Nearly everyone despises blogger outreach. They feel like a jerk for doing it. However, things don’t have to be that way. It is feasible to conduct outreach on a large scale without coming out as spammy.
You carried out an online action.
Although no one is aware of it, you believe it to be beneficial.
You would like to see more tweets, links, and other positive content about it.
Never one to give up, you turn to Google to look for an answer. You discover this blogger outreach thing at that point.
It has an awful sound. mass-sending templated emails to strangers who will undoubtedly detest you and confirm your worst suspicion: your content is terrible, which is why no one cares.
what I hope to hear whenever I send out an outreach email.
You still decide to try it nevertheless because you have nothing to lose.
You’re here now… wishing to acquire the skills to do this without coming out like a pushy door-to-door salesman.
Fortunately, I’m going to teach you just that.
What is blogger outreach?
By sending them tailored emails, blogger outreach involves getting your content or product in front of relevant bloggers and journalists. Blogger outreach’s main goal is to persuade people with sizable, targeted audiences to talk about you and connect to your website.
You might wonder how that differs from SPAM.
Let’s engage in a brief game.
Here are two recent emails I got. Simply let me know if you consider them to be spam or outreach.
Before continuing to read, cast your vote. I’m interested to see the outcomes.
My judgment? The second email isn’t spam, but the first one is.
Although it’s obvious that both emails are templates, only the second one tries to be interesting, conversational, appealing, and relevant in any way.
The first is essentially just a guy announcing that he has made a blog post.
Which leads me to my next point:
Outreach != broadcasting
Nobody wants emails like the one in the first example to arrive in their inbox. If so, they would subscribe to your email list.
To assume otherwise would be plainly rude.
People aren’t stupid. They can spot a generic outreach template a mile off, and when they do, they’ll know three things about you:
You don’t give a damn about them or their business.
Wow. What a great first impression. 🙄
But here’s the thing: almost all outreach emails appear in this format, which can result in two slightly at odds ideas:
These emails used for outreach are awful. No one must ever respond to these things, right?
These emails used for outreach are awful. But if everyone is sending them, that must mean that they are effective, right?
Strangely, both of those assertions are somewhat accurate.
The two outreach approaches
There are two main trains of thought (approaches) in the world of blogger outreach:
The sniper approach.
The shotgun approach.
Let’s briefly cover what these are.
The sniper approach
The proponents of the sniper strategy carefully select each of their “targets” before sending each of them individually tailored outreach emails.
They think that providing value to a select group of targeted prospects while anticipating a favorable response is the key to effective outreach.
At Ahrefs, we follow and promote this strategy.
The shotgun approach
Shotgun approach proponents spend little to no effort tailoring outreach letters that they send out to a large list of “targets.”
They contend that “scale” is the key to successful outreach since more emails translate into more links.
Due to the prevalence of the shotgun strategy, terrible blogger outreach still occurs.
It’s easy to see why, too:
It takes less time.
It requires less effort.
It feels like you’re making tracks… even if you aren’t.
The shotgun strategy makes a lot of sense if you’re playing a short-term game and don’t care about building bridges, so let’s be really honest and clear about that now.
From a purely link-building standpoint, sending 100 personalized emails and persuading 10% of recipients to link to you is identical to sending 1,000 non-personalized emails and persuading 1% of recipients to link to you.
Why then don’t we advocate the shotgun method, leaving aside personal preference and disdain for spam emails?
Link prospects aren’t infinite. No matter what niche you’re in, there are only a finite number of websites from which a backlink is likely to move the needle. If you burn through and alienate 99% of these prospects, the ceiling for your link building efforts is going to be pretty low.
Deliverability issues. Have you ever seen that button in Gmail that marks emails as spam? The more people that click this, the less Google is going to trust your emails. And if that happens, your emails may end up in your recipients’ spam folders.
Lower quality links. Because bad outreach is so prevalent, anyone with a half-decent website has likely received shotgun-style emails before. So, it’s probable that this approach is more likely to work on those with newer or weaker sites who don’t get so many bad pitches.
I’ll be delighted to modify my mind if someone wants to test point #3 or provide evidence that I’m completely mistaken in this assumption.
Because of these factors, the procedure I’m about to describe emphasizes a sniper strategy.
Step #1: Find prospects
Many link building strategies rely on a specific way to find outreach prospects.
Skyscraper technique = Websites that link to inferior articles.
Resource page link building = Websites with relevant resource pages.
Broken link building = Websites linking to relevant dead pages.
Unlinked mentions = Websites that mention but don’t link to you.
Those strategies are effective, but only in certain situations.
You’re leaving a lot of links on the table if you’re simply attracting prospects inside the parameters of particular approaches.
In order to locate more outreach prospects, try these four basic methods:
1. People who’re featured in your article
Why not get in touch with the bloggers you link to and include in your article if you’re doing so in order to inform them of the mention?
This is a rather simple task.
After loading your blog post, go over it to look for references to blogs in your niche.
Here’s an example of how Ryan Stewart, the creator of Webris, was mentioned in one of our blog posts.
If you think this will take too much time, you may speed things up by utilizing a tool like this one that pulls all external links from the page.
IMPORTANT! Select “External” from the drop-down menu (extracting internal links serves no purpose) and make sure the “Image” and “Meta tag” boxes are not checked.
After exporting the data to CSV, go through and remove any pointless prospects.
2. People who’ve written articles on the same topic
You can sure that if someone has produced an essay about the same subject as you, they are seriously interested in it. I could care less about fashion and wear mostly joggers and $2 t-shirts, which is why I exclusively write about SEO and not fashion.
There are two approaches to locate these individuals:
Go to Google and perform a keyword search for your content’s subject. Make a list of all the articles that show up in the search results.
I’d run a search for something like “blogger outreach” if I were seeking for potential candidates for this position.
You might also wish to filter for and concentrate on “fresh” information because people are typically more likely to update recent articles that they still care about. Beyond that, you can also use Google’s advanced search operators to discover results that are incredibly relevant and extremely focused.
I could use search operators to identify only postings regarding blogger outreach that don’t reference, for instance, the shotgun vs. sniper outreach tactics since they are discussed in this article.
By doing this, I can already begin to justify my outreach (“I noted that you published about blogger outreach but did not cover the shotgun vs. sniper tactics – my piece mentions that…”).
Even still, copying and pasting dozens or even hundreds of URLs from Google search results can be tiresome (unless you’re skilled at using scrapers).
Fortunately, you can expedite this procedure by using the Ahrefs SEO toolbar.
To extract and export all search results from the page to a CSV, simply install the toolbar and click the download button.
Even better, the CSV contains all Ahrefs SEO metrics, including expected organic traffic, Domain Rating, and other metrics. (These will be useful later.)
Still too monotonous, Go on reading.
Use Content Explorer
You can export tens of thousands of results from Content Explorer, a searchable and filterable database of over a BILLION web pages, in only a few clicks.
There are 6,026 results for “blogger outreach” in a search.
All of these can be exported to CSV right away.
But because Content Explorer by default looks for these keyword mentions anywhere on the page, it frequently pays to be a little bit more specific.
To avoid pitching the same websites more than once, let’s switch the search type to “intitle,” enclose our search word in quotation marks, and turn on the “One article per domain” checkbox.
We are currently left with 385 highly relevant results.
Use the “highlight unlinked domains” function to only locate websites that are new to linking to you if your list is still too large:
In your outreach emails, you should take extra effort to address these “unlinked” prospects because a link from them will be more valuable than a link from someone who has already linked to you.
How are we aware? Because we examined approximately a billion webpages and discovered a strong association between traffic and the amount of backlinks from distinctive websites (referring domains):
Once you’re satisfied, click export to download the data as a CSV file.
3. People who’ve linked to articles on the same topic
Go to Content Explorer and conduct a search for a topic relating to your content.
Then follow these two steps to identify the articles with the most backlinks:
Set “Referring domains” to only show articles with at least 10 websites linking to them;
Sort the results by referring domains (high to low)
The next step is to enter each article’s URL into Site Explorer and look through each of its hyperlinks to determine whether there is a chance for outreach.
At first, this can be extremely laborious, but with practice, you become very adept at recognizing the most promising outreach chances simply by looking at the linking page’s headline and the language immediately surrounding a link.
To focus on the top prospects, you may also use the built-in filters.
One of my favorite filter combinations for this activity is as follows:
As I indicated in the previous paragraph, Google can also be used to find prospects.
The Ahrefs SEO toolbar may then be used to extract and export the SERP, giving you a spreadsheet that resembles this:
Just paste any relevant sites one at a time into Ahrefs Site Explorer after sorting the Referring Domains column from high to low.
4. People who tweeted articles on the same topic
I arranged the four prospect groups in decreasing order of effectiveness.
Therefore, for two reasons, this group is the least effective of the three:
First off, far more content is tweeted out than is published or linked to. Therefore, the likelihood of them linking to you is little to none unless you’re also planning to urge these people to tweet your content (which we don’t advocate).
Second, a lot of people tweet, and most of the time they don’t even read what they post.
However, this does not imply that you should completely disregard their prospects.
It simply requires selecting the top prospects to contact and taking the time to tailor your approach, like with the other two groups.
It’s simple to track out those who tweeted a certain piece of content. Simply enter this URL into a Twitter search box:
Twitter will automatically display the “Top” tweets, which is incredibly useful for outreach prospecting. To view all they have, you may also select the “Latest” tab.
The problem with this strategy is that it is a complete nightmare to scrape the necessary data from Twitter.
Fortunately, that information is available in Content Explorer; simply paste a URL and check the “Who tweeted” tab:
To save time, you should only filter for recent tweets if you’re going to bother doing this at all.
People are unlikely to remember what they tweeted even a month or six months ago, let alone last week. You will come across as a complete stalker if you approach someone in the middle of August and say, “Hey, saw you tweeted x last December.”
I advise choosing “Last 24 hours” or, at most, “Last 7 days.”
The only problem with this approach is that you’ll often end up with few or no results, which renders the whole activity somewhat pointless. So here’s a much better workflow:
Search for a topic in Content Explorer;
Filter for only articles published in the last 7-30 days and only “Published once”;
Sort the results by Twitter shares.
Now you should have a list of relevant articles, with tweets, that are all recent.
Step #2. Segment your prospects
Not treating everyone the same is essential to effective outreach.
Because of this, you should classify the prospects on your list according to their “influence” power.
The following four groups, which in general do a great job, are suggested by our CMO, Tim Soulo:
These are the people with a huge audience and notable achievements.
In the marketing and entrepreneurial space, this would be people like:
How to get on their radar
Your only chance to get in touch with these folks is through a personal introduction or by creating something incredibly innovative and exceptional.
Should you reach out to them?
No. It may be tempting to pursue these prospects, but it will be difficult to capture their interest.
2. Big Fish
Despite not being as well-known as the Sharks, these individuals have a sizable enough following to have an impact on your own company.
In marketing, Big Fish might be:
How to get on their radar
A decent, personalized email has a fair chance of reaching them, but never one that uses a template.
It is ineffective to ask Big Fish for tweets and links (and silly). By asking them to evaluate your work or support your ideas, you will receive considerably more value.
They will tweet and link to your content nevertheless if what you’re doing is worthwhile in their eyes.
Should you reach out to them?
Yes. A link or tweet from these individuals might be extremely beneficial to your company.
3. Small fish
The audience for these individuals is still small. Their websites are only now beginning to get traction, but they are already actively marketing themselves by participating in events, producing guest pieces, and participating in specialist communities.
How to get on their radar
Even if the emails are loosely based on a template, these folks typically respond to personalized, courteous, and value-adding outreach communications.
Should you reach out to them?
Yes. Although a link or tweet from one of these individuals won’t benefit your company as much as one from a “Big Fish,” they are frequently more eager to form connections.
They are just getting started in your sector and haven’t yet amassed a sizable following.
How to get on their radar
Even if your outreach emails are 100% pre-written templates, these people frequently reply to them.
Should you reach out to them?
No. As unkind as it may sound, a link or tweet from these individuals won’t add anything of value.
How can we split the list of prospects we have now that we are aware of who we should and shouldn’t contact?
Let’s start by excluding the Sharks and Spawn from our contact list.
There isn’t a completely flawless method for doing this, but I’ve discovered that the best approach to do it on a large scale is to filter by Domain Rating (DR).
The generated CSV should have this metric for all the sites if you found and extracted your original list of prospects using Content Explorer (or the Ahrefs SEO toolbar Plus Google). Prospects with a DR below 20 should be eliminated in order to remove the Spawn.
Prospects with a DR higher than 80 should be removed in order to remove the Sharks.
Feel free to tinker with these numbers; they are not fixed. With that lower DR filter, you might want to be less stringent if you don’t have as many possibilities.
You don’t have the Domain Rating for the prospects on your list.
Paste them in batches of up to 200 at a time into Ahrefs’ Batch Analysis tool.
You should only have Big Fish and Small Fish left after this.
You can once more use the DR filter to divide the resulting list into sections.
Prospects with DRs of 50 or more are considered Big Fish, whereas those with DRs of less than 50 are categorized as Small Fish.
IMPORTANT! There is no exact science in this. You get to decide how to divide up your prospects.
Reiterating the previous point, this is being done because reaching out to big fish pays off because they are more valuable than small fish.
Step #3: Find the right contact details
Let’s face it: when it comes to performing blogger outreach at scale, this is the true bottleneck.
If you care about getting the appropriate contact information, locating email addresses is laborious, time-consuming, and surprisingly difficult to automate.
Instead of taking the time to thoroughly investigate each prospect and locate their genuine email address, many people rely on various automated applications to scrape (or occasionally even guess) the email addresses of their outreach prospects. However, some people prefer to send emails to an invalid email@example.com, which are caught by our catchall: He rejects these emails, as Tim describes in his outreach guide.
In his own words: We already have a thorough tutorial detailing eight ways to get email addresses, so I’m actually not going to go into much more information about that in this piece.
But I’m going to provide a clever “hack” to quicken this procedure.
Just so you know, nobody has ever shared this tip before.
Sam Oh should get the credit here because he told me about this.
The Hunter “Hack”
A well-liked automated program for locating the email addresses linked to a website is called Hunter.io.
For instance, it will provide a few email addresses of people you might know if you install their Chrome extension and use it while surfing ahrefs.com.
That’s great, but there’s a drawback: You frequently find yourself with a list of many people’s email addresses but no idea of who you should contact.
The problem here is a flawed methodology.
Instead of beginning with a website, identify the emails connected to it, and then try to determine which one is the best. Find that person’s email address instead by starting with their name and website.
For this, Hunter has a tool:
The mass version of this application, which allows you to upload a list of names and websites and have Hunter attempt to locate each person’s email address, is even better.
So, there is just one issue left: where can I find a list of names and websites?
You might have noticed that we display author names for some of the results if your list of potential customers came from Content Explorer:
These also show up in CSV exports.
The raw domain is the only thing that is lacking. However, you can accomplish that quickly using this Google formula. After that, you can upload the spreadsheet to Hunter’s bulk email finder and filter it so that only URLs containing author names are included.
Hunter will never be able to locate emails for every prospect, but it’s a great way to start.
Based on the procedure described here, a virtual assistant can help you find the rest.
Before beginning a campaign of outreach, always double-check your emails.
Bounces may lower your campaign’s deliverability rate if you don’t do this.
There are several programs available for email verification, but Neverbounce and Zerobounce are the two that have given me the best results.
Step #4. Craft your pitch
At this point, the majority of outreach manuals advise you to create a campaign template that resembles something like this:
I recently discovered your article: %URL of their article%
I saw that you referenced this article: %URL where they link to%
Although I produced a better piece on the same subject, this is still a fantastic post.
Look at it here: %URL of my article%
I’d appreciate it if you could tweet or put a link to my post in your story.
There is nothing wrong with templates right now. If you want to expand your outreach, you need them to be successful.
But the issue with beginning with a templated strategy is clear:
You end up with something that resembles a template in both appearance and feel—and this is true.
Therefore, set aside your templates for the time being and concentrate on creating a persuasive argument for ONE individual.
Here are some pointers for achieving that, some of which are drawn from this article:
1. Evoke curiosity with your subject line
At this point, the majority of outreach guidelines advise you to create a template for your campaign that like this:
I recently found your article. %URL of their article%
I saw you linked to this article: %URL where they link to%
It’s a fantastic post, but I also published a much better piece on the same subject.
You may see it here: %URL of my article%
I’m hoping you’ll tweet about my post or at least include a link to it in your article.
There is currently nothing wrong with templates. If you wish to expand your reach, you must ensure their success.
But there is a clear issue with starting with a templated strategy:
The final product has the appearance and feel of a template—and that’s because it is.
So, put your templates in the trash for the time being and concentrate on creating a persuasive case for just ONE individual.
Here are some pointers for achieving it, including a few from this post:
2. Show them you know them
Your response rate will soar if you take the time to find out a little bit more about the individual you are contacting.
Here is a wonderful email I received a few years ago:
In 2016, I contacted Julie Joyce via cold email. I included Julie’s huge love of Alan Partridge, which I learned through our brief conversations on Twitter, into my email.
Was the additional work worthwhile?
Definitely. Julie and I frequently corresponded via email about Alan Partridge, and she also wrote about one of those emails in a piece for SEL. Julie also included a link to my website in that piece. SEL unfortunately removed it.
Back to work…
I suggested establishing familiarity with the receiver in the first couple of lines of your email. Why? Since this portion appears before opening in the majority of email clients, it contributes to your initial impression.
3. Avoid fake flattery
Hey, I just read your %subject% article. Awesome stuff!
Yes, I accept your account.
These kinds of meaningless compliments are present in almost all outreach emails, but they are unnecessary.
Do you really believe that your ambiguous and obviously false statement would mislead anyone, by the way? I have my doubts.
Either speak intelligently, or don’t speak at all.
Here are a few excellent examples:
What you stated about XXX is fantastic. This month, I will definitely put it into practice.
Your experience with XXX is truly inspirational. Just now, I discussed it with a few of my pals.
Still sound fairly trite? That’s because you have to put something genuine and personable in the “XXX” part.
Here is an email I sent a few years ago with a sincere recommendation:
4. Explain why you’re contacting them
Hey, I just finished reading your article on %topic%. Excellent work!
Yes, I do believe you.
There is simply no need for hollow compliments like this, which appear in almost all outreach emails.
Do you really believe you are fooling anyone with such an ambiguous and obviously false statement? It’s unlikely, in my opinion.
You can either say something important or say nothing at all.
Here are some excellent instances:
I adore what you had to say about XXX. This month, I’m definitely going to use it.
Your XXX story is so motivating. Just now, I told a few of my friends about it.
Still sound a bit cliched? This is due to the fact that you must substitute a real and personable word for the “XXX” part.
Here is an email I sent a few years ago with an entirely sincere compliment:
5. End with a clear call-to-action
No, this does not imply that you should conclude your outreach letters by asking you to include my link in your post.
Is there a way for me to obtain a link?
I’m not going to lie: there are instances in which requesting a link in your opening email makes sense. However, it’s often inappropriate. It’s similar to proposing during a first date in that there will almost probably be a prompt “no” in response.
You’re perceiving this incorrectly if you think it’s strange to not include a link in your first email request.
Your initial email should be used to initiate conversation rather than to close the deal.
Therefore, you should finish with a statement that invites a response from the reader.
Here are a few concepts:
Do you think I overlooked anything?
How do you feel?
Do you concur with what we’ve come to?
I’ll be honest: those are still quite generic. Because of this, it’s crucial to create a special outreach email for each campaign and each group of prospects.
6. Only use your best work
The majority of people frequently post new content. On the Ahrefs blog, for instance, we add 1-2 new blog entries per week, and we currently have more than 150 posts overall.
Do you genuinely believe that conducting outreach for each of those positions makes sense?
Without a doubt. If we did, we’d quickly start to irritate other bloggers in our field and tear down relationships.
We only conduct outreach for the best candidates because of this.
How do you decide which posts to undertake outreach for and which to ignore given that “best” is a subjective term?
Simple. In Ahrefs Site Explorer, paste your website, then review the “Top content” report.
This analysis rates your website’s content according to its “social power,” or the total number of social shares it has received across all social networks that Ahrefs is currently tracking.
Use these statistics as social proof in your outreach emails as an added bonus.
That is all really simple, as you might have noticed. Outreach isn’t a complex science, and it doesn’t involve manipulating people or employing cunning psychological techniques. It involves treating people with respect and letting your material speak for itself.
The best way to think of it is like this:
You’re contacting this person because you know they’re interested in a certain topic.
You think they might find value in your content.
Sending this email just so happens to be the quickest and most direct way to introduce them to that content.
Step #5. Scale your outreach
Here’s what most people do at this stage:
Load up their pitch in an outreach tool like Pitchbox.
Replace the first name using a mail-merge field.
Upload their list of prospects.
Blast out thousands of “personalized” emails.
Um, no. This isn’t personalization.
By personalizing a communication, each recipient is catered to. Furthermore, personalisation and “success rate” are highly connected.
However, the issue is how to scale up personalization of that persuasive pitch you just created for a large number of receivers. Given that you probably went all out in the previous phase, your pitch probably contains some elements that are so “personalized” that you can actually only send it to ONE recipient.
Not to worry. That was the entire purpose.
As I previously stated, if your goal is to build a template, that is exactly what you will produce: something incredibly generic that reads like a template.
By using this procedure, you can create a winning pitch template rather than attempting to make your robotic template sound distinct and personal. That, in my experience, works considerably better.
How are templates used for it?
merging the fields.
1. Create some custom merge fields
Personalization means adjusting the dialogue for each recipient. Furthermore, let me inform you that personalisation and “success rate” are highly related.
But how can you take that persuasive speech you just created and individually tailor it to hundreds of recipients? If you went all out in the previous phase, some of your pitch is probably so “personalized” that you can actually only send it to ONE recipient, isn’t that right?
Remain calm. That was the main idea.
As I previously stated, if you set out to develop a template, you wind up with something incredibly generic that sounds like a template.
Instead of attempting to make your robotic template sound distinct and personable, you may automate a persuasive pitch by following this method. In my experience, that functions considerably better.
How does one customize it?
using merge fields
2. Fill in your merge fields
Prior to sending any of these emails, you must actually choose what the merge tags for each prospect will be substituted with.
In a spreadsheet, in my opinion, is the best method to go about doing it.
Open a blank sheet of paper and give it a name. It should be something like “Post name – Prospect kind – Segment.”
Add the column headings for each of your custom merging fields next.
IMPORTANT! Their email addresses, which you should have previously found in step #3, also need to be included as a column.
Start adding prospects and filling in the columns from here.
Just be sure to take the email’s context into account when filling them out. When you combine these two concepts, it ought to make sense and flow naturally.
You should arrive at something similar to this:
Naturally, here is where your earlier segmentation is useful, as you can now devote more time to tailoring emails for Big fish than for Small fish.
NOT GOOD WITH SPREADSHEETS?
It’s acceptable to completely avoid merging tags and instead fill in these fields when sending emails. Because a spreadsheet technique is considerably simpler to outsource, I favor it.
For example, we could easily hire a freelancer to find the following data points for each of our prospects:
Unique nugget of wisdom from their post
Something our post mentions that theirs doesn’t
Not only does this reduce your workload, but it’s also often more cost efficient.
3. Review and send
Everything starts to come together at this point because all that’s left to do is submit your spreadsheet and template to your outreach software.
The data points in your sheet will then be used to replace those merging fields in the template.
Hundreds of emails are now prepared for delivery.
Just be sure to quickly scan each email to ensure that it makes sense before sending.
Seriously, resist the urge to push send after skipping that final step. To get here, a lot of effort is required, yet outreach errors are all too frequent. Trust me.
4. Follow-up, once!
All that’s needed to do at this point is submit your spreadsheet and template to your outreach software, which is where everything starts to come together.
Once that happens, the data points from your sheet will be used to replace those merge fields in the template.
Hundreds of emails are now ready to be sent.
Prior to sending an email, just make sure to quickly scan it to ensure that everything makes sense.
Please resist the urge to press the send button after skipping that final step. To get here requires a lot of effort, and outreach errors are all too frequent. I assure you.
How to find new prospects on autopilot
The fact that you’ve read this far means that you now know more about outreach than 99.9% of so-called link building experts. Well done! Fantastic work!
But there’s still a problem, and it’s the fact that every campaign comes to an end eventually. Or does it?
What if you could always locate fresh outreach candidates for your campaigns?
There are, in fact, a few ways, which is good news.
1. Mentions of relevant keywords
Tools like Google Alerts have been used for years by marketers and SEOs.
Not knowledgeable about such tools? You only need to submit a few keywords associated with your piece of content to receive alerts whenever these terms are mentioned online.
You then choose whether it makes sense to get in touch with the author of that post and share your material based on the context of that keyword mention.
We created our own web alerts functionality because Ahrefs has the second-best web crawler behind Google (according to a third-party research).
Go to Alerts > Mentions > + New alert to add an mentions alert.
2. New links to relevant articles
Here’s a cute finding: If you enter the URL of any nearly top-ranking item in Google into Ahrefs’ Site Explorer, you’ll find that it continues to receive fresh backlinks:
People rarely conduct any further investigation and instead frequently choose the Google result that is listed as the top result. As a result, they continue to link to that top-ranking page whenever they need to cite a source on the subject.
It’s your responsibility to take advantage of the SEO virtuous cycle by keeping an eye out for any fresh links pointing to the pages that rank highest for your target keywords.
You can utilize Ahrefs Alerts’ backlink alerts feature for this.
Simply enter the URL of any post you want to follow, and you will receive an email alert everytime there is a new link:
3. New tweets of similar articles
Every day, millions of fresh tweets are sent out, and some of them almost surely contain links to articles that are related to yours.
It might only be a small group, but that is all you need.
Consider how many tweets are pointing to this article about blogger outreach:
It appears that 280 have occurred in the previous three years.
If you do the arithmetic, that is around one tweet every four days.
Every four days, on average, we would have a fresh potential outreach prospect if we could somehow keep track of tweets regarding that particular article.
If we repeated the process for a few additional articles, we could easily get 50 to 100 new leads each month.
However, how do you follow tweets?
Utilize IFTTT’s “New tweet from search” feature on Twitter.
Before I wrap this up…
Every day, millions of new tweets are published, and some of them almost definitely link to articles with content that is comparable to yours.
Yes, there may just be a small number of them, but that is all you need.
Look at how many tweets there are pointing to this article about blogger outreach, for instance:
Looks like there were 280 in the last three years.
That works up to about one tweet every four days if you do the math.
We would have a fresh potential outreach prospect every four days on average if we could somehow keep track of tweets regarding that single article.
We could easily get 50–100 new prospects each month if we repeated the process for a few other articles.
But how do you keep track of tweets?
Use Twitter’s IFTTT “New tweet from search” feature.
The importance of timing
Our marketing staff at Ahrefs spends far more time engaging with “new” blogger outreach prospects than it does sorting through thousands of existing ones.
It is improbable that someone would still be interested in the same topic today if they had written, linked, or tweeted something a year prior. Because the time is off, even our most sophisticated outreach email will come across as spammy.
But as soon as a fresh chance arrives in our inbox, we want to act right away.
The author is typically still open to conversation because the subject is still fresh in their minds.
Of course, we don’t ignore “old” prospects entirely. We simply choose our contacts very carefully and mercilessly weed out those who don’t seem promising.
Blogger outreach is not difficult to do.
Given the length of this essay, it might seem like it would take a while, but once you get the hang of it, things usually fall into place quite fast.
This isn’t to imply that it’s always simple, because it’s not!
You need to be extremely organized, a strong problem solver, and most importantly, a people person if you want to succeed in outreach.
Not all those things, though? Not many of us are, so don’t worry. The secret is to assign each stage of the process to experts in that area.
Once you’ve done that, you’ll have a system for all the links you’ll ever require.
If I missed something, please let me know in the comments or on Twitter.