First, let’s start with the most basic link building question of all. What is Link Building? According to WordStream, it is “the process of getting other websites to link back to your website.” Digital marketers usually have two goals when they execute link building campaigns. One is to get referral traffic, and the other is to rank high on Google.
Gone are the days when marketers are just building links anywhere and abusing keywords to manipulate search results. Over the years, the search giant got smarter with its big algorithm updates to detect link spamming, link buying, duplicate content, and many others.
Google has over two hundred ranking factors, and a website’s backlinks are one of them. A smart marketer shouldn’t just build links for the sake of getting links. The websites you want linking to you should also be relevant with a high authority score.
Link building is probably a digital marketer’s most difficult task, but if done the right way, the benefits it could bring to your website will be off the charts!
1. Research Prospect Leads
The start to any link building campaign whether if it’s for promoting a piece of content on your website or for branding is to look for likely prospects whose audience are the ones you’re trying to target.
85% of the time, people just look for leads on Google and collect their contact information on a spreadsheet. But as a smart digital marketer who wants to maximize time, even though that strategy works, accumulating leads that way should only be a last resort option.
With Buzz Stream though, they took the lead generation process to a whole new and smarter level. Basically, you can use their Discovery feature to find the right influencers.
You simply have to enter your query, and then you’ll see an extensive list of potential leads who are experts on the certain query you entered.
From there, you can begin evaluating that result by applying several filters. You can filter by domain authority, category, number of twitter followers, last site activity, and more.
Once you’ve filtered out your list based on your lead criteria, you have the option to add them directly on a project or investigate their profile even more.
2. Email Outreach
After you’ve done your research and made a prospect list of your leads, it’s time to do the actual outreach.
Prepare a template for an initial and follow up email.
If you have grouped your prospects accordingly by topic or niche expertise, you can basically send them a templated email without worries of any inconsistency or out of scope topics.
Buzz Stream has this amazing Email Outreach feature that helps you send out your email templates without the hassle of copying and pasting.
You can add custom fields to your emails to still make it personalized. Like the prospect’s name, website, and your first name.
While you’re personalizing your emails to individuals, the tool also shows you the latest information and updates on that person all in one screen, which can be pretty handy if you’re trying to build a relationship with your leads.
3. Link Monitoring and Management
Monitoring the sites where you’ve linked to is a necessary process in a link building campaign. You want to make sure you’re not reaching out again to leads who already gave you a backlink.
According to Backlinko, for 90% of the time, a link prospect who gave you a backlink will let you know (mostly via email) that they’ve posted your link on their site. That’s an ideal scenario for link builders.
But for some leads, they will give you a backlink, but they won’t notify you of the good news or even respond to your initial email.
That’s why having a link monitoring tool is essential for keeping track which lead gave you a backlink and which one didn’t.
4. Monitor Email Performance
Email outreach will always play a significant role in a link building campaign. That’s how you would most likely initiate the first contact with your prospects and build relationships and share ideas.
Your leads will be getting lots of emails of the same context as yours. So you want to make sure your email headline and body will pique their interests.
To measure whether your email outreach campaign was a success or a flop, track the open rates and response rates. How many of your prospects did open the email you sent? Then how many of those did respond?
Ensure you have a record of the dates of initial and follow up emails, which of your team member initiated the contact, and how many and which of those prospects gave you a backlink.
What are the most common ways to build links?
From the simplest to the most complicated link building strategies, you can’t deny that they do bring value to your website if they’re done the “white hat” way.
● Guest Post
This is a link building strategy where you reach out to webmasters or bloggers who have a similar niche and audience as you, and you try to contribute an article that links back to your site.
This strategy has always been in the grey hat area in Google’s eyes. But as long as you contribute great content that actually brings value to anyone who reads it, then you don’t have to worry about getting a penalty.
● Link Bait
This is a link building strategy where you create a very compelling, well-researched, and evergreen content in a specific topic that people will naturally link back to it and refer you in their articles.
This is a difficult approach since amazing content takes time, and you have to promote it first before compelling anyone to link to it.
● Connections & Partners
This is a pretty easy link building strategy where you can ask your friends and colleagues who have blogs and websites to link back to you. But remember always to make sure they’re site’s niche is relevant to yours.
Link building is a very long and tedious process. Patience, determination, and proper strategy implementation are your source of strength for this. Out of all the tips mentioned in this article, two things that you should always remember is to reach out to relevant and if possible, high authority sources. Though it may not be simple, the benefits you’ll reap in the long run will be rankings and converting traffic.