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This is an abbreviated version of the corresponding content from our popular Advanced Online Recruiting Techniques course, explaining methods and resources applicable to recruiting in any industry, function, geography or level. Learn more about or register for our live seminar or online course! Or return to free sample content.
Learn more about online recruiting
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Targeted Email Address Datamining

Numerous inexpensive software tools exist to extract email addresses in a bulk manner ("email harvesters"). The danger with these is that they are not sufficiently refined and often pick up people who do not meet your search criteria. When you then send solicitations to the list, you risk a higher percentage of negative responses (flames).

Here are some good ways to find email addresses for people at a company, or someone's email address if you know their name. Also see many more methods, updated for 2017 on our full course's Lookups page:

  • Web search: On Bing search, use (substitute your target company's domain name)
    (e-mail OR email OR contact) NEAR ** @companydomain.com OR AnyActualEmailAddress@companydomain.com AND (2014 OR 2013 OR 2012)
    (including the known email address allows you to verify an existing address plus find new ones; including recent year numbers surfaces more recent (and hopefully more accurate) addresses atop your results)
    Use these strings on Google (which has the most pages indexed and thus is more likely to have results for smaller companies than other search engines). Note the use of the asterisk (which is the word placeholder wildcard on Google) and the quotation marks:
    • "email * * companydomain.com"
    • (email OR contact) * @companydomain.com
    • mailto ibm.com (or this variant: mailto=*=@ibm.com) or even just *@ibm.com
    • mailto companyname if you don't know the email domain at all (e.g., mailto capgemini) because sometimes it doesn't match the web domain (e.g., www.Fidelity.com is Fidelity's website, but employee emails end in @fmr.com)

  • Corporate online press room: If for some reason you can't find anyone at your target company using the above, go to the News Releases section of the desired company's website (usually under "About Us") and click on any press release. Contact information for someone at the company is usually listed at the bottom.

  • WhoIs: If you're really desperate, you can search WhoIs Source (more comprehensive than Network Solutions' version, etc.) to find contact info for at least a technical person at that company. Just type in the domain name and the administrative, technical and billing contacts' direct contact information will appear. The only exceptions are when the domain owner has opted for private domain registration, and it displays generic contact information instead.
Here are some other methods to find relevant email addresses.
  1. If you know the person's name, that makes them much easier to find, especially in news. For example, in Google News you could search for something like IBM software=engineer for names of software engineers on random press releases in small publications. Again, to limit results, add keywords in Google's advanced news search.
  2. Or if you know the person's name, you can often find their email address via the MetaSearchAgent MESA, which simultaneously searches Bigfoot, Internet Address Finder, WhoWhere and Yahoo! People Search
  3. Another meta email search tool is The Ultimates, which has the search forms for Yahoo, WhoWhere, IAF, Bigfoot, InfoSpace and Switchboard (the last two are also good on their own) all in one page. -->
  4. To find email addresses of students, staff and faculty at many colleges, click here (though this is dated; but many schools have a directory search on their public website, too).

  • Note: many people try to protect themselves from spammers' email harvesters by stating their email address as myusername_at_ibm.com or myusername [at] ibm [dot] com. Just replace the at part with @ and the dot with . to get a working email address.

    This is an abbreviated version of the corresponding content from our popular Advanced Online Recruiting Techniques course, explaining methods and resources applicable to recruiting in any industry, function, geography or level. Learn more about or register for our live seminar or online course! Or return to free sample content.

    Copyright 1997-1998 Glenn Gutmacher. Copyright 1999 - Recruiting-Online.com. All rights reserved. No copying or redistribution without written permission. Email to request.