Building links is easily the most disliked part in any SEO narrative. I hate building links. They always take time, requires lots of effort and despite all the hard work you put in don’t always stick.
Links however are a must to achieve rankings.
And it’s becoming harder than ever. You might force yourselves to write articles that are over 10000 words long or even longer but sans links the article would rank for only a few terms and would never occupy the top spots. That should have gone on to occupy the first page but it won’t and it won’t get any of the traffic it deserves.
So how do you rank your site and articles in this world where you have to fight tooth and nail to get a single link.
And there’s something that can net you links all day long.
It’s called blogger outreach. There are many advantages to reaching out to other bloggers.
- An influencer mention can potentially mean boatload of traffic, links and recognition.
- It feels you’re part of the same flock. When a leading blogger mentions you, you are considered part of an elite club only few have invites to.
- Increases social media influence
- Blogger outreach helps build and nurture relationships.
Blogger outreach gives you quality links from the top sites and in as low-key low-spam way as possible.
Now that you are aware of the advantages let’s see how to create a powerful outreach strategy to help you get yourselves all the good links possible.
But first let’s see how we can dig in and find their email addresses:
How To Find their email addresses
When doing blogger outreach email address is the final step in the process. Without emails you’d be lost.
Here’s how to find them. Remember to personalize each email you send to maximize the number of positive responses you get.
Finding email addresses need not be time consuming. It can often turn out to be the easiest task at hand. Most bloggers accept products for reviews and have an email where sponsors and advertisers can reach out to them. You can try sending an email there. There are contact forms you can use to send emails and it increases the potential of them landing the inbox. There’s also email ids given and posted publicly. Even if that’s not the case there are several Gmail plugins you can use where you type in the domain name and discover all emails on that account. This helps you drill down to the right person and avoid the gate keeper.
I have tested several Gmail addons to this end and I found Clearbit to be the most useful and promising among the scores of tools available. Clearbit lets you key in a domain name and find all associated email ids on that account with names as well.
It’s pretty straightforward. Next,
Find the target
To do blogger outreach you first need a list of bloggers to begin with.
Now you may separate these bloggers into relevant categories based on what they primarily blog about or based on how strong their reputation is. But the thing is you must have a list to get things rolling.
The top-notch bloggers may not always reply and you may need more than a few attempts to get your message across. I would say in total you should have a list of 100 bloggers as the response rates are quite low and you need heavy numbers to make a dent.
Contact each blogger at some space and time at a time even instead of mass spamming all of them and hoping for some result if any at all.
2. Build The Relationship
After contacting them, the next step is to forge a relationship with these bloggers.
Remember that contacting or outreach isn’t equal to spam. Though the GDPR laws have embroiled us into a lot of controversy spam’s different.
Here’s the step by step process you need to follow to reach out to the top bloggers in your niche.
Step 1: Follow the target blogger on social media platforms like Twitter and Facebook. If they have a page like it on Facebook. It’s pretty easy to start a dialogue using Facebook. On Twitter look at their tweets and starting posting positive replies on those tweets. It may take some time but you will certainly get noticed eventually.
Step 2: Do the same thing on blog posts. Start leaving long thoughtful comments. The first few ones don’t even bother to leave your site link. We need the comment to be seen and approved for its quality and it shouldn’t be seen as a cheap trick to score a backlink.
Step 3: Once you have established rapport using social media and through his blog it’s now time to send the email. Without these steps your email won’t get read or replied to. Now that you have a working relationship that you built over many days the target blogger is much more receptive to what you have to say.
Step 4: Most people like it when you come directly to the subject instead of beating all around the bush. So instead of asking them what they think of your blog or asking them to review your blog post tell them you’ve mentioned them in a particular blog post. And send the link to it. If he likes it there’s a probability you will get a link back in the future somewhere.
3. Measure Your Success, Rinse And Repeat
It’s a long process one that takes patience and something that’s met with on and off chances of success. But you shouldn’t fail at the task and continue at it. Outreach to bloggers and ask them to tweet or mention how you linked to their post. It’s essential you take time everyday off your schedule to continue with the process so that you get dozens of links to your site over time.
You will generate a lot of exposure to your content with this on-going steps of reaching out and building relationships with bloggers. It will help you attract traffic and social media shares as well.
Things you shouldn’t be doing at any cost
Forgetting to track emails
- When you’re doing outreach tracking emails is of the paramount importance. When you track them it’s easy to see who opened the mails and who did not.
- You can see when they opened the mail and how much time elapsed between them opening it and not responding.
- Finally most solutions also let you see how many times the mail was opened.
There are many free and paid tools available that let you track email opens but I use ClearBit. Other tools that I’ve used are MailTrack but it leaves a signature on each outgoing email in the free version which is what I hate about it. Boomerang and Yesware are two other options to use.
The reason why your emails fail is because they are not personal and it’s easy for anyone to ignore them. Don’t send too many emails at once as you won’t be able to personalize so many emails at just a short notice.
Slow and steady wins the race.
- You’re not following up on the emails
Once you send the email write a follow-up email after a few days to see if they’re responding to the email. It might be that they have forgotten about getting in touch with you after the first email and it’s important to send them emails reminding them of your question or query.
- Not doing any research
Before sending out emails en-masse it’s important to research details about the target blogger first hand. You need to find out their email address, their site address and their social media handles too. Read blog posts, watch videos and listen to podcasts to get a handle of the content they’re putting out on their blog and elsewhere and to clearly understand what their entire identity is.
- Your email is too long and boring
Don’t write obviously verbose, cryptic emails that don’t help anyone. No one reads those emails and they don’t have time to go through the nitpickings and understand the email for what it’s worth.
- Forgetting to test email subject lines
The first thing the other person sees is the email subject line. Ensure it takes their socks off.
The pitches should be great. The email subject lines should be rivetting to say the least and get opened immediately.
- Forgetting to build interaction
It’s a mistake not to introduce yourself to the blogger and get to know him better prior to asking for any help. Without prior interaction their . Don’t ask for links review or social media shares right off the bat.
- Don’t turn this into a slugfest where you keep begging for links
- Reciprocate. When you want others to link to you, also ensure that you’re linking out to them to. All of us want shares, links, mentions and comments and not just you.
- Let passion speak through whatever it is you’re writing. The more passion speaks through the better you should be able to bring others on board and better you’d be able to convince random people to link out to you.
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