Friends, welcome to our link building series! We last talked about why link building is so important for SEO and for business, and we recommend it (although we’re biased! if you haven’t read it already)
Today we’re talking about how to get great links via evergreen content, freebies, and guest posting.
1. Create a list of your ‘low hanging fruit’
These are opportunities that are about as easy as sending, “Hey friend! Want a guest post about XYZ?”. You wouldn’t email that to just anybody, so make a list of people you have a comfortable, established relationship with.
Once you’ve compiled this list,
- Make a list of who you have great business relationships with. Think biz besties, people you know in person, or anyone you have an established relationship with.
- Reach out to Facebook groups.
- Watch Facebook groups for calls for guest posters–this happens a lot.
- Has anyone guest posted for you? Add them to your list.
- Add current and past clients to your list.
2. Write excellent content
- Plot out your content ideas in a tool like Trello or Asana
- Create super helpful evergreen content
- Write a list of content ideas that you send with each pitch, even for people you know.
3. Create various types of link-worthy content
This is content that would live on your site that’s so good it compels people to link to it and share it with their audience. Having a library of something to link to is ideal for eliciting great links.
Ideas for this include:
- Host a contest, link to winners of all categories (or just create a list of your favorites resources)
- Make a mini-video series, embed on your site (then put on Youtube and include links)
- Any kinds of freebies
4. When you write, tell people about it
People are not going to stumble upon your blog randomly. You have to tell them.
- Post about your latest blogs and guest posts all your social media accounts
- Send an email to your list about your latest posts
- If your blog post includes outside links, email those you linked to and let them know you’re writing about them, including a link to your post. It would probably make their day to get an email like that, and you’d be building a strong business relationship in the process.
- Make the most of resources like Medium, Quora, and Reddit. Post your blogs there. You’ll contribute to the discussion, generate backlinks, and almost certainly get more traffic!
- If you see someone who has written something similar to what you’ve written, share your post! Send a simple email
5. Create a list of your dream guest posting opportunities, then apply!
This is the high-hanging fruit, the link opportunities that are harder to get, but so worth the work.
- Make a list of dream outlets
- Write idea topics
- Write a stock pitch email (then customize it!)
- Follow their application process exactly. High profile outlets don’t have time for something that doesn’t follow their standard process.
- Follow steps 2-4 to make it a success!
6. Set up Google Alerts for your Business, your name, and website
You’ll be able to see who is linking to you that you might not know about, so you can send them a note thanking them, and possibly link to them. This goes a long way in building strong business relationships.
See our tutorial on how to set up Google alerts and use them creatively. And if you followed these steps in the tutorial, then see #7 on this list!
7. Follow someone else’s tutorial, then write about your experience with it (then send them an email with a link to your post!)
This is a brilliant and totally legitimate strategy for getting people with HUGE followings to write about and link to you.
Think Pat Flynn or Neil Patel: they write super helpful content with tutorials for things like “7 Steps to get 100 email subscribers in 30 days”. Thousands of people read those posts, yet how many actually follow through? Not many. And of those that follow through, how many actually write up a post detailing their experience? I’d guess that you could count the number on your hands.
For people who are in the business of being successful by helping others be successful, having a post about someone’s experience with their tips is GOLD. It shows that their method works, is free content for them, and is a way to motivate others to use their services/methods.
If you do this, I can almost guarantee that someone will at least link to you, and quite possibly repost what you write. This takes a bit of work on your part, but what do you have to lose? If nothing else, you’ll have followed the advice of a leader in the industry (like getting 100 email subscribers), and that in itself is valuable.
8. Keep it Professional
You’ve done so much work to get great links! Don’t lose momentum due to a technicality like grammar or forgetting to email back. Set up an autoresponder if you have to to be sure everyone gets a response within 24 hours, and use a free tool like Grammarly to check for common errors.
- Respond to emails in a timely manner
- Use perfect grammar
9. Show off what you already have
People are far more motivated to promote you if they see that other people already think you’re great. Show this off by showing links where you’ve already been featured, if anywhere, and include links to your social media handles so they can check you out there.
If you don’t have features or a lot of people following you, it’s ok! Just keep showing up with what you have, and you’ll get momentum. It will happen with persistence and with something of value to offer.
- Demonstrate social proof.
- Link to all your social media on your site
- Make your current blog posts easy to find
10. I saved the best for last, the best way gaining quality backlinks is HARO
HARO is the acronym for Help A Reporter Out it is super useful for building high quality backlinks. HARO is a service that connects reporters with expert sources. When a journalist or writer needs an expert opinion or real-life story or a credible resource for their article, blog or podcast they use HARO to find them.
HARO compiles the list of reporter requests and sends out an email 3 times a day (5:35 am, 12:35 pm and 5:35 pm EST). Sources like ABC, TIME, WSJ, Refinery 29, Glamour Magazine and the New York Times ALL use HARO.
I get the lists and often send pitch ideas to clients who I think would be a good fit. Sometimes I write posts if necessary or I notify the client if it is going to be an interview.
Here is a sneak peek of how the emails look!
Just in one section of this email there are 3 opportunities I found for clients — HARO is a gold mine for getting press, gaining exposure, establishing yourself as an expert and growing your SEO authority.
The only catch about HARO is that you have to act quick, reporters are under a deadline and they normally need a response within 5-24 hours so there is no time to waste.
If you want to sign up to receive the emails, read about how HARO works and sign up. If you don’t want 3 more daily emails, then let me do the filtering for you and become a client.