How to Plan a Link-Building Strategy

You might have heard the phrase ‘link building’ tossed around when new media marketing professionals talk about search engine optimization,  and to many, it sounds incomprehensible. How can you build a link? Can you pay someone to link to your site, like an advertisement? Or do you create connections with other companies and bloggers, who might then link to you? The answer is: both of these strategies, and more.

Link Building Tools

But let’s start from the beginning. When coming up with a link-building strategy, we need to know what we’re aiming for. Which website linking to yours would be the best for your company’s overall business strategy? Shoot for the stars at this stage, because you really never know who might pick up on your content. Once you have a comprehensive list of all the sites you’d like a link from, highlight the biggest. This doesn’t have to be the site with the most readers, but the one with the most authority in your area of expertise.

Now ask yourself: Why would they want to link to us? The answer is already on their site. What kind of content do they currently publish? What do they usually link to? Are they all about fresh new statistics? Unusual ways to make business connections? Graphics about obscure points of code? Try to find a gap in their current content spread – maybe they haven’t covered JavaScript in a while, or perhaps you recently had an employee attend a stand-up comedy workshop for better confidence when giving presentations. Whatever you choose to write about, make sure that you have as much information as possible on this subject. Remember this piece is going to be seen by hundreds of thousands of people, right?

After bringing all the research together, and creating the content, see if there’s a timely opportunity to publish it. Maybe it’s World Comedy Day or World Code Day. These sorts of events mean that people will be looking for content on these topics, and they will be prepared to share them. On a smaller scale, there will be blogs running carnivals, and blogs curating all the posts on these topics for that day, so seek these out and make sure you get a link on their websites. This will make it easier for the bigger names to find you.

Finally, don’t assume that researches on the big name sites, or in the big name companies, will stumble on your content, and don’t be afraid to directly contact the people who you want to link to you. It’s more acceptable than ever to shoot off a succinct and respectful email asking for a link, or even to Tweet at people who might be interested in your piece.

What do you think of this off page SEO strategy? Have you successfully earned a link from a big name site or company? How did you do it?

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