4 Tips to a Successful Link Building Campaign

A link building campaign is a lot like running for prom queen
In true prom queen fashion, you should be “linking” arms with the prom king (that means big sites in case you’re slow). (Image source)

Running a link building campaign (shudder – who *really* likes link building? Raise your hands. Didn’t think so) is a lot like running for prom queen. First, you have to make ‘nice’ with the guy most likely to be voted prom king. In the world of Search Engines, Google is the front-runner. Next, you campaign for people to like you and your links and ask them to cast a ‘vote’ in your favor. As your peers like you, you become even more popular and, well, even more people like you! In true prom queen fashion, seek the highest authority and most popular support

So here are a few tips on how to run an effective campaign without sacrificing value, honor or giving away more link juice than you’re getting.

1. Quality content is (prom) king

Writing awesome content that is entertaining, relevant and useful to your audience is the single most effective link building method. Research your topic, incorporate personal experience and do everything you can to illicit a reaction from your readers. When your content provokes response and comment, is re-posted or quoted, tweeted, liked on Facebook and stumbled on StumbleUpon, your site will rise in the search engine rankings. This is the fastest and most organic way of creating link love.

TIP: A big part of what makes content worth linking to is the inclusion of “content enhancers”. Find these content amplifiers using social media.

The Official Google blog tells us (old but worth a read) that they have made it “harder for spammy on-page content to rank highly.” The search engine launched major changes and continues to look at methods to minimize rankings of low quality or “low levels of original content” sites. 

2. Be a guest (i.e. have a date at the prom)

If you're going to guest post - don't ruin your reputation in the process! (Image source)

Guest blogging on another quality website is a wonderful way to stretch your writing muscles, make alliances in your industry or market, build a larger audience and grab some inbound links.

It’s important to remember tip #1 above – quality content is crucial.

When you write for another site (or at the prom), be on your best behavior:

  • Only ever use your best content – here’s an example of a guest post that’s generated hundreds of backlinks, been shared over 200,000 times and translated into about 12 languages.
  • Write and edit according to the publisher’s guidelines and try to style your message for the audience of the site. Don’t lose your own voice, but a post or article that doesn’t fit with the host site won’t win you fans among the host audience or the site owner.
  • While you certainly want to include links back to your site through a bio and within the text of your post, don’t abuse the opportunity to simply create backlinks. If it’s relevant, use it. But, be authentic and make sure the link refers the reader directly to the extra resource and not a generic page.

Tip: Read How and Why You Should be Guest Blogging

3. Participate and share your information

Do NOT share your cheese with Oli. (Image source)

To gain inbound links, you must get people to like you and your content enough to talk about it and share it. That means you also must participate online where people talk and share. If you’re an expert on financial matters, participating in forums like RichDad Community gives you an opportunity to share your expertise and establish yourself as an authority figure. There are forums and groups on social networks covering everything from art to zoology. Find one, set up a complete profile with links and start sharing, communicating and helping. People will soon begin to look you up and share your links and information.

4. Give it away (maybe not on prom night though!)

Like any great campaign, a few “bribes” won’t hurt. Seth Godin is one of America’s most sought after marketers, an excellent blogger and writer and he gives away information, helpful guides, even software for free all the time. He keeps his audience looking for freebies and coming back to his sites. Further, he encourages others to talk about and share his gift-giving, so there’s of lots of traffic to his site and many inbound links.

Your gifts don’t have to break the bank:

  • Free e-books for download and sharing
  • Awards and badges for those who participate in, link to or support your site
  • Courses, tutorials and how-to guides
  • Resource guides and lists from high authoritative and well-researched sources
  • Guest post opportunities without any expectation of return

Check out an example of gift giving (lots of free info) in this guide to 50 Awesome Posts on Email Marketing.

Be creative in your gift giving, just make sure it’s legally owned by you and something you don’t mind others giving away.

– Joynicole Martinez

This is a guest post, all opinions are those of the author.

Joynicole Martinez is a professional consultant specializing in marketing and the healthcare industry. When she isn't developing marketing strategies, raising capital, challenging organizational cultures or writing for online outlets, she spends her time training for marathons and chasing the runner's high.

Comments

  1. Tamal Anwar says:

    I like this PROM themed approach in covering this topic. For long time I found that quality content wins the battle in long run. My posts that took me like weeks to come up now ranks high in search and gets daily traffic. I didn’t know anything about keyword research or link building.

    One latest approach in content and authority building I read that I want to share here is about building MINI authority sites. Sites that will be there for one topic specific purpose and will not be something on-going. These mini sites will then link to your original mother site to build a stronger network in that particular market. What you think about this one?

  2. Toni Jones says:

    Excellent pointers. I especially like #3. So many times we put together blogs and write well researched posts without doing anything to lead people to the information.

    You’re right, communities built on blogs like this one can be good places to start sharing information and resources. I always scan comments to see if anyone writes something I didn’t think of or that digs deeper into the original writing.

    Really a great post – I appreciate the prom theme too – since my daughter just had hers last week :)

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    The object oriented approach to explain the better methods of gaining popularity and control is something that is more practical and easy to correlate to understand the concepts of link building tactics. Thanks for the post!

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