6 SEO Link Building Outreach Tips I Learned Sending 10,000 Cold Emails

Over the last 12 months, I’ve sent over 10,000 cold emails to build backlinks for my clients and my own website.

So I figured:

Why not make an article teaching you my best link building outreach tips?

That way, you’ll have tons of tips and tricks for link building outreach, without having to send 10,000 cold emails yourself.

Here goes…


6 Link Building Outreach Tips I Learned When Sending 10,000 Cold Emails

Tip #1: Not All Content Is Ideal For Outreach

When it comes to outreach, not all content was made equal…

For example:

If you have any product pages or Amazon reviews, these types of content aren’t ideal for cold email outreach.

That’s because they have too much commercial intent

i.e. You’re trying to make money from them.

Instead, try to build links to informational, value driven articles.

This way, the webmaster will be more likely to add a link to your content.

Why?

Because informational content is:

  • Value driven
  • More engaging
  • Less self promotional

How can you optimise your content for cold email outreach?

Make it more comprehensive, detailed, and actionable.

This is far better than promoting a review or a product page – which offers very little informational value.

Most pages like these are just there to make money:

Webmasters can quickly spot a commercial page.

Watch my video breakdown of ‘6 tips I learned sending 10,000 link building outreach emails’ here:

Also note:

Some niches are not ideal for cold email outreach.

For example…

If you’re in the casino or the gambling industry, then you’re probably not going to get links from cold email outreach (unless you pay a lot of money).

Why?

Because these industries are often viewed as unethical – so websites will usually decline your request.

But how can you really optimise your content for link building outreach?

Here’s what I’d recommend:

  • Make your content very unique
  • Cross-over your niche (see video below – you’ll never run out of prospects like this!)
  • Make your content really comprehensive and detailed

This will boost the chances of you getting a link back from your cold email outreach campaign.

And the more that you optimize it, the more links you’re going to get.

Useful Resource: Check out my guide on cold email deliverability hacks here.


Tip #2: You Will Be Rejected

When you send thousands of cold emails, you’ll also receive a lot of rejections!

Webmasters can be pretty brutal about this when you’re doing link building outreach.

So just be prepared for that.

You have to expect that a lot of websites will say no:

In fact, some won’t be happy you’re contacting them.

And quite often, outreach is a numbers game.

But just remember, there are websites out there willing to link to your content:

You just have to filter through all the other stuff at first.

Or you might have to send a hundred emails before you get one link back!

Just be prepared to be rejected a lot:

And understand that every NO gets you closer to a YES.

Why do we get rejected so much when we do cold email outreach?

It’s simply because there’s a lot of competition out there.

Webmasters might receive 10 or 20 cold email outreach emails per day from other people asking for a link.

So what can you do to stand out?

You need to make your content and the copy in the email really quirky:

How?

Make it stand out by being funny – include some puns and some jokes.

Here’s a cold email example that worked really well for me:

email stands out

Basically, do whatever you can to boost your reply rates. 


Tip #3: Outreach Is NOT Dead

What I’ve also learned is that outreach is definitely not dead…

For most people, outreach doesn’t work because they don’t persist with it.

Cold email is an ongoing process – it requires lots of tweaking, testing and improving.

The truth is:

There are a lot of websites that will link to you.

In fact, there are thousands of websites out there willing to link back to you.

And all you have to do is drop them an email.

What sort of conversion rates can you expect?

If you’re running the skyscraper technique, it might be 1/100.

Yep, that’s right:

You might send 100 emails and get just one measly link back.

Outreach really is a numbers game.

But here’s a big problem I often face:

Some people will ask for money for a link.

They’ll offer you a paid opportunity for a link.

But it might cost $20, $30, or even $100 dollars a pop.

So what can you do about that?


Tip #4: Paid Links Are Still Negotiable

Paid links are negotiable:

You don’t always have to pay for the backlink.

There’s room for negotiation, and many times I’ve negotiated a free backlink.

How?

Find a win-win situation that suits both you and the webmaster.

Here’s a few ideas: 

  • Offer a reciprocal link
  • Write a guest post
  • Give them a few SEO tips on how to improve their site

There are loads of ways you can negotiate a free backlink, even if the webmaster asks for money upfront.

Why do webmasters ask for money?

Because it’s a commercial opportunity.

They know how valuable a backlink is, and therefore, they know that people are willing to pay good money for one.

If it’s a really authoritative site, the price might be $500+ for one backlink.

But even if you do pay for a link:

Just know that it’s a negotiable price and that often, webmasters don’t understand the true value of a backlink on their site.

Backlink rates are very negotiable, so don’t settle for the 1st price.


Tip #5: Be Productive When Managing Emails

If you’re sending out a lot of emails, focus on productivty.

You have to be smart when you’re managing your emails

Why?

Because if you’re sending 000s of emails, you’ll get lot of replies back!

And if you’re not careful, that means you could spend your whole day replying to them.

What’s the solution?

Start using and saving templates for canned responses to different answers.

There are going to be FAQs that you answer all the time:

For example, responses to saying “thank you” or just saying “let me know when you add the link”.

You might want to save these templates, to save yourself time writing.

Also, hire and outsource an assistant to manage your email inbox ASAP.

(Especially if you’re sending emails at volume.)

Overall, don’t spend all your time answering emails:

It’s boring. It’s not time-efficient. And you could do better things with your time.

using and saving templates

Finally, only check your email inbox once per day.

You could sit there all day waiting for replies, playing email ping-pong.

But at the end of the day, that’s not the best use of your time. 

It’s not productive, and you can quickly waste hours doing that. 


Tip #6: Link Building Will Boost Your Rankings

And here’s my final point:

Building backlinks still makes a huge difference to your organic rankings. 

It’s still one of the most important ranking factors in 2020.

And if you want to grow your site, build your authority, and drive more traffic, then you need links.

When I build links for my own websites and for my clients, I quickly find a spike of traffic within 3 to 6 months of building those links.

Link building might take a few months before you see results, but it’s 100% worth it.