Hi there! I am Pablo, co-founder of Guruwalk and I am going to tell you the amazing Linkbaiting strategy we are now carrying out to make us known.
Every time I hear people saying “you know, we have 10,000 followers on Facebook and we pay for marketing campaigns every week”. I always ask the same: how many of them are really buying your products?
Is it always necessary to spend money on advertising? Would it not be better to opt for a strategy producing sustainable sales in the future?
I have good news, there are other ways!
Why Linkbaiting as a strategy?
I’ll start with the bad part (this way you will enjoy much more the good part): the only bad point of a linkbaiting strategy is the hardness to get it and the time it takes to create a good base of links increasing the importance of your website.
Our experience allowed us to position our website from a domain authority (DA) 1 to an domain authority 28 in less than a month and a half.
The pros of this strategy are numerous and proven:
- The importance of your website and the consequent rise to the top of Google results
- Generating a high DA equals higher visitor traffic and higher sales
- Investment is time but not money
- The higher your organic traffic, the lower your cost in the future for paid campaigns
- A SEO strategy, in this case off-page, lasts for much longer than an SEM campaign. When Google detects that you are no longer paying it will send you back far from the top results. On the contrary if you have a good link base built through content this is not going to happen to you
Tip: Creating your linkbaiting strategy is free, the investment is time and the results will last for a long time.
Define your sector and think about alternatives
The first thing we did at Guruwalk was to define our sector. As we are a platform to do free tours all around the world, our sector is then the travel world.
We started by looking for the best travel blogs existing in the Spanish and English world. Any Google search as “the best travel blogs” or “the top 10 blogs of travel 2017” can already give you an good idea.
But how do you know which blog can really give you a quality link?
We were always looking at the DA of the websites we were interested to post. The tool we use is the MOZ toolbar, an extension of Google Chrome analyzing the DA of the websites and allowing you to know its importance on the internet.
We made an excel sheet with the name of the blogs, its contact, its DA and were writing all that in the form of a CRM which allows not to get lost.
Think of alternatives. Any portal that directs a link to your website with high DA is good! As a startup we think about portals writing about entrepreneurship, marketing portals, blogs of agencies sending students abroad, travel magazines, airline magazines, etc… everything is valid as long as you can insert a natural link.
Tip: Alternatives to the sector are there to catch them. You can write in more than just blogs of the same topic but there are also many other options that give very good results.
Start the easy way doing guest post
If you contact them, it’s the most normal thing in the world they are asking for something in return as money. However, we make clear that we are still a very small company and we can’t afford to spend for a guest post.
If you don’t want to pay this fee, it is necessary to be very clear that the content you are providing has a high quality and will give value to the blogger. So it should be amazing!
When you start contacting, it is difficult to catch the attention of bloggers. But we will talk later about how we optimize our messages to have a good response rate.
One of the strategies that helped us a lot at the beginning is to search for blogs that accept “guest post” publicly.
There are many if not an infinity of blogs accepting to post guest articles on their websites. We take advantage of it to put a link on a natural way and increasing our domain authority.
We made a list on another excel categorizing blogs that allow guest post travel, marketing, startups, etc … It is a way to start with the easy because, the difficult will come later.
Tip: Choose to exploit the easy path since, depending on your authority, you can go later for the bigwigs.
Focus, focus, focus!
Every blog or portal where we want to publish must be analyzed. This analysis will give you ideas of a good topic to bring to the blogger.
When we find a blog we like and on which we want to publish to continue with our strategy of linkbaiting, we start studying it.
We look at what kind of articles it usually posts. For example, there are very sensational blogs with almost every article looking like “Travel to Valencia, the 10 best things you can do” etc.
For a blog of this style, we have to propose the same kind of topic. Why? Because we want them to accept our article and the only way is to match with the editorial line of the blog.
This kind of post can be realized in only one or three hours as there is a lot of information available on the internet that you can use to create a completely new and original post.
But think about it. These kinds of blogs have a huge community of readers. So beside giving you a powerful domain, it can make you known on the web.
This is why you should create an epic post and work it well. In this strategy, we are not just looking for putting a link but also looking for the publication to make us famous.
Tip: Generate content adapted to the blog on which you want to publish. Invest more time if you think that the blog is worth it.
Contact like no one else
One of the best articles I’ve read on how to make a good first contact and considerably increase the response rate is here.
To contact people we use two ways: email and LinkedIn. The truth is that you can’t imagine the power of LinkedIn.
Whenever we have to contact some medias that interest us, we always look first on LinkedIn because the degree of personalization is very high.
To improve your response rate it is important to follow a very clear structure and put yourself into the skin of the person who will read your email. Being kind and writing as if you know is important to improve your connection and increase their empathy.
When I send an email selling something impersonally, my finger goes to the delete button. These people receive a lot of emails everyday, so it is even more likely to happen.
One of the best videos I’ve seen defining a good email structure in order to make a good first contact and to increase your response rate, is this video of Rand Fishking.
Our way to contact by email, and the one that gave us the best results is the following:
- Subject of the message: Hi blogger’s name! or Hi company name team! If you see an email like this, you usually ask yourself who sends it to you and for what purpose? We already reach our first goal: to open it!
- The first paragraph should be no more than 2-3 lines enhancing the good work of the reader of your email: “I have seen your last post on post title, I have loved the topic is very inspiring”.
- Explain then why you write this email: “I write because I have interesting content for you, we are looking for diffusion and I’d love to contribute to your blog”. Give some post ideas based on the existing post on the blog.
- Close on a friendly and original way.
Tip: You have to think about how you would like them to write or ask you for something. We think that being kind and personal is the best way for a first approach.
Look at the competition
A way to find websites to post is indeed by analyzing the competition. Like you, they also had to find medias and websites to write about them, right?
Which companies or blogs linked them and why?
We have to differentiate between the typical sponsored post, which was paid, from the post that was written to bring value to the website’s community. That’s the last one that is interesting for us.
To find which website have a link with our competition we stay loyal to MOZ and its search engine for links, by importance, domain, etc … You can find it here.
Thanks to this search engine, we can now see who linked them and what kind of link. This way we can find online portals that have already talked about your topic and could link you too.
Good news! Doing that can also give you new ideas about what to write!
Another well-known tool is Ahrefs. The problem with this one is that it only lets you do about 3 searches per day which can be short when we are conducting a research on the competition.
Tip: Analyzing your competition can give you ideas, but best of all it offer a source of potential websites to do guest posts! Go for it!
LIKE A BOSS
Of course you can just translate existing posts and write your own very quickly just to put a link in it. But on the other side, you can also do another king of guest post we call “Epic post”. These are original articles with a very high quality and bringing great value to the reader.
For this kind of post, you need to have a very good list of truly important blogs. This time it is not that much for its DA but for the repercussion that it can give you.
More than just raising awareness about your website, this kind of blog is read by so many people that it leads to collaborations, more contacts, have other important blogs that want you to write a good article for them and even investments.
To contact them it is important not to be afraid and ask them directly. It can be through LinkedIn, Facebook and even email.
Tip: Bigwigs are there to be catched! Creating an Epic post takes time, but the investment leads into reaching what you could not reach before.
All these advices forms the strategy that we are doing at Guruwalk and for now results are astonishing!
The Linkbaiting make us known in the world travel with a 30% growth every week, without having to spend a single euro in marketing.
In addition, startups portals are talking about Guruwalk as a good initiative and ultimately our domain grows pretty fast.
Being on the first page of Google and among the first result in secured sales!
We have already achieved this in Havana, where we started to carry out this strategy.
We are now centered on Vienna and we are repeating the same strategy to climb to the top of Google’s search results.
Linkbaiting represent a lot of work but it will give you sustainable sales which in the end is what we all want.
So, what are you waiting for?