Matthew Bellows of Yesware

Matthew Bellows

Founder and CEO at Yesware

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Matthew Bellows is Founder and CEO of Yesware. Yesware serves almost 1 million salespeople at companies like IBM, Groupon, Salesforce, Twilio and Yelp.

Prior to Yesware, Matthew was the Vice President of Sales at Vivox. Before that, he served as General Manager at Floodgate (acquired by Zynga), as Founder/CEO of WGR Media (acquired by CNET Networks), and as VP Sales and Marketing of Interstep (acquired by Flycast/CMGI).


3 Thoughtful Subject Line Tips To Increase Your Cold Email Response Rate

Subject lines are the unspoken gatekeeper of an email marketing campaign. They are the first thing your reader sees in their inbox before they even decide to open your message. Choosing the wrong subject line can lead to…

Expert session

Tactic that has had the biggest impact on Matthew’s success

Personalization and research

Result if you follow the steps in Matthew’s session

At the very least, you’ll get a response or your email forwarded to the correct person

Full session with video, notes, audio and discussion inside EHQ Club. Learn more

Expert session snapshot


If you had to pick one thing, it would be to spend a little extra time with each email to make it personal.

There are plenty of people and plenty of companies that basically blast out cold emails to dozens or hundreds of people a day.

I’m not going to say that it doesn’t work. That is a tactic that works. But from my point of view, it’s a very short-term solution and it has the potential to really impact your company and your brand.

It’s basically spam. I think what we really need to do as small business owners and people who are trying to build a company that we’re proud to work at, is spend a little extra time thinking why would this person want to work with me? Specifically, what would that person gain from working with me?

Customize in a very simple but scalable way the message to each person so that they feel like you’ve taken the time and the energy to connect with them one on one.

If you can get your mind around not just uploading a list and blasting it out and want to spend the extra 20-50 seconds sometimes on customizing, I think you’ll get not only a better response rate, but also a better long-term benefit to your business.

The time thing is about how big your deals are, and how many emails do you need to send to get how many deals started to get how much revenue for your business.

Generally, the bigger the deal, the bigger the contract value, the more time you can spend customizing your email, right? If you’re closing $500 deals, you can’t spend as much as if you’re closing $5M deals.

It could be anything. The typical sort of things are like, the sports team congrats you on your latest sports team win. Things like that are kind of generic. But still, show that you’re taking a little extra step above the hundreds of cold emails that I get a day which are completely generic.

I like even taking it one step further and finding something in this person’s background that we relate to, especially if you can find something that is relatively recent in their professional life and is relatively good.

My favorite is the congrats email, “Congratulations on X …”

If I’m writing to a VC, “Congratulations on the funding of this new business…”, “Congratulations on the sale of this company you invested in…”, “Congratulations on the IPO…”

If I’m writing to a business owner, and you know they just raised a round of financing, or just hired a great new person, or just announced a great year, “Congratulations on this business accomplishment that you’ve done…”

And say, “I know you want to take it to the next level”, “I know you want to do more”, “I know you’re always striving for the next goal, here’s how I think I can help. Here’s what we’ve done … Here’s the social proof … We’ve done it for this company/companies (which is bigger than you, and aspirational for you.) Can we set up some time where we can talk about how this might serve your business?”

Sending a cold email is one thing.

Personalizing it, taking extra time to send and make it good is the next step.

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