Building Your Reputation with Backlinks: Outreach Tactics Guide

domain authority

In today’s digital age, where an astounding 99,000 Google searches occur every second (Google still dominates the search engine race with 80+% of all searches occurring on this platform) success online is more challenging than ever. To etch a distinctive mark amidst this digital cacophony, it’s imperative to master the nuances of link building since you build your reputation with backlinks. The more backlinks you garner, the better, especially when those backlinks come from reputable websites. Yet, garnering backlinks organically takes time and a sustained effort. Hence, the importance of outreach tactics in gaining valuable backlinks. These tools, when wielded correctly, can significantly amplify your online reputation, making you a force to reckon with in the digital space.

outreach tactics to gain backlinks
Image courtesy of Backlinko

In today’s post, we provide an in-depth exploration into the world of link building. We elucidate its foundational principles, underscore its pivotal importance in the digital landscape, and furnish readers with a meticulous roadmap for its adept execution. Additionally, we shed light on the most effective strategies to adopt and the potential pitfalls to be wary of in outreach initiatives.

Why backlinks matter

In the image above, you see how other websites can link to your website’s content. It’s called a backlink. Backlinks are kind of like the citations your English teacher insisted you use in your research papers. They indicate that you used resources to support your paper. Citations from more established sources, like the Wall Street Journal, and those from scholarly sources, such as The New England Journal of Medicine, have more weight than, say, a random post from someone’s website.

Backlinks, like citations, indicate you did your homework when putting the post together and included more than just your opinion. Note, the backlinks in this post to demonstrate the credibility of my content. Hence, gaining a backlink from a website demonstrates they consider your content as credible and trustworthy. Plus, backlinks in web content let readers easily view the resource which brings more traffic to your content.

Another way that backlinks help bring more traffic to your website is via SEO (search engine optimization). Links, often termed the building blocks of the internet, are among the triumvirate of Google’s ranking determinants. By judiciously enhancing your link collection, you not only elevate your position in search results but also significantly amplify the amount of organic traffic visiting your site. This traffic, derived from users navigating Google with specific and often intent-driven queries, is of paramount importance in driving traffic as it accounts for 53% of all traffic visiting your website.

When your domain prominently features in their search results, the likelihood of conversions, be it sales or sign-ups, skyrockets, as you can see below.

conversion rate by source
Image courtesy of First Page

Hence, link-building isn’t a transient, one-off endeavor. It demands continuous commitment, strategic planning, and regular refinement to ensure sustained business growth in an ever-evolving digital landscape. Just as important articles have more citations, webpages with more backlinks are considered to be more valuable. Hence, when search engines like Google put together a list of results from a user’s search, it ranks the results so the best results appear first. Backlinks figure very prominently in the algorithm Google (and other search engines) use to rank website content before displaying search results.

What is link-building?

As said earlier, link building revolves around strategically procuring hyperlinks that seamlessly direct users to your digital domain. However, it’s crucial to understand that success in link-building isn’t an easy process. Organic link-building relies on the time-consuming process of creating valuable content. As you can see below, that means writing long-form content (the longer the better) of high quality.

content marketing

But, as I said earlier, just gaining backlinks isn’t sufficient. Their intrinsic quality, source, and relevance play a pivotal role. In fact, backlinks from poor-quality websites can actually hurt your website performance, hence Google offers a disavowal tool to allow website owners to eliminate this type of backlink.

The overarching objective in link-building is to secure links from reputable and authoritative websites. Techniques for this intricate endeavor encompass outreach to like-minded sites, rectifying and capitalizing on broken links, leveraging the power of content marketing, and crafting valuable online tools that others find indispensable.

Successful outreach tactics

Email outreach is a primary method for building more links to your content. The process involves identifying relevant websites, verifying their credibility, making a beneficial proposal, and offering value in return. However, it’s worth noting that outreach tactics like this are a time-consuming task. For those who prefer to save time and ensure effectiveness, there are agencies that specialize in handling the backlinks outreach process for you.

Guidelines for successful outreach tactics:

  • Setting clear goals: Before embarking on the outreach journey, it’s essential to have a clear vision. What do you aim to achieve through this campaign? While procuring a link might be the immediate goal, consider the long-term benefits such as forging lasting industry alliances, expanding your professional network, or amplifying brand visibility on a global scale.
  • Importance of research: In an era where inboxes are inundated with generic pitches, a personalized outreach can set you miles apart from the competition. Dive deep to understand the essence of your recipient. Familiarize yourself with their professional trajectory, their role in the organization, past achievements, and the broader ethos of their organization. This personalized touch can significantly increase your chances of success, making your outreach resonate with the recipient.
  • Crafting your offer: Your proposal should be clear, concise, and compelling. Address the pivotal questions: What do you seek? How do you envision the collaboration? And most importantly, why should they invest their time and resources in your proposal? By answering these questions lucidly, you present a transparent and enticing proposition that’s hard to decline.
  • Being authentic: In a world rife with automated bots and generic pitches, showcasing your genuine human side can be a game-changer. Personal touches, such as using the recipient’s full name, crafting an engaging subject line that piques curiosity, referencing their notable achievements, and having a genuine email signature, can make a world of difference. It’s all about forging a genuine connection and making your outreach resonate on a personal level. I can’t tell you how many times I get duplicate requests worded exactly the same from the same email address on the same day. Or, how many times I get an email requesting a backlink that starts with “My dear”. Don’t do that!
  • Deliver Exceptional Value: One of the golden rules of successful collaboration is to always exceed expectations. If you commit to delivering a piece of content or a resource within a stipulated time frame, aim to provide it well in advance. This proactive approach not only leaves an indelible impression but also paves the way for future collaborations, fostering a relationship built on trust and mutual respect. I offer guest posts on my website for exceptionally well-written pieces of content that strictly adhere to my editorial guidelines. I can’t tell you how many times I get requests for contributions that don’t fit my niche or content submitted that doesn’t even approach satisfying those guidelines. Don’t do that!

Common outreach tactics mistakes

Despite the best-laid plans and meticulous efforts, some outreach tactics might not yield the desired results. It’s essential to understand the potential pitfalls involved in navigating this complex terrain adeptly. Common missteps include resorting to impersonal templates that lack the personal touch, casting too wide a net without focusing on quality prospects, being overly persistent to the point of annoyance, neglecting to proofread communications leading to unprofessional interactions, and giving up prematurely without refining and iterating the approach.

Final thoughts

Link-building, often overlooked, is a vital cog in the SEO machinery. It not only bolsters online visibility but also serves as a conduit, channeling high-quality traffic to your site. While the process might seem daunting, the results, in terms of enhanced brand visibility and organic growth, are well worth the effort. A key takeaway, emphasized throughout this guide, is the unparalleled importance of personalization in outreach endeavors. By investing time in truly understanding your contact and crafting a proposal that offers mutual benefits, you set the stage for a fruitful collaboration.

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Hausman and Associates, the publisher of MKT Maven, is a full-service marketing agency operating at the intersection of marketing and digital media. Check out our full range of services.