Email Templates to Make Networking Way Less Awkward

Whether you’re searching for a new job, looking to learn more about a specific industry or role, or simply want to expand your web of professional contacts, you know that networking is incredibly useful.

But, let’s face it—it can also be awkward. It takes quite a bit of courage to reach out to someone you hardly know in the interest of forging a relationship.

Fortunately, I’ve pulled together a few email templates to make that first step a little easier—whether you’re requesting to setup an informational interview or following up with someone you recently met at an industry event.

Leverage these templates to your advantage, and you’ll be well on your way to becoming a networking master—no breathing into a paper bag required.

1. When You’re Reaching Out to a Stranger You Admire

Perhaps it’s someone who works in a relevant department at your dream company. Or, maybe it’s that experienced professional who has a stellar reputation in your field. Either way, you’re eager to establish some sort of connection with this person that you respect—even though you’ve never actually met.

Hello [Name],

I hope you’re having a great week!

My name is [Your name], and I work as [Position] at [Company]. I became familiar with your work when [how you discovered this person] and wanted to reach out to tell you how much I admire your [skill or specific experience].

If you’re open to it, I’d love to [grab coffee/connect on LinkedIn/other opportunity to get to know each other] to [keep in touch/learn more about your experience].

Really looking forward to keeping in touch, [Name]!

Best,
[Your name]

What it Looks Like

Hello Kendall,

I hope you’re having a great week!

My name is Kat, and I work as a staff writer at The Muse. I became familiar with your work when I saw your piece about marketing strategies for Business Insider and wanted to reach out to tell you how much I admire your relatable and straightforward writing style.

If you’re open to it, I’d love to grab coffee to find out more about your experience and connect (and commiserate!) with a fellow writer.

Really looking forward to keeping in touch, Kendall!

Best,
Kat

2. When You’re Following Up With Someone You Met Briefly

You made some polite small talk and then exchanged business cards with this person at a networking event. Now—rather than letting that contact information collect dust in your desk drawer—you want to take the next step to forge a relationship.

Hello [Name],

I hope you’re having a great [day of the week].

It was so nice to meet you at [place where you met] and chat about [topic you talked about]. After our conversation, I found this article about [relevant topic]. I thought you’d find it interesting and enlightening, so I figured I’d pass it along.

Again, I really enjoyed meeting you and I’m looking forward to keeping in touch. Don’t hesitate to reach out if you want to get together and bounce around some more ideas about [topic]. I’d love that!

Wishing you the best,
[Your name]

What it Looks Like

Hello Josh,

I hope you’re having a great Friday.

It was so nice to meet you at the recent marketing association meeting and chat about content marketing trends. After our conversation, I found this article about the most effective B2B headlines. I thought you’d find it interesting and enlightening, so I figured I’d pass it along.

Again, I really enjoyed meeting you and I’m looking forward to keeping in touch. Don’t hesitate to reach out if you want to get together and bounce around some more ideas about click-worthy article titles. I’d love that!

Wishing you the best,
Kat

3. When You’re Requesting an Informational Interview

You don’t just want to connect with this stranger—you want to learn from her. You’re eager to setup an informational interview (or even a more informal coffee date or email chat) where you can come prepared with a list of questions you want answers to.

Hello [Name],

I hope you’re doing well!

My name is [Your name], and I’m a [job title] with [Company]. I really admire your [work/experience] with [outlet]. I’m interested in finding out more about [area] myself and was hoping you’d be willing to provide some insights from your experience.

If you’re open to it, I’d love to buy you a cup of coffee sometime soon so I can ask you some questions and learn more about you and your [journey/career path].

I understand your schedule may be busy, so I’m also happy to pass along some questions via email if that’s easier for you.

Looking forward to hearing from you, [Name]!

Best wishes,
[Your name]

What it Looks Like

Hello Megan,

My name is Kat and I’m a freelance writer specializing in career and self-development content. As a fellow writer, I really admire your advice articles for Entrepreneur. I’m interested in finding out more about writing about entrepreneurship topics myself and was hoping you’d be willing to provide some insights from your experience.

If you’re open to it, I’d love to buy you a cup of coffee sometime soon so I can ask you some questions and learn more about you and your writing journey.

I understand your schedule may be busy, so I’m also happy to pass along some questions via email if that’s easier for you.

Looking forward to hearing from you, Megan!

Best wishes,
[Your name]

4. When You’re Connecting With a Friend of a Friend

Your friend or colleague recommended that you reach out to one of his acquaintances, as he thought you’d have a lot to connect on. Rather than making an introduction, he passed along that person’s contact information and encouraged you to get in touch.

Hello [Name],

My name is [Your name], and I [how you know mutual contact] [mutual contact’s name], who passed along your contact information to me.

[Mutual contact’s name] mentioned that we share a [passion for/interest in/experience with] [shared interest] and said you’d be a great person to get to know! So, I thought I’d reach out, introduce myself, and let you know that I’d love to find out more about you and your experience with [specific area].

Looking forward to connecting, [Name]!

All the best,

[Your Name]

What it Looks Like

Hello Logan,

My name is Kat, and I’m good friends with Jane Doe, who passed along your contact information to me.

Jane mentioned that we share a passion for dog rescues and said you’d be a great person to get to know! So, I thought I’d reach out, introduce myself, and let you know that I’d love to find out more about you and your experience with Saving Paws Rescue.

Looking forward to connecting, Logan!

All the best,
Kat

There’s no doubt about it—reaching out to someone you’ve never met or barely know can inspire plenty of anxiety (here are some tips to calm your nerves, by the way!). But, it’s a necessary step if you want to expand your roster of professional connections and maintain a positive reputation.

Luckily, these email templates can help you establish new connections with a little less unease and discomfort. Add a few personal details to the templates, use them to your advantage, and prepare to grow your oh-so-important network!

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About Richard Moy

Richard Moy
Richard Moy is a Content Marketing Writer at Stack Overflow. He has spent the majority of his career in talent management, including a stint as a full-cycle recruiter and hiring manager. In addition to the career advice he contributes to The Muse, he also writes test prep and higher education marketing content for The Economist. Say hi on Twitter @rich_moy.

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