Standing out from hundreds - sometimes thousands - of candidates, competitors, others conducting business in your industry can be tough.
If you want to get a job, close a deal, or foster a valuable business relationship, though, you have to find a way.
The question is, how?
Besides polishing your resume, doing well during an interview, and impressing potential customers in pitch meetings, there’s another factor you can work to perfect: your follow-up email.
Follow-up emails should be sent after interviews, application and resume submissions, business meetings, sales pitches, and more.
Now, you may be thinking, but I already send follow-up emails.
However, it's all about how your email is crafted — from your subject line to your signature. Your follow-up email needs to be professional and flawless — this message has the power to be the final push your recipient needs to hire you, become a paying customer, or agree to another meeting.
In this guide, we'll help you craft remarkable follow-up emails that will make your recipients want to open, read, and respond. Click the jump links located at the top of the page to head directly to the section of greatest interest to you, or simply keep reading along.
To start, let's take a look at possible subject lines you can include to grab the attention of your recipients.
Subject lines are the first thing your recipient sees — meaning, they impact your open rate. To help you craft a subject line for your follow-up email that will make your recipients want to open and read your message, we've compiled a list of some of the most effective options that can be used in various scenarios.
Pleasure to learn more about [Company Name]
Can’t wait to explore [Position Title] further
Appreciate your time and consideration
Excited about [ ___ ] opportunity
Any other information you need?
Have time for another chat, [Name]?
Thank you for your time today, [Name]!
Update on [____]?
Prior to looking at the templates, it's important we review how to write a follow-up email for after an interview. Not only is this a very common scenario in which you'd send a follow-up email, but it's also one of the most important types of emails to get right. After all, you're writing this message to convince a recruiter and/ or your company of interest that you're the candidate for them.
Here's what you'll want to include in your post-interview follow-up email:
Your follow-up email after an interview doesn't have to be extremely long, but it should include these items.
Now, let's move on and review the common follow-up email templates which are organized by scenario.
If you’ve ever been to a job fair, you’ve seen the swarms of people all working towards the same thing: leaving a lasting, positive impression on recruiters. But, with so many people, names, and resumes being shared with these recruiters every day, it can be difficult for them to remember you.
So, how can you stand out from the crowd and jog the memory of the specific recruiters you chatted with? Send a follow-up email that further conveys your level of interest and the value you can bring to their team.
Excited to explore opportunities with [Company Name]
Contacting a potential employer via social media has become a popular and effective way to connect with businesses you're interested in working with or for. Whether on Twitter, LinkedIn, Google Plus, or another social platform, this can be great strategy for establishing first contact and general familiarity before or after submitting your job application.
Application for _____ position at [Company Name]
Hi First Name,
My name is Your Name, I reached out to you earlier today on Twitter. I found the job listing for Company Name and had to get in touch with you.
I also went through Piece of Company’s Content and recently read Hiring Manager’s Content about topic. It's great. I believe I would be a great addition to your team for the following reasons:
1. I'm always learning, whether it be through books or articles (currently reading [Book Title] by [Author]).
2. I focus on Your Unique Value.
3. The thought of helping Company accomplish its goals makes me excited.
Attached is my resume and cover letter explaining why I would be a great addition to your team. I've also included Example Work Samples Related To Your Field for your review.
Looking forward to hearing from you, First Name!
To demonstrate how much you care about the position you just applied for — as well the company's brand, product or service, and mission — send a thoughtful follow-up email once you hit "Submit" on your application.
Excited about [Company Name]'s future
Hi First Name,
It looks like things are going well for you guys at Company Name right now. I saw the blog post from last month about the upcoming new features, and I can’t wait to try them out myself! I hold my breath a little every time I log into my account, hoping they’ve rolled out early.
I also liked the article Industry Publication wrote about the news. I think some of the ideas they came up with for using some of the new features were really unique. It definitely had me thinking about different ways I could set up my account.
I’m coming up on Graduation or End of Current Role in a few months, and would love the opportunity to be on a team that creates such great stuff. Do you know what the Relevant Department’s hiring situation may look like around Start Month? I just submitted the application on the site, but wanted to reach out as well.
Phone interviews are just as important as in-person interviews — each conversation and interaction you have with your company of interest matter.
Additionally, recruiters often handle multiple phone screens a day. Following up with the recruiter you spoke to will keep you top of mind and ensure you don't blend in with the other candidates. Use your follow-up email after the phone interview to emphasize some main talking points and specific details you chatted about. This follow up is how you show the recruiter you should be moved to the next stage of the hiring process.
Thanks for your time today!
Back to one of the most critical instances in which you need to write a follow-up email, as we discussed above: after the interview.
This is where you re-emphasize why you believe you're the right candidate for the particular role at this specific company. You should also reinforce points you discussed and/or learned about during your interview.
Thank you, [Name]!
Hi First Name,
Thank you so much for taking the time to talk yesterday. It was a pleasure to learn even more about Your Company and how you approach Industry with innovative strategy. I’m very excited about the opportunity to explore a potential career with the specific team.
I couldn’t agree more with your philosophy on surrounding yourself with incredible people specific detail discussed during interview. For me, Company Name, is about developing meaningful relationships company value. I think it’s rare to find a company whose asset truly reflect its values and mission so closely.
Again, I appreciate the opportunity to have shared my background and interest in position with you. I think my experience with industry, skill, or product aligns perfectly with what your team is looking for, and I hope to prove that. I thought I would share a few links to projects that I mentioned during our conversation as well insert hyperlinks or attachments. Thank you, and I hope we’ll be in touch soon!
Let's not forget how critical it is to continue the process of sending follow-up emails after your second interview as well. This email should be just as personal and thoughtful as the follow-up email you sent after your first interview.
That's the sound you may have heard after sending a follow-up email before. So, what should you in the case where you've sent your follow-up email, but haven't heard anything from the recipient? You can try again with another follow-up email explaining your interest in the position, partnership, or deal all while gently expressing the fact you cannot wait forever.
You did it! You got the job offer you wanted!
But ... hold the phone — you're also still interviewing with two other companies of great interest.
Now, you need to follow-up via email that expresses your gratitude and excitement yet asks for an extension on the offer.
Extension on my offer?
It's no secret you may receive an offer that you need to decline at one point or another. Whether you've been offered another position you'd rather accept, you no longer feel as passionate about the position you were offered, or another deal has piqued your interest instead, you should still send a follow-up email. This will ensure you leave things on a good note and you maintain the positive impression you made on the people you've been communication with — after all, your paths may cross again down the road.
Thank you for the opportunity
Lastly, what about the follow-up for the offer you have received and accepted?Follow up with a message expressing your gratitude and excitement. If applicable, you can also include any questions you have about immediate actions you need to take.
Excited to join the team!
In addition to subject lines and templates, there are some follow-up email tools with capabilities and features sure to keep your communication as efficient and professional as possible, no matter the type of follow up you're sending.
HubSpot's email tracking tool notifies you when any email you sent has been opened or clicked. Email tracking software places an invisible image pixel in your emails that can detect the exact time and date an email has been opened by a recipient. The process of tracking sent emails allows you to use that collected data to inform your business decisions
You can also use HubSpot's other available email templates to help you optimize your approach to your follow-up emails. Then, you can track the performance of given email templates, save them, and automate future follow ups.
Another way to efficiently manage your follow ups is to allow your potential customers, interviewers, or interviewees to schedule a meeting on your calendar, on their time. This free tool reduces all of the unnecessary back-and-forth that tends to happen when arranging meetings and scheduling appointments or interviews.
Check out LinkedIn for recent updates on specific companies and individuals. The platform is a great way to keep up on industry news, marketing campaigns, events, blog posts, and new products or services too — you can reference these findings in your follow-up email communication.
Remarkable follow-up emails help you distinguish yourself among the rest — whether that's business competitors, candidates you're up against for a job, or anyone else.
By writing a strong, attention-grabbing subject line, articulating your message clearly, and conveying your value, your follow-up email will stand out and pique the interest of any recipient. So, use the templates we've reviewed above and incorporate various follow-up tools to make your streamline your processes — then, hit "Send" on your follow-up email.
Editor's note: This post was originally published in December 2015 and has been updated for comprehensiveness.