Blogger outreach is a great way to grow your new blog, build influence and also amplify your brand message.
Almost every blogger, who is well-informed make proper use of blogger outreach to get great benefits from blogger outreach.
There are many reasons why businesses outreach bloggers like product promotion, sponsored posts, advertising, interviews, and much more.
For any business to succeed, one thing is important – leverage. With blogger outreach, we are essentially stealing the influence and authority of other bloggers to promote our own brand.
Our main focus in this article is the blogger outreach when it comes to SEO.
In simple words, in this article, you will get detailed strategies on how to leverage the power of blogger outreach for boosting SEO of your site or a blog.
Why blogger outreach is the most effective way to do SEO? Google has evolved a lot when it comes to SEO. Their ranking algorithms have changed a lot during the last few years. SEO is not the same as it did a few years ago.
The need for quality backlinks has increased a lot, so the old-school SEO tactics aren't working anymore. It's time to move on and build backlinks the natural way.
Blogger outreach enables you to get natural contextual links that appear natural and also increases the relevancy.
Because, with blogger outreach, you'll be outreaching the real people and getting SEO backlinks or quality social signals from high-quality blogs and influencers.
You are on this blog post, as you already know the importance of SEO blogger outreach when it comes to building high-quality backlinks.
Blogger Outreach for SEO: The 5-step Process
Blogger outreach is not as simple as it seems. Many people actually have very poor results with it.
Does that mean that the theory itself is wrong?
The art of blogger outreach demands the combination of skills like writing, persuasion, leverage, empathy, and sometimes negotiation.
Did I say empathy?
Yes, indeed I did.
Before doing any kind of blogger outreach, the first question you need to ask yourself is – “If I were the other blogger, would I have accepted the proposal?”. If the answer is no, then don't hit that send button or land in the trash.
When it comes to any kind of blogger outreach, there are 5 steps.
Most of us bloggers, only do the #1 and #4 correctly and fret about the poor results and ROI.
Even before diving into this process, you need to start with why?
Why you need to do blogger outreach? What's the objective?
I understand that for your SEO is the objective. But you need to be specific. If you don't have a clear, specific and quantifiable objective you'll not be able to carry out the above 5-step process effectively.
Prospection – List Down Influencers
It's the most important step in the 5-step process of blogger outreach.
First, you need to prepare a list of bloggers and influencers you need to consider outreaching.
Without having a quality list of bloggers who would likely accept your proposal, no matter how well you put out the remaining steps, you'll be left in vain.
Your goal is to find the most influential or popular bloggers in the niche you are targeting. There are several ways by which you can do this.
Create a Google or Excel sheet, note down the list of influencers and their details.
As you can see in the above prospect sheet, we list all the details of the prospects. It makes us easier to conduct the remaining steps.
How to find the influencers?
With BuzzSumo, you can find the top influencers in any of the niches you wish. In the above example, I searched for most popular Twitter handles containing SEO in their bio.
In this example, you can see BuzzSumo returning the people who shared content related to content marketing in the last month.
If they have shared something related to your niche, then you may want to consider outreaching them and getting them to know about your content – so to get more social shares, referral traffic and may be backlinks too.
You can use BuzzSumo to find influencers in almost all the niches.
You can also make use a tool I use called NinjaOutreach. This is a tool specially made for blogger SEO outreach.
In this tool, you can search for promotional opportunities, Instagram influencers, Twitter influencers, most shared content, and much more.
In the above example, I’ve searched for Twitter influencers when it comes to content marketing. The tool returns me the websites of the influencers, emails of the influencers, and also allows me to add the person as a lead to my NinjaOutreach list.
You can add them to any of your lists, and outreach them using any of your email templates.
Watch this video to know more about Ninjaoutreach tool.
If you are doing SEO outreach, you can use backlink checking tools like Ahrefs to figure out the sites which are accepting guest posts.
All you need to do is, enter in your competitor site URL in Ahrefs, and search for the backlinks they got from the guest posts they published.
Now, your competitors are managing to publish guest posts on some sites, then you can also submit the guest post.
You can also implement reverse author bio search for finding other blogs that a specific blog has guest posted on.
You can see I easily found one more site where the guest post has been published with the same author bio.
To sum it up, in the step of prospection, your job is to list down the people you need to outreach for executing the objective of your blogger outreach.
Research – Know about them
Once you prepare the list of prospects you need to outreach, next you need to research data about them like their email address, site URL, Domain Authority, their location, interests, their social media profiles and much more.
Install a Chrome extension called Hunter.
When you go to any sites, you can click on the “Hunter” icon in the Chrome’s bar, and it’ll display the email addresses of the founder and also all the staff working for that brand.
The free version of their tool enables you to make 100 requests per month, and this is more than enough if you occasionally do blogger outreach.
This is a great tool as it also displays the names associated with the users.
If the extension doesn’t display the emails, you can go to the website’s contact us page and get the email address or fill up the contact form.
The Hunter extension will only display the email accounts associated with the specific domain name. If you want to display the other personal emails of the blog owner you can make use of the NinjaOutreach’s Chrome extension.
Above is the NinjaOutreach’s Chrome extension in action.
I prefer to outreach to the email of the key decision maker who may fulfill your objective.
Always tend to avoid generic company emails, as their support staff would pick it up. That’s why I use these extensions that display me multiple possible email addresses to outreach.
Apart from the email of the prospect, you need to also collect their names, so that you can personalize your outreach process effectively.
As you are doing blogger outreach, you need to obviously collect the site URL of the prospect blogger and also the Domain Authority (use MozBar) of their blogs if you are doing the blogger outreach for SEO purposes.
You need to also collect also their social media profile URLs. For this, you can make use email enrichment tools like ClearBit or Pipl.
The goal of this step is to collect as much data as possible about your prospects. The more data you collect, more effective will be the next connect and outreach process.
Once you collect the social media profiles of the influencers in your niche, you need to research about them, find a common ground of interest between you and them.
Connect – Get them to know about you
If you’ve done the previous research process, at this point you already know the interests, expertise and the nature of the prospects.
Before executing this step, it’s very essential for you to take a minute and go through the previous “research” section.
How to connect?
Here are some ways by which you can connect with the prospects.
- Leave an insightful comment on their blog. If you leave consistent high-quality comments on their blog posts, they can’t help but notice it.
- Send them connection request on Facebook or LinkedIn. They likely accept your request as they know you through your blog comments.
- Engage in their social media posts by finding a common ground.
- Share their blog posts by tagging them and mentioning the common ground.
- Sign up for their email list newsletter and reply to their emails.
- Feature them in your blog posts, interview them or include them in expert roundups.
- Buy their products and send testimonials – preferably videos.
When communicating with the influencers, it’s important to treat them as equal to you. They should not feel that you feel inferior to them.
Because people like to hang out with people who are like them and are of the same standard. Building rapport with your prospects is the key here.
Without building that rapport with the prospects, the success rate of your emails will be very limited.
You need to offer enough value to your prospects so that when you ask them a favor they resist to say “no”. They should feel like they are obligated to help you.
Outreach – It’s time for action
If you did all the above steps right, and if the outreach technique you follow is wrong, you’ve messed it all up.
This is the most important step in this 5-step process.
Before outreaching, as I said before you need to have a clear objective in mind.
What’s your objective?
- Is it to get a backlink to your epic post?
- Is it to get social shares for your latest post?
- Is it to publish a guest post no your prospect’s site?
Now, after getting clear about your objective, you need to ask yourself – “What would the prospect get in turn for fulfilling my objective?”.
Whenever the prospect opens your email, their reptilian brain keeps asking – “What’s in it for me?”. Well, if the answer to this question is not that satisfactory, they better don’t reply to your outreach.
So, before crafting your email you need to be clear about yours and as well as prospect’s objective – make sure your campaign is a win-win for both of you.
Rather than pitching for yet another guest post, pitch why your guest post is totally unique that other generic ones.
And, emphasize how you value their audience by replying to all the comments that the guest post receives and sharing it on social media with 1000s of followers. Or you could also promise them that if your guest post gets published, you would drive them paid FB ads.
If you are a product owner, do you offer them a lifetime access to your product for a review? Or a 1-year subscription? Make it a win-win. It’s not always about money.
Barter system? Yes, it still does exist.
Catchy subject line: Using a catchy subject line is very important to break the pattern of boring outreach emails.
35% of email recipients open email based on the subject line alone, according to Convince&Convert.
If the subject line is not intriguing enough, the people you outreach won’t even bother opening your emails – let alone buying your product.
Once bloggers open your email, you just doubled the chances of them considering your pitch.
Keep it informal: Use informal words in your email rather than keeping it formal. They need to have friendly connect with you to fulfill the objectives. Refrain from using words like “sir”, “madam”, “respected”, etc.
Personalization: You need to make your email as personalized as possible. I’m talking not only about addressing them by their first name, but also your email should seem as if it’s hand-crafted for them – it should not at all look like a template. That’s why the research phase of this 5-step process is very crucial.
Always prefer the personal emails over the generic company emails. You need to find the email of the key decision maker for your objective.
It’s not only about the personalization on their end, but you need to also showcase you as a person in your emails in the form of signature. That email signature should contain your photo, email, website, phone, and social media URLs – it builds trust.
Make it easy: The main resistance for the site owners is an execution of your request. If you are submitting a guest post to a blogger, most of the times he/she will be too busy to format, add links and publish your blog post.
In that case, you may consider properly formatting your guest article, adding internal links for them (killer), compressing images, and also describing them the effort you took to make them easier to publish your guest post.
If you are doing the blogger outreach for getting some social shares, make use of some tools like Click to Tweet or ShareLinkGenerator to include a link in the email that lets the influencers share your content in the click of the button.
Because the biggest hurdle for busy bloggers is sharing by themselves.
Social-proof: If you are outreaching the blogger for a guest post, social share, or a backlink, it’s essential to show them the other blogs where you guest posted on or other bloggers who shared your content.
If you are requesting a blogger to a do sponsored post on your product, including the links to your already published sponsored posts on other blogs in the same niche.
This act of presenting social proof eliminates most of the possible objections for your email outreach.
Tell them the benefit: As I told you earlier, no one would accept your offer, if it’s not a win-win situation. If it’s a guest post, don’t expect them to give a backlink just for a piece of content. They get tons of shallow requests every day.
You need to communicate clearly about the quality and depthness of the guest post you write to them, quantify the value that it can produce in their blog, and also why they need to trust you.
In case if you want them to share your awesome content with their audience, make it clear – why they need to share? If there is no strong “why”, they won’t take action.
Because no one likes to share content without any reason.
If the epicness of the content is self-explanatory, no need to convince (as in the above screenshot)
Follow-up: You need to follow up your prospect 3-4 times before giving up. But make sure to have 3-4 days buffer time in between.
This is very important.
As per my experience, you get replies from the prospects only after 2-3 follow-ups. Weird, but that’s the truth.
Everyday they will be bombarded with dozens of emails. On average, every email user in the world gets an average of 88 emails per day – it’ll be even higher in B2B space.
Your email need to stand out of the rest of the emails as they have the stereotype pattern of ignoring the emails. Once you break that pattern by following up and not giving up, you break that pattern and demand their attention.
Your follow-up messages will be triggered only if the prospect won’t reply or open the email in say 2-3 days.
First, you need to learn “Snoozing the emails” that need a manual follow-up on your end. If you open an email (say on your mobile), and have got no time to reply, just snooze it – so that you won’t miss replying to it.
There are some common reasons why prospects resist your outreach offer.
Make a list of all the reasons your prospect may resist your offer, and prepare your email outreach strategies accordingly.
Respect their time: It’s very essential to realize that you are doing a request, and you need to thank your prospect for taking time and reading your email. And also, space your follow-ups with 2-3 days in the middle and also don’t do more than 3 follow-ups.
Relationship – Stay connected
I know sometimes things may not work out as intended. The blogger may not accept your proposal.
Even if they don’t accept your pitch, it’s ok.
Keep on interacting with them on social media, their blog comments, and also share their content.
Your network is your net-worth. You need to have genuine relationships with as many people in your niche as possible.
The goal of blogger outreach should be to build relations, not to pitch and disappear.
Who knows? Today it may be a failed blogger outreach. Tomorrow it may be a partnership or a joint venture.
So that’s why I highly suggest you to build trust and build relations with quality people even if your outreach objective has failed with them.
Hope you loved my blog post on blogger outreach helpful. The success of blogger outreach depends upon the organization, strategies, and persuasion.
As you may have realized in this blog post, even if you miss any of the 5-steps I mentioned, you likely fail or get poor results.
Make sure you pay careful attention to each of the steps I explained in this post.