Link Building PR Tips

Think of link building as Public Relations (PR), not Page Rank (the other PR).

When you do this, you are thinking about quality for your brand and online presence. But, none of the link building effort is worth it, or frankly, matters – if you don’t have a relevant page and strong offer/content to provide to your visitor that is searching for that information. If you do this right – you will get rewarded *everywhere*, from Google, user stickiness, sharing of your information, and opportunity for link reputation, while providing value.

To prepare, ask these questions below – about your page content, about your service, about your product and overall positioning. Can you offer a unique value (or sales) proposition? Are you clearly calling this out in every content piece? (without spamming, of course)

  1. What can your product / service do for me? And, that nobody else provides?
  2. What can you guarantee me, that nobody else can?
  3. What is unique about you, as compared to your competition?
  4. Why should I do business with you, and why should I trust you — and nobody else?

These are important questions to ask, and creates a solid foundation for everything you do. Not easy to answer for most, but a necessary discussion along with a SWOT (strength, weaknesses, Opportunities & Threats). This will help keep more visitors on your website, and keep them coming back too.

So, here are reasonable tips that anybody can do.

Controversy tends to work well, but you’ll be amazed how well this can work against you as well. As Matt Cutts(thanks for tips here) at Google says, “it can be okay to uncork a good rant sometimes” but don’t  use this as a norm. You’ll be like a boy who cried wolf, hey, look at me,  pay attention to me, over here, etc – be careful.

You can use humor or bring something original to the table, that’s a lot better. (Dilbert comic strips are classics)

A great way to get links, is to participate in the community. Answering questions on LinkedIn, for example, can work really well for you. If you know the answer to something and say: “hey I know that – I can help you!”. People will be more receptive to clicking to your site and seeing what you’re up to. Answering questions to help other people is really cool. Try Yahoo Answers and even groups in the social media space.

Original research is another great way to create hooks to your site. Danny Sullivan created a comparison of all the spam out there for about 30 days of different e-mail providers and he documented that. He blogged it and a lot of people linked back to him.

You can go out to Google groups, Yahoo! Groups, and other places in the social media space where people are discussing your topic to see what they’re asking.

Social media is really cool. You can enjoy a participation on friendfeed and twitter and look  where people are spending their time. Perhaps it’s more on the Facebook and Twitter – then spend time there. If you have a video and you spoke at a conference, for example – you can you can list that and people will see it.  It helps to create trust and visibility.

The ‘ol “Top 10 lists” are are good, but they have been overused and lost some of their their allure – so you might want to look at that sparingly.

Make sure you get yourself a blog. I set this one up WordPress from an open source download. But, you can try either on WordPress.com, Blogger.com or download the source to install it on your own domain. Update it a couple times a week at first. Then, make sure you join the community and share your blog as appropriate. In the social sense, it’s more about “them” than you, remember that. Your blog can also be a great asset to establish yourself as an authority and thought leader in your business.

How to and tutorials are always great. People are looking for information on the Internet. Your site can be a great way to get awareness to you and your business. And, keep in mind –  if you build this out as useful, quality content pages, you don’t have to think too much about top keywords only – but long tail keywords – that tend to draw really quality traffic  can help you tremendously.

You can make a product or a widget and give it away for free, like a Firefox extension or a WordPress plug-in. Those types of things can be really good. People tend to link back to you as a thank you. You do the work once, and then lots of people can access it and download over time w/links.

Make sure that you have easy access to your site both from a search engine perspective and from user perspective. The site architecture, navigation and structure are very important. Make it easy to get to and links within it. 2-3 link depth is good.

Make sure to create a couple of videos. Short how-to tips or information about your space uploaded to YouTube and others – easy to do.

That’s it!

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