Content shock has been a thing for almost a decade, and as we move into 2023 – it’s getting harder and harder for companies and content creators to stand out from the crowd and create an impact.
This is where blogger outreach comes in. With the right strategy and approach, you can connect with influential bloggers and influencers in your niche, build relationships with them, and leverage their audiences to reach a wider audience for your own content.
To make things easier and less confusing, I’ve created this blogger outreach guide to help you reach your goals in 2023.
What is Blogger Outreach?
Blogger outreach is a type of outreach marketing strategy that connects companies with influential bloggers to promote their site, product, service, brand or event. Companies in every niche use this tactic because it’s a great way of connecting with your target audience more naturally.
This outreach strategy is also a widely popular way of building high-quality backlinks. The outreach campaign focuses on reaching out to authority sites and getting guest posts to help increase domain authority – a key SEO factor when it comes to building organic traffic.
In fact, that was the way I was able to grow my domain authority from 0-41DR in a short period of time.
Here are several reasons why you would want to contact bloggers and influencers for collaboration opportunities:
- You have launched a new product and need to promote it;
- You want to reach new audiences;
- You’re expanding into a new local market and need exposure;
- You want to improve your brand’s online presence and become a staple in the industry;
- You want to promote an event;
- You want to build backlinks.
Naturally, reasons will vary from one business to another, but these are the most common motivations for starting a blogger outreach campaign.
Now, just as with any digital marketing strategy, blogger outreach has its good and bad sides. So let’s take a look at both of them.
Advantages of blogger outreach
- It helps bring exposure to small businesses;
- It allows you to reach a very targeted audience;
- It will help increase brand awareness more organically;
- It’s ideal for when you need to promote a new product or service;
- It will help you build relationships with bloggers and influencers in your field;
- It’s not expensive and has great ROI;
- It will bring more traffic to your websites;
- It will bring quality backlinks naturally.
Disadvantages of blogger outreach
- Cold email outreach can be hard if you’re not experienced;
- Many influencers refuse to partner with competitors of someone they already represent;
- Inconsistency is a general problem since, most of the time, you’re not the one writing the content (blog posts, product descriptions, promotion pieces, etc.);
- Most influential bloggers have busy schedules, and it takes time to make the deal and publish the content.
Can you use blogger outreach in B2B content marketing?
When most professionals hear the term blogger outreach, they think about B2C and e-commerce brands. However, the truth is that established bloggers and relevant influencers exist in every niche.
The last thing you should do is limit yourself to how your business can gain exposure in the online world. If you are looking to boost your B2B content marketing efforts, then blogger outreach is a great way of doing so.
5 Steps to do Blogger Outreach
There is no one-size-fits-all approach to blogger outreach, as every business will have different goals and needs. However, there are some general steps that you can follow when creating your blogger outreach strategy:
1. Define your Goals and Target Audience
Look, I know it’s not super exciting.
But in my experience, this is key to a successful blogger outreach campaign. It’s the difference between a successful campaign that brings great results and a campaign that simply fizzles out.
Start by taking some time to define your goals – what are you trying to achieve?
For example, are you looking for more brand awareness? A boost in sales or traffic? More backlinks from high authority sites?
Make sure you set specific, actionable, and realistic goals. As an example, with my blogger guest post campaign, I had a very simple goal of wanting to get to 40 DR in less than 6 months.
Now, if you know anything about link building, having a DR goal is hard to measure (as it’s more complex than a 1 link = 1 DR point increase).
But I knew that having higher DR links to my site helped increase my DR faster.
So my goal became very specific: get 10 70+DR backlinks every month for 6 months.
That meant I had to write at least 60 guest posts published on 70+ DR sites in 6 months.
Simple, actionable, and realistic.
Next, identify who your target audience is. Here are 3 things you should consider.
- You want to reach out to the blogger that creates the type of content that aligns with your goals and values.
- You want to reach out to the blogger that has a big enough reach or audience in your niche. You may look at social media followers as a metric.
- You want to reach out to the blogger whose audience is also YOUR target audience.
In my case, it was very simple. First, I’d reach out to top marketing blogs that accept guest posts (so I don’t have to do the guesswork).
Once you have a clear idea of your goals and target audience, it will be much easier to create an effective blogger outreach strategy that gets results – so don’t skip this step.
As the wise Sun Tzu said, “Every battle is won before it’s ever fought.”
So plan smart and start with the end goal.
2. Identify the best or most relevant bloggers in your niche or industry
Prospecting is the next step in your blogger outreach strategy.
This is where you identify the top influencers or bloggers in your niche and reach out to them. There are many different ways to do this, but here are a few techniques that I’ve found most effective:
- Use platforms like Buzzsumo, Sparktoro, or any social listening tool to find the most popular bloggers in your niche.
- Tools like Ahrefs can be a great way to find bloggers ranking for topics relevant to your offering.
- Search for trending social media posts in your niche to find top creators.
- Tap into existing networks of people – ask current customers, partners, or even employees for recommendations of bloggers they follow and trust.
- Look at bloggers promoting your competitor’s products/links/services.
- Browse top creators in relevant hashtags on social media channels.
- Do a trusty ol’ Google search.
3. Find their contact details
Got a list of bloggers that fit the brief? Great, because now we’ll have to find their best contact details.
There are 3 steps to this.
Step 1. Make sure you’re reaching out to the right person.
When contacting influencers, sometimes you may want to avoid going directly to them but rather to their editor, head on sponsorships, or social media manager.
This contact/role may vary from blogger to blogger. Most of the time, you will likely be reaching out directly to the blogger themselves, but it’s important to remember that this may not always be the case.
Step 2 – Determine the best channel to reach out to
The best channel really depends on who you’re trying to reach out to and what they prefer/respond best on.
Some bloggers prefer email, while others may respond better via social media or LinkedIn. Some might even have contact forms built into their website that you can use instead of emailing them directly.
For example, suppose you’re reaching out to a beauty influencer with a large social media following. In that case, it might be best to reach out via email outreach as their social media DMs may be inundated with messages.
On the other hand, if a blogger is more of an authority in the niche of marketing or sales and is very active on LinkedIn, then it may be better to try contacting them through LinkedIn.
The key here is to reach out on the platform they’re most likely to respond on.
Step 3 – Find their contact details
Once you’ve figured that out, you can use many tools and techniques to find the right contact information. Some options include:
- Using a tool like Hunter to find email addresses
- Searching for their LinkedIn profile and looking for the “contact” tab
- Scouring through their website, blog, or social media accounts for an email address or contact form
- Reaching out via Twitter (if you’ve already followed them) by sending a direct message, tagging them in a tweet, or mentioning them in your own tweets.
- Googling it. Seriously.
Make sure you note down a few backup options in case the first choice isn’t available or if they don’t respond.
4. Craft personalized outreach emails.
This is probably the most demoralizing part of an influencer marketing campaign – or any outreach for the matter.
Once you’ve identified a list of target bloggers and their contact details, it’s time to reach out and build relationships with them. This step is crucial for getting results from blogger outreach – after all, how can you expect anyone to want to work with you if they don’t even know you?
Now, the most important step in the outreach process is ensuring you have an offer.
Because, well, it’s 2023, and nobody does things for free or out of the goodness of their heart. If they’re going to promote your product/service or help you achieve your link-building efforts, then they also need to get something out of it.
So come up with a value proposition that aligns with your campaign’s goals – whether you’re offering them access to a tool or product, exposure to your audience, compensation, or free content (in the case of guest posting).
Once you’ve got your offer down, it’s time to craft your outreach email.
This should be personalized and tailored specifically for each blogger on your list – after all, not everyone is going to respond the same.
To emphasize this point, a study on outreach by Backlinko, found that personalizing an email’s subject line and body can increase your chances of a reply by 63%.
Pro tip: an easy way to do this is by checking out the blogger’s site/social media.
Pay special attention to how they communicate with their audience.
→ What kind of tone are they using?
→ Are there any specific hashtags that they use more often than others?
Take note of these insights as you’re creating your outreach message so that it is tailored specifically to them.
Some standard email outreach practices include:
- Use a subject line.
- Keep it short and sweet.
- Always personalize.
- Address them by their first name.
- Make it about them, not you.
- Follow up if you don’t hear back after the first email.
You can see our best-performing blogger outreach template here.
While you can do this all manually, I recommend using a blogger outreach tool to make it easier on yourself. It’s also the best way to scale your outreach efforts and get better results.
5. Measure the results and optimize your approach.
Once you’ve sent out your outreach emails, it’s time to sit back and wait for the responses to come in.
It can be a little nerve-wracking waiting for those first few replies but try not to get too discouraged if they don’t come right away. Remember that blogger outreach is a long-term strategy, and it can take some time to build strong relationships with influencers.
Once you’ve started getting responses, ensure that you’re tracking your progress and measuring your campaign results to optimize for future efforts. This includes things like:
- The number of replies/rejections
- The conversion rate
- Any new links or referral traffic you’ve received as a result of the campaign.
Using these metrics, you can tweak and optimize your blogger outreach strategy over time to get the biggest returns on investment.
In a nutshell…
At the end of the day, successful blogger outreach takes time and effort – but it’s well worth it in the long run.
The key here is to develop long-term relationships with these key influencers.
Because, like everything in life, relationships also compound over time – and the more connections you make with bloggers, the more valuable they become, and the more opportunities there’ll be down the road.