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Link Building Outreach: Crafting Compelling Pitches That Get Results

May 5, 2024
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‍Links are the currency of the SEO marketing world. But when it comes to quality links, you can hardly find them “growing on trees”.

Link Building Outreach

‍Over 95% of web pages on the internet do not have backlinks, and not for lack of trying.

‍Most people spend a large chunk of their time searching for good opportunities. And then spend another long stretch of time sweating over a pitch only to get nowhere.

‍What could be wrong? Most times, it’s the pitch itself. First impressions do matter. So, if your guest post pitch is not good enough, that is trouble.

‍Chances are that webmasters will not be willing to see the rest of your content. So, in this post, we will look at how you can nail your link building outreach campaign.

What Is SEO Link Building Outreach?

‍A simple way to describe link outreach is to compare it to writing application emails, but you send them to other website owners to ask for a backlink.

‍Of course, you are not applying for a job, scholarship, or something in the same vein. Instead, you are hoping that this mail would be the start of a new relationship that leads to quality links for your website.

‍And quality links are what can improve your rankings in SERPs, get more people to land on your website, and, therefore, have more potential leads.

Why Should You Care About Doing an Outreach for Acquiring Links?

‍There are many perks that come with doing an effective outreach for link acquisition.

‍Productive link building is an important part of online marketing. You get to improve your SEO search rankings, but also, the more links you have, the better positioned your brand is:

  • Gain more exposure to finally reach those obscure consumers;
  • Outrank your competitors on search results pages;
  • Gain easier access to your targeted market;
  • Improve your authoritativeness and build up a solid rep for yourself as a credible brand;
  • Rake in more referral traffic and leads and mop up revenue;
  • Record the kind of organic growth that doesn’t fizzle out after a couple of weeks.

How to Find Guest Post Pitching Opportunities?

Topic Clusters for SEO

‍Source: @shawntheseogeek on X

‍Trying to find perfect guest post opportunities can feel a lot like searching for the proverbial needle in a haystack – very difficult but not impossible either. Here are a few tips to narrow down your search and cut down your time:

Check what links you need for a natural backlink profile.. Before you even start searching for guest posting opportunities, you have to understand what to look for in the first place. And the only way to know that is by analyzing your backlink profile. What is it? All the links your website has. Now, what should you check to see whether your profile is natural or not?

  • Dofollow vs. nofollow links. Despite the fact that everyone hunts after dofollow links (because they give you the link juice), you also have to have nofollow links for Google to perceive your page as an organic one.
  • Outbound vs. inbound links. While you should have more inbound links (leading TO your page) than outbound ones (leading FROM your page), Google will never treat you as a non-spammy site if you don’t have any links from your site to others but thousands of backlinks from other pages.
  • Anchor diversity. Having only a brand name or only keywords as an anchor is a no-go. Instead, create a healthy ratio of keyword-based, brand name, and generic anchors.
  • DA/DR diversity. There is another popular misconception. People think that they only need super high domain authority websites. It isn’t true because it looks fake to Google. That’s why make sure you have links from diverse sources (but mostly medium- to high-DR sites).

‍After assessing all these, you will understand what you should be looking for. Maybe you simply need to add more nofollow links to your profile or lower-DR websites. Who knows?

Look at your competitors’ backlinks profile.Analyzing your competitors’ backlinks will let you find sites that are already relevant to your niche and open to the idea of guest posting. You won’t have to do so much groundwork to convince them. Just make sure that whatever you are offering them is better than what your competitors gave them earlier. Hint: offer better-quality content that is more updated and ask them to link to that.

Employ link building tools.Back in the day, grandma had to manually search for sites, but you don’t have to do the same anymore. You now have several SEO tools that come loaded with many advanced features. They can help you dig up guest post link opportunities. Some of them can even draft your pitch and come up with several campaigns for your outreach.

Use social media.Yep. You can find guest post opportunities on social media if you look hard enough and have a little bit of luck on your side. Most bloggers, webmasters, and editors have active SM accounts. Occasionally, some of them will make a post about being open to guest post collaboration on certain topics. You can just ask them even if there’s no such post; who knows what opportunities you can unlock when you take bold steps?

Remember about Google search.While a bit more time-consuming than most methods, this is still a valid way to uncover some pretty cool opportunities. For the most part, you are likely to find a ton of guest post sites this way. Simply type your keyword + “write for us” in the search box, and you get thousands of pages in less than a second! Of course, not all of them will be good fits. You now have to check each one and do some digging around to determine the quality and other important markers. The latter part is why this method is so tedious. Still, with a little patience, you just might uncover a gem of an opportunity.

Consider inventories. With this option, you can access a whole database of guest blogging websites. You simply need to filter all the pages according to your niche and budget, and voila! In this case, you don’t even need to reach out to webmasters with your guest post pitch. The outreachers will do it for you. Of course, you still have to choose the websites with the best metrics, like high organic traffic, good authority score, and all that essential stuff.

Hire link building agencies.Then again, not everyone can handle even that. Some may prefer to outsource all those stressful tasks entirely. If that sounds like you, a link building agency is not a bad idea. They can help you handle your link building outreach management from start to finish. Only be sure to stick with white-hat link service providers so you don’t end up with spammy/toxic backlinks. Protip: The cheaper the backlink cost, the higher the likelihood it is from a dodgy source. But not all cheap links are bad and not all expensive links are good. Like everything in life.

How to Do Backlink Outreach?

Topic Clusters for SEO

‍Source: Reddit

‍It takes a lot of work not only to find the best guest posting websites but also to know what to do next. To be fair, it can be a bit confusing, and there’s so much room for errors when it’s your first time.

‍So, here is a simple step-by-step guide to follow when doing a backlink outreach campaign:

#1 Find the Right Prospects and Make a List of Them

‍We have already covered several ways you can do this. Typically, you would have a list of prospects (aka websites) that you think will be a good link match for you.

‍Remember that the choice of the right prospect at this moment depends on the type of links you are building. So, not everyone in your niche will make a good fit.

‍For example, if you’re looking for a podcast link, you would focus on those who have podcasts that explore topics similar to yours.

‍But make sure you check whether the quality of those sites is good enough.

‍You don’t want any spammy page just because it’s in the same niche; that won’t really cut. You want the one that is reputable and reasonable with the SEO efforts.

‍Remember that saying about a rotten apple and the rest of the barrel?

‍Links are kind of the same way. Too many spammy links will have a bad impact on your site performance and leave a bad taste in your mouth.

‍Now what? It’s time to reach out to everyone on your list.

#2 Dig Up Their Contact Info

‍Does it mean you have to stalk them or hide in the bushes to observe their habits and hopefully trail them to their house? Of course not. The only thing you need is their contact details.

‍You can use email lookup services like Hunter and GetProspect, or anything else you prefer.

‍Most of them will let you enter a list of names and domains and will spit out their emails in seconds. Sometimes, a Google search can help you find their emails, social media profiles, etc.

#3 Send Them Your Carefully Crafted and Personalized Pitch

‍You have covered a lot of groundwork by now; there are just two more steps to go. The next step in landing that backlinks outreach involves you finally sending your pitch.

‍Keep in mind that even the best content topics are useless if no one actually gets to read your pitch.

‍Some people assume they just have to be formal, but they end up sounding stiff. Some make the mistake of trying to be overly friendly and charming, but that hardly works, either.

‍You must maintain a good balance while also knowing how to personalize your email and sound convincing (more on that later).

‍Here are a few things to keep in mind when creating your pitch:

  • Hook them. Your email must have a compelling subject line that just makes them want to read more.
  • Draw them in. The body of your email needs to be short and convincing and capture your points well.
  • Win them over. Make sure you tell them what they stand to gain by linking to your content. On the flip side, your content really has to be worthy. It has to be well researched but also provide actionable steps readers can take to resolve whatever issues are raised in the guest blog post.

#4 Remember to Follow Up

‍Are you hoping to succeed on the first try? Probably you shouldn’t. Chances are that your first pitch may be missed. Things happen, and sometimes, it takes a while before you hear back.

‍Still, you don’t want to miss out on a good opportunity simply because someone forgot to reply to your email.

‍This is why it’s important to do a quick follow up, at least one time. Send a very brief email to let them know you are interested and expectant.

‍Once this is done, there’s no need to email them again if there’s no response on their end. Just cut your losses and move on to the next person.

Topic Clusters for SEO

#5 Learn From Your Mistakes

‍It is okay that some webmasters will ghost you. You simply have to admit it and get over it. But if no one responds to you at all, maybe it’s time to reconsider your pitching strategy.

‍So, how do you know it’s you and not them? Well, maybe your writing doesn’t have any typos, but the style is a bit off. Are you coming across as overly familiar or too rigid?

‍Maybe it’s time to find a balance between the two extremes.

‍Sometimes, instead of focusing on just sites within your niche, you could try something more ambitious – a cross-brand link strategy that focuses on unique angles like case studies.

‍Bonus point: there is usually less competition if you opt for this move. Besides, if you successfully pull it off, you may be the one turning down guest post offers. Won’t that be something?

#6 Stay in Touch With Your Network

‍When you already have some contacts, don’t just throw them out of the window. Connect with them on SM (at least LinkedIn) and try to stay in touch.

‍This is the relationship or networking aspect of link building. Why is this important?

‍Chances are that one link simply won’t be enough. So, you are going to need another link from them someday.

‍If you have already worked together in the past, it will be much easier next time. So, shoot them occasionally just to keep in touch and build that bond.

‍At the same time, try not to be a stalker, either. There’s really no need to keep emailing every other evening asking about their day and inviting them to dinner.

‍That’s an easy way to get blocked or worse – blacklisted. Instead, keep it cool and professional. This makes it easy for you to request a link in the future or refer you to someone else they know.

3 Really Cool Template Ideas You Can Use in Your Next Pitches

‍Truth be told, this is where most people struggle. But the type of pitch you write will depend on the type of link you want.

‍Want a few pitch templates to take the guesswork out of this process for you? Try these ones:

#1 First-Time Contact Pitch Template

‍This one is special. You can use this for those cases where you have not had the time to build a relationship with the person on the other end, but you want them to link to your content.

‍The step can be a bit nerve-wracking if this is your first time trying something like this.

‍But a good rule of thumb is to offer them something really fresh and valuable, maybe some new data or infographics that they can’t resist, like the following:

Topic Clusters for SEO

#2 Guest Posting Opportunities Pitch Template

‍This is one particular link building strategy that can drain you fast if you don’t know what you are doing. But do it right, and you end up with the best opportunity ever.

‍Your work gets published before a whole brand new audience, and you score some sweet referral traffic. But first, you gotta nail that first pitch. So, what does it look like?

Topic Clusters for SEO

#3 The Mentions Pitch Template

‍This type of outreach for link acquisition is also pretty effective. The trick is to send these pitches to someone only after you have mentioned their name or work (or maybe their product) in one of your blog posts.

‍The idea is to share the article, ask for their feedback, and hope they like it enough to share it on their SM channel. This way, you get to build a new friendship with them and gain a backlink, too.

Topic Clusters for SEO

Common Pitching Mistakes and Tips to Avoid Them

‍Link building is on the list of the top SEO techniques that boost search rankings and organic traffic. So, you probably want to put your best foot forward. What does that mean?

‍You have to become familiar with common mistakes that people make and then figure out how to avoid them yourself.

‍There are tons of forums and online communities where you can read about other’s mistakes and how they were able to fix them, but that will take a while.

‍So, here’s our list of some pretty common ones to look out for:

  • Don’t sweat the little details too much.

‍Sure, don’t send an email riddled with typos and grammatical errors but also don’t spend the whole week fine tuning your writing to get it to sound perfect.

  • Don’t spam their inbox.

‍You will face some rejection, and this will happen many times; some people won’t even bother to reply.

‍It’s okay to send a follow-up email, but don’t start bombarding them with more after that.

  • Don’t send one email and call it a day, either.

‍Give us a minute to break that down. While spamming is not a great move, you also shouldn’t throw in the towel and quit altogether. Getting a guest post opportunity is really a numbers game.

‍If you send a hundred pitches to 100 different emails, you might end up getting only a single “yes.”

‍This happens a lot, especially when you’re looking for free guest posting opportunities. So, try sending more emails to improve your odds.

  • Consider templates an inspiration not a crutch.

‍Have you heard people complain that they don’t like getting emails asking them for links?

‍Chances are that they have seen people overuse the same templates. Templates are useful as they can show you how to do something right.

‍They are, however, not meant to replace your own unique writing voice or your own style. Pick the one you like and then tweak it to fit your needs.

  • Don’t include too many links.

‍Usually, it’s a good idea when pitching to share examples of your previous work, especially if it’s been published in reputable media.

‍One thing you will want to avoid is flooding them with too many links. There’s no need to send the link to every article you have ever published.

‍Just 2-3 of your best works that are relevant to the topic would do just fine.

Key Takeaways

‍Phew! If you have made it this far, congratulations! You are ready to pull off your best outreach yet. If you simply scrolled down to this point, no worries either.

‍You can check out the takeaways now and make time to go through the whole thing later. Here are the main points:

  1. Have you heard anyone talk about SEO link building outreach and wondered about the meaning? It describes what people do when they send emails to blog owners and webmasters to request links to their websites.
  2. Doing this actually comes with some solid SEO benefits. They include improved SEO search rankings, more brand exposure, x2 traffic, conversions, and many more.
  3. It all starts from being able to find guest posting opportunities. You can use Google search, do competitors’ backlink profile analysis, try out a link building tool or two, check social media, etc.
  4. How do you start doing outreach? You first have to find the right prospect, send them an email, and do follow up.
  5. Wondering how to write your pitch? Use the templates above.

Conclusion

‍You need to approach link building outreach management with an open mind: be ready to learn new things and be willing to try again and again.

‍The last bit is really important because even a perfect pitch can still get rejected for any reason, and that has nothing to do with quality at all.

‍If that happens, pick yourself up and try again. Hey, there’s good news. Once you finally land a few really good guest posts and quality backlinks, things really pick up from there.

‍Soon, you will be everyone’s favorite guest writer. In time, you will be able to share your experience and tips to help others, too.

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