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Career skills

Five Proven Informational Interview Email Templates

This article covers five essential informational interview email templates:

  1. 📨 Subject lines people will open
  2. ☎️ Request email template
  3. 👋 Request email template (when you have something in common)
  4. 🤝 Referral request email template
  5. 🙏 Thank-you email template

What are informational interviews?

Informational interviews are a job hunter’s secret weapon: they’re low-stakes, informal conversations where you learn about a person’s career, role or company.

They let you learn quickly, and can turn into job offers or referrals on the spot. (See this guide for a complete, step-by-step process for getting jobs offers from informational interviews.)

Informational interview email
Informational interview email

How to write an informational interview email subject line

The goal of any subject line is to get people to open your email (read here for more on getting jobs from cold emails). There are three main ways to get someone to open your email:

  • Pique interest. If the subject is interesting or unexpected, people are more likely to open your email, just to learn what’s inside.
  • Elicit trust. Say something that causes them to trust you – this is often referring a person they know, or something you have in common (like your school, or common connections).
  • Preview the email. Sometimes, you might provide important information in an email, that you can preview in the headline (like the name of a shared connection or the purpose of an email).

Sample informational interview email subject lines

  • Informational Interview with Dartmouth Student?
  • Taylor Thompson Suggested I Reach Out
  • Informational Interview for Dartmouth Tech Club?
  • Informational Interview for Low-Income Students in Tech?
  • Interview for Blog Helping Students Break into tech jobs?
  • Informational Interview about Product Management?
  • I read your blog – 20 min informational interview?

How to write an email requesting an informational interview

To write a great cold email requesting an informational interview, make sure to:

  • Use common connection in subject
  • Who you are
  • Why they might want to help you
  • What you want
  • You’ve done your research — so you aren’t going to waste their time
  • Your accomplishments — so they know you’re serious
  • Respectful in scheduling
  • End with question
  • Put details below the fold

You can see what this looks like below.

Informational interview request email

Subject: Dan Bartlett Suggested I Reach Out 

Hi Adam,

I’m Taylor, a student at Dartmouth interested in product management. I’ve been really impressed by your blogs on building a career in tech, so Dan suggested I ask if you’d have time for a quick informational interview (see my key questions below). 

This year a friend and I built a mobile app that has 100,000 users, and I loved the experience — so I’m excited to learn how I can prepare for getting a job in product. 

You can schedule time in the next few weeks here, or let me know an alternative and I’ll make it work(as long as I don’t have class). Would you be open to a quick call? 

Taylor

___
Questions: 
Can you tell me some of the most impressive accomplishments you’ve seen in product hires you’ve made? 
What skills are you looking for when hiring product managers? 

Could you share your favorite interview questions? 
What are a couple projects/tests you’ve assigned when hiring PMs?

Informational interview email for someone with something in common

Hi Taylor, 

I’m a Dartmouth student interested in biz ops. I’m doing informational interviews to understand how other alumni have built careers in product — and writing a guide for other Dartmouth undergrads as a result. 

I saw that you [INSERT DETAIL FROM THEIR CAREER YOU FOUND ON LINKED IN], and I’d love to learn more about [INSERT]. 

You can schedule some time on my calendly (LINK) or let me know a good time to speak. 

Would you be open to a quick conversation?

Informational interview introduction request email

Subject: Intro to Bonnie Zen? 

Hi Adam, I’m doing informational interviews to get ready for applying to PM jobs. I saw you’re connected to Bonnie and would love to see if she’s open to speaking. Would you mind reaching out to her? I’ve pasted some language you can use below. 

Taylor
____

Hey Bonnie, I just got the note below from a really smart undergrad I’ve mentored. Over the summer he built an app and got 100K users — he’s now doing informational interviews with PMs and asked if you’d be open to speaking(his intro note is below). 

Could I make an intro? 

Adam
____

Hi Bonnie, 

I’m Taylor, a first-generation college student at Dartmouth interested in product management. I’ve been really impressed by your blogs on building a career in tech, so Dan suggested I ask if you’d have time for a quick informational interview(see my key questions below). 

Given your experience in product at Lyft and Google, this would be really helpful — and I’m writing up a guide to share with other students. This year a friend and I built a mobile app that now has 100,000 users, and I loved the experience — so I’m excited to learn how I can prepare for getting a job in product. 

You can schedule time in the next few weeks here, or let me know an alternative and I’ll make it work(as long as I don’t have class). Would you be open to a quick call? 


Taylor
___
Questions:
-Can you tell me some of the most impressive accomplishments you’ve seen in product hires you’ve made?
-What skills are you looking for when hiring product managers?
-Could you share your favorite interview questions?
-What are a couple projects/tests you’ve assigned when hiring PMs?

How to follow up after an information interview

When you follow up after an interview, make sure you:

  • Thank them for their time and wisdom.
  • Prove that you were listening by referencing the most valuable one or two insights you took from the conversation.
  • Deliver on anything you promised during your interview.
  • Remind them what they offered to do – and make sure to include sample language for them to send, if they offered to introduce you to someone.
  • A thank you gift if the conversation was helpful.

Thank you email after informational interview

Hi Adam, 

Thank you so much for speaking with me — I know you’re busy, so I appreciate you spending time to help me learn about [FUNCTION].

Your advice on[XXX] was particularly helpful: I’d never thought of[YYY] so now will be[doing ZZZ] as a result! 

As promised, I wanted to share[AAA] with you here. And, if you’re able to ask your friend[NAME] at[COMPANY] if they’d be willing to speak with me, I would love to speak with them(and I’ve included a draft email below). 

I also wanted to share small gesture of thanks: since you love coffee, here’s a gift certificate to let you choose one of 500 different bags of specialty coffee! 

Warmly, 
Taylor

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