An ill-informed salesperson sent this email pitch to Amazon's CTO


Amazon CTO Werner Vogels

Flickr/Leonid Mamchenkov

Amazon CTO Werner Vogels

A lot of salespeople rely on cold email to find prospects and sell their product.

But when it's not done the right way, cold emails could quickly become spam - or worse, turn into public humiliation.

Take, for example, this email Amazon CTO Werner Vogels got recently. 

The email, which Vogels shared on Twitter last week, shows a salesperson named John Gabriango trying to sell a cloud product by asking if Amazon has made the transition to cloud technology yet.

Vogels is widely recognized as one of the fathers of Amazon Web Services, Amazon's massive cloud service that's been taking the computer industry by storm. This year alone, AWS is expected to generate over $10 billion in revenue.


Vogel's response to the email pitch was perfect:

For what it's worth, Gabriango likely used an automation tool that sent out the same email to groups of people, so you can't totally blame him for the mishap.

But as CB Insights CEO Anand Sanwal pointed out in his newsletter Tuesday, it's a good reminder that most cold emails are terrible and could significantly improve with just a little more effort.

In fact, Sanwal made this point in a blog post last year, pointing out 94% of the cold emails he received were awful. Through his own analysis of 147 cold emails he received, Anand wrote the "overwhelming majority" of them used some automated template software, while more than 75% of them didn't seem to know his business at all.


If you need help writing your cold emails, here are 9 different ways to do it.

Disclosure: Jeff Bezos is an investor in Business Insider through hispersonal investment company Bezos Expeditions.

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