A Lesser Known Method Of Link Building

From Peter Lavelle at foreign exchange specialist Pure FX

Do you run a blog or website? Then I’m certain I don’t need to impress upon you the importance of building backlinks. Doing so helps you reap benefits including featuring higher on Google’s organic listing and receiving referral traffic from the links. Moreover, there are countless reputable sites out there dedicated to telling you how to build links. The most commonly named include SEOMoz and Search Engine Land. Take a look, read a few entries, add them to your RSS feed or Google reader, and you’re golden: professional link building and SEO advice at your fingertips.

Of course, in addition to the usual gumph about creating quality content (what exactly is quality content? Is it just well-written or does it have to do something more?) there are some methods of link building you might not learn just by reading the top dog SEO blogs. To help you boost the returns on your link building campaign, I have featured one below. Good hunting!

1. Skip searching your competitor profiles

Conventional wisdom has it that your first port of call when link building should be examining your competitors’ link profiles. This (it’s said) helps you spot easy pickings. But in fact, I’d adopt this course with caution. Depending on the topic you’re optimizing for, mining a competitor profile can just lead you to countless affiliates: people that have no interest in talking to someone else providing exactly the same service. Moreover, given the prevalence of SEO agencies in competitive industries, mining competitor profiles can often just reveal how much artificial link building your competitors have been doing, rather than provide legitimate opportunities.

2. Hit Twitter instead

Instead, in my experience, Twitter provides much more fertile territory for link building. How come? Because Twitter users tend to be bloggers, as opposed to the nameless corporations that sometimes fill the Google listings.This means you can reach out to someone by name (always a boost to the response rate!) and talk to someone that has a personal stake in their site, as opposed to an employee that couldn’t give two figs. In addition, unlike those nameless corporations, bloggers on Twitter probably haven’t been solicited a thousand times for links already, increasing the odds they’ll get back to you.

3. How then do you go about using Twitter to build links?

1. Enter the topic you’re link building for into the Twitter search bar.

2. One at a time, go through the users that show up. To optimize your chances of getting a response, you want people that post as themselves as opposed to businesses.

3. Send them a couple of tweets just to let them know you exist!

4. See whether the URL of their blog or website is featured on their profile. If it is, click through and send them your solicitation.

5. If not, chances are you can find it by entering the person’s name into Google. Then the same thing applies.

That’s the ballgame!

Doing this, as opposed to soliciting websites found searching competitor backlinks or scanning Google, is likely to give your response rate a 15-20% boost. Good luck.


Peter is a marketing consultant at foreign currency exchange specialist Pure FX.


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