The Best Links Come from Knowing Thy Self

Do you question your existence? Do you ask yourself questions like:

  • Why am I doing what I do everyday?
  • Could I be doing more or doing better?
  • Do I like what I’m doing?
  • Do I like the things I tell myself I like?

I suppose being able to ask those questions is a product of living in an advanced civilization. Do most people in Sub-Saharan Africa ask these questions?

Maybe it’s just me.

I bring this up because I really know one thing about myself. Without a doubt, 100 percent, I love technology! I love gadgets, the Internet, cameras, computers, cell phones — I can’t get enough of it all. I’ll be the guy with the computer chip in his head.

In the scheme of things, that epiphany is rather insignificant in relation to my value in the world. But at least it’s something.

“Sage, this isn’t a therapy session. We’re here to learn about promotions and link building.”

Ah, right you are, dear reader.

I was reminded of this because of a big link building success story that happened here at SageRock.

Each month, we give away a $25 Amazon gift certificate to the SageRocker (as we are affectionately called) who gets the most traffic to their blog post in a single day. April’s winner was Brian Augsburger.

This interests me a great deal because Brian isn’t in our production team. While he knows a lot about Web marketing, many others know it in more depth than he does. His understanding of it is more big picture. Brian is our business development guy.

In April, he blew everyone else out of the water. On April 10 he got 419 views for his article: “Increase Web Traffic: Part 1 of 4.” No one was even close… me included.

The reason he did so well is because he has a passion… he has a true love. Brian loves design.

Brian is a fanatic when it comes to all things design. He loves Web design, car design, home design. If it has the word “design” in it, I’m pretty sure Brian is all about it.

So, naturally, Brian is an avid reader and participant on design blogs. He particularly likes Creattica.

So, after Brian wrote his article, he sent an e-mail to an editor at Creattica asking if they might like to link to his article. He explained that it was original, unique content. He also pointed out that, because he’s an avid Creattica participant, he believed their Web design audience would find the information particularly interesting.

He also knew that they would probably like the SageRock blog because it’s designed quite well.

Brian was right. He got the link here. That one link from a major blog made all the difference.

On top of this, Brian also had an underlying strategy. He wanted the article to do well for the phrase: “increase Web traffic.” If you notice, all four parts of his four-part series are titled with the phrase “Increase Web Traffic.” And the Creattica page that links to his article is titled “Increase Web Traffic.”

As of the writing of this column, Brian’s article was result 31 in Google for the phrase “increase Web traffic.” There are 249,000 other pages in Google that have that exact phrase somewhere on the page. That’s a pretty impressive showing for such a competitive phrase.

Brian’s link building strategy was flawless.

The optimization of the page for the phrase “increase Web traffic” came from his knowledge of SEO principles. But the way he went about getting his link was genius because he truly understood his target and cared about them.

So, I happen to be a fanatic of digital photography. What if I wrote an article about how to market your photography business through SEO? Don’t you think I would have a relatively easy time asking to get a link to the article on a photography blog? Wouldn’t I have an easier time if I had already participated in the blog by commenting and so forth?

Think about what you love and then see how you might be able to create some content that would be of interest to the people in that community.

Love is the secret ingredient to link building.

Join us for Search Engine Strategies Toronto, June 8-10, 2009, at the Sheraton Centre Toronto.

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