7 Easy Steps to Kickstart Your Link Building Journey

5 min read

Commencing your venture into link building can be made smoother with these invaluable insights, encompassing versatile prospecting techniques and tailored email outreach.

Allow me to impart seven valuable pointers that will help ease your initial foray into link building.


1. Setting Realistic Expectations


Link building can prove challenging, especially when purchasing links or leveraging pre-existing link partnerships. It may take several weeks or even months before your campaigns gain traction.

Therefore, it’s crucial to maintain faith and to persist in refining your strategies.

If you’re collaborating with other stakeholders, it’s equally vital that they understand the time it may take.

Building effective links requires ample room for trial and error, and having impatient stakeholders can hinder the process.

So, before commencing your link-building journey, ensure that all parties involved are prepared for potential setbacks and are eager to engage in a learning and experimentation process – including yourself.


2. Prioritize Your Focus


In the marketing world, the allure of novel strategies is ever-present, and SEO professionals are no exception.

However, especially for those new to the field, it’s wiser to concentrate on one link building approach at a time.

Your outcomes hinge not only on the chosen tactic but also on the precision of your execution.

Here’s why emphasizing one approach is crucial:

  • Attempting multiple methods concurrently may lead to insufficient execution, diminishing your chances of success.
  • Frequent shifts between methods increase the likelihood of errors.
  • Monitoring and evaluating your progress becomes more challenging when juggling various techniques.

Commence your journey by tackling the link building tactic that appears most manageable to you. Test it out and assess its performance.


3. Begin with Adaptable Objectives


Typically, outlining precise goals for your link building initiatives is a fundamental practice. Such goals aid in assessing your achievements and monitoring your advancement.

Nevertheless, it’s entirely acceptable not to set concrete goals when you’re just starting.

Your objective may be as straightforward as gaining familiarity with link building and observing its impact on your business.

This constitutes a perfectly valid objective, enabling you to embark on your link building journey with a more open-minded approach. It encourages learning through trial and error and fosters an environment conducive to experimentation.


4. Leverage Your Current Connections


I include this tip here, even though it may seem incredibly obvious because even seasoned link builders can sometimes overlook these valuable opportunities.

When you embark on your link-building journey, beginning with the low-hanging fruit is wise.

Ease doesn’t equate to insignificance; substantial opportunities may be hidden within these connections. Start by compiling a list of areas where you and your colleagues already have established relationships. Consider these examples:

  1. Friends and family (obviously).
  2. Your software suppliers.
  3. Other vendors and service providers.
  4. Local businesses and organizations.
  5. Your alumni network.
  6. Events and associations.

Once you’ve cataloged your connections, send them a brief message regarding link-building opportunities. Please keep it simple; everything can be simple enough.


5. Hone Your Skills with Personalized Emails First


A personalized email is one that’s crafted exclusively for a specific recipient. When they peruse the message, it should be apparent that it was tailored solely to them and no one else. You can incorporate various elements to emphasize its uniqueness.

Although crafting personalized emails might appear labor-intensive, it’s an effective way to refine your ability to create more effective templates.

Personalized emails are the foundation of email templates.

Most link building hinges on outreach, often conducted through standardized email templates. Templates can be highly efficient, but mastering the art of creating templates that yield tangible results is crucial. Otherwise, you may copy or purchase templates from others, a potentially costly and time-consuming alternative.

Frequently, a well-targeted template that employs the language and addresses your link prospects’ pain points, interests, and desires is the most successful approach.

It will yield significantly higher conversion rates than a generic template with typical link-building language. Of course, there’s no shame in straightforwardly offering to buy links if that’s your strategy!

So, why initiate with personalized emails?

I consistently advise my trainees to compose 5 to 10 personalized emails initially because it compels them to accomplish three vital objectives:

  1. Break free from the conventional “corporate” tone of professional emails.
  2. Delve deeply into the value proposition: What motivates the prospect to add the link? What benefits do they gain?
  3. Engage in thoroughly exploring a single prospect and uncover commonalities among potential link partners.

Crafting distinctive outreach emails gives you a richer understanding of what resonates with prospective link partners.


6. Flexibility in Relevance


In addition to acquiring links that drive traffic and facilitate sales, it’s advantageous to expand your perspective beyond the immediate interests of your potential customers.

Consider the broader interests of your target audience and where they congregate online. In essence, identify the additional online spaces they frequent.

Let me illustrate this with an example:

Suppose you’re a luxury real estate broker. You’d want links from real estate websites, as they rank for pertinent keywords and attract a prospective buying audience. However, securing links from these sites can be a formidable challenge when all your competitors have a similar mindset. It’s still a worthwhile pursuit, of course.

Yet, you can also broaden your horizons to obtain links from prospects that aren’t inundated with link requests from your competitors. For instance, consider these alternative prospects:

  1. Luxury car dealerships.
  2. Private jet companies.
  3. Fine art dealerships.
  4. Interior design firms.
  5. Panic room installers.
  6. Security companies.
  7. High-end travel agencies.

This form of “expanding” can be applied not only to your prospecting angles – whom you reach out to – but also to the development of linkable assets for both active and passive link-building strategies.


7. Diverse Prospect Scouting


In the initial stages of prospecting, you typically opt for one of two methods: analyzing competitor backlinks or focusing on specific keywords.

In the first method, you scrutinize the backlinks of your direct or indirect competitors and contact those websites or similar entities.

When prospecting based on targeted keywords, you identify websites that rank for the keywords you wish to target and reach out to them. You can also explore their backlink profiles and approach potential prospects. Both of these techniques are essential and should be addressed. However, it’s important to recognize that your competitors are also pursuing these avenues.

To infuse creativity into your prospecting efforts, consider identifying the types of websites and companies that resonate with your audience. Then, compile a list of prospects from this pool.

By doing so, you can uncover fresh opportunities and engage with a broader audience.

For example, if you’re a coffee roaster, you could compile a list of all companies catering to (part of) your target audience, including:

  1. Coffee enthusiasts.
  2. Offices.
  3. Hotels.
  4. Coffee shops.
  5. Home roasters.
  6. Gift shops.
  7. Online retailers.
  8. Wholesale distributors.

Tip for the Clever and Efficiency-Minded (my favorite!): Enlist the assistance of Bard or Gepetto for brainstorming these lists.

You can construct distinct prospect lists for these categories of businesses. Subsequently, craft theme-specific emails tailored to resonate with each particular group.

Furthermore, you can take an additional step in enhancing relevance by researching companies that serve the businesses from your initial list.

For instance, when considering hotel owners as an audience for coffee roasters, you can identify non-competing enterprises targeting the same demographic, such as:

  1. POS (Point of Sale) systems.
  2. Housekeeping supplies companies.
  3. Loyalty program providers.
  4. Property management systems.
  5. Booking engine services.


In Conclusion


Here’s a parting message for my beloved newcomers in the world of link building.

Forget about conforming to norms! In link building (and in life), celebrate your unapologetic individuality.

Cast aside the “propriety and professionalism” constraints associated with corporate culture.

Embrace your distinct style, have confidence in your instincts, and resist the urge to mimic others. Dive into experimentation, revel in the journey, and proudly own your unique approach. If you ever need help finding it all too challenging or bewildering, consider exploring our monthly SEO packages, where our experts can handle it all for you.

Shilpi Mathur
[email protected]