent Prospects From Going Cold 70% Of The Time

You’ve been there.  You had a great conversation with a potential client, they seemed into you, and then . . .radio silence.

Here are three templates I’ve used that typically get a 70% response rate (either a positive or negative response).

Template #1 – The Surrender

Subject: My apologies {name of potential client}

Hi {name},

Hopefully, you might have a few minutes to help me out with some feedback. I haven’t heard from you over the last few weeks, which is perfectly OK. But based on our previous conversation, you expressed an interest in solving {list benefits you provide}.

I can only assume that perhaps somewhere in our communication, I dropped the ball or could have done a better job at explaining how our services could help {name of company}. Or maybe you’ve decided to just sit tight for now which is not a problem at all.

I understand that there are multiple people competing for your time and resources.  But I will, for now, ask for a favor. I’d love to be able to be more helpful in the future, so – would you be open to sharing some feedback as to where I could have improved in my ability to have better addressed your needs?  Even a few bullets would be super helpful as I’m a work in progress. 


Why It Works

  • Blaming yourself diffuses sales pressure
  • People don’t want to feel like they are causing you pain if they dropped the ball
  • Shows empathy (I understand that there are multiple forces completing for your time)
  • Shows that you’re vulnerable which humanizes you
  • Gives you an opportunity to learn how you can be more helpful

Template #2: The Presumptive Negative

Subject: Did I lose you?

Hi {name},

I haven’t heard back from you on the project aimed at {benefit you provide}, so I’m going to assume you’ve gone in a different direction or your priorities have changed.  Or maybe you just don’t like my bald spot. 

In any event, please let me know if we can be of assistance in the future.


Why It Works

  • Uses self deprecating humor to diffuse sales pressure (maybe you just don’t like my bald spot)
  • When you “break up” or detach from a potential client, they will feel more inclined to respond because they will be afraid of losing you, particularly if they think you can help
  • Leverages the Law of Reciprocity:  People feel more included to respond in kind if you “give” first (in this case a helpful article that makes them smarter in the PS line)

Template #3: The Last Email

Hi John,

Two words – “The Cubs”. Wow what a comeback!  Are you pumped?

Anyway (that’s called an awkward transition) . .  .

You expressed interest in private labeling but I haven’t heard back you.  I assume that somewhere along the way I dropped the ball or that your interest has diminished so this will be my last email to you.

If you’d like to pick things up again, no worries, please let me know and I’ll have you selling more products online in no time.

Thank you,

Why It Works

  • Connects by referencing something the prospect is interested in (The Cubs).
  • When something is going away, it often make it more desirable.  In this case it’s my last email.
  • Puts the “blame” on me (I dropped the ball) which diffuses sales pressure.
  • Sounds human, uses casual language (pick things up again).
  • Reinforced the benefit (selling more products online).


I only use these templates when I follow up with someone four or five times and haven’t heard back.   If you use these templates too soon, you might come across as being confrontational.

About 20% of the time when I send these templates potential clients are still interested in continuing the conversation, but have just been crazy busy.   Oftentimes I get authentic feedback, which helps me sharpen my sales chops.

Of course that means that a good chunk of people will say that they are no longer interested.  Which is a good thing, because you don’t want to spend your time chasing people that aren’t a fit.

A Typical “No” Response

Here’s a typical “no” response I get (confidential information redacted).

Hi Josh,

Thank you so much for reaching out and I sincerely apologize for the lack of communication from my team here with you about the {redacted}.  We had an assistant on our team that was reaching out to all the vendors and I had assumed had reached out to you as well.

In brief, the scope of our project had changed dramatically based on many factors that were related to funding sources and the decision made by our chair to refocus the project funds on alternate means of educating the public.  I found this quite unfortunate as we were very excited about the original project.

Your company gave a great presentation.  It was slightly over our budget availability but within the scope and the product you were suggesting was much more interactive than we had received from other vendors.

Thank you again for the time your group put in on responding.  My hope is that we can restart the project with the original focus once the current phase of work is completed with a different internal vendor that is making a very different kind of video for general information to the public that involves a news media type product without animation or digital media focus.

I hope this is helpful.

And Here’s a Typical Positive Response

“We apologies for the late response. We have made the payment of $250 today, again sorry for the delays. Please start the process as soon as possible. We have sent all the package design details to Maria and we forward to seeing an initial design. Thank you.”

But What If They Still Don’t Respond?

If your potential client still doesn’t respond and they are of high value to you, then send them a relevant article every 3 months or so and move on.   You can also automate this process using or

Happy emailing.  And remember, the fortune is in the fortune is in the follow up.