14 Follow-Up Email Example Templates & Mistakes to Avoid
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Writing the perfect follow-up email that ensures a response can be difficult. After all, you may have effectively introduced yourself in a previous email, but now feel it is time to ask for a reply politely.
It’s also important to remember that people do not usually respond to emails immediately. On the one hand, we can all be reached more quickly and respond anywhere — but on the other hand, we are still humans who have differing attention spans and concerns.
Maybe your recipient saw your email but hasn’t had time to respond. Perhaps they were out of the office. Or maybe your email got lost in transit.
Whatever the reason, a follow-up email is the perfect way to get yourself back on a recipient’s radar and have them respond to you. That’s why you must feel comfortable sending follow-up emails whatever the circumstances.
5 follow-up email mistakes
Before we present our proven follow-up email examples, here are five mistakes many people make when writing their follow-up emails and why you should actively avoid them.
1. Using buzzwords in the subject line
As with any email, the subject line is one of the most critical elements. However, using buzzwords is a surefire way to annoy a recipient. Terms like “touching base”, “game changer”, and “Let’s get our ducks in a row” are all meaningless in the context of email.
Instead, use conversational language when writing your follow-up email. Otherwise, you’ll come across as robotic, using terms that sound clever but don’t tell people what you want them to do.
2. Providing no context to the email
Your follow-up email essentially needs to jog a recipient’s memory. Even if they don’t remember the first email you sent, you’ll get a more positive response if they’re reminded that you’ve been in contact with them before. However, if you don’t say why you’re emailing them, they have no reason to take action.
That’s why your follow-up email needs to provide additional value compared to the first message. Show the recipient what you can do for them and how you can solve a problem they might have. Or add more information about what you’re offering so they can make an informed choice.
3. Offering no call-to-action
If you don’t tell the recipient what you want them to do in your follow-up email, it shouldn’t surprise you when they don’t do it.
People don’t have time to determine what you might want. They need to know exactly what you want. If you want them to call you back, say so clearly. If you want them to book a meeting with you, tell them explicitly.
4. Waiting too long to send your email
Sending a follow-up email two weeks after your first message will have minimal impact. The recipient will probably have forgotten your first email and what was asked of them. As a general rule, two or three days is the perfect amount of time to wait before sending your first follow-up email.
Any further emails you send should have an increased wait period, so you don’t bombard the recipient. So, send a second follow-up email after five days, a third after seven days, and so on.
5. Using funny images
Now, this can be very subjective. Many think adding memes and GIFs to emails is great. However, we would argue that corporate email should always maintain a level of formality even when sending a follow-up message.
Sending an animated GIF to a recipient might amuse you but could backfire spectacularly and offend someone. You can’t gauge what someone does or doesn’t find funny over email.
Instead, keep your follow-up email polite and friendly without relying on gimmicks. After all, how many emails require the use of such images?
14 follow-up email example templates
Below are 14 follow-up email examples you can use for various occasions. Feel free to copy and paste this content for any stage of your personalized email outreach. They are designed to increase your response rates no matter how well you know the recipient.
1. The simple check-in email
This follow-up email example assumes that the recipient read your previous email but hasn’t gotten back to you yet.
This gentle reminder lets them know you’re here to help if they have any questions, which is more likely to elicit a response.
I just wanted to see if you had any thoughts about the suggestions I sent over last week.
It would be great to hear what you think.
Please let me know if I can help in any way.
All the best,
2. Following up after a meeting with next steps
When it comes to any meeting, it’s helpful to summarize everything you’ve discussed in a follow-up email to all participants.
This provides everyone with a clear overview of the main discussion points, the benefits of choosing your company (if the meeting was a sales pitch), and the next steps that have been agreed upon.
It was great meeting with you the other day and talking about [THE NATURE OF THE MEETING].
I now understand the issues [YOUR COMPANY] has been having with [BUSINESS PAIN POINT] and how it is making it hard to [THE ISSUES THE PAIN POINT CAUSES].
Here are all of the action items from the meeting.
Main points of discussion:
- [ITEM 1]
- [ITEM 2]
- [ITEM 3]
- [ITEM 4]
Benefits of choosing [My Company]:
- [BENEFIT 1]
- [BENEFIT 2]
- [BENEFIT 3]
- [BENEFIT 4]
Agreed actions and next steps:
- [ACTION 1 – DATE – OWNER]
- [ACTION 2 – DATE – OWNER]
- [ACTION 3 – DATE – OWNER]
- [ACTION 4 – DATE – OWNER]
Please let me know if I have missed anything that you believe is important.
All the best,
3. Requesting for action to be taken
There’s a fine line between reminding someone they need to do something and pestering them.
A follow-up email of this nature should be as brief as possible. You want to ask if they looked at the thing you sent them and if they have any questions about it.
I hope you had a great weekend.
Have you had a chance to review the press release I sent over last week? Do you have any questions about it?
Please let me know if you need me to send it over again.
4. Asking for the right contact
Sometimes you email someone and then find out they’re not the right person to talk to. When sending this type of follow-up email, it’s important to let the recipient know who it is that referred you to them and what you can do for their company. CC the colleague you originally emailed but focus primarily on the value you that you can provide.
You can add further credibility by adding links to your social media profiles and corporate website via your email signature. This gives the recipient an easy way to learn more about what your company offers.
I recently spoke to [PERSON] over the phone who pointed me in your direction.
[PERSON] mentioned that you’re currently looking for a way to solve [BUSINESS PAIN POINT], which is a major challenge for [YOUR COMPANY].
I’d love to talk to you about how [MY COMPANY] will [BENEFITS OF YOUR PRODUCT/SERVICE].
Here are some [EXAMPLES OF WORK OR CASE STUDIES/TESTIMONIALS]:
[LINK TO ASSETS]
Shall we arrange 15 minutes next week to discuss this in more detail? Let me know what day works best for you.
5. Having left a voicemail
When you can’t reach someone over the phone, sending a follow-up email is the perfect way to get a recipient to notice your message. You should send this email right after leaving a voicemail, making the copy as brief as possible.
I tried to call you earlier but assume you’re busy right now.
When you have a moment, please call me back on [PHONE NUMBER] so we can [WHAT YOU WANT TO TALK ABOUT].
Otherwise, please let me know what time would be convenient for me to call back.
I look forward to hearing back from you.
6. Following up a product demo
Now, these are people that have shown a serious interest in what your company offers. They have also invested their time to learn more about what your product or service can do for their organization. So why send a follow-up email?
Until the prospect has purchased, there is still a risk they might forget about what you offer or lose interest. Your follow-up message should briefly explain what happened in the demo and outline the next course of action. You can also address any concerns the prospect might have and gently nudge them further along the sales cycle.
Thank you for your time today. I really enjoyed chatting with you and showing how [PRODUCT/SERVICE] can help [YOUR COMPANY] [BENEFITS OF YOUR PRODUCT/SERVICE].
As we discussed, the next steps would be to set up a free trial so that you can test our solution within your own company. You can do this by visiting [URL].
If you want to ask anything else, I’m happy to answer your questions. Please either call me on [PHONE NUMBER] or drop me an email any time.
I will contact you in a few days to see how you’re getting on.
All the best,
7. Chasing an unpaid invoice or late payment
Chasing an overdue payment is never easy. That’s why the follow-up email you send should be brief but direct.
Never use confrontational or dramatic language. If you frame the email as more of a casual inquiry, you’re less likely to make the recipient feel harassed.
Hope you’re well and enjoying the sunny weather.
I am just sending you a quick email regarding the invoice I sent over on [DATE]. Unfortunately, we have yet to receive payment from yourself.
Please let me know if you need me to resend the invoice or when we can expect to receive payment.
I’m also happy to answer any additional questions you may have.
8. The follow-up email after no response
You will always encounter people that don’t respond to your emails. So, rather than just sending the same email again, give additional value to the recipient.
You could offer more information on what your company does or provide some product resources. At the same time, you want to make it as easy as possible for them to answer you, so a strong call to action is critical.
I recently sent you an email about [MY COMPANY] and how I think we would be a great fit for you and [YOUR COMPANY].
Did you know that [INTERESTING FACT ABOUT YOUR PRODUCT]? We also offer [INCENTIVE/TRAINING, etc.].
If you’d like to hear more about what [MY COMPANY] offers, please let me know. I’d be happy to set up a meeting at a time that is convenient for you and to provide an online demonstration.
[BUSINESS PAIN POINT] is something that many companies deal with. That’s why [MY COMPANY] offers the perfect solution for your needs.
To follow up from my previous email, I thought I’d send across some additional resources our customers have found useful:
[MY COMPANY] can offer you the perfect avenue to solve [BUSINESS PAIN POINT]. Please let me know if you’re interested in hearing more.
All the best,
9. The job interview follow-up
When interviewing for a job, sending a thoughtful follow-up email can make you stand out in a crowded market. The email should show the hiring manager your enthusiasm for the position, showcase your skills, and directly refer back to conversation points discussed during the interview.
The follow-up email example below will often be appropriate for most interviews. However, if there is something you forgot to mention or want to elaborate on, this is the perfect place to do so.
Thank you for taking the time to speak with me today about the [VACANCY] role at [YOUR COMPANY]. It was great to meet you and learn more about this exciting new position.
I’m very excited about the opportunity to join [YOUR COMPANY] and am extremely interested in [POINT OF DISCUSSION]. I’m very enthusiastic about [ONE/TWO SPECIFIC ASPECTS OF THE JOB ROLE] and bringing my experience in [PREVIOUS JOB EXPERIENCE] to this role.
After our conversation, I am confident that my background in [YOUR SHARED INDUSTRY] will enable to me to successfully fulfil and exceed this role’s requirements and support the vision of [YOUR COMPANY].
Please feel free to contact me should you require any further information or samples of my work.
I very much look forward to continuing the conversation and hearing from you soon.
10. Following up after an event
Events such as trade shows and exhibitions are great places to find people interested in your product/service. However, after the event has taken place, it’s common for attendees to forget who they spoke to.
To ensure this potential lead does not get lost, send a timely sales follow-up email to get their attention while the event is still fresh in their memory.
It was great to meet you at [EVENT NAME]. I hope you enjoyed it and thank you for your interest in [MY COMPANY].
It was really interesting to hear about [BUSINESS PAIN POINT] and how [MY COMPANY] can help.
I’d love to chat to you some more about this so you can see the [BENEFITS OF YOUR PRODUCT/SERVICE].
Do you have any time available for a call next week? Please let me know what times work best for you and we can schedule something in.
Also, feel free to drop me any questions you might have in the meantime.
I look forward to hearing from you.
All the best,
We recently had a discussion at [EVENT NAME] on the issues [YOUR COMPANY] is having with [BUSINESS PAIN POINT].
I honestly believe that [MY COMPANY] will be able to help you with all of your [BUSINESS PAIN POINT] issues, as well as provide [OTHER PRODUCT/SERVICE BENEFITS].
Have you had a chance to look at [MY COMPANY] in more detail? Are there any questions you’d like me to answer?
I’m happy to set up a time for us to talk in more detail. Please let me know when you’re available and I’ll book in a meeting.
In the meantime, here is a [WHITE PAPER/CASE STUDY, etc.] that provides additional information on what [MY COMPANY] can do for [YOUR COMPANY].
11. Following up at a later date
There are many reasons why someone might ask you to contact them back at a later date. It might not be the right time in their purchase cycle, they might not need what you offer, or your product might not have a feature they need.
This follow-up email sample provides a reminder of what was discussed previously, offers them new content, and asks to set up a time to talk further.
I hope all is well.
We chatted [PERIOD OF TIME] ago about [MY COMPANY] and [VALUE PROPOSITION]. At the time, you mentioned that it was not the right time and asked me to connect with you in [DATE/TIME PERIOD, etc.].
We now have some exciting new features that we’ve added to our solution, and I can’t wait to show them to you.
In case you’re still not sure, here are some quotes from our recent customers:
- [QUOTE 1]
- [QUOTE 2]
- [QUOTE 3]
Are you still looking for a solution to [BUSINESS PAIN POINT]? Shall we jump on a quick call sometime next week?
Looking forward to hearing from you.
All the best,
12. The breakup email
If a contact goes completely silent over email, there is only so much you can do before you start harassing them. That’s where the breakup email comes into play.
Now using this type of follow-up email template doesn’t necessarily mean you’re giving up on a recipient. In fact, a good breakup email can be highly effective in reigniting a conversation. It refreshes a recipient’s memory by telling them that you have contacted them a few times, you haven’t been able to get a response, and this will be the last email they will receive from you.
The wording is deliberately designed to provoke a response from the recipient. You can either confirm that there is no need to communicate with them again or that they’re still interested but have just been busy.
I’ve sent you a few emails on helping [YOUR COMPANY] solve the issue of [BUSINESS PAIN POINT]. As I haven’t heard back from you, I’m assuming that the timing isn’t right.
In the meantime, here are some resources that will give you more insight for professionals dealing with [BUSINESS PAIN POINT].
- [ASSET 1]
- [ASSET 2]
- [ASSET 3]
- [ASSET 4]
If in the future you have a need for what [MY COMPANY] offers, please don’t hesitate to contact me.
Thanks for your time,
Writing a good follow-up email that prompts a response is not easy. We all have busy inboxes and many priorities to deal with. At the same time, you don’t want to bombard recipients with constant messages to the point where you become an annoyance.
Using the follow-up email examples presented here is easier than writing your messages from scratch. The important points to remember are that a follow-up email should be brief, provide added value to the recipient, and offer a strong call to action. By following these guidelines, you’ll quickly be able to initiate conversations with your prospects and customers over email.
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