Link building has become a critical component of SEO optimization. Backlinks are essential for content marketing, especially if you want to rank higher in search engines and achieve a high flow of organic traffic. However, you need an excellent link-building outreach campaign to create high-quality backlinks from authoritative websites.
As content marketing continues to become more popular, marketers are focusing more on building a solid backlink profile as part of the SEO strategy. According to data from the Content Marketing Institute, 73% of B2B marketers utilize content marketing as part of their overall marketing strategy. However, marketers must invest heavily in outreach to get the best results.
The link-building process is labor and time-intensive. However, there are strategies that you can use to succeed. This article will look at the best link-building tactics and tools to get high-value backlinks.
What is Link Building Outreach?
Link-building outreach, also known as blogger outreach, involves reaching out to external organizations, bloggers, and web admins to get backlinks to your site. For this process to be effective, you must research the company or person willing to link to your website or blog content.
Your outreach strategy should also cover how to contact the prospects. Typically, one can do it via social media or cold emails. The link-building outreach process involves prospecting, preparing the email message, getting the prospect’s contact details, and personalizing pitches. Outreach link building will help you:
● Increase your content’s visibility
● Boost search engine rankings
● Improve brand awareness
● Boost organic and referral traffic
Best Link Building Outreach Strategies
There are different link-building tactics that you can use to get the best results. Here are the top ones.
1. Link Reclamation
This process involves identifying links previously linked to your website but have been removed. To reclaim them, you need to find, fix them and request the website owner to add your links again.
2. Broken Link Building
Typically, links get broken if the website changes URLs or removes some pages after a site redesign. In most cases, site owners may not notice that some of their outgoing links are broken; therefore, it’s your responsibility to find dead or broken links and ask the owner to replace them with working ones. Replacing it will be easy if your content is high-quality.
3. Unlinked Mentions
Like link reclamation, this process involves finding images, mentions, and other references that contain your content but are missing a link. With this strategy, you can ask the content owner to fix the issue by linking the content back to you.
4. No Follow Links
These links are used to prevent black hat spammers from sourcing shady backlinks. However, you can still use them to gain referral traffic to your website.
5. Link Roundups
You can also boost your link-building process by finding a list of other blog posts that are relevant to your subject. For instance, you can search “Top Email Marketing Posts” and reach out to the owners of the sites with a request to link your content to the following posts.
6. Skyscraper Method
This strategy involves finding content with many links and creating a better version. For instance, if you are writing about “Email Marketing Strategies,” you can draft an improved blog post. You can then contact website owners linked to this content and share the improved version.
7. Resource Page
Also known as pillar content, the resource page comes in handy when marketers need to create a topic cluster. This page is typically about 2,500 to 10,000 words long and covers various in-depth topics. Resource pages are usually valuable because they are treated like valuable content by Google, searchers, and other websites.
Your link-building strategy should involve asking the blog or website owner to include you on their list on the resource page and link back to your website. The prospect can link your content after creating the blog posts.
8. Helpful Content Creation
One of the other strategies you can use is creating more helpful content than what’s available on the internet. If your content is unique and valuable, Google will rank it higher, and other websites will want to link to it. Helpful content usually presents unknown information, answers a question, or explains how to do something. You can use a content creation platform to help with research.
9. Guest Posting
If you are in the B2B space, consider guest posting as a link-building strategy. To achieve this, find a trustworthy platform with a large audience and reach out to the owner with a proposition for a guest post. However, you should know that the changes in the Google algorithm and abuse have made guest blogging less popular; therefore, you should talk to the owner about what works for them.
10. Email Outreach
This process involves emailing people and requesting them to link to your content. However, before emailing anyone, you must research and find relevant websites. Once you identify the websites, you can draft a personalized email indicating the value this link building will bring. Finally, you can provide feedback about their website in your email and ask them to link to your content.
11. Digital PR
Digital Public Relations (PR) raises awareness about your brand online. You can use it as a link-building strategy by creating PR content about your organization and sharing it with authoritative journalists and companies. The content can be in press releases, guest blog posts, or directory inclusions. Once they cover your content, they can drive traffic to your website.
12. Influencer Outreach
Influencer marketing is here to stay. Statistics show that the value of the global influencer marketing market was at $16.4 billion as of 2022 and has doubled since 2019. Therefore, if you want to boost your SEO efforts, you should consider using influencers for link-building.
You can reach out to influential websites and bloggers and offer to write for them, and in exchange, they can link back to your social profile or website. However, remember that influential bloggers might be skeptical about unsolicited emails to guest-post; therefore, you need to strategize better.
Some bloggers will only allow businesses to add links to author bios. Although you’ll not manage to link to your website in this case, you can add a short bio with your business credentials and link to your social media pages. Interested readers can follow these links and discover more content.
13. Social Media Outreach
In 2021, more than 4.26 billion people were using social media globally, and this is projected to increase to approximately six billion in 2027. Therefore, social media platforms are an excellent place to start if you need to contact people and source backlinks for your website. To achieve this, you need to research and build relationships via social media platforms to make your content popular.
Some of the strategies to use on social media include:
● Start conversations with potential followers
● Engage the existing customers on different platforms
● Follow people
● Like posts
● Promote your social media posts
● Send direct messages to followers to check out your content and website
● Participate in discussions on social media platforms
You can also send infographics if you need a blog post to pitch to a prospect. For instance, if your company has done some research and has the results, you can pitch this valuable visual data to an external website or a blog.
15. Link Exchange
The other strategy to use is link exchange. You can do this by contacting an influential blogger or a company with the content you’d like to link and asking for a link in exchange. However, if you use this strategy, ensure that the link exchange is reasonable, as this may affect your rankings on the search engine.
Link-Building Outreach Process
To work on your link-building process, you’ll need to choose the right link-building strategy, create linkable content, and prospect. You have to spend time building your outreach campaign for it to be successful. Here are the steps you can follow to make your link-building process much more manageable.
Find Link Opportunities
To start your link-building outreach process, you first need to identify the available opportunities and choose the strategy you’ll need to use. For instance, if you already have linky-worthy posts, you can send them to bloggers to add them to already published resource pages or request them to be added to upcoming content.
At this time, you can also find broken links by using tools like SEMrush, Ahrefs, and Google Search Console. It allows you to discover some of the missing links or outdated ones. You can use this information to update your new content. You should also think about topics for guest blogging and find the right websites to pitch to.
At this step, you also need to determine the goal of your outreach campaign. For example, are you looking to get more press coverage, or do you want to improve your Google search rankings and get more organic traffic? Once you have an objective, planning your backlink outreach campaign becomes easier.
List the Outreach Campaigns
Before reaching out to your prospects, list down all the campaigns you plan to run. The objectives of the campaign should guide this. You should also come up with different keywords to use for each link-building outreach campaign. This strategy will ensure that all the strategies are successful.
Search Relevant Websites and Influencers
Once you have the links and content, you still need to find the relevant websites to source links from. To get the best websites, you can examine the competitors’ backlinks and get a list of targets. Alternatively, you can focus on your niche and Google the top influencers and bloggers in the industry.
For instance, if you run a broken link outreach campaign for your accounting software, you need to look for relevant websites with “accounting software” related keywords in the title and article body. You can use a free tool like Google Grabber to get a list of URLs. Once you have the list of websites, segment them according to your goals to save time.
On the other hand, if you plan to work with influencers, you need to find them first. You can search for influencers manually or use an outreach tool that automates the process. If you are planning to find them manually, you can:
● Search forums for related questions
● Put up a Google alert for your keywords
● Identify influencers that work with your competitors
As you choose influencers, remember to check their engagement rate, number of followers, domain and page authority, and quality of content. Since they have already built trust with their audience, a recommendation with a backlink will bring you traffic.
Reach Out to Existing Partners
Instead of spending time reaching out to new prospects, you can talk to your acquaintances or partners if you already have an existing network. You could also get reliable contacts from them or an invite to a link-building community you didn’t know about.
Additionally, suppose you have an existing email list for your marketing campaign. In that case, you can also repurpose it and use it for link building, especially if the websites are a good fit. Leverage on the contacts that have responded positively to your previous messages. However, this only works if the contact list is new. Otherwise, you’ll need to verify the emails before sending any messages.
Find the Contacts of Your Prospects
Once you have a list of your prospects, you need their contact details to reach out. If your prospect is a website, you can check for the editor’s contact under sections like “Contact Us,” “About Us,” or “Write For Us.” In addition, you can manually check LinkedIn or other social media profiles to find emails.
Connecting via social media pages can improve the engagement rate. For instance, if you send your prospect a connection request or message on LinkedIn, they might be more willing to respond to your email. In addition, it adds an extra level of personalization, unlike a cold email.
However, it can be challenging to get these contacts manually. Fortunately, several email finder tools can automate your process. That will make it easier to find the personal email of the editor or content marketer instead of the generic address.
Collect All Your Data
For your link-building process to succeed, you need to be well-prepared. Therefore, plan and gather all the necessary data in a worksheet. Some of the key data you need to gather includes the following:
● List of URLs: You need to collect all the links you plan to share with the prospects in one place. It should include links to your web pages, products, or content.
● Link-building content: You’ll share the content according to the goal during the outreach campaign. Therefore, before you start, gather the content you need to share. It can be your blog posts, product information, videos, infographics, or podcasts.
● Anchor text keyword: For the link-building outreach campaign to work, you should know your anchor text and ensure that it corresponds to the linked content.
● List of Prospects: You need the list of editors, companies, and websites you plan to reach out to for backlinks.
Contact Your Prospects Via Email
Once you have a strategy and all the information, you can contact prospects. Email marketing is commonly used as a digital marketing tool. More than 80% of industry experts said they used email as a marketing strategy in 2020.
Here’s how to craft your outreach emails.
Craft a Compelling Subject Line
You need to create a compelling subject line to improve your chances of getting a response. 47% of email recipients open emails based on the subject line alone. It is the first thing your recipients see; therefore, it should be intriguing enough to convince them to open and read.
To boost your reply rates, make the subject line about your email recipient; you can do this by mentioning the article’s name, company name, or title. In addition, the subject line should be brief, precise, and creative to capture the reader’s attention.
Here are some examples of compelling subject lines.
● One of the links on your company website is broken
● Thanks for mentioning (company name)
● I’d like to share (your new article) for your resource page
Include a Call To Action
As you draft the email body, you should have a specific call to action. First, indicate why you contacted the prospect and what you’d like to get from them. Although most people avoid mentioning the words “SEO” or “link” to avoid being flagged as spam, it’s advisable to communicate your request clearly.
For instance, you can suggest different courses of action that the prospect can take, such as sharing content on social media, accepting a guest post, or embedding an infographic from your content. You could boost your chances of receiving positive feedback by providing multiple courses of action.
Personalize the Email
Email open rates increase by 50% when the subject line is personalized. As you send the email, you hope the recipient will respond. However, by personalizing the email, you need to ensure that it is not marked as spam or deleted. Most marketers, influential bloggers, and editors receive thousands of emails daily, so you need to stand out from the rest.
You can personalize emails by mentioning their name and specific elements of their work to show that you have done your research. You can get this information by looking at recent blog posts, special media posts, and comments on posts. It makes the email as natural as possible. In addition, you should use a proper email signature with a genuine email address, phone number, and location if necessary.
Using a generic email will hinder your backlink outreach campaign. To make your work easier, you can create several email templates and customize each version to make them original and catchy. Apart from personalizing the email, ensure it’s brief, about 80 words or less.
Manage the Campaign
Once you start sending emails, you might instantly get some negative and positive feedback. Therefore, you need to plan how your team will receive the emails. For instance, you can choose a team member responsible for all the email responses.
When you have someone leading the campaign, you can determine which emails need feedback or what needs to be forwarded to a client. In addition, the team member can determine how effective the link-building outreach campaign is and make adjustments when needed.
Furthermore, you can prepare some templates to use once you get feedback from the prospects. For example, create four templates to use when the offer is accepted, declined, ignored, or countered. This tactic makes the follow-up process much more manageable.
Influential bloggers and journalists receive loads of emails daily; therefore, your email pitch might get lost in a pile. Because of this, it’s advisable to follow up on your outreach emails. Apart from getting a response, this will show the prospect that you are genuine.
Most responses come after a follow-up; therefore, reviewing all the emails after a few days is essential. Additionally, you should be well organized by ensuring you refrain from following up with prospects that have already linked you. You can use simple spreadsheets or CRM systems to stay organized.
However, as you follow up, it’s essential not to be too annoying or pushy. Only send a few follow-up emails; otherwise, this might bother your recipient. If you are still waiting for a response after three emails, it’s possible that you are using the wrong email or the blogger or content manager is too busy. For the best results, space out your follow-ups to avoid being flagged as spam.
Add an Email Signature
While an email signature looks like a minor thing, it might determine whether the recipient responds to you or not. It also comes in handy if you are looking to build trust. You should have a simple email signature that can include the job title, business logo, social media profile links, and the company’s physical address.
The prospect is more likely to trust you if you have this information. In addition, professional email signatures indicate that you are not spamming the blogger or content manager.
Once you get feedback from your prospects, establish partnerships as quickly as possible. If a prospect accepts your request to collaborate, find ways to turn this into a long-term partnership.
To hook your prospects, respond to their email as soon as they answer your pitch. To avoid missing these emails, activate your notifications to catch all the leads. If you take long to respond to the prospect, they might lose interest in the partnership; therefore, you should stay on top of your emails.
Alternatively, you can join link-building communities to connect with others in the same space. These communities have hundreds of link builders working for agencies and brands. It can help you find collaborators with little time. Although some have a limited number of people, it’s an excellent place to start if you want to build long-term partnerships.
Track and Review the Data
If you are working on your SEO efforts, you will likely work on several link-building campaigns. Therefore, once you start one campaign, you need to track the results to determine how successful the outreach is. Review the outreach plan every month to determine how many backlinks the company has earned, press mentions, and guest posts.
As you review and compare all the campaigns you created, check the email open, reply rates, and total leads. Once you have all this information, you can show your team or client the progress and use the details to strategize for the next outreach campaign.
You can also determine the least-performing campaigns and use this to change subject lines and email templates for the next link-building outreach plan. Take advantage of the successful campaigns and use similar strategies for subsequent campaigns.
How to Improve Your Outreach Success
If you already have a link-building outreach campaign, you can improve it to get the best results. Here are some key steps you can take to ensure your outreach process is successful.
Research Your Prospect
You can increase your outreach success rate by doing your research. For instance, if you plan to send cold emails, you need to carefully review the prospect’s recent social media posts, blog posts, and website to get information.
To build this relationship, go through these pages and get an angle for your pitch. For example, the prospect might respond to your email if they feel like you did your research on the current projects. In addition, this also shows that you are a genuine person and that the email is not software-generated.
Personalize the Communication
As mentioned, personalization plays a significant role in email open rates. Using the prospect’s name in the greeting displays that you are genuine and boosts trust levels. If your email is generic, the prospect might assume it’s spam and ignore it. Please pay attention to how the emails are structured before you send them. You’ll notice that the open rates are higher during the review stage.
Pay Attention To Subject Lines
You should work on the subject line if your open email rate is lower, below 5%. It is the first thing people see; therefore, if it’s done poorly, your recipient might not even read the body of the email. A great subject line should be precise, informative, and catchy to prompt the reader to open it.
Remember that you should write the subject line according to the objective of your email and outreach campaign.
As you send your pitch to the prospect, it should be relevant to the subject. For instance, if you are reaching out to a content marketer for broken link building, you should state this in the subject. Additionally, the email subject should align with the body. It shows your prospect that you are professional and know what you want.
If the email body and the subject line are not in alignment, your prospect might not take you seriously. It could impact your ability to get high-quality, authoritative links.
Select Your Prospects Carefully
You could get backlinks from different prospects. However, you should focus only on getting links from authoritative websites. It’s better to have one high-quality link relevant to your website than several low-authority links.
Research is crucial because it will help you identify the best influencers and websites to reach out to. It will also prevent you from spending a lot of time and resources contacting irrelevant prospects.
For instance, if you want to promote your products on social media, you should target your outreach campaign to the right influencers. Their brand should align with your company’s objectives for better results.
Use a Link Building Outreach Tool
Although you can find your prospects manually, it takes more time. However, you can make your work easier by investing in outreach tools that automate your tasks. These outreach tools can help create personalized email templates, find your email addresses, and track your results. Find tools that work best with your website.
Find the Right Contact
You must talk to the right contacts if you send cold emails. For example, suppose you want to contact the content marketer of a specific brand; you’ll increase your email open rate if you have the right email address. Before sending any emails, it’s essential to do your research about the prospects.
One of the best places to get email addresses is LinkedIn. Use LinkedIn Sales Navigator to find the right people in a company. This way, you can personalize your outreach and get feedback from the prospects.
Monitor Your Results
Like any other campaign, you need to monitor the results of your outreach campaign. Tracking all the analytics will help you identify areas of weakness that you need to tweak and improve for the next link-building campaign. Fortunately, there are tools that you can use to track your results automatically.
Additionally, you need to understand your current backlink profile to build your next outreach strategy. Conduct a backlink audit to identify harmful links that could negatively impact your website rankings. This audit will also highlight the successful backlinks from high-authority websites.
Build on Interaction
Before emailing a prospect, you should build your relationship by communicating on social media. For instance, you can start with LinkedIn to establish a professional relationship. Send a connection request and a brief message to start things off.
You can comment on their LinkedIn posts, share their recent blog posts, or respond to their queries on industry forums. Once you have the communication going, it becomes easier to get recognized once you send your emails.
Build a List of Quality Blogs
If you want to share your content with influencers and marketers, you need to have quality blog posts available. So take time to build a list of these links and have them ready to share as soon as your prospects agree to your request. Apart from blog posts, you can have a collection of videos, infographics, podcasts, and other interactive content.
Review the Competitor’s Backlink Profile
Apart from looking at your backlinks strategy, you also need to understand how your competitors operate. You can review competitor’s backlink profile to see which tactics they use and choose some that can align with your business. If your industry has a long list of competitors, minimize the number to core players to save time on this review.
Examples of Link Building Outreach Tools
As mentioned, some tools automate your link-building outreach campaign. To make the outreach successful, consider using these tools in your business.
BuzzStream is an outreach platform that businesses use to grow their link-building and digital PR results. This public relations management tool helps you stay organized and offers all the solutions you need for link-building and outreach. With BuzzStream, you don’t have to waste time; the device monitors links, researches prospects, and helps you with the outreach process.
Some of the key features include:
● Campaign management
● Backlink management
● Contact management
● Link analytics
● Email distribution
● Social media monitoring
● Rank tracking
NinjaOutreach is a powerful social engine that comes in handy when looking for YouTube and Instagram influencers and business profiles. This CRM was created for small businesses and digital marketers. With this outreach tool, you can filter through influencer insights and find one that aligns with your brand and business objectives.
To get results, you need to type in the keywords and access the millions of profiles and the respective email addresses on the NinjaOutreach influencer database.
With NinjaOutreach, you can:
● Send emails to your prospects using the templated
● Find social media accounts and emails
● Monitor and analyze campaign results
● Easily find contact information
Pitchbox is an influencer outreach and link-building platform for publishers, brands, and SEO agencies. It’s designed with intuitive keyword search and multiple prospecting profiles, which allows you to find prospects in a matter of seconds. It also integrates with SEO providers like SEMrush and Moz to ensure you pull links from the most authoritative publishers.
This tool will integrate with your existing business systems and provide reports for all outreach phases. Although it’s costlier, it’s easier to use. It automates the outreach process, giving you control over your messaging. You can use the platform to customize all the emails and automatically follow up on the respondents who are yet to respond.
With Pitchbox, you can track every step of the outreach process, including user specifics and campaign strategy. With this information, you can refine the outreach strategy and boost your efficiency in subsequent campaigns.
This tool is helpful if you need to find backlinking outreach opportunities. In addition, you can use the tool to identify influential prospects to collaborate on the link-building process. Here are the features you get from BuzzSumo.
● Influencer tracking
● Trend tracking
● Reputation management
● Audience segmentation
● Configurable alerts
● Impact scoring
● Customer engagement dashboard
You can also find the influencers and editors that work with your competitors and contact them for your outreach campaign. Additionally, if your brand is mentioned but needs a link, you can use BuzzSumo to email a request.
Link-building outreach is one of the most effective ways to get valuable links from authoritative sites. To boost your Google rankings and organic traffic to your site, you need an outreach strategy to connect you to the prospects. However, you’ll need to manage the process systematically to get the best results. Start by finding the websites, company information, social media profiles, and email contacts before reaching out.
Remember that your request might get declined, accepted, or ignored. You should be well prepared for each response. You can have email templates to follow up on your prospects to make the outreach process much more manageable. Apart from email, you can use other platforms to build relationships, such as social media platforms.
The backlinking strategy you choose should align with your SEO goals. However, the link-building outreach process can take time because you need to follow up. Fortunately, there are outreach tools that automate the entire process. Consider using one of these tools to get feedback from your prospects and earn high-quality links.