Sales criminals are at it again, and this time they’re making foolish mistakes with cold prospecting emails. Instead of being overly apologetic or angrily aggressive, they’re just not thinking things through before hitting send. This sadly mistaken sales rep managed to email a person who will never, ever be interested in what they’re selling.

What you’re about to see is an actual sales email that we’ve received in our own inbox, with names and pertinent details redacted. Prepare yourself – these sales crimes are real, and so are the clueless sales reps who hit send. We hope that by analyzing the worst of the worst sales emails, you will never make these terrible sales mistakes yourself.

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A Stupid Mistake

At first glance, you might not think this cold sales email is all that terrible. In fact, it doesn’t have a single typo, and is fairly well-written. It’s a simple email that offers a free demo of some very popular software and invites the prospect to join in to learn more.


However, your opinion of this email may change when you learn who exactly received this email. This sales rep actually emailed an employee at HubSpot, offering them a free demo of their own software. Oops!

How could a sales rep who partners with HubSpot have ever pressed send without noticing the person they’re emailing had an address? It seemed to be such a silly mistake. And yet, it happened, and it clearly did not result in a new sales opportunity for the rep.

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What Went Wrong

It’s fairly obvious that the sales rep in question was sending this email out to a large list of names and didn’t check each one carefully. If he had double checked the list, he would not have emailed someone at HubSpot to “help introduce inbound marketing,” a concept the company actually invented. The rep clearly knows HubSpot, and it was a simple — though quite dumb — data error.

Funnily enough, this is not the only time this exact mistake has happened to a sales rep attempting to reach prospects interested in HubSpot products. This is another message that a completely different sales rep recently sent on Twitter directly to @HubSpot, the company’s official handle.


No kidding, HubSpot uses HubSpot software!? This may not be a cold sales email, but it is also probably a case of sales automation tools gone awry. This sales rep is attempting to utilize social selling on Twitter, but is clearly targeting the wrong audience for the message.

A Better Solution

Many sales teams today use automated tools to make their jobs prospecting cold more efficient and effective. However, if you don’t have the right sales process in place, sales automation can go badly awry, as seen here. Reps can’t just adopt every new technology without learning how to use it properly.

It sounds like pretty simple advice, but make sure you check your work before you hit send. In the busy lives of prospecting sales reps, it can be all too easy to forget this step. Hopefully, this embarrassing email and Twitter message will teach you to be a little more careful with your next prospecting message. No one wants to be the example of a bad sales email, and with the right precaution, you won’t be.

Keep an eye out for the next edition of True Crimes: Cold Sales Emails for more lessons in perfecting your pitch.

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