“The core of influencer marketing lies in building a solid relationship to ensure mutual value creation.” – Dr. Konstanze Alex Brown

Don’t create content that nobody gets to read. Go out there and build an audience. 

Get new people to know about your content, products, and services. 

Reach out to those who matter and build partnerships that last.

 

This guide will help you figure out how to connect with the right bloggers and amplify branded content!

Ready, let’s start.

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What is Blogger Outreach?

Blogger outreach is the strategic process of informing the relevant niche bloggers about branded content or products and services.

  • It’s a process of building a relationship with industry influencers who have an existing audience. 
  • A strategy that helps improve business visibility and reach.

 

Why is Blogger Outreach Essential?

The web is an ocean full of content. To get your voice heard, you need to tie up with established bloggers who have a large audience. Blogger outreach helps you:

  • Reach out to an enormous audience and get more readers for branded content.
  • Build and profit from long term relationships with authority bloggers and influencers. 

Did you know?

Influencer marketing is expected to become a $10 billion industry.

  • Get more backlinks for your website that results in higher traffic, search rankings and conversions. The following study by Ahrefs confirms a strong relationship between backlinks and site traffic:

 

  • Build a robust online reputation by promoting expert content. 
  • Blogger outreach is the best way to get a high number of content shares. More social shares mean more search rankings and more traffic from social media and organic search. 
  • Building relationships with bloggers can help the audience engage with content pieces and leave their comments.
  • Build niche authority and display your industry knowledge and expertise. When influencers share your content or mention it, you build trust with the relevant audience. Studies show that people trust the content that’s shared by influencers as opposed to brands.

Expert Tips on Blogger Outreach

Before we get to the bottom of how to do blogger outreach the right way, let’s get some tips from the experts. Here are some unique insights on the best ways to improve the success rate of your outreach campaign.

Ready to master blogger outreach with robust expert advice? Let’s get started.

When it comes to outreach I’ve seen two small tweaks make a big change in open rate of the outreach email and response rate.

The first tweak is using the recipient’s first name in the subject line. Preferably using the recipient’s first name in the the first word in the subject line. For example, “John – Quick question” is working really well right now to boost open rates in my outreach emails.

The second thing is by using humor in follow-up emails. Most people are ultra boring in their outreach. Anything you can do to stand out for a split second can help boost your response rate. Something I’ve done to help boost response is by using just a touch of humor in my outreach emails. For example in a follow-up email I might say something like,

“Haven’t heard from you (first name), which could only mean 1 of 3 things.

1. You’re on a tropical beach somewhere with your toes in the sand.
2. You’re busy and haven’t gotten a chance to respond yet.
3. You’re not interested in working together.

Feel free to respond with 1, 2, or 3.

Thanks (first name)

-Shane”
This is short and sweet with just a touch of humor!

Let’s now quickly cut to the chase and understand how to connect with influential bloggers and create an outreach program that works for your business.

Find Prominent Niche Bloggers

Before you start sending emails, you need to know about bloggers who are relevant to your business. Let’s learn about some unique and exciting ways to pick the cream of the crop niche bloggers and influencers.

Use Followerwonk

Most influencers are active on Twitter. This nifty tool helps you scout for top niche profiles on social media platforms. 

Head over to the search bios option in Followerwonk.

Type your niche keywords, along with words like ‘blogger’ or ‘specialist’ or ‘strategist’.

You’ll get a list of all the Twitter bios that include your search terms.

That’s pretty easy peasy, right?

As you can see in the screenshot above, there are filters to search influencers based on social authority, account age, number of followers, and tweets.

Use BuzzSumo

Similarly, you can use Buzzsumo to find popular niche influencers on Twitter. The tool gives you an option to add multiple search parameters:

1. The terms in a blogger’s profile bio

2. The topic for which an influencer has shared articles

Plus, you can use the Retweet filter to see which influencers are actively sharing content.

Buzzsumo also provides you with options to find Authors and YouTube influencers.

Quite neat, I must say!

Let’s go further.

Google ‘Best of’ Lists

There’s no denying that Google’s the king of search engines. Use the right search terms and operators, and you’ll find the correct information in seconds.

You can try the following searches in your Google search bar:

  • Top 100 blogs “keyword”
  • 100 best “keyword” blogs
  • Best 100 “keyword” blogs
  • Top “keyword” influencers
  • Top “keyword” bloggers to follow

And boom! 

You’ll get a list of the best blogs and bloggers in your niche. 

Look for Niche Journalists on Muck Rack

We’re living in the age of brand journalism. It means that many bloggers, influencers, and industry experts also happen to be famous journalists and guest bloggers. 

PR platforms like Muckrack and Prowly offer a database of the best journalists in any niche.

You can use these tools to look for niche bloggers and influencers. 

The best part is that you can find the bloggers’ contact information within these tools.

Use Blog Aggregator Services

There are many blog aggregator services to find and follow the top blogs in any industry. Here are some popular ones:

a. Feedly

b. Feedspot

c. Alltop

d. Flipboard

 

Qualify and Segment your List

The next step is to understand which influencers are suitable for your business. Put your list in an excel sheet.

Add details such as website URL, Website Domain Authority, Social Media Followers, and Average Comments on blog posts.

You can add the email address if you already have it or fill this column later. Focus on the social network that’s most relevant in your niche. 

Now you’ll have a clean list of bloggers you wish to reach out to and start a conversation. 

Based on the metrics, you can divide bloggers into different segments or levels.

This exercise will help you understand which bloggers require more effort in terms of relationship-building.

 

Break The Ice

When you want to ask someone out, you need to warm them up first, right? Connecting with bloggers works similarly.

  • Do your research and learn more about the blogger. 
  • Do something that makes them feel good.

Let me break it down for you,

Add Comments on their Blog Posts

The best way to start building a relationship with a blogger is to read their blog and add a valuable comment. 

Remember that you must be honest about doing this. 

Adding a comment for the heck of it does NOT work. Be authentic about adding value. 

Write a pro tip or a complementary point that adds value to the readers of the blog post. Share what you felt about the post, along with a personal point of view. Take a look at this example:

Trust me; you’ll enjoy this process of starting a relationship that’s based on genuine knowledge-sharing. 

Connect with them on Social Media

One of the etiquettes of connecting with someone you don’t know personally is to follow them on Twitter or LinkedIn. 

You can comment on one of their latest social media updates.

Again, make sure that your comment is valuable and relevant to the update. 

Another thing that might catch their attention is you sharing their post on a social media platform.

Start with a candid conversation on Twitter.

You can Retweet one of their tweets or mention them in one of your Tweets, including a link to one of their articles. A good way is to highlight a quote from their article.

Similarly, tagging a blogger on a LinkedIn update works. You can either share their article or quote them.

For the top-of-the-end bloggers, you might have to repeat your gestures so they can take notice of your actions. 

Once a blogger knows about you, you can find their contact details and start with the outreach process. Let’s look at some easy ways to find a blogger’s email address.

 

Finding a Blogger’s Email Address

There are quite a few tools that can help you find the email addresses of your outreach prospects.

Blogger’s Website 

The simplest way to find a blogger’s email address is to head over to her website contact or collaborations page. 

  • See if there is a direct email address listed over there. 
  • If you’re looking to pitch a guest post, you need to check the guest posting guidelines pages for the relevant email address.

Rocket Reach

Rocket Reach is an easy-to-use database. 

Pop a name or a LinkedIn profile to get the professional’s email address and contact number.

The paid version of the tool starts at $49 a month. You can look up 170 emails in this plan.

Hunter

Hunter is another interesting email lookup tool. 

  • You can download the Chrome extension and look for all the email

addresses registered under a domain. 

  • Perform 50 searches for free every month. 
  • Pay $49; you can get 500 monthly searches.

Let’s now look at a simple process to download bulk email addresses from this powerful tool. 

Upload a list of names and websites, and the email finder gives you the email addresses of all those on the list.

Here’s how you should start,

a. Use Ahrefs’ Content Explorer to find a list of popular blog posts on a specific topic.

b. Export the list, and you’ll get the content URLs and author names in the CSV file. To extract the domain from the URL, you can use the following  Google Sheets formula:

c. Now upload your list with only Author names and domains, and you’ll get your list of the relevant email addresses.

It’s a super-efficient way to stack up all the relevant email addresses. 

Outreach Tools

PR platforms and outreach tools offer a list of journalists along with email addresses. Tools like Prowly would cost you $179 a month for looking up 1000 contacts. If you’re looking for email addresses of Instagram and YouTube influencers, you can check out a tool like NinjaOutreach; it offers 1000 per month starting at $119.

 

Start Sending Outreach Emails

Remember that sending an outreach email is about building a personal connection. It’s not about cracking a deal.

  • An outreach email should be to the point. That’s because bloggers have their inboxes full of requests from PR pros.
  • You must customize your outreach email, depending on what you’re aiming to get out of the partnership. For instance, are you looking to write a guest post for the site, or are you requesting the blogger to share your content?

Let’s understand how to meet different types of PR objectives through unique outreach emails:

Guest Blogging Outreach Email 

Guest blogging for high-quality sites does not come easy. Getting a blogger to read your pitch and respond takes diligence and attention to detail. 

  • Read through the guest posting guidelines on the blogger’s website.

  • Browse through some of the latest blog posts to understand the content style and type of posts they publish. 
  • Create a list of topics that would work for the readers of the site. 

Now, you can send a professional pitch email with your story ideas. 

Take a look at this pitch template:

Hi [Name],

I hope you’re doing well.

Sharing some guest story ideas that might work well for the readers of 

[Site Name]:

[Story Idea 1]

[Brief Outline]

[Story Idea 2]

[Brief Outline]

Please let me know what you think, and I will be happy to share the draft. 

Sharing some of my published pieces for your perusal 

[URL1]

[URL2]

[URL3]

Thank you for your time and attention [Blogger Name]. 

I look forward to your reply.

Warm Regards,

[Your Name]

[Designation]

[Your Website]

A professional email like the one above empathizes with the recipient. 

Sending previous work helps the blogger to understand your capabilities as a guest blogger. 

It works in your favour if you have already published on quality websites in your niche. 

One of the things you can do to make your guest post pitch more personal is finding a conversation starter.

Take a look at the following pitch template, for instance:

The pitch template above shares just one story idea with the blog editor. Simultaneously, the sender starts the conversation by referring to the topic the blogger writes about—e-commerce businesses in the textile industry. 

When you know what a blogger might be interested in, you have a bigger chance of getting your foot in the door. 

Requesting a Link Outreach Email

Remember not to sound desperate when asking for a link. 

  • Look for content pieces that have the scope of including your guide or listicle. 
  • Find a content piece from your blog that adds value to the targeted content.
  • Write an email conveying how your resource is a good fit and creates a win-win for both parties. 

Here is an email template that you can use for sending out a link request. 

Dear [Name],

I hope you’re doing well. 

I came across your awesome post about [Topic] and thought we could collaborate. 

I recently wrote about [brief description of your content]: [URL].

I thought it might add value to your readers if you included my piece under the “[Section Title]” of your article. 

No worries if you think otherwise. I hope you have a good day. 

Thanks for your time, [Blog Editor Name]

Warm Regards,

[Your Name]

[Designation]

[Website]

Are you looking to earn a link to something specific like an infographic? You can take a look at this email template from MonitorBacklinks:

There are three things to learn from this template:

  • Learn more about the recipient and target content. It helps you personalize your message. 
  • Write a line or two about the process of creating the content piece or the infographic. It’s a helpful tactic when explaining the merit of your content piece. 
  • Offer exclusive access to a content piece. It makes the blogger feel special, plus offers them a competitive advantage as they’re covering something before other niche bloggers. 

When you’re requesting a link, you’re selling a content piece. But don’t be salesy. I know it’s a little tricky, but it’s worth the effort.

Offer an Opportunity to Write for Your Site

Another cool way to get your foot in the door is to offer the blogger to publish guest posts on your site. Take a look at this script template:

Hi [Name]

I hope you’re doing well. I’m [Your Name], and I work as a Marketing Manager at [Company Name].

We just published our in-depth guide about [Topic]. I’m sure it’ll be a great value addition to your readers. I’m reaching out to see if you would be interested in mentioning it in your [Article URL]

I also wanted to ask if you would be interested in writing guest articles for [Your Blog Name]. We’re always happy to publish guest articles from industry experts. Please let me know if you’re interested. 

Warm Regards,

[Name]

[Designation]

[Website]

Well, that’s a pretty straight-forward email. The best part is that the sender is showing respect for the mail recipient’s expertise. That’s what makes it a winning outreach template. 

Making the Blogger Aware of a Content Piece

In some cases, all you need do is go out there and share your content piece with the right set of influencers.

  • Make a list of niche influencers who’re actively sharing content on social media platforms like Twitter. 
  • Go out there and write an email telling them about your content piece. 

Take a look at this email script:

Hi [Name],

I hope you’re doing well. 

I recently wrote an in-depth blog post about [Brief About the Topic] 

I have been an avid follower of your blogs about [Your Niche] and thought you would be interested in the post. 

Sharing the link to the published piece—I would be happy to get your feedback. 

[URL]

I hope you find it useful.

Warm Regards,

[Your Name]

[Designation]

[Website]

You don’t need to beg for the link; just sharing the content piece works.

Do you want to make a blogger feel exclusive? 

You could give them a heads-up about your original research or upcoming guide. Take a look at the following script:

Hi [Name]

I hope you’re doing well. I’m reaching out to give a heads up on our latest [Brief About The Guide]. 

As an avid follower of this topic, I thought the content piece would be of interest to you. 

Please let me know, and I’ll be happy to share it as soon as it goes live. 

Thank you!

Warm Regards,

[Name]

[Designation]

[Website]

The good thing about such an outreach email is that it intrigues the recipient and makes her want to respond and reciprocate your gesture. 

Solicit a Blogger’s Opinion 

When you talk to new friends, you hit it by talking about what’s going on in the country, state, city, neighbourhood, etc. Good friendships are about sharing opinions and views. 

So, how about starting a blogger relationship by asking for an opinion. That’s a terrific way to sound less intrusive and more civil. Take a look at the following template:

Hi [Name]

I hope you’re doing well.

What caught my attention was your latest post about ‘Marketing Automation Trends’ – [URL]

We recently spoke to over 1000 CMOs and asked them about the performance of the MarTech stacks.  

It turns out that most marketers (More than 50%) are struggling to get the most of their marketing tech stack. 

You can read all the takeaways from our research in this post: [URL]

I would love to get your opinion on how CMOs should align their tech investments and optimize their Martech stack the right way. 

I look forward to hearing from you. 

Warm Regards,

[Name]

[Designation]

[Website]

Offer to Collaborate

As you know, a healthy relationship is a two-way street. You’ve got to do something for the other person before asking for something in return. 

For example, you can link to a blogger’s content piece in one of your popular blog posts or a guest post.

Write an email to tell them about it. Plus, you can ask about future collaboration opportunities. 

Here’s an excellent email script you can use:

You can ask a blogger to review your product or run a sponsored story talking about your business. 

  • Tell them about the type of partnership you are looking for.
  • Be clear about what you’re looking for and what’s in it for them.

To start an ongoing relationship with a niche influencer, you can use an email script like the one below.

Hi [Name],

I hope you’re doing great. I’m [Your Name], and I’m the Public Relations Manager at [Your Company Name].

We recently launched [Brief about the New Product], and I wanted to see if you would be interested in reviewing it. Please find below the details. 

[Brief about the product features]

Please let me know, and I will be happy to send you free samples. 

I look forward to hearing from you.

Warm Regards

[Your Name]

[Designation]

[Website]

Being transparent about your intent builds trust with the blogger and helps get a quick response to your outreach email.

 

Some Rules to Improve Outreach Conversions

As a PR professional, you must remember that following certain trade tricks can help you get better outcomes from your outreach campaigns.

Rule #1: Create Worthy Content Assets 

Whether you’re an influencer or not, you don’t want to share content that’s anything short of remarkable. Why? 

Because it puts you in a bad light.

  • That’s precisely why you should try to make your content pieces as insightful as possible. 
  • Optimize your content for different devices and browsers. 
  • Create content pieces that are thought-provoking and engaging.

Let’s Look at some content assets that naturally attract backlinks and content shares.

Original Research

Publishing primary research in the form of industry studies and surveys offer profound insights to the readers. Plus, bloggers and journalists are looking to quote the latest industry reports.

Original research is the most effective form of link-building content.

Infographics

As you can see in the graph above, infographic content is a highly linkable content asset.

Infographics make content concise and easy-to-understand. That’s why audiences love infographics.

At the same time, infographics add significant value to a blogger’s content.

In fact,

Infographics have had the most significant increase in usage among B2B marketers in the last four years — now at 65%.  (Content Marketing Institute)

Video

Another visual content type, video, is promising for improving the outcomes of your link-building outreach campaign. Videos make content life-like and enhance audience engagement and dwell-time. 

Do you know?

In a 2018 HubSpot survey, 54% of consumers wanted to see more video content from a brand or business they support.  (HubSpot)

That’s why influencers prefer to link to relevant and impactful video content. 

Long-Form Blog Posts

If you want to make your content more worthy of links, start creating long-form blog posts.

What is long-form content?

A content piece that breaks down everything there is about a topic is considered long-form. 

These blog posts range anywhere from 4k to 10k words! 

But no fluff, mind you.

Long-form content is a proven way to earn higher search rankings, more traffic, and more shares.

Creating in-depth guides is a fantastic way to attract quality backlinks. It’s very natural that if you pitch such guides to niche influencers, they’ll be happy to link to and share your content.

Free Tools and Templates

How exciting is your content is what makes the blogger more interested in your outreach email. 

Nothing better than creating a new free tool or a template that’s highly useful for the audience. The strategy could help you earn thousands of backlinks and press mentions. For instance, HubSpot’s free website grader tool has got over 248k links!

Case Studies 

When it comes to creating value-driven content, case studies always stay ahead of the game. Industry experts are hungry for reliable case studies and real-life examples. Case studies can help you fetch mentions in round-up articles as well as guide-posts. 

  • Case studies offer a first-hand and unique experience to the readers. 
  • Concrete examples help bloggers to make their content educational and authentic.

Create Newsworthy Content

Some bloggers use a simple trick to hog the limelight—they follow and cover industry trends. As an SEO manager, your role is to keep tabs on the latest trends in your industry. Here are some easy hacks to offer something newsworthy to a niche blogger:

  • Write about topics that are making headlines in your industry. Ride the wave, and it will help fetch immediate attention from bloggers. 
  • Have you created a path-breaking product feature? Are you doing something to serve the community? Create a press release to talk about your achievements.

Give an influencer a reason to see your email, and you’ll win more than half the outreach battle. 

Rule # 2 Watch Your Intent—Focus on Content Quality

As a marketer, your end goal is to build authority for your business. To meet that end, you must make sure that you’re not doing outreach for links alone. Here is a list of objectives you’re trying to achieve:

Expand Your Audience

Speaking of reaching out to a broader audience, you need to make sure that you’re pitching content assets that you want the audience to consume and share.

Display Niche Expertise

Whether you’re writing a guest blog post or offering an infographic to a blogger, you aim to build expertise. When you focus on sharing knowledge with the audience and the email recipient, it becomes much easier to build strong relationships with those who matter in your industry. 

Whenever planning to send an outreach email, revisit these objectives, and it’ll be much easier to craft worthy and winning emails. 

Rule #3 Focus on Personalization 

When you’re reaching out to a known blogger, you need to treat her with respect. No one wants to be at the receiving end of a junk mass email campaign asking for a link. 

Did you know?

 Personalized emails get 1/3rd more replies than generic emails.

Here are some essentials for personalizing your outreach emails:

  • An email script is the tip of the iceberg. You need to personalize an email template to the needs of the blogger. Personalized emails separate you from online spammers and create a good first impression. 
  • Research about the blogger to understand her interests and preferences. 
  • The best way is to be polite and friendly. You are out there to build a lasting relationship. Do not come across as a fly-by-night link-builder. 
  • Don’t be lazy or selfish. Remember that an outreach email is not something that you can broadcast, automate, and forget. The process is a lot more human and intimate.
  • Spend time on the quality of outreach emails as opposed to quantity.

Rule #4 Write Sexy Subject Lines

Subject lines—they’re like book covers, make them attractive, and you’ll set yourself up for success. 

An email subject line tells the recipient what’s in the email message. The golden rule is to match your subject line to your outreach objective. 

More than 50 percent of the surveyed publishers said subject lines should be descriptive, specific, and tailored to their beat.

For instance, if you’re offering to write a guest post, you need to use a subject line template like this:

Story idea: [title of your content]

Likewise, if you’re pitching your resource for inclusion, you need to use a subject line script like this:

New resource for [name of resource page]: [name of your resource]

Is there an ideal length of a subject line? Studies show that the perfect length of an outreach email subject is between 36 and 50 characters.

And here comes the big question. 

How to spice-up your email subject line and make it alluring enough for the blogger to open your email?

To make the subject line more personal, you can add the recipient’s name. 

In fact,

Personalized subject lines boost the response rate by 30.5%.

Now take a look at this subject line template:

Hi [Blog Editor Name], My Guest Story Ideas for [Blog Name]

Addressing the blogger by her name is the simplest way to get her to notice your email. 

Another unique way to grab the recipient’s eyeball is to use a statistic based subject line. 

If your content title has a statistic, you could use it as your subject line.

Take a look at this example: 

50% People Prefer Sustainable Fashion Over Fast Fashion

This subject line is offering newsworthy information to a blogger. That’s why it’s so much more effective. 

  • Catchy subject lines matter—spend time to write effective subject lines for your outreach emails.
  • Test different styles to improve outcomes. 

Rule #5 Send Follow Up Messages

Are you shy about following up on your outreach email?

An amiable follow-up message is an essential part of the outreach process. 

In fact, 

Studies show that sending multiple follow up emails can improve response rates by up to 16 percent.

Most bloggers and influencers get hundreds of emails every single day. 

The chances are that they cannot open and reply to each of these emails.

That’s why you send it so vital to send a follow-up email. Here is a follow-up email script you can use:

Hi [Name]

I hope you’re doing well. I was just checking to see if you received my email about our recent blog post. 

I’m excited to know what you think of it. 

I hope you have a great day!

Warm Regards

[Name]

[Designation]

[Website]

Sending a couple of follow-up messages about a week after you haven’t heard from the recipient is a worthy tactic for outreach success. Here’s another template for following up on your guest-post pitch:

Hi [Name]

I hope you’re doing well. I just thought I would drop a line to ask if you received my email below. 

I would be happy to know if you’re interested in any of the story ideas I shared. 

Warm Regards,

[Name]

[Designation]

[Website]

Being crisp and to-the-point saves precious time and ensures a positive response, as well.

Rule #6 Display Credibility 

One of the things that makes a blogger take notice of an email is the sender’s credentials. 

  • Have you contributed to authority blogs in your industry?
  • Has your business got coverage in large and reputed media outlets?
  • Are you a distinguished speaker or a subject matter expert?

An outreach email is like a sales letter. Go out there and talk about your achievements. A successful outreach email is about creating the right perception and building trust with an influencer. 

Rule #7 Offer Before Asking for Something

Like any other email communication, you need to learn the etiquette of an outreach email. 

  • Never make the mistake of asking for a link or a mention. 
  • Always offer your content piece as a way to add value to the blogger. 
  • Is there anything else you can offer, such as an exclusive offer for the blogger’s audience? 
  • Can you become a go-to resource for the blogger? 

Here’s an excellent example of an email script where the marketer is offering to do an exclusive report for the blogger:

Do you get the drift?

The beginning of a relationship starts with offering something of value. When you do that, the other person has an incentive to listen to you. Use this principle for your outreach campaigns, and it will work in your favour.

 

Final Thoughts

Growing your business through organic content marketing does not come easy. But if you have the right influencer relationships, then find an audience and getting search rankings can all look like a piece of cake.

As with good content, you need to understand the purpose of blogger outreach—building robust and lasting relationships through value-driven content. Bloggers need to keep adding value to their audience. If you help them, you’ll find abundant light at the end of the long winding outreach tunnel. Be honest and persistent with your efforts, and blogger outreach could be your most potent weapon for content promotion.