Mailshake Review: The Best Cold Email Software For Link Building?

mailshake review

Wondering whether Mailshake is the best software for doing cold email outreach at scale?

Wondering whether it’s worth buying or not?

Wonder no more! 

Instead, read my comprehensive Mailshake review where I reveal everything you need to know to make an informed decision.


Clean, elegant, sophisticated, intuitive, lot’s of white space.


Just like proper cold email outreach is great for getting links, so is Mailshake great for facilitating the process and making it less arduous.


Very easy to use. In 30m you’ll feel like you’ve been using it for years.


Mailshake is a solid tool that does what it promises, and even over delivers.

What is Mailshake Exactly?

Mailshake is an email outreach platform that helps you send cold emails at scale and with minimum time input needed.

It’s mainly used by email marketers for whitehat link building outreach, and if you’re that kind of folk, you’re in for a treat.

But first, something you must know about Mailshake.

It’s NOT an all-in-one outreach tool. 

Mailshake won’t help you search for prospects. It won’t help you find their contact info.

It’s useless in that area.

But it will help you get a tonne of new referring domains and links hitting your website.

Cold email outreach done right is POWER, and Mailshake helps you take full advantage of it.

Mailshake Features

Mailshake has lots of useful features that I can tell you’ll fall in love with. But here I want to focus on those that’ll bring you the most benefit if you use them.

#1- Mail Merge

Instead of adding in email addresses manually, which is dull and inefficient, Mailshake let’s you import your list of prospects (as a CSV file).

Simply insert field replacement tags and the tool will pull in relevant data (first name, company name, etc) for each recipient that you want to email. 

mailshake mail merge

Of course, using their name is basic personalization. 

I advise you to be deliberate and go all in with email personalization.  The ROI you get will make the extra effort worth it.

#2- Follow-ups

In my opinion, following up with your prospects is the number #1 thing you can do to skyrocket your conversion rates and get more links from any campaign you run.

It’s so beneficial, but also extremely laborious and time consuming. 

Think about it, you set a reminder to follow up after a week, and then when the notification shows up in your inbox, you have to drop whatever it is you’re doing to take care of it pronto. 

Multiply one follow-up with the number of emails you sent and it quickly becomes a mess and an organizational disaster.

In fact, manual follow-ups are what makes people hate cold outreach, even more than outright rejection on the first email.

But you don’t need to start hating cold email outreach. Mailshake lets you follow up with prospects automatically. 

Simply set up a follow-up sequence when you first launch your campaign and the tool will do the rest.

mailshake follow ups settings

#3- Lead Catcher

Mailshake helps you keep tight control of who gets your email and exactly what kind of email they get.

For example, someone who replied to your first email will not get your follow-up. Because that would be redundant, but also obviously automated.

Mailshake accomplishes this feat with its Lead Catcher feature. An awesome way to see who out of your target list of contacts responded to your first email. 

They’re your warmest leads and most likely to do what you asked them in your email

You can access Lead Catcher by going Campaign>Lead Catcher.

lead catcher mailshake

How to Use Mailshake (Tutorial)

Step #1– Log into your Mailshake dashboard and click on the “New Campaign” button

mailshake new campaign

Step #2– Give it a title and set from which address you will be performing outreach. I suggest you use the address you connected with Mailshake.

name your campaign

Step #3– Import your list of recipients via CSV file, or do it manually. 

Normally I’d upload a CSV, but this is for testing purposes so I’ll do it manually and import just one email, which happens to be my own…

Note: You can also use an existing list or import from an app, (this feature is still in Beta mode).

import csv file mailshake

Step #4–  Write your first email. Either do it from scratch, or use a template. 

You can access templates by clicking on the “Choose Template” option.

And if you write your template make sure you save it because if it works you’ll be able to reuse it for future campaigns.

pick or save template mailshake

Step #5– Add a follow up and customize it.

add follow up mailshake

Step #6– Set up drip campaign (optional).

Drip messages go on schedule and to everyone, including the people who responded to your previous message.

I don’t like that and I think follow-ups are sufficient and give me more control.

add drip sequence

Step #7- edit the message to look genuine and human. Mailshake recommends you have a signature, clear CTA and that you’ve tested the email before hitting “Send”…

campaign previewing and tweaking

Step #8- Set up tracking to see how your campaign performs. Click next and you’re off to the races.

enable mailshake analytics

Finally, when you receive replies, they will come to the email address that you used for this campaign. And you can respond directly from your inbox.

Mailshake Pricing: How Much Does it Cost?

mailshake pricing

Mailshake has two pricing plans (called Email Outreach and Sales Engagement)

Email Outreach ($59 per monthly; or $530 yearly)

  1. Connect Mailshake with mail accounts from any provider
  2. Outlook / Office 365 / SMTP accounts
  3. Email personalization
  4. Advanced scheduling & throttling
  5. Automated email sequences
  6. Respond to leads (Lead Catcher)
  7. Salesforce / Pipedrive / Hubspot integrations
  8. 1000+ integrations via Zapier
  9. A/B testing
  10. Prospects view
  11. 5,000 list-cleaning credits each month

Email Outreach plan is a perfect solution for white hat email outreach link builders. It doesn’t cost a lot and you get everything you need to scale whitehat link building, even if you’re on a very tight budget.

Sales Engagement ($99/mo, $900 yearly)

This tool gives you every the email plan does, plus:

  1. Phone dialer
  2. Social selling
  3. Create custom tasks
  4. Higher recipient limit
  5. Onboarding phone call
  6. 10,000 list-cleaning credits each month

As you can see from the list of features, Sales Engagement is geared more towards direct contact with prospects. 

However, If you’re a blogger or a webmaster who’s looking to grow their authority in Google, you probably don’t need this plan

Cold emailing strangers is annoying enough, let alone calling them begging for links:)

Note: both plans come with a 30-day money-back guarantee.

Mailshake Review: Pros and Cons

Spoiler alert, I think Mailshke is a great tool and a boon to any white hat internet marketer.

However, it’s not perfect and there are plenty of ways the tool can become even better.

Let’s explore some of those below…

Pro- Very Easy to Use With Lots of Helpful Documentation

Mailshake is an insanely easy tool to learn to use. 

When you first log in into the dashboard there’s an onboarding process that takes you by the hand and explains Mailshake features and how to make good use of them.

The tool also has a pretty extensive library of helpful material. To access it simply click the question mark icon and a pop-up will appear with a bunch of excellent video tutorials.

I suggest you binge-watch when you have the time because they’ll answer 99% of all questions you have.

helpful resources

And if that 1% is still letting you have no sleep at night, then you can email support with your questions and they’ll provide an answer ASAP.

Con– A Whole New Separate Interface to Work With

While it’s nice that Mailshake has its own space for you to get comfy and organized with your email outreach; it also means you need to have yet another program running beside probably a dozen others in the background.

Also, I connected my Gmail account to Mailshake and when I get replies to my messages sent from Mailshake, I have to open Gmail to see them and reply back.

It’s no big deal, but life would be easier if it were all in one place.

Pro- Detailed Analytics

For every campaign you launch Mailshake shows you detailed analytics. It’s easy for you to see how many prospects opened your email, how many replied, and how many emails bounced.

Con– Mailshake Doesn’t Work With Google Sheets

This is a minor thing because all you need to do is save your Google spreadsheet as a CSV file… but it’s annoying because of that extra step that feels unnecessary.

Pro- Automated Follow-ups that Look and Feel Genuine

This is my favorite feature by far.

Automated follow-ups leave me (and you when you buy) free to focus on other aspects of growing my business. All the while the tool is negotiating more backlinks for me behind my back.

Con– Hard to Set up Custom Tracking domain

Custom tracking domains improve deliverability, and even though Mailshake has some documentation on it, it’s pretty hard to set them up. They even say you need a tech wizard to do it.

Pro- Excellent Pre-written Templates

Mailshake owners, Sujan Patel and Colin Matthews are both email outreach experts. And it shows in their templates, which are all exceptionally well crafted.

However, good as they are, my advice is to personalize and build upon the templates. And not use them in verbatim.


Because that’s what lazy marketers do. And Mailshke already has 38 000+ customers which means their “private” templates are actually common knowledge by this point i.e., many a spammer can quote them in verbatim (they’re stale and impersonal to the core).

Con- Relatively Steep Pricing

Mailshake is reasonably priced when you get it for  just one person. But that changes significantly when you want your whole team to use it.

Namely, Mailshake sells by the number of users, so 2 users is already double the price, and 10 users is ten times as much as a single user license.

You can see how that adds up quickly, can’t you?

Pro- Mail Merge

Not much to say here. Mail Merge is an awesome feature that imports your data from a CSV file into Mailshake, sparing you the trouble and angst of doing it yourself.

Trust me, if you’ve ever dealt with spreadsheets without any automation to help you, then you know what true pain is.

And you know how life saving Mail Merge feature is.

3 Mailshake Success Stories- The Power of Email Outreach Done Right!

There are many more success stories than just 3, but I stuck with 3 because it’s a magical number (or is it 7?). And because 3 stories are enough for you to see how powerful Mailshake is.

#1- Ashley Ryan and The Value of Authentic Email Marketing

Mailshake brings in $100 000+ of new business every year for Ashley Ryan.

She’s had raging success with this tool and she credits it to a smart email follow-up cadence (of 9 emails in total) that she set up with Mailshke.

Here’s her process in a nutshell. 

Whenever she finds a new potential lead for her business (she uses LinkedIn for prospecting), she first warms them up manually for 14 days (commenting on their posts, giving likes, sharing their content…).

And after 14 days have passed, she puts the now warm lead’s contact email into Mailshake and the tool takes over from there.

In her own words:

When people think I’m emailing them, rather than an autoresponder, it’s more intimate and effective,” she explains. “They really think they’re getting a personalized email from ‘the president’, and I don’t have to worry about them receiving irrelevant emails based on the actions they take.

Read the full story here!

#2- Promotehour and the Power of Giving Value First

Promotehour is a PR company that focuses on providing press coverage for newly opened startups on some of the biggest websites in the world. 

Here’s how they use Mailshake to streamline their outreach process.

First, they get a huge list of several thousands startups created that month. Then they send each of them a personalized email message where they offer free resources for startups to use to get their own PR.

They don’t promote themselves in that first email.

Most people don’t respond. 

Those that do respond trigger a follow up sequence of just one more email where Promotehour contacts them again explaining what they do and how they could help.

By using Mailshke’s Lead Catcher feature they make sure to contact only the startups who’re interested in hearing from them.

And as you probably know, offering a warm lead exactly what they need to solve their crucial problems is not a shabby marketing strategy:)

Mailshake makes it possible and a piece of cake to boot.

Read the full story here!

#3- FiringSquad and The Power Of Automation (Mailshake+Zapier)

Firing Squad is a lead generation company with offices in New York and Cape Town, South Africa.

They help their clients refine their cold email processes so they reach more cold leads, and convert more of them into warm leads and buyers down the line.

In this success story (read it, it’s awesome) they share 8 pointers/lessons they learned from hundreds of thousands of emails sent over a decade’s worth of time.

What I found interesting is how they put Mailshake to good use. Yes, they use it to shoot emails to their leads, but what’s more they connected Mailshke with Zapier (you can do that btw) so that when someone fills out a form on their website, they get on the “warm leads” (via Lead Catcher)  and the tool starts a follow-up sequence.

I admit this is brilliant because again it’s personalization at scale and as soon as a new lead responds, a human can take over from there.

Bottom line is that Mailshake is an awesome tool that can help you grow your business, in more ways than one.


Christopher Jan Benitez



Mailshake is a fantastic tool. 

I say that despite the minor cons I mentioned above.

If you’re a beginner marketer who wants to try out whitehat email outreach. And you need a tool but don’t know where to turn; turn to Mailshake.

It’s easy and affordable and will get the job done.

And If you’re an experienced marketer who’s tired of fancy tools full of pricey features you never use. And you’re looking for a simpler and more elegant solution- you’ve found it in Mailshake.

I promise you won’t be disappointed.