The Link Builder’s Guide to Email Outreach

link building

One of the least sexy ways to build links is through email outreach. It sucks because it’s time consuming and boring, but it works. It actually works really well.

For every 100 emails you send out, at least 5 of them should be linking back to you. If you can’t get 5 of them to link back, it means you are doing one of the following things wrong:

  • You are emailing non-relevant sites.
  • You are emailing your competitors.
  • There is little to no substance to your website.
  • Your email copy isn’t compelling enough.

If you’re interested in giving it a shot, I’ve made the whole process easy for you. From finding sites that will potentially link to you to the templates you should test out,Β I’ve laid it all out. So, here it goes:

Finding links

The easiest way to find sites that will potentially link to you is to do backlink checks on your competition. You can do so easilyΒ through Open Site Explorer.

In addition to backlink checks, you can do some quick Google searches to find sites that you can reach out to. For example, if you are looking to get links from sites that talk about all things Vegas, you may want to run this search command on Google:

intitle:”las vegas” inurl:”links”

Once you run that command, you’ll get a listing that looks something like this:

las vegas links

And it doesn’t stop there. Another way you can find sites to get links from is through broken link checkers. Search for sites that tend to link to content similar to yours and find out if they have any broken links on their website. You can do this through tools like Broken Link Check.

Getting names and email addresses

Now that you have a list of sites that you want to reach out to, you need to get contact information of the actual people running those websites. You can do this manually, or you can just use Mechanical Turk or oDesk.

For pennies on the dollar, you can get the name and email address of the webmaster that manages the site as well as the website name and a few links to popular pages on that website.

Don’t forget about the basics

Before you start your email outreach program, you need to set up your tracking. You don’t need much to accomplish this. I typically use an Excel spread sheet to keep track of everything, Gmail to send out my email, and Yesware to track my email open rates.

Out of all the tools, the one I find most useful is Yesware as it tells me which email templates and subject lines are read the most. This helps me fine-tune my email outreach templates so I can maximize my open rates.

Now that you got the basics down, it’s time for you to start sending out emails.

Email templates

If you don’t know what to write to webmasters or if you aren’t creative, don’t worry about it. If you use the email templates below, you should be fine.

When using the email templates that I wrote below, you need to keep a few things in mind:

  • Keep the subject lines in lower case letters – I do this because I want the email to seem casual as if a friend was sending you an email.
  • Be creative – plain, boring emails tend to be considered spam in many cases.
  • Personalize – you have to include the person’s name and the website name in the email so it doesn’t come off as spammy.

Here are different email templates you can use, depending on the type of outreach you want to do.

Broken link email template

You want to send this email as an independent 3rd party, and not a website owner.

Subject: there’s something wrong with your site πŸ™

[insert their first name], I was browsing your website and noticed you have a broken link. πŸ™ You can find it on [insert webpage with broken link], and it’s the [insert anchor text of the broken link] link.

As an avid reader of [insert their site name], I love reading anything you write about, such as [insert article on their website], and anything you link out to. Sadly, I couldn’t find the article you were trying to link to, but I did happen to find another good webpage on the same topic:Β [insert url to webpage that you are building links to]. You should check it out, and if you like it, you probably want to switch the links.

I know you are busy and probably get millions of emails a day, but I hope this one was helpful. I just wanted to help you out for once as [insert their site name] has changed my life.

[random persons name]

Basic link request template

You want to send out this email as yourself.

Subject: [insert first name of website owner], i think i’m in love with you

I hope I didn’t freak you out by my subject line, but I’m really in love with you. Don’t worry, it’s not in a creepy way. What I mean is I’m in love with your website [insert their website name].

You probably get tons of people everyday who are in love with [insert website name], so I won’t bore you with my reasons. Instead, I thought I could show you some appreciation by giving you some feedback on how you can improve your website.

  1. Insert suggestion #1
  2. Insert suggestion #2

And if you are wondering how you can repay your biggest fan, feel free to link to my website [insert URL]. πŸ˜‰

Ah… just kidding, you’ve already done enough for me by making [insert their website name] so awesome!

[insert your name]

PS: If you do happen to link to my websiteΒ [insert URL], it will seriously make my year! Maybe even decade!

PR pitch

You want to send out this email as yourself.

Subject: don’t you hate it when people pitch you story ideas [insert their first name]?

Well, I too have a PR pitch for you, but before you hit the spam button and move onto the next email, just give me 37 seconds, or else you’ll regret this for life! πŸ˜‰

So, here it goes:

I’m launching [insert your website URL] on [insert date], and I wanted to see if you wanted to cover it. Here are 2 reasons your readers would love it if you covered it:

  1. Insert benefit #1
  2. Insert benefit #2

I could keep on going with reasons on why you should blog about us, but I won’t bore you with the details. If you’re interested, let me know, and we can set up a time to chat when you’re free.

[insert your name]

Oh… I think I have 7 seconds left, so if you could just hit the reply button and let me know what you thought of my pitch, that would be great. Even if it is “F off”…, any feedback would be great.

Guest posting

You want to send out this email as yourself.

Subject: you should blog about [insert your guest blog post topic]

[insert their first name], as an avid reader of [insert their site name], I would love to read about [insert guest blog post topic],Β and I think your other readers would as well.

Your content on [insert existing post from their website #1, insert existing post from their website #2, and insert existing post from their website #3] is great, but I think you can tie it all together by blogging on [insert guest blog post topic].

I know you are probably busy and won’t blog on it, so I’m going to make you an offer you can’t refuse. πŸ˜‰ How about I write it for you? Don’t worry, I’m a great blogger and have had my posts featured on [insert previous guest post URL #1] and [insert previous guest post URL #2].

Let me know if you are interested. I already know your blogging style, plus I understand what your readers love… as I am one. πŸ˜‰

Look forward to hearing from you,
[insert your name]

Funny link request

You want to send this email as yourself, but be careful with this template. It worked really well for me with the first few hundred emails I sent out, but after a while people started to mark my email as “spam”.

Subject: dude you have to check out this nude pic

You dirty boy, I can’t believe you opened this email. There’s no nude pics here… instead I’m using a software called Yesware to track if you opened my email… and you did!

But don’t worry [insert their first name], I am not going to blackmail you by posting it all over the web. Instead, I just want you to link back to me. πŸ˜‰

Or at least consider it.

My website is [insert your URL], and here is why I think your readers would want you to link to me:

  1. Insert reason #1
  2. Insert reason #2

Hopefully you link to me. And don’t worry, even if you don’t, your “dirty” secret is safe with me. πŸ˜‰

[insert your first name]


I know many of the email templates above are a bit edgy, but they work. I’ve been using them for years, and I can typically get 6 to 7% of the website owners I email to link back. That is why I think you should be able to get at least 5% of the people you email to link back to you.

I want you to go out there and try the process out. Trust me, it works. And if you really want to boost your response rate, email people from a female email handle and make sure you add a semi attractive picture, but not too attractive.

I tested that method with a relocation company, and I had an 11% success rate when emailing coast guard websites, which is a .gov link. πŸ˜‰


  1. Thanks for the really useful example scripts!

    The tip about broken link detection is excellent – a way to add value instead of just telling the owner “hey give me a link”

  2. I am a regular reader for last three weeks. I hear about most on most of the forums and links. Yes you are the expert with some excellent professional reviews. Your contents are really touchy. I really got some think every time i visit your blog. “Links Building is really an art”, I tried to understand every point of your article. In the mean while if i don’t get any of your portion i contact you.



  3. Email templates!!

    Your copy writing skills are too awesome neil.

    No matter how busy, popular, or famous your target email reader is, you will always get more attention than other ways of digital communication. There tacticts work really great.

    • Thank you Darshan, I appreciate it.

    • Adam Bielawski :

      First your article is excellent and thanks for some great references. As to the email templates, I find them all as SPAM. On a daily basis I will receive one or two worded templates that are identical to yours. I just delete them as soon as I see the first line, “…as a avid reader of your sit..”. Just an opinion

      • These templates have been downloaded and used by hundreds of thousands of people, so I wouldn’t be surprised. However, most people don’t even know where to begin, so these help give you some sort of a baseline.

      • Kimberly Dsouza :

        I know what you mean Adam! I myself have received emails identical to Neil’s and Brian Dean’s template! I wouldn’t call it spam though… they are just trying! I have received some pretty decent requests. But yes, I do wish people would use the templates more as a guideline rather than mere copy-paste!

  4. Great info Neil, How long does it take you to write all this up?

  5. Martin Ramirez :

    I love email templates!

    I always worry if the language I use is going to be effective and it’s great to know that they’ve worked in the past.

    So once again thank you.

  6. This is a great no BS write-up…

    people need to understand that just writing mails wont help….instead what works is:
    “Writing emails to right people, for right purpose and in right words ”

    the post explains it all…

  7. For my taste the templates you are giving are a little bit too direct, sometimes even ‘pushy’. But then, if you say you had success, then it must be working…. πŸ™‚
    Since I do not consider myself being able to contact the potential links in this manner, I would use a ‘milder’ variation of your approach.My web page is about online education and I do not think it would be beneficial to reach my audience in this manner. Of course, you might disagree, with just reasons. Maybe I would need more time to process the ‘concept’ that you are describing above… and might use it later on, for different type of audience.
    Regardless of the said, I find the tips useful and very much implemented in practice (I am a beginner yet).
    Very best regards,

    • The best way to figure out what works best for you is to try out different thing. Give these templates a try sometime, you may be right and they may not work in your field but you won’t know until you try. πŸ˜‰

  8. Neil!
    What can I say?
    I think I am in “love” with you too πŸ™‚
    Ok, not in a creepy way but honestly with the amazing content that you are dishing out here.
    Where have you been man?
    You are the man!
    The main man!!

  9. Neil,

    Great article. Will companies like us in who are initial stages of building links.

    Thank you

    • Let me know if it doesn’t work well for you guys. It should though… it works for all the companies I tested it on.

  10. Theodore Nwangene :

    All the templates above are superb Neil,
    I’ve used something similar before when i guest posted on one blog and it really worked well.

    Thanks for this useful info.

  11. I always glue to my screen when I receive any email from you Neil. It is always superb and practical.

  12. Hey Neil,

    I just wanted to reach out and tell you what an incredible job you do in writing these posts. I have learned more from your site than almost any other site across the internet – for one reason – they are always actionable.

    I have to be very picky about whose info I read and follow because frankly, like all entrepreneurs, I don’t have any time to waste. Thank you for taking the time to teach what you probably spend countless hours, energy and money to learn.

    • Thank you Shrad,

      I know how hard it can be to start off with little to nothing. Trying to find information and ways to grow successfully without breaking the bank. That is why I do this because I want to helps those who are struggling like I did.

      I really appreciate your kind words. All the best to you.

  13. Peder Steirud :

    When i started my e-mail marketing efforts, i did not have the right tools to make them attractive.
    But now they are stunning and my business i getting much better.
    Thanks to you!

  14. Johannes Starke :

    Love your detailed examples, Neil.

    My challenge will be to find enough websites that write on my topic, fibromyalgia and chronic fatigue syndrome.

    I’ll give it a go though.

  15. lol your funny link request made me crack up “You dirty boy”. Well definitely try that one out:) Great email templates Neil.

  16. Thanks again Neil. I like the Funny link request. : ) That should probably work. : )

  17. I like it. I thought this was dead a while back and haven’t tried this since 09…granted I didn’t have your copy to do it. I still do the broken link route and that does work, but a lot of time the research is tedious.

    Neil you are great man. The only RSS feed to hit my inbox, the rest are in, keep kicking arse.

  18. I really like the examples you gave. Even though they are templates they sound really friendly and authentic. And I’m going to look into yesware, I’ve never heard of it.

    I know you’re a busy guy but you should work on v2.0 of your course! πŸ˜€


  19. Steven Leconte :

    Hey Neil, your stuff is amazing and these templates are another great example or your generosity and your talent. Thank you so much! I will make some time this week to send by first batch of 100 emails to see how many responses I get.

  20. I don’t know if I agree with this so wholeheartedly. We all get spam – tons of it – and I’m not sure I want our company to be loaded into this category, or worse, blocked.

    Although the scripts of the templates are cute and catchy, and I fully expect they produce the results that you say they do, I feel they may be more appropriate to your type of industry than to mine – carpet cleaning. I’m just not sure I want to go down that road just yet.

    However, I have a repository of all sorts of items which I revisit from time to time, and I’ll add this to it. One never knows…..

    • You should give it a try on your carpet cleaning site, you will be shocked by what works. I have done it on boring industries like power supply and it works well.

  21. Thomas Oppong :

    Once again another resourceful article, you are always given practical tips away for free. And that is why we keep coming. Thank Neil.

  22. Hey Neil, excellent post, seriously your funny templates are awesome and i think that guest blogging is one of the best thing for linkbuilding,
    thank you


  23. Thank You Neil Patel for sharing excellent tips. I got great oppotunity to improve my SEO quality. I really appreciate your effort and contribution. I did not aware on this topic before.

  24. Bali silver jewellery :

    Something different and unique approach.
    It makes sense. Lets implement and find out.
    Thanks Neil.

  25. Awesome email templates, with those used, you can definitely expect a link back.

  26. This is great – Thanks!
    I’m glad I stumbled on to this article. I’m trying to build my real estate site, here in Philadelphia. I didn’t think it would be this hard in a local market.

    I just can’t seem to get the site to budge!

  27. I love these link request email copies. It’s simply great. Thanks.

  28. Hey Neil, don’t you think the last email template will balckmail a webmaster ?

    Anyway it was amazing informative article and now I’m saving these templates to tryout the technique to get some targeted and worthy link backs.

  29. Neil… thanks for the you shared for email marketing is awesome…

  30. Hey Neil,

    That is pretty effective isn’t it. You’re putting yourself out there a bit but, the rewards can be great. Good stuff.

  31. Hi Neil! This is a great post! I’ve tried backlink checks thru Open Site Explorer and it really is a big help. Yesware sounds good. I’ll look up on that one now! Thanks for the tips! πŸ™‚

  32. Shouvik Mazumder :

    Thanks Neil for sharing, but if i shoot the mail then by contacting the site owner will it then become email spam?
    Let Me know about your thoughts,

    • In general it shouldn’t cause you to go into the spam folder if you are writing custom emails.

  33. Nikunj Tamboli :

    As always a great post & good examples of email template

  34. Hi Neil,
    Kem cho? this read was very helpful to me, seeing that i don’t quite understand all this computer lingo (being a housewife for 10 yrs does that to u) this seem like a good idea, but I know I’ll have to put huge amount of time and effort….I just hope this will work.
    thanks πŸ™‚

  35. Its great and amazing content you have return, recently i use to think is there any alternative for link building? by this article i was very happy to learn this thanks a lot neil!

  36. There are some mistakes in the post. I clicked the link odesk, but i can not get the result as you described. and the same mistakes more than 3. You get so many traffic to these sites, But i think you should give us the right link to right place, no cheating the dear vistors. thank you very much

  37. Thanks ! for the tips & a list of DoFollow blogs . I will ensure that I bookmark your blog and may come back sometime soon.

  38. iPhone Game Developmnet :

    Nice Email Templates Neil!! This is really that you provide us such a useful templates. I had tried before this idea of mailing to webmasters but it didn’t work as I was expecting. But now I am thinking to use your ideas and tips. And I am sure , it will really helpful.
    Also you have given new point of view to link building.
    Thanks for sharing.

  39. These are fantastic and just such a good find while coming though the Quick Sprout site.
    I am wondering, have you ever been able to integrate yesware into a mail merge? As with finding a lot of information from prospects, filtering them into a batching sheet and then sending them all out at once, still allows for personalization but also higher efficiency.
    Really would love to hear from someone of such caliber and just to keep it in good taste…. click reply for a nude pic….

    • I haven’t tried that yet… I also don’t use mail merge.

      LOL, I clicked “reply”. πŸ˜‰

  40. These templates are sick Neil! Love the “edge”.

    Whenever I am outreaching via email, I usually tailor my messages a bit more, offering some specific SEO help for their site in exchange for a link back. However if you’re getting these types of CTR and responses, I’ll have to give it a shot for sure. Cheers!

    • Thanks Josh,

      That is definitely another great way to go about it, thanks for sharing what you do.

  41. Neil, this is brilliant – probably one of the best guides I’ve seen in a while.

    I’d be really interested to know what sort of conversion rates you’re getting with each of these individual templates though.


    • Very rarely do I see anything less than 5% and anything greater than 10%. It depends on the templates I use.

  42. Hey Neil!

    First thing i want to tell you that,Your copy writing skills are too awesome neil.
    This post is really interesting on all of them.

  43. Excellent Email templates. I will surely try these. πŸ™‚

    Thank you

  44. Hi Neil, this is a great post and excellent tips in the first part of the article, but honestly the email templates are very edgy for me. I operate various websites and we do get approached by linkbuilders, but if I got the ‘I’m in love’ or the ‘blackmail’ template, I would delete it in two seconds because they are way too freaky for my taste. I understand they work for you, so possibly it’s a difference of style and taste between the US and Europe (unless you tell me these work in all parts of the world, in which case I humbly shut up and start testing these myself with other webmasters :-)). Thanks in any case for sharing it with us!

  45. property dealers noida :

    i have never tried to get back links by asking for link requests. I surely need to try this out. Thanks for the useful tips.

  46. Great post, very informative and well written. This is really relevant to the issues today.Thanks so much for sharing.

  47. Immigraton Blog :

    Thanks for this awesome info. I just started trying to set up a blog and I’m learning still. You explained a mountain of information in a simplistic manner unlike other people. Good work!

  48. To get quick google Indexing- one should have Unique content posting with maintaining more link Backs and Directory links of high page rank

  49. i like this and you write very nice blog about the link bulding and write more about this pls

  50. I love using the email outreach/broken link tactic. In the past, it’s actually helped me develop a few new connections in the SEO community that I continue to keep up with. Cheers!

  51. Hey! I know this is kinda off topic but I’d figured I’d ask.

    Would you be interested in trading links or maybe guest writing a blog article or vice-versa?
    My website covers a lot of the same topics as yours and I
    think we could greatly benefit from each other.

    If you might be interested feel free to shoot me an e-mail.
    I look forward to hearing from you! Superb blog by the way!

  52. Ningsang Jamir :

    I’m so,so trying out the last one on you.Watch out for headings lie “Hey Neil,Clare wants me to deliver some roses.How?”….Hehe

  53. Very useful email templates here, these can really help people who aren’t used to creating their own and are looking for a great template for their emails πŸ™‚

  54. who buys used cars :

    Excellent guide. I think that most of the link builders are making links using old methods like profile links and social bookmarks. They should find some new methods to build links.

  55. I need to start building email database and try these email approach

  56. Awazie Ikechi :

    Great tips. I will try and use these tips for my site

  57. Hey Neil,

    Have just bookmarked this article and 2 others(a simple plan and don’t forget the marketing) – I will get back to you on how successful your templates have been for me(Fishing electronics).

    I think one really important thing that you highlight with your email templates is to keep it casual and informal. Gone are the days of “Dear Sir/Madam” and “To Whom It May Concern” – you have to be tongue-in-cheek to get noticed, and the internet is all about getting noticed.

    You really are “Kind of a Big Deal” – πŸ˜‰


    • Shabbir, thanks! I would really like to hear how the templates worked for you so please follow up..

  58. Hi guys,

    Very informative and useful guide. Really well put Neil!!
    I must say one of the ways I utilize link building is by adding backlinks to my site. This generates good and fast traffic. A cool site to try is

    Hope this helps

    • Allen, thanks for the site.

      • Personally I wouldn’t trust a third party service to write and spin articles for me for linkbuilding purposes.

        Proper spinning by hand and inserting images and videos in with it takes a long time.

        Also if your website doesn’t already have at least 20-25 pages of unique content and its been up for a couple of months at least I wouldn’t recommend blasting a bunch of links to it.

  59. What a material of un-ambiguity and preserveness of precious familiarity on the
    topic of unexpected feelings.

  60. awesomesauce. Really glad I found your blog. I actually just started an internship at a startup today. I was excited when I got my kissmetrics account. Looking forward to checking it out and learning more about how to use it over the next few weeks.

  61. Hi Neil! Email outreach sounds ineffective to me before because of it’s spammy nature. Thanks for enlightening me with those broken link detection techniques and excellent templates. Those creative subject lines will surely catch attention.

  62. Nick, I’m super impressed that you reply to every single comment (just about). Talk about impressive way to build a community. ViperChill is the only other one I’ve seen effectively do that. Props!

    My big question: When you say “You want to send this email out as yourself.”
    Do you, or have you really sent out all these email campaigns as Neil Patel? And do you imply that you own/run/work with the company that you’re doing SEO for?

    As a new SEO, I’m always trying to figure out how to represent a client when it’s really advantageous for the owner to be writing, and should be, but I’m the one doing it – like these emails, or managing a social media presence. Especially when it’s a single owner or small business.

    As I write this, I’m sure this question has been posed and discussed a million times, but google isn’t getting me there. Do you have a quick answer, resources, links, discussions, you could point me towards?

    I figure the above is enough to answer the question, and get me in the right direction, but situation I was perplexed about the issue:

    On the slideshare about how to start a facebook campaign, slide #13 says that one should appoint an ambassador to be the voice of the company/brand. It says “Tip: be careful if you use your own profile to do this; could be better to either create a new one for yourself (risky and against FB’s ToS) or get someone else to do it…”

    So if I’m managing facebook pages for several companies (not yet, but potentially), do I login as the client (most wouldn’t be thrilled about this), as me, and get connected in the public’s eyes to multiple companies (probably not the best) or an alias profile?


    • Yes, I send them out as my name. But the key is not imply that I own or run a SEO company. If they ask, I am open about it… but I try not to talk about SEO.

      The slide show wasn’t created by me… I myself just use my brand for all of them as Facebook lets you easily manage accounts from 1 user name.

      • David Hobson :

        Thanks for the reply!
        As an side note, having a subscribe to comments features helps significantly, encourating interactivity and community. It’s especially beneficial to users like me, when hoping for a reply. Personally I like “Subscribe To Comments Reloaded”, but as you know, there’s a bunch out there.

        Thanks again!

  63. Andrew Hiddleston :

    Great post…so very very useful.

    Thanks Neil!

  64. Neil,

    Great as always, actually came to check out your stuff after listening to your interview on SPI. I wanted to know what kind of people or jobs you look for on odesk to find good people to provide the names and emails for you? I’ve always done this on my own but it takes up so much of my time that if I could find someone who’s excellent at finding them, it would help take my outreach to a new level.

  65. schutzpakete :

    Hi Neil, thanks very much for this great suggestions on how to get leads and links. Really awsome information bites you are sharing here. There are manny crappy wsos that cost some money and are not providing the info you gaive away here for free thanks so much.

    • Glad I could provide what you need. I think information should be free, most times.

  66. My family all the time say that I am killing my time here
    at net, however I know I am getting familiarity daily by reading thes pleasant articles.

  67. Hi Neil,
    I have been trying my hand at email marketing (grew our list to ~12K over the last year), but am not sure if I understand this art! Had a few questions,
    + I am not sure, if a subject line like: “Subject: dude you have to check out this nude pic” would even pass the spam filter of the mailbox, whom you are trying to reach. I get 100’s of such emails in the spam box and I would not even think of opening them. Even if such a message landed in my mail box, still I would be scared to open it!
    + When you write these friendly emails, I think they can work, if the person knows you. Otherwise I am not sure, how they would respond. Ofcourse you tell me that these worked for your clients as well, but did the clients customers know about them already?

    I would like to ask you:
    – If you know about any service, that can tell me a reliable “spam score” for my email (based on subject line/ content)?
    – If I have a list of subscribers, then what would be the right strategy to get them to move from free subscribers to maybe a freemium service to a paid service? I have tested Interspire, and they seem to provide a workflow for the same. Do you have anything else that is useful?

    • 1. With a good email sender client you should be fine. But you don’t have to use an aggressive timeline.

      2. The emails have worked well for me.

      3. I don’t keep track of spam score. My email client does it by color… red being bad, green being good.

      4. I would create an email drip that gives them a ton of good free advice. After the 7th email, I would then pitch them on a product or service. Send them to a long page sales letter to boost conversions.

  68. A bit boring but good enough technique. I really liked that funny link request. By the way, Thanks.

  69. Navid Moazzez :

    Hi Neil,

    This is awesome, thanks for sharing your email templates! I will give it a try soon for sure πŸ™‚

    Keep up the good work!

  70. adeel zahoor :

    very hard working guy you much amazing knowledge you best Guideline you make me SEO specialist..!thanks for caring us..!

  71. Great post here with a lot of valuable information. By searching for the backlinks that other websites in the same niche have, you can easily find other websites on which high quality backlinks can be established!

    • Daniel, great point. It’s always important to look at your competitors to see what they are doing. By doing so you can understand what you need to focus on.

  72. Pretty sure it’s a quip to your “SEO Secrets Worth $5,000 Per Hour”, because it’s takes you 2 hrs to write a blog post.

    • Chelsei, it’s a figure of speech. However, my individual consultation rates are pretty high πŸ™‚

  73. This is really awesome post. I will definitely try this soon. Thanks, Neil.

  74. Neil,

    Thank you for all of your help. I am an intern trying to put myself up on the top of the tier in regard to work. I am currently learning SEO, so just brand new to the scene. Do you have any links to knowledge that will get me up to date with everyone in the office. Yet maybe even surpass their knowledge?

    • Olquin, I would suggest reading every one of my articles. You can start with this one πŸ™‚

  75. Nice article! I love the fact that you provided examples. Thanks

  76. Neil –

    I am new to SEO and have learned a lot for a bunch off your blog posts (have a bunch of them bookmarked). I am missing something in the process though. How do you get the actual back link? You send the email out then…..



    • Kurt, if you look at the article you’ll see that the click through via the email is how people get to your site. Hope that answered your question.

  77. Hey Neil –

    I had a quick question for you:

    I send out about 200-400 emails a month via Gmail. Should I worry about my emails being flagged as spam? I try my best to switch up my template every 15-20 emails. Any good way to test my emails getting to the inbox?

    Keep up the great work —

    • Tom, I think you are doing all the right things. It’s important to switch up the copy and really have a narrowed down list that you are sending stuff to.

  78. Great templates and great information. It’s a bit surprising to me that many of these work, being so straightforward. I’ll have to try them.
    Thanks again!

  79. Great article! and the templates make the process even easier πŸ™‚ but does link building this way still work? (I can see this article was published in 2012)

    Thanks again,

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  81. Good tips but they are such spammy subject lines and messages! The first one about a broken link is ok but the rest make me want to throw up! I had to stop reading them!

    I have read subject lines like this in the past in my inbox and it is so obviously not worth your time that I have never opened them.

    Obviously the broken link example would be worth your time but not the others. I really wouldn’t want to be considered a spammer!

    • I’ve tested them and they work well. πŸ™

      But you are right, there are probably better subject lines that could be thought up.

  82. Hey Neil, thanks for the post. I just got done with your Double your traffic in 30 days and it is working out great. Email outreach for guest blogging and link-building has been rough going for me so far, but I’m getting better. I will try and integrate these templates and perfect my tactics.

    On average, how many emails would you say you send back and forth before a link is earned? Maybe I’m giving up too early.

    – Dustin

    • Dustin, sounds like that’s a good strategy.
      I don’t have a set number. I just keep doing it until I have reached my quota for a particular period of time. It’s all about getting the link πŸ™‚

  83. Nikhil Narkhede :

    Hi Neil,
    Wow excellent and whacky templates. I know that giving a personal touch gives a lot of appraisal from the client. I am using your template. You made my day! I read this very late, because I was reading all your posts in a chronological order. Cheers! πŸ™‚

  84. Andrew Braxon :

    Hi Neil, many thanks for your guide. But sending hundreds of emails in one time can be dangerous, can’t be? Is there any safe way to send so many emails, and not to get your email address blacklisted?

  85. Hi Neil, thank you for sharing!

    I’ve installed the MOZ bar, is there minimum PA & DA before to chose to request the link?

    • Michele, not that I am aware of. Let me know if you encounter otherwise.

    • Hi Michele,

      I would be more concerned if the site is infected with Malware or contain other stuff that could harm visitors. You definitely don’t want to get back links from those sites.

      Use sites like or if you have scrapebox, it has an addon for you to check a list of sites quickly

  86. :

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  87. Hey Neil– Amazing stuff as ALWAYS

    Question: do we create an awesome piece of content FIRST before emailing these people and then ask them to link to THAT
    do we just ask for links to our homepage?


    • Greg, I would create the content first before doing any of that. You want to make sure you are hitting the right audience.

  88. Gynalissie Tigere :

    Definitely trying this out! Thanks Neil πŸ™‚

  89. Hey Neil, if you wanted a improve the rankings of a particular page on a site, would you ask them to link to that page using this method, or your homepage? I’m thinking a combination of both would be the most natural way to do it, but not really sure if it makes a whole lot of difference.

  90. Your email suggestion is great, i would try to do what you said in future, i have allot to learn about SEO

  91. Wow! Great one..just searched on Google “email outreach templates” and got yours one on first position..Really this post deserve this position..

  92. Thank you for providing this information! Its straight to the point and I found exactly what I needed. I can’t wait to try some of these and see the kind of results I get. Thank you again!

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  94. Hey Neil,
    Love the article. Edgy templates! Just started my campaign using your advice. What jobs do you look for specifically on odesk and mechanical turk to find people who can find webmaster contact info?

    Venture On,

    • Sean, I just typically type in specific parameters for what jobs I am looking to hire for. Be specific with the keywords you use.

      • Thanks, Neil. I am bootstrapping this one. I am using, godaddy, and domain lookups in other countries (Asia, New Zealand, etc.) to find names and email addresses.

  95. Thank you, this post really helped me a lot I’m starting to notice the changes in my ranking πŸ™‚

  96. Emma, glad I could help. Thanks for the feedback.

  97. Thank you, this post really helped me a lot I’m starting to notice the changes in my ranking. Again thank you so much to share this info!

  98. I personally don’t use Email Outreach. For me it would be like calling 100 different homeowners and offering my carpet cleaning services. Just seems like telemarketing only with email. Hovever if you really want to do it you can use to enhace your emails and engadgment. You can create a better and more professional message with call to action buttons.

    • Neil Patel :

      Roland, thanks for the tips. To each their own — sounds like you have a solid strategy in place anyway πŸ˜‰

  99. Hey Neil,

    An interesting piece here on outreach, I do agree with templating, but only to a certain extent.

    I believe outreach should be personal, I craft each email carefully, rather than taking the mailshot approach.

    I have had a far better success rate since I’ve started to reach out like this.

    This is important especially when you work in a smaller niche, where some of the big players know each other, leaving a bad impressions on one webmaster can be fatal.

    • Neil Patel :

      Droid, good points — I think manual outreach does a great job. Often it’s better than the template model.

  100. Ivailo Durmonski :

    Thank you for the material Neil! Great stuff!

    Are you receiving a lot of pitches like the ones you describe above, just curious?

  101. Neil,

    I am looking for a solid outreach strategy and I am glad I found this post. I actually want to outreach authors of big/influencial websites (like HuffPost, Lifehacker etc).

    However, There’s one thing that’s bothering me though.

    Isn’t it against Google Webmaster Guidelines to directly ask someone for a link? (in 2015) If yes, what’s the alternative?

    Thanks again.

    • Swathi, You shouldn’t ask for links — you should ask to contribute and provide value. The link just comes as an added reward sometimes.

  102. hi neil, thanks for this site, it helps a lot. but i just to clarify how to use mechanical turk in getting contacts info of the actual people running some sites?

  103. Hi, Neil
    How do I look for backlinks of a certain website? Can I use MOZ for this?

  104. Nice templates, Although if I got that last one is my e-mail I would scrape it right away. It’s just seems annoying, maybe it’s just me. Anyhow thanks for the share πŸ™‚

    • Franklin — just go with what works for you. Everyone has a different strategy but you have to test it all out.

  105. Rintu Biswas :

    Hi Neil another class content by you. But I have seen that broken link building very time consuming, yes it works…but you have to be patience.

    Neil I have one question, how to use web 2.0 sites in SEO?

    • Rintu, glad you found it helpful. Can you be a little more specific on what you mean by web 2.0 in SEO?

  106. I like the email Template even words… Thanks Neil..

    But Am getting some spam mails with subject ” i’m in love” So am bit confused …

  107. Actually, i never tried reciprocal link building or just one way through email request. But your thought to get back link seem awesome. But one major concern how to exclude competitor’s as mostly people sending request to competitors websites.

  108. Sohrab Hossain :

    The Link Builder’s Guide to Email Outreach is very good information. I see all thus information it’s very helpful for me.thanks

  109. Hi Neil Sir
    I’m first time on quicksprout and wonderd why I’m unaware from this great blog. I find this when I’m reading a blog post on (must follow 5 bloggers).
    And also i used your audit tool for my blog and subscribed for newsletters!!!
    But above post is great. Thanks!

  110. Hi Neil,

    Great post! The worksheet is absolutely amazing! I have been saving all your email templates so far and they really work.
    But I am really uncertain about the ‘funny link request’ template! It is funny, but like you said people might mark my email as spam and then there is no way to reach them in future.


  111. Awesome post neil. These templates are awesome.
    Thanks for the great article.

  112. Hi Neil,

    Just want to add, I change the subject into

    “about your previous post ‘topic’ at ‘their website name’ ”

    got close to 65% open rate.

    I used bananatag to track.

    The problem is, some of my email sent drop into their spam box. Do you have any idea how can I prevent this?

    I saw someone write about this already, but its quite long and I dont want waste my time reading that long except you.


    • Syed, that’s great that your open rate improved. Unfortunately the change may have been caused you to be marked as spam in some advanced filters. I would keep tweaked it to see what works best. I always test for headlines.

  113. Old article but still helpful….

    Thank you for such a great article….

  114. Frederik Faarup :

    Nice article.

    IMO, the key is to keep the outreach as personalized as possible.

    Every business owner gets tons of offers every day. Let your influencer know, that you want to COLLABORATE and not give them an offer.

    I have a problem with this, though.
    Most of the influencers in my niche are businesses, so the personal approach can be hard at time.

    Imagine an office assistant reading the “i think i’m in love with you”-email template πŸ˜‰

    • I agree that personalization is key. It’s tough to find the right headline to use but once you do the results can be great.

      That would be funny if they were to read that LOL.

  115. Very nice Article Neil, Thanks a lot for sharing this.

    • You’re welcome Patel, please don’t hesitate to ask me any questions, I’m here to help πŸ™‚

  116. Menn! Your blog post are killing. I spent average of 2hr skimming on your contents and blogs. It is boring as you said to reach out bloggers via by email.

    What is do is to hire lancers on Upwork or Fiverr to get it done for $5. I have experienced tremedous changes in my ranking.

    Thank you very much

  117. You’re crazy lol but after seeing how well nutritionsecrets is doing I’m going to have to try these templates out.

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  120. Wesley Parker :

    Hi Neil, with the basic link request template do you change the feedback suggestions for every website, or do you keep these the same? Also do you email this to any type of website or all, for example would you email this to just blogs, or directories and forums etc?

    • I would make the feedback unique according to that website. I depends, but mostly blogs

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  123. Thank you for those wonderful thoughts. Perfect timing for my upcoming link building projects. I’ve always been a quicksprout fanatic for long and everything you’ve written about is what keeps me amazed and resourceful.

  124. Hi Niel, your content is always awesome and i love reading each and ever word of it.

    I tried doing the same for my work email, unfortunately the reply rates are not even close to my expectations. Seems like i am doing something terribly wrong with my emails. I am trying to get people to buy or saas mobile app development platform. any help would be highly appreciated.

    • I’m glad it’s helpful Yuvi!

      If you get stuck or have any questions along the way, please don’t hesitate to ask!

  125. Nikhil Jain :

    Thanks for this awesome info. I know you are a busy person and approve my comment in your busy schedule, thanks for this?

  126. This is so great, Neil!
    I was so blank on this strategy.
    Never thought that it’d be a great idea for starter like me to gain more reach.
    I have learned from many websites in which I subscribed into their newsletter programs, and found out that their strategies are very clear yet very on target.
    I should be thinking about email outreach right from the very start, only if you agree with me. πŸ˜€
    Anyway thank you very much for this post, this is a very helpful resource for me.

  127. Hello sir,

    I am building up my own authority site ( I will really appreciate that if you can give me some tips. πŸ™‚


  128. Himmat Chahal :

    You are too smart at social engineering, truly inspirational stuff. Thank you so much for sharing so much detailed content.

    Do you have a streamlined way for acquiring emails? Would you mind sharing how “quickly” you are able to acquire addresses?

    I suppose I’m just foolishly looking for some kind of shortcut, other than “google pages relevant to you, then go to their contact/social media page and get their email address, and open up gmail you lazy bum!”


    • Bets way to collect emails is to provide your visitors with an amazing lead magnet. You can use something like optinmonster

  129. Hi Neil
    At the bottom of this post you asked a question from us:
    So, do you know of any other creative email templates that work for link building campaigns?
    MY ANSWER: Yes, I’ve a template. Will you give me a link back if I give that template to you? πŸ˜‰

    • You can post a link to your template in the comments and it may help you get some traffic. Up to you πŸ™‚

  130. Hello Neil, I’m curious how you deal with finding emails? I mean, I’ve built a great tool that I can use as a link building strategy, but it’s really hard to find emails. There are a lot of blogs that don’t include the email and some even don’t have a contact form. Thanks.

  131. Alicia Sawyer :

    Thanks Neil for explaining this process. I will definitely try this procedure, one thing which i want to ask is like how many follow up should we do? And after how many days ?

    • It will vary, but sometimes it can take 5-7 touch points before someone decides to do something with you

  132. Alicia Sawyer :

    Thanks Neil πŸ™‚ Appreciate this. One more thing can you give little bit idea about touch points.

    • Our conversation right now, is a touch point. Same thing when you get an email from me or see something I posted on social media πŸ™‚

  133. Hi Neil, I really love this article. I read this article may be 1 year ago but couldn’t able to find it. Just found out it from brian dean blog post. I particularly like the last template, it’s so funny and amazing. Hope you have a great day ahead.


  134. Thanks Neil! For sharing such a useful information. It would really help in business growth and definitely help startups. Thanks a ton again!

  135. Hi Neil, I am trying to build links for my carpet cleaning business, can you give me some actionable tips? Thanks!

    • Create a blog and talk about the health benefits of having clean carpets. Then reach out to local bloggers, maybe even realtors and build strategic partnerships with them. That way they can blog about what your’e talking about and naturally link to you

  136. Hi Neil,

    Apologies if you’ve discussed this elsewhere, but I’ve been unable to find it – should you use an email address connected to the site you want to build links to, an unconnected domain email, or plain and simple Gmail?

    The first would mean they can weigh up your worth, but also report you for spam (even if your email were polite and helpful). The second would mean extra work building that domain up for perspective webmasters to take you seriously, and the third is building links to hoodwink Google, using their own mail service.

    There’s pros and cons for each, but which would you recommend?

    Thanks again for an excellent post, Neil.



    • There definitely are pros and cons, so I would try both to see which is more effective. It maybe a mix of the two strateigies.

  137. Last 6 Month i just follow your Guide line and Those are realy working . I must follow in your Link building strategy. thanks for this niche post

  138. I am spending more time on this email outreach for backlinks. Most of the admin won’t ready to accept the request for link back to site. But I am still trying and would not give up. thanks for your email template for outreach.

    • The more you know what makes them tick the better.

      You will need to stand out to increase the ones who share the link.

  139. LuΓ­s ClΓ‘udio :

    Great email templates to get links. Congratulations if you want to mention my websites in some post I’ll be very grateful.

  140. Thanks Neil
    That is what i was looking for, check for the broken link in my niche and contact those webmaster for link replacement.

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  143. Congratulations clarified some doubts. But are other site links important for ranking on Google? Thank you so much

  144. Amazing post Neil. Email outreach still an amazing technique for aquiring links. I have also created a post of list of 40+ link building email templates from experts here:


  145. gaurav khanna :

    So many pop-overs after pop-overs. I had to close two windows just to see to your content.

    I like marketing but this is getting ridiculous. If Google isn’t penalizing this sort of content it should start doing it, because this is nothing more than bait-n-switch. One content in Google, a totally different content in Landing page.

  146. Hey Nail,

    I try to read some thing every day which will help me to grow.
    and this post is seriously out-standing. you have cleared my views on email out-reach.

    Thank you
    btw i share same surname πŸ˜›

  147. It’s actually the game of simple probability, the chances of getting backlinks over the total chances you create by sending an email.
    very well explained Neil

  148. Rahul Bansal :

    Hi Neil,
    You described all the points very well. But I stuck on “Getting names and email addresses” point because I have no idea how can I get name and email address to reach to blog admins or managers. If you can help me in this it will be great.

    • Sometimes a simple search on Google or social media handle, contact page will show you that.

  149. Hi Neil,
    Just planned to start to Email Outreach for one of my existing blogs. Really your articles were teaching me new things every time when I read.

    I already told might you remember or not, I am a recent follower of your blog. I felt sad very much because I found you so late dear GURU.

    Thanks for this post, I will start following it now.

    • I look forward to your return visit πŸ™‚

      • Hi Brother,

        I am back here to update my work based on your article. I have purchases InterSpire Email Marketer and used MailGun SMTP.
        Started my Email Marketing Campaign and in the last 10days, I have seen countable improvements in traffic for my blog.
        Still, have to monitor completely this entire month.

  150. Mark Joshua Santos :

    What do other things you think will be useful for email outreach? Besides the guest posting and broken link building.

    • Getting in touch with influencers, urging subscribers to share your email content, and advertising your email campaign on social can all help.

  151. I love it! Since I opened my business I need all of it. Thank you very much Neil! I have been watching all of your youtube videos and reading your posts.They are so valuable and great. Keep posting please.

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