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Link Building Outreach: How to Pitch Your Content for Backlinks

Link Building Outreach: How to Pitch Your Content for Backlinks

Building high-quality backlinks is one of the best things you can do to improve your website’s SEO ranking and drive organic traffic.

To do so effectively, though, it’s imperative to have a reliable link building outreach strategy in place.

What Is Link Building?

Links on external websites that direct people to your site are called backlinks. As your website becomes connected to other websites on the internet, its value grows in the eyes of Google and other major search engines.

A search engine considers backlinks an endorsement, which can increase your trustworthiness — a factor that, along with expertise and authoritativeness, Google has trained its search quality evaluators to focus on. When Google believes that your content shows experience, expertise, authoritativeness, and trustworthiness (or E-E-A-T), you gain a higher ranking and placement on SERPs, which can dramatically boost your visibility and organic traffic.

In a perfect world, your website is used as a resource organically and linked to by reputable companies and websites. But for most businesses, that isn’t the norm. This is where link building outreach can be useful. With this strategy, marketers reach out to other websites or blogs to see if they would be interested in linking back to their content.

What Makes a Strong Backlink Profile?

Various link qualities can improve your backlink profile and help you gain higher SERP placements. There are a variety to include in your strategy to boost your ranking and drive qualified traffic for your site:

  • Natural links: These occur organically and have no tracking parameters, such as links used as sources for other blogs or news reports.

  • Authoritative links: These link to trusted sources of reliable information. A link to Ahrefs, for example, would be in this category because it’s a high-authority website. A high-authority website has a high domain authority, which is a measure of the likelihood of a search engine to see a site as relevant and trustworthy.

  • Links from related websites: These are links to websites that produce similar content or sell similar offerings.

  • Links from diverse yet relevant sites: These are links from websites that are topically similar to your own.

  • Follow links: These links pass link equity from one website to another.

What’s the Best Type of Content to Use in Outreach Pitches?

Websites are more likely to link to certain types of content than to others. Thought leadership pieces and articles that contain original research are often the best choices, but infographics, informative videos, interactive content, and free tools and templates also tend to have a lot of success.

When your content reflects foresight and deep industry knowledge, you earn the respect and authority that make people want to link to it. Similarly, by investing in original research, you’re not just adding to the conversation — you’re starting new ones. Publishers and industry leaders are always looking to link to content that showcases groundbreaking findings.

Still, it’s important that you align your content with the goals of the target publication. You should always review a website to ensure that your content fits with its audience and the topics that it normally covers. Irrelevant content, no matter how well-written or brilliant, is unlikely to get linked back to.

How to Identify the Best Websites to Contact

Once you’ve selected the content you want to pitch, you can start to identify target websites for outreach. Here’s how:

  • Conduct keyword research to identify other websites that are in your niche.

  • Utilize SEO tools to analyze potential targets to determine their domain authority and their relevance to your website.

  • Prioritize authoritative websites that are relevant to your own content and likely to respond to your outreach pitch efforts.

  • Consider the potential audience size and traffic that the target website may be able to provide you.

Key Elements of a Successful Link Building Outreach Pitch

As you reach out to websites, you should use these principles as the minimum expectations for success:

  • Personalization: When communicating via email, customize your outreach to include people’s names and organizations. Outreach that resonates with recipients is more likely to be successful.

  • Value proposition: Tailor your value proposition to reflect the needs of the recipient. Highlight why this content will be valuable to their readers.

  • Politeness and professionalism: You should maintain a friendly and respectful tone throughout your emails. People do favors for those they like.

  • Conciseness: Keep the request simple and to the point. No one likes a long email.

  • Follow-ups: If you don’t receive a response from website owners or marketers, you should send polite yet persistent follow-ups. This outreach historically doesn’t land on the first try. Have a plan for your follow-up emails.

If these requirements are met, your email will probably look something like this:

Hi [Name],

I’ve been following [recipient’s organization/website] and am particularly impressed with your work on [specific topic/article].

My company, [company name], recently published a piece on [content topic] that could add significant value to your audience, especially in light of your recent article on [related topic on recipient’s website]. Our piece dives deep into [brief description of your content], offering [unique value proposition of your content].

Would you be open to linking to this piece in the article to add another layer to the story?

To ensure this aligns with your editorial standards, here is more of our past content to review: [link to your content]. I’m confident that your readers will find it informative and engaging.

I look forward to the possibility of working together.

Best regards,
[Name]
[Title]
[Contact information]

Tips for Managing Your Outreach Program

An effective follow-up strategy can include:

  • Sending a thank-you email to the recipient after your website link is live.

  • Keeping all lines of communication with the recipient open for any potential collaboration in the future.

  • Promoting their website or sharing their content to show your appreciation.

  • Making an offer to update or improve the content linked to if needed.

Tracking all of your interactions and follow-ups in spreadsheets or CRMs can help you stay organized.

Backlinks enhance the visibility and credibility of websites in the eyes of search engines. Securing these links demands a strategic, personalized, and persistent approach. Offering genuine value and maintaining professional decorum will allow you to focus on building authentic relationships that can lead to a robust backlink profile and significantly improve your website’s authority and reach.

As with any strategy, monitoring, adjusting, and refining the approach is key. When you know how to pitch for link building and understand the nuances of link building outreach, you can pave your way to SEO success, higher organic traffic, and maximized ROI.

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Picture of Alyssa Patzius

About Alyssa Patzius

I'm the president of Intero Digital's Content & PR Division. Intero Digital is a full-service digital marketing agency whose Content & PR Division helps businesses improve their lead generation, SEO, sales enablement, and thought leadership — all powered by content marketing and PR.

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