Long time lurker here. I am a website owner, and author who frequently visits but rarely adds to the discussion. My website is an online trade magazine in my niche. I've been publishing content daily for nearly 8 years now, so my name in the industry is out there, and if you ran a search on a keyword in the niche, there is a good chance you'll find one of my articles on the first page.
With that said, I was just perusing my administrator email inbox. To say I get a lot of unsolicited emails is an understatement. Unfortunately, this morning a few stood out. A few of them got opened and read, but most were either opened, deleted or dropped into my junk folder immediately.
If you are marketing an SEO firm, have a website and an email address from that site. If you don't have a website, at least spend a few bucks to purchase a domain you can use for email. Don't try to sell a publisher or website owner on the fact you are an SEO guru if the email is coming from gmail or yahoo.
If English is not your first language and you are sending an email to an American company, please find someone who can proofread your marketing pitch before you send it out. Nobody faults you for poor English (English is probably the only language the reader is proficient in). But, if you want your message to be read and listened to, it cannot read as though the email was cut and pasted into Google translator.
If you are working to get backlinks to an article I published that has a high rank in whatever tool you found it through, you better have read it. Show the author some proof that you did. Don't just copy and paste the url into your email and then add a link to the article you want linked in the post. If your article does not tie directly into the subject of the article, why would a publisher want their readers to leave their site to read an article they may have no interest in?
If you are looking to guest post, read the website to understand what they write about and if you feel your guest posting skills would add value to their readers. While I do get a lot of good pitches from people who know what their speaking about, I get more offers from people who don't. Again, don't use boilerplate emails. Or if you do, make sure it feels customized and not something that is sent out to the 5,000 websites on your list. Provide a link to other articles you've written and have an idea about what you'd like to write about. This could include a headline along with an intro paragraph to give the editor a better idea about you.
Oh and finally, if you do use standardized templates for your marketing emails, please, please, please. Make sure the main body of the email is all the same font and font size. Maybe it's just me, but this is one of my pet peeves, but the minute I see the bulk of an email in one font, but the parts specific to my website in another, I know something is up, and usually stop reading immediately.
Feel free to disagree, as these are my opinions, but I know I am not the only website owner that shares these opinions. Sure this post may be a little self-serving, but at the same time, it is definitely advice that would get your messages read and responded to.
Best of luck - CG