Ask any inbound marketer and they’ll tell you that quality backlinks play a huge role in the success of your primary online business presence – your website. However, as many over-zealous optimization ‘experts’ have discovered over the last few years (see this post on content and Google algorithm changes), building backlinks as part of a content marketing strategy should not be entrusted to automated systems.
You should no longer be looking at tools to churn out multiple, poor quality rewrites of content (often ‘borrowed’ from others!) to add to low ranking websites (or systems) that have been created solely for the purpose of backlinking.
Putting in the effort to obtain natural links from genuine online properties, sites that contain unique content, is what its all about.
What Are ‘Natural’ Links?
‘Natural’ links are those which – as the name suggests – are obtained without overt interference or manipulation. They are created by having valid users follow links from third party websites to yours (such as through organic search, forum posts, or social media). And the best way to get people to come to your site is through the creation and wise distribution of unique content that is relevant to your target audience.
Linkable Content For New Websites
There’s no question that it can be difficult to get started in online business, but there are things that you can do to gain some quality links right off of the bat. One of the best ways to gain traction in the online world is to write guest posts and articles for industry websites and blogs, and to provide worthwhile and interesting comments on blog posts written by others.
Why are guest articles so essential to your new business?
It’s really just common sense: you’re reaching out to a clearly defined group that already has an affinity with your industry or your niche, and your are providing them with information they can use. You’re essentially funnelling traffic from that industry-focused site right back to your own website. It’s a win-win situation.
Not only that, but many of these groups will have members with a social media presence, so there is the added opportunity for your guest posts to be added to, for example, their Facebook or Twitter stream, thereby broadening your reach. I know that I often share links from Australian Marketing Magazine and other industry-focused sites on my Kerry Finch Writing Facebook page.
Linkable Content For Veteran Websites
You can write and publish for days without having a single visitor to your site if you haven’t perfected the art of creating “linkable content”. This comprises text, videos and infographics that really grab the attention of the viewer or the reader. Your content must be relevant to your audience, and your titles must entice that audience to read on – it must promise value. Some suggestions:
- One on one interviews with relevant and respected industry leaders
- Controversial material that will inspire debate without alienation
- Short, easily digestible ‘list’ posts (“3 Ways To xya Today”)
- Highlight niche-relevant news and developments – ride the wave of a hot news topic.
Spy On Your Competitors
The online world is a competitive one, and, as in the offline world, it makes smart business sense to keep an eye on what your competitors are doing. There are tools available (like SEMRush) that allow you to see where your competitors’ backlinks are coming from. Identify these and add them to your overall content marketing plan – consider how you can tap into those sites as well. Competitor analysis such as this can provide invaluable insight into the content marketing strategies of others in your niche, and allows you to consider how to do it better!
Content Marketing – Two words to help you keep it real
When creating your content marketing plan, I suggest that you put these two reminders at the very top of the page:
- Uniqueness – ensure that only original content is published on your website
- Relevance – your content should engage your ‘ideal customer’ and make a seamlessly connection between him or her and your business.
By all means leverage your unique, relevant content by having it rewritten and passed through Copyscape, and then use those rewrites on other properties – just resist the urge to use spinning software or writers with a poor command of English to create your rewrites. Keep in mind that everything you publish online that contains links to your website, can come under search engine scrutiny. Keep it real.
If writing original and relevant content is a challenge for you, perhaps I can help. You can email me directly – and I (the real me, not a robot or outsourcer!) will respond.