Paddy MooganHere are my notes from an excellent talk by Paddy Moogan, Lead SEO Consultant at Distilled (@paddymoogan | Google+ profile)

Linkbuilding: It’s not that easy! It’s easy if you already have a name (Mashable, SEOmoz, Wired). They have age, authority, following, and connections. When they post, they get links without trying. Here is a picture of Rand Fishkin‘s link building tool built into his blog:

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But it wasn’t always that way. In 2007 Rand’s posts got very few thumbs up or comments. His average post got one link, and that was usually from his own SEOMoz.com! It took seven years for him to get where he is today. He did it with inbound marketing.

The one thing that the present monsters of inbound marketing all have in common is regular SEO reports. If you cant’ show links built, the client suddenly doesn’t care about inbound marketing, no matter how “viral” you got their content to go.

Stragegy is important, but you need inbound tactics that will constanly move you closer to the end goal of the strategy: getting good, natural links. Without tactics, you will be fired before you can see the strategy work. So here are 35+ tips to help build those kinds of links.

  1. Bookbait – ego bait in real life. Get 50 bloggers to contribute about a topic. Assemble it into a real book and send it to all of them. Do you think they won’t link to it and promote it?
  2. Place an embed code within an embed code. Inside the embed code you give for your infographic is code that produces an embed code box on their site (linking back to your site, of course). http://dis.tl/mozcon-embed is a tool that does this!
  3. Photos get links. Use Google Alerts (paste image URL in alert – also use image reverse search) and contact websites that use your photos asking for “photo credit” in the form of a link. Case study: Paddy did this for a client, sent 16 emails, got 15 links.
  4. Competitors doing guest posts? Search for their bylines in Google to find where else they guest post. And set up Google Alerts for their names. Those are all good sources for you to get guest posts.
  5. Put competitors backlinks into Open Site Explorer and Google Custom Search Engine.
  6. Find guest blog opportunities quickly through blogdash.com, bloggerlinkup.com, guestr.com.
  7. If you have paywalled content, do deals with bloggers: in exchange for a link give them first-click access to your content.
  8. Find someone’s email address easily with Tout Chrome plugin or use Rapportive in Gmail.
  9. Buzzstream.com – Use RSS tab to see what a target writer has written about recently and mention in your outreach email to them. This tool shows date of last published post so you know how live they are. Also gives conversion rates of your recent outreach emails.
  10. Make photos embeddable. Install a script that provides embed code when visitors right click on your image. Moz embed script demo
  11. Take bloggers to an event, and require a post about the event that inlcudes a link to your site.
  12. Competitors doing badge bait? Enter URL of their badge in Google image reverse search, and you’ll find all the blogs that used it. These are people in your niche who are willing to link.
  13. Bring offline online. Venturebeat.com/2012/05/06/brazil-facebook-likes – cool offline idea that brought online linking. Example: Create a local blogger list and post offline (in store).
  14. Ask bloggers what content they want. Use their contributions in post or infographic and give them credit for contributing. Nice ego stroke and inspires them to link back.
  15. Find important writers and bloggers on Twitter. Go to FollowerWonk and enter things like “writer for mashable.”
  16. Boomerang Gmail plugin. Ability to schedule emails for the best time for international outreach. Also reports to you about those who haven’t replied to your outreach email. Create canned follow up responses to send them.
  17. Have a client (person) profile page. When senior people at your company are quoted, it is much easier to ask for a link to their profile page than to your generic homepage. Setup google alerts for that person’s name and ask for links if people have quoted them but not linked.
  18. Monitor tweets and look for websites (in Topsy). If someone tweeted about your infographic, tweet to them and offer them a way to embed it on their web site.
  19. PR Request Twitter Hashtags with IFTTT. For finding requests for info tweets by PR professionals, use #prrequest and topic in quotes (#prrequest “travel”). Setup IFTTT to send you an email whenever someone tweets with that hashtag.
  20. Make up fake products (for ecommerce sites). “Unicorn meat” went huge viral.
  21. Pay your writers to guest blog and build links. It’s pretty easy to get a nicely sized pool of out-sourced writers. Find your best ones and pay them to find places to put their content. Double their fee if they both write and place their content with link back to you.
  22. Tweet people at just the right time. SleepingTime tells you when someone is most likely to NOT be on Twitter. Use it to get an alert for when your prospect comes online and send them their first Tweet greeting of the day.
  23. Go to meetup.com and search for “blogger” and you’ll find loads of meetups. Take your product to the meetup. Or run or sponsor the meetup. Good bet that some bloggers there will post an appreciative post or social message.
  24. Blogger competition with a twitst. To enter your competition, bloggers have to write about your site in some way. But make one of the conitions “you should nominate five other blogs to take part” and give them and who they nominate an extra chance of wining if they do. Great way to get your contest to go viral, and create a ton of good links at the same time.
  25. Second level broken link building. Use Check My Links Chrome Plugin. Run Open Site Explorer on the 404s and find more linking root domains. Contact them.
  26. Create a Spotify playlist for your niche with songs based on a keyword. Put it on your blog and make embeddable.
  27. Incentivise sharing a page. “The more people who tweet this the cheaper the product becomes.” “Tweet this page and get free shipping.” Also gets covered and linked to by others for its sheer creativity and fun.
  28. Get your customers to link build for you. Add a blog/website field to your signup form. Segment them in your email contacts and email them with offers in exchange for blogging or linking to you.
  29. Konami codes to get discounts. “Geek bait.” If visitor does a konami while on your site, they get something hidden. http://snaptortoise.com/konami-js/ Every day change it to activate a different discount or offer. “One day a week” promise a random extreme offer.
  30. IFTTT recipe: Monitor HARO tweets for keywords. If tweet for URGHARO “coffee” then send me an email. http://dis.tl/link-recipes
  31. Build a good infographic in an hour: http://infogr.am. Limited templates so don’t use too much. But if you get some great links, can incentivize the boss to hire developer time to custom design more!
  32. Use Amazon wishlists for bloggers. Search wishlists for email addresses of bloggers you want to reach out to and find their list. Send them something they wanted with a note, saying your blog about X was awesome, a little gift from us.
  33. Find outreach targets using Amazon. Top reviewers are often prolific bloggers and writers. A Google search for site:www.amazon.co/gp/pdp/profile/”WebPage.” “E-mail.” “travel” will filter by topic those who have a site and an email address.
  34. Send something physical. Create something an influential person dreams up or wishes for and send it to her.
  35. Guest blog post search engine. Create google custom search engine : http://dis.tl/moz-guest.
  36. http://dis/tl/guest-blogs <– download it. Thousands of good blogs that post with links!
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