Increase Your Traffic And Email List With These Three Proven Content Hacks

Filed in Email Marketing, Ultimate Guides & Resources by on October 30, 2014

Traffic conversion


This is a guest submission by Giles Thomas 

Getting people to see, read and engage with your content is hard.

You need to promote your content to get traffic and leverage that traffic into email subscribers to build your business.

If you keep asking yourself:

“How do I get featured on top blogs to generate interest in my brand?”
“How do I build backlinks to increase my traffic?”
“How can I convert more visitors into email subscribers?”

Then you are in the right place.




In this post we’ll discuss how you can use something as simple as email outreach and a little known marketing technique to:


  1. Win high profile guest posts
  2. Build backlinks with broken link building
  3. Convert more visitors to email subscribers using the Content Cliffhanger Technique


NOTE: Scroll to the bottom or read to the end to get the bonus content, includes content templates, video training and a free wordpress plugin


(P.S. If you'd like to download a free list of 34 ways to grow your email list click here or the image below)


How to win high profile guest posts

Many people use automated tools or generic email pitch templates when applying for guest post opportunities.

This is in an attempt to get many guest posts.

The truth is that these kind of guest post pitches only work when publishing on very small sites that may not be worth your marketing time or dollars.

This means, you won’t get a return on your marketing investment.

Just like most things in business it is better to take the Pareto Principle approach and focus on the 20 percent of guest posts that bring 80 percent of results.

This means targeting only top tier blogs in your industry, the ones that bring high referral traffic and really build your brand equity.

To successfully pitch a guest post to a high quality blog you need to craft a personal email; generic templates and automated outreach won’t work.

The email has to focus on communicating the benefits of publishing your guest post to the blog owner or their audience.

Focus on why it is good for them to have you write for them, don’t talk about you talk about them.


Show the guest post blog owner respect

Showing respect for people’s time is very important in the pitch.

Start your email pitch with:


Hi [name]

I know you are really busy and get lots of email so I will keep this short.


People often then go on to write a huge email, don’t.

If you promise a short email, deliver it.

This shows the reader you respect their time and appreciate them reading the email.


Focus on proven content for their audience

Researching the most successful pieces of content the blog has published is key.

This show you understand what content topics and formats resonate with their audience and therefore what future content has an already proven audience for their blog.

Go to, a great website for finding successful content.




Paste in the domain name of the blog you are pitching and look through their top content.

For example:

If you were pitching a paleo diet blog, in this example you could find that ‘Cracklin Chicken’ is their most socially successful blog post.



This means you know recipes with instructions do well for this blog.

If you’ve already written awesome recipe posts you can reference them in the pitch.

So look for content formats or topics that you have already covered, preferably your best articles.

Here is the next part of our pitch email:

I saw that your audience loves recipes with step by step instructions, this piece did really well for you:

I also wrote a recipe post with detailed step by step instructions: [link to your high quality blog post on the same topic or with the same content format]


Now pitch your blog post idea and keyword focus

The next step is to pitch the same topic or content format to the blog owner.

Here is the final part of the email:

I'd love to write a guest post that helped your audience [topic or content format of post]

Let me know and I'll send over an outline with title, keyword research and bullet points for each section.

Do not pitch a specific title, keep it open in the beginning. This allows them to guide you a little and makes sure your idea doesn’t put them off.

Also by showing you will create an outline with research you prove you know how to approach good guest post writing.


Putting it all together

Here is the full guest post email outreach template completed for our paleo diet example.


Subject: about


I know you are really busy and get lots of email so I will keep this short.

I saw that your audience loves recipes with step by step instructions, this piece did really well for you:

I also wrote a recipe post with detailed step by step instructions: [link to your high quality blog post on the same topic or with the same content format]

I'd love to write a guest post that helped your audience cook paleo recipes with step by step instructions.

Let me know and I'll send over an outline with title, keyword research, proven audience spreadsheet and bullet points for each section.


[your name]


Proof this technique works

To prove this is a killer technique I have included below screenshots from some famous blogs I have successfully pitched.

This blog post was pitched using this technique!




I successfully pitched with this technique.




But what if you don't want to guest post? There's still away to get links and traffic from reputable sites...


Broken Backlink Building

Building backlinks is a great way to increase your domain authority and to drive referral traffic to your site.

You can guest post articles to get backlinks and traffic as seen in the last section, but you can also just ask people for a link without even creating content.

Again email outreach comes to the rescue, let’s look at how to build authority and relevant links with broken backlink building.

Broken backlink building is where you find out of date content, with broken links and help the blog owner not only fix his broken links but update his content too.

This not only restores the content to it’s former glory, doing the blog owner a great favour but it also allows you to swap those broken links with precious links to your content instead.
First you need to start with your best content.

For me it is my Definitive Guide to List Building

Next you need to find people who link to similar content that is out of date or doesn’t exist anymore.

Put your keywords into google and use this search string.

inurl: + “topic”

This will show you pages with links out to content within your topic.

Go through the search results and find content that links to similar content to yours.

The first link I found for list building articles was by This would be a great backlink for my content.




Next install this google chrome extension, Check My Links.




Next load up your extension in the content you’ve found.

When we click on the Check My Links icon in the top right of the browser it finds 7 broken links in the article.


We can now reach out to them and let them know about the broken links, once they respond we can pitch our content as a way for them to bring their content up to date.

Here is the first email template:

Hi [name]

I was looking for some information on [enter your topic] today when I came across your article:

[link to article with broken links]

Great stuff by the way!

However, I did come across a dead link:

[first dead link]
[second dead link]

I hope this helps you out and keep up the great work at [name of blog]!

[your name]


Once they reply send this email:


Hi [name]

Glad I could help out

I also wrote about [topic] here

Might make a nice addition to your article.

Either way, keep up the good work.


[your name]

This technique works well because you add value to the site owner before you pitch them your link. Your link is also closely aligned with their users needs for that page.

As long as your content is great, it is really a win win.





Convert more visitors to email subscribers using the Content Cliffhanger Technique

Once you’ve driven traffic to your site with guest posts and backlinks you need to convert that traffic to email sign ups.

This will allow you to nurture your prospects and build a loyal email list with brand advocates and return customers.

But converting your visitors to leads is no easy feat.

I struggled with email collection just like you, I had a respectable conversion rate of 3% until I discovered a little known marketing technique.

The Content Cliffhanger Technique

In three steps I went from 3% to a site wide 22.46% conversion rate!




Let me show you how, but first I’ll explain the psychology behind the technique.


The Zeigarnik Effect

Just like in the movies, when it comes to online marketing and niche marketing cliffhangers work like a charm!

This is because of the something called the ‘Zeigarnik effect’.

It is when a story or a piece of information is started but not finished, our brain then retains the information, pushing it into our conscious mind until the story is complete.

It seems to be human nature to finish what we start and if it's not finished, we can’t forget it.

Bluma Zeigarnik a Russian psychologist first studied the phenomenon after her gestalt professor Kurt Lewis noticed something intriguing about waiters and waitresses.

After observing them when serving tables, they found the waiters had much better recollection of unpaid orders than paid ones.

Actually, as soon as the table left the restaurant and closed the cheque the waiter would forget their order completely.

The information loop stayed open in the waiters mind until the table was finished, because the story or narrative of that table was not complete.



Leveraging more emails using Zeigarnik’s findings

We can use this technique in our blog posts to help collect more emails.

Simply by starting a story or information loop in the blog post and asking for an email opt-in from the reader to complete the loop.

The way you do this is simple:


1. Write a piece of content on a niche topic

For example ‘How to get killer abs’.

In the post start an information loop, the beginning of your story, the set up for your cliffhanger.

In this example they talk about 4 of the 8 best ways their readers can improve their abs.




Write half the content in the blog post and half in the free download.

Use one of my free content archetypes templates to design your free download, they are included in the bonus download content.


2. With the Content Cliffhanger plugin offer the reader a free download

Create a download for the post that tells the reader the remaining 4 ways they can improve their abs or offer a high value resource like a video.

Allow the reader to close the information loop by downloading the free content.

I created a free wordpress plugin included in the free bonus pack to enable you to easily offer free downloads.




3. Record the difference in your email opt-in rate before.

Now while I cannot promise you exact opt in rates, I have never seen a less than 5% shift in conversions when using this technique and plugin.

The difference with this plugin and most others is that you can customize the form and its contents for every post or page. So you can have free downloads that are always aligned with your pages content.

That is the secret behind the technique, when the users search intent is aligned with the opt-in offer, you see much higher conversion rates. Because the give away is aligned with what they originally searched for on google.

Start an idea in your blog post but finish it in the download, like a cliffhanger in a good tv series.

People then want to close the information gap or loop, increasing the likelihood of conversion.

This works much better than generic opt ins like, ‘Get Updates’ or ‘Join the newsletter for the latest content’.


I hope you found this post informative and actionable, leave your thoughts in the comments and download the bonus content pack to start increasing your traffic and email list today.


What you get in the free bonus download:

  1. 65 Page PDF guide to list building
  2. The free ‘Content Cliffhanger’ wordpress plugin to help capture more emails from your blog
  3. Video training on how to use the plugin
  4. PDF, 11 types of free downloads to offer your audience including template files to save on design time and costs




Author Bio: Giles Thomas writes about Ecommerce growth marketing at and Instagram marketing at He is also the founder of the Shopify fashion marketing agency Whole Design Studios. He loves helping people improve their business or startup with marketing, design and strategy tips.



To date, Stuart has revealed well over 1,500 hot niches.

He's living his dream of being location independent, and having traveled the world, thanks to internet marketing.

The aim with Niche Hacks is to help you live your dream thanks to online marketing, whatever that may be.
NicheHacks on FacebookNicheHacks on GoogleNicheHacks on Twitter

Comments (6)

Trackback URL | Comments RSS Feed

  1. Superjab says:

    I love how detailed the process is! This is gold! thank you for posting it.

  2. That was a good read ) It made me think.

    I love the psychology angle. It reminds me of what I liked about psychology when I was studying for my degree.

    So much of what happens to determine whether someone subscribes or not is happening below the level of conscious awareness.

    Don't imagine your readers giving it deliberate consideration. People are not sitting weighing up the pros and cons of signing up to your list. It's not like that.

    Your brain is a task driven problem solving machine.

    Most of the time the information loop is already open when people arrive on your page. People are already mid task when they land on your page.

    Show your readers that completing their task or solving their problem involves going through your email gate

    Targeted content upgrades are the way to do this.

    You'll then be onto a winner in terms of growing both your influence and email list.

    People talk about writing EPIC content... but you are not writing War and Peace.

    Help people close their loops and solve problems.

    • NicheHacks says:

      Great insight Alistair, yeah I agree solve problems and this is a great way to do it. The cliffhanger technique is something I'll have to try out.

    • Giles Thomas says:

      Hi Alistair

      Thanks for the kind words.

      I agree with you and Stuart, solve real problems and align your content cliffhanger with the visitors original search intent.

      Generic opt-ins just don't work.