A recent article on Inc.com questioned the thoughts of many companies who let younger people handle their social media efforts without a second thought. While it brought on many rebuttals, it also brought to light a recent trend of companies not acting intelligently when it comes to some online campaigns. Clients often want to hire an outside agency to handle all of their SEO and link building services, and while an agency can do a lot for you, there are some tactics you should definitely keep in-house.
Forum Posting: One of the most well-known link building strategies around is the forum post. Essentially, you find forums that are relevant to your industry and answer questions related to your goods or services. You can often provide links back to your site, as well; sometimes, they have to be in your signature, but some allow links in the post. The main rationale behind this link building campaign is that you establish your company’s name as an intelligent leader in your industry, and your site as a place to solve people’s problems. A few years ago, you could have outsourced this to an agency; today, though, your customers are smart. They know exactly what advice they’re looking for, and they want expert opinions and help, not help from a digital strategy company that sort of knows what the company is about. You don’t have to post often; you can spend an hour or two a week going through a handful of forums and seeing if there are questions you can answer, and your wise thoughts will be much more appreciated than the generic answers given by someone not truly in your business.
Answer Sites: A similar quality link building tactic involves answering questions on services like Yahoo! Answers and Cha Cha. Hundreds of people seek out advice from these sites on a daily basis, and questions are asked concerning just about every topic on Earth. Industry experts who answer these questions can include links to their sites, as well as suggestions to use their company. Just like with forum posting, question askers want a reputable answer or recommendation, not just something they could have Googled. If you scan these sites once or twice a day, you’ll probably find a question that’s right up your alley. The poster will be glad you helped them, and you get a chance to put another link of yours on the web.
Blog Posting: One link building strategy that is beginning to decline is guest posting on other industry blogs. This strategy has fallen by the wayside because of oversaturation – everyone knows about it and thinks it’s easy to do, so they all want to do it. While you might not find a lot of guest blogs to post on, you can still post your own unique content on your own blog. This remains the best way to employ organic link building, as you can post internal links to your site within your own blog as much as you want. If you subscribe to other blogs in your industry, you can also comment on blogs that cover an area of your expertise, and you can include links here for others to see, as well. While it does take time and energy to blog, it is often well worth the effort, as you can do as much link building within your post as you want. In a larger company, different people can blog from week to week, so no one gets too bogged down and you continuously create great content.
Of course, digital strategy consulting companies can spend time on many other link building strategies, as well as work together with you on other tactics that will boost your online presence. Two excellent off page SEO techniques are photo and video sharing. If you have pictures of your products or videos of your employees hard at work, a consulting company can find many outlets to share this media, such as Picasa for photos or YouTube for videos. They can take the time to properly tag the videos and generate the most off page SEO possible, as well as employ the best link building practices in the titles and descriptions of all your media, so many people find it through search. Many other strategies should be left to companies that specialize in link building services, but if you want to get a head start on your own link building, begin with the above three methods. You will be well on your way to drawing in more views from across the Internet.