WHAT IS OUTREACH?
SEO Outreach is the process of getting backlinks (any links, anywhere on the web, which link to your site). Out of the hundreds of metrics used by search engines to determine preferred content, backlinks remain the strongest signal for SEO ratings. While this is an incredibly important aspect of the search ranking, getting backlinks is a nuanced, multi-faceted endeavor. At the end of the day, people tend to link and refer to pages they like. If you’ve got great content, people will share about it, naturally. Therefore, SEO Outreach is not a magic formula, but rather a series of strategic steps that will get your great content in front of the right people and encourage them to share.
Outreach primarily involves strategic networking. The idealized scenario is that you build something so great that people just discover it and begin talking about it, but in reality, that’s difficult to do. Using outreach strategies, we can nudge the process along and increase the likelihood that your site will earn those coveted backlinks. You build something linkworthy (a great tool, a great article, a unique perspective), and then the SEO team will organize the efforts to network intentionally around this great content.
WHO DOES THE OUTREACH?
The effectiveness of these efforts really comes down to relationship, rapport, and trust, because ultimately, we’re kind of asking for favors. Building rapport and trust relies heavily on you, the owner —the SEO can facilitate the efforts, but relationship is far more easily established between people who can hold an intelligent conversation about the industry and who truly have something to offer other thought leaders.
Outreach is literally reaching out to people, but one important realization is that the audience for our outreach is not necessarily your customer. We’re not looking for someone who needs our product or service necessarily, but instead for anyone connected to an authoritative website who might link to us. They won’t link to the content if they don’t know about it, so outreach closes that gap.
OpticTour will do the research to find the best sites and influencers. Once we’ve given you a report of authoritative sites and as much contact information as possible, we’ll brainstorm how to reach out to them. Why would they link to your site? What do you have to offer that they might be excited about? Will they be at any upcoming conferences or events? Etc.
Perhaps you see that a great site just published a blog post about some emerging data, and as it turns out, you have some info about that data. We can reach out complimenting their post and offering ours as a further resource. Or perhaps we create an infographic from their data and offer them an opportunity to imbed the great visual. As you can see, opportunities for outreach often are specific to a time, person, or place.
Still looking for examples? This list is in no way exhaustive, but should give you a sense of the
Possibilities for SEO Outreach:
- Competitive Research (Who is linking to our competitors? Can we be included in that conversation?)
- Link Out to influencers (A fantastic way to get their attention while benefiting their SEO)
- Engage with social media. (Though links from social media are generally not counted by Google, this is still one of the most basic forms of outreach. We’ll help you to get involved in a way where you move beyond simply publishing self-serving posts, but instead start intelligent conversations with intelligent people. This is an important step in getting your linkworthy content in front of more people)
- Create infographics that people can embed and link back.
- Attend events like conferences: great places to meet important people. (Make sure you are prepared before you go to the event, and that you have created relevant content ahead of time)
- Offer a Guest Blog: This tried and true method works best when you do it for the right reasons. Blog on highly authoritative websites because you have something valuable to give to that audience, not just for the link credit.
- Create White Papers. White Papers are typically a deep, robust analysis which can become an industry resource (For example, a biannual study of industry priorities, the results of an extensive experiment, an interview with industry experts, etc.). A strong white paper stays relevant over time and is easy to promote since the value offered is so high. The way the white paper is published on your website is very important, so we’ll coach you to make sure you get the backlinks you need.
- Create a Survey: A well-orchestrated survey will serve the entire industry.
- Reveal Something New: An important case ruling, a new tool, new data, etc.
- Call Attention to Broken Links: Over time, certain websites come down, and links to them stay live. We can contact a sight you’d like to be linked from, let them know their link is broken, and offer your resource instead.
These are simply examples. What we do specifically for your outreach will be tied to your strategy and content. Finding the right people and outreach strategies is part of the process. If you’re going to conferences, we’re going to leverage that. If you’ve got a new reveal coming, we’re going to leverage that, etc. The bottom line is that it’s important to maintain intentional outreach, and as your SEO team, we can help facilitate the process.