I'm working on a site, one part of which is going to be a directory of links related to the subject. Relevant websites are being added to the directory as I explore the net in this niche. Inclusion in the dir is free.
To let the featured sites know about their inclusion, I'd like to send out email notices to the contact named on their contact pages. I'm not sure if I should mention that links back to my site are welcome, provided they like the site.
Is it acceptable practice to send out an email about the inclusion? And what about asking for a backlink?
build the directory, but don't send inclusion messages. At least not for those that you found and entered yourself. Later you might get requests for inclusion and those you can confirm (even with the polite request for a backlink to help their users :) ).
Hey, thank you all! It's pretty confirmed now that sending out inclusion messages is not a good idea when someone wants to play by the rules. Thus linked sites will recognize their linked status if they check the referrers in their stats :)