How to Cold Message on LinkedIn (With Ready-to-Use Templates)

By: Jack Reamer |
 March 18, 2024 |

Since 2019 we have had the following averages when it comes to Linkedin cold messages.

  • A 45% connection request rate acceptance rate.
  • A 19.98% reply rate to our LinkedIn messages
  • And a 48.14% positive reply ratio (These replies were either meeting requests or qualified sales inquiries on our clients products/service.)

If you would like the same averages for your business, then we are here to help. 

Cold messaging on Linkedin isn’t complicated. Yes, it takes time and research, but in essence, it’s all about starting conversations and building relationships. 

In this article we will show you how to write ultra personalized outreach messages, along with tips and 7 ready to use templates for inspiration. 

(If you need some help or advice with your LinkedIn outreach strategy, hit the button below.)

The secret to cold outreach? Personalization.

Have you ever received a Linkedin message like this:

If you’re like me, you probably ignored it. Firstly, I don’t have a need for this, and secondly, this message comes across as spammy and generic. The same message was probably sent to hundreds of other LinkedIn users

Most prospects have “spam blinkers” on. 

When you see a random sales message, you will most probably ignore it, especially if you don’t have a need for the product/service

But if you had to receive a message like this:

Wouldn’t you be more inclined to respond?

The reason?

It was a personalized message.

And that’s what successful cold messaging on Linkedin is all about. You just need to say something that will get your foot in the door for further conversation. 

We call this the CCQ method:

CCQ is our go to for writing personalized messages that capture a potential lead‘s attention. We will either find something to compliment the prospect on, mention a commonality, or ask them a question in our direct messages

For example:


Have a look at your prospects’ LinkedIn profile. Is there something very specific that you can use in your messaging to compliment them?

For example: 

  • Did they recently host a webinar and it had a great turnout? 
  • Were they featured in an article?
  • Did they write an article or social media post that resonated with you?
  • Did they just celebrate a promotion?
  • Have they been working at the company for 10+ years and are celebrating?

If you notice something specific to compliment your prospect on, mention it in your LinkedIn outreach message. 

Here’s an example:

Hi Sean 

Congrats on your new role at {company name} Would love to connect with you because I’m interested in learning more about your {{topic}} approach.


A commonality means to mention something that you have in common with your potential customer. It could be a mutual connection on Linkedin, or perhaps you know someone at their company, or you work in the same industry; It could even be a shared love of surfing.

Some ideas for commonalities:

  • Are you part of the same Linkedin groups
  • Do you have shared connections?
  • Do you both support a certain charity that can be used as common ground for starting a conversation?


{{first_name}}! {{common_connection}} recommended you as the expert for {{topic}}. Looking for the secret to getting {ideal_outcome}}.


Asking a question is another way of capturing someone’s attention. For example, if you are selling a product or service that might help the prospect with their pain point, you could always ask them how they are dealing with their “pain point.”


“{First name} I noticed that your company does XYZ. I was curious about how you handle {pain point}? For reference my company does {how you solve pain points}. Would love to connect and see if we could be of any help to each other.

If you use this method, the chances of getting more positive replies will be greater. Our clients know that they can expect 1 qualified sales lead per day.

Here are some replies that we have received from prospects:

7 Linkedin cold message templates (Connection Requests)

1.Hi, since you have a {type_of_company} and we work in a similar field, I may have people in my network who are relevant to you. Would you like to connect?

2.Hi {{first_name}}, I’m helping creators & companies produce 10x more content using AI & automation. In the last month I helped generate over 200M+ views. If you know anyone who could benefit from this, I’m taking on 1-2 more clients. Pm me or just forward this to the right person.

3.Hey {{first_name}}, just found your {article_name} on {blog}. Would love to connect.

4.Hello {{first_name}}, I’ve just found your article {article_name}. I’m familiar with the subject because {describe_common_background. Are you open to exploring creating some content together?

5.Hello, {{first_name}}! 🙌 We’re working with CEOs, Speakers, and Coaches and their network led me to you. Would you be interested in {offer} for {price} to support you? 

6.As we actively expand our B2B outreach, we’ve recently come across your company and are fascinated by the prospect of collaboration. Looking forward to a virtual meet.

7.Hey, I’m using the last part of the year to connect with more people that work in the consulting space. {Your name}

For more inspiration have a look at our 60 Linkedin Connection Request Templates article.


Next, follow up consistently, add more personalization and ask for a booked sales call.

Some salespeople give up pretty quickly in their lead generation strategy. For example, if a prospect doesn’t reply, they might not send a follow up; Or they might do the opposite and send too many spammy follow ups

There has to be a fine balance when it comes to follow up messages in your outreach strategy

We suggest waiting 3 days before you send your first follow up message

When you do this, add in some more personalization.

Here are some Linkedin cold message examples (Follow ups

1.{first_name} good to connect, By the way, congrats on your new role at {company name.}

2.Good to connect (first name). By the way, what are your favorite hiking spots these days? Saw you’re in charge of account management, do you also handle { (to keep clients updated?) Or am I way off?

3.{first_name}, good to connect. By the way, happy to give you an intro to anyone in my network now that we’re connected. I’ve been doing some research on (XYZ) (We provide (What your company does.)Since we’re newly connected, I’d like to share this post with you: (Share a link that’s helpful from your website.) P.S. It explains (XYZ)

4.Hi {first_name}, If you could help {company_name} with (XYZ) would that be worth a short conversation? I’m asking because of XYZ. Worth a short conversation?

5.Thanks for connecting {first_name}. I’d love to connect outside of Linkedin too. Very curious to hear about where you get most of your (XYZ). What does your calendar look like over the next week or two to connect? PS: For background, my company does (XYZ).

6.Hi {first_name} Thanks for connecting. We just opened our (discuss in short what your company does) I’d like to share some details about this opportunity with you. What’s your best email? {your name}

7.{first_name} (Add a custom intro sentence) My company is looking to invest in XYZ. Ps: For background, we have X + years in the industry. We have already purchased from companies such as XYZ

8.{first_name} There is an upcoming webinar next month on XYZ. It’s invite-only and specifically for leaders in the (XYZ space). In fact, I’m sure you already know some executives in the group. What’s the best way to arrange a short conversation over the next few days?

9.{first_name} Good to connect. Now that we are connected, do you mind if I ask you about your approach to XYZ? I’m curious – How do you (Ask a question about their strategy) Could we get on a quick call next week at (time, date.) Ps: For background, after helping (mention what you do and how you have helped other companies) I’ve been exploring new ways to forecast revenue and ROI. I can share insights if this piques your interests?

10.Good to connect {first_name} (Add a custom intro sentence) To be transparent, I do XYZ and we help with XYZ… Does this resonate with you? Or are you pretty happy with where you are right now?


We asked for a booked meeting (phone call) in many of the messages? Don’t be scared to ask for a booked sales call. Often sales teams leave this part out, but we have found based on data since 2019 that 48.14% of prospects agree to a meeting (This is the positive reply ratio.)

So have a clear call to action, that will be easy for your prospect to engage with. 

You could ask:

  • Will you be available for a quick meeting next week to discuss XYZ?
  • How about we hop on a quick 5 minute call next week to see if this is something that could work for you?
  • Are you available next week {time} for a quick chat?
  • Send over your calendar link and I will book a quick call.

We suggest following up every 3 days at least 4-6 times. If a prospect doesn’t respond all to your connection request, you could add them to a cold email or SMS campaign. 

Linkedin prospecting tips for successful cold outreach

Have an ultra refined list of your target audience

LinkedIn lead generation is a mix of excellent list building and personalized copywriting. If you have these two things in your campaign then you will get a better response rate.


Because if your list of potential customers is refined, you will be reaching out to people who:

  1. Want what you’re selling
  2. Have the buying power (the decision makers)
  3. The budget to buy your product/service 

Then you close the deal with an engaging copy that stands out from every other spammy salesperson

This article: How To Build A Sales Prospecting List In Any Industry goes into more detail on how to build a prospecting list.

Update your Linkedin profile before reaching out to potential clients

View your Linkedin profile as a “first impression”. 

People will look at your profile. 

If your profile looks unprofessional, or reads as a resume, prospects might not be interested in engaging with you.

So view your profile as a sales page. 

Have various testimonials on your page, share case studies, mention stats and all you have achieved for your current clients. 

These “trust signals” add to your thought leadership and prospects will be more willing to engage with you. 

Also make sure that it’s easy for your prospects to contact you; whether you have your email address on your LinkedIn profile, or share your website details. 

Have a value proposition that’s difficult to resist

We suggest only mentioning 1 value prop of your service/product per message.

Some people try to mention everything in one message, but it’s best to mention 1 great feature with each follow up

  • Why is your product or service better than anyone else’s?
  • What can you offer that will make your prospects day better?
  • Is your pricing more affordable?
  • Is your tool more superior than others? Does it have a user friendly aspect that other tools don’t? 
  • Are you offering to pay your prospect $100 for reading through your ebook?
  • Do you offer a money back guarantee?

When you do this in your cold outreach messages, it will help encourage your potential client to respond and get excited about your offer. 

Skip the sales pitch

Don’t use sleazy sales pitches in your messages, rather leave the sales speech for the booked call. Use LinkedIn as a bridge to building connections and getting your foot in the door for a sales call. 

When prospects see sales pitches, the chances of them running for the hills will probably be 90%. 

So cut the sleaze. 

Send connection requests on Mondays at 10:00 am

We analyzed data from Salesbread since 2019 and we found quite a few interesting stats. For example, the best time to send a connection request is on Mondays. Why? Because Mondays are when prospects are the most likely to accept your request. 

We also noticed that prospects are more likely to reply to your message at 10 am. 

For more detailed information, read this article: Our 2024 Outreach Stats Revealed + The Art Of LinkedIn Outreach

Frequently asked questions 

Q1: What is Sales Navigator, and how does it enhance my LinkedIn cold outreach?

Sales Navigator is a premium LinkedIn tool designed for professionals who specialize in B2B marketing, sales, and recruiting. It offers advanced search filters, lead recommendations, and the ability to stay informed about their professional network, making it an excellent tool for effective LinkedIn engagement.

Q2: How can I engage with my professional network on LinkedIn in such a way that creates thought leadership?

To stay connected, regularly share relevant content, comment on posts, and participate in industry discussions. You can also use InMail messages as a supplementary form of outreach if prospects aren’t replying to your connection requests

We prefer sending a connection request, but we have also supplemented with Inmail. When you do the above, you’re creating thought leadership in your space and building business relationships.

Q3: Is using an automation tool for LinkedIn advisable?

Yes, you can use automation tools but you need to be cautious.  Use it responsibly to automate routine tasks, but always personalize your outreach, especially in the first message.

Q4: What should I include in my first message to make it effective?

Q6: How does LinkedIn Sales Navigator benefit B2B marketing strategies?

LinkedIn Sales Navigator provides powerful tools for identifying and targeting potential clients. With advanced filters and lead recommendations, it helps refine your search, enabling more precise B2B marketing strategies to connect with decision-makers and generate new business opportunities. But you need to use this tool the right way – This article goes into more detail on how to use Sales Nav. 

Q7: Can I cold message a hiring manager on LinkedIn?

Yes, but approach it strategically. Research the company and the hiring manager, and craft a personalized message that shows your skills and interest in their organization. Respectfully convey your value proposition and the benefits you can bring to their team.

Q8: How can I obtain contact information for effective LinkedIn outreach?

LinkedIn is designed to protect user privacy, so avoid attempting to obtain contact information outside of the platform. Instead, focus on building rapport through meaningful interactions on LinkedIn, and once a relationship is established, explore other communication channels.

Q9: How can startups leverage LinkedIn to acquire new customers?

Start by optimizing your company profile, connecting with relevant professionals, and sharing valuable content. Actively participate in industry discussions and use targeted outreach through Sales Navigator to identify potential customers. Write personalized messages and share how your product/service can solve your prospects’ pain points.

Q10: How does cold calling relate to LinkedIn cold messaging?

Cold calling and LinkedIn cold messaging can complement each other. Use LinkedIn to research and warm up prospects before making a call. Reference your LinkedIn interactions during the call to establish a connection, making your outreach more personalized and effective.

In conclusion

For effective cold messaging on Linkedin, you need to use the platform in the way that it was intended. Build relationships, start conversations, and show interest in helping people. When you use personalized outreach and build targeted lead lists, the chances of success will be high.

If you need a strategy that works, hop on a free 15-minute strategy session with Salesbread, and let’s see how we can help you find 1 qualified sales lead per day.