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TechWyse Asks SEO Experts: What Was Your Best Backlink of the Year?

Search Engine Optimization June 3rd, 2013



There isn’t a standard procedure for generating vaulable backlinks, but one strategy stands above all: creating awesome content that people love and will share.

SEO and industry experts alike are constantly searching for innovative ways to build to relationships that result in quality do-follow backlinks for their companies and clients. No matter what type of content, it’s proven that quality content readers will find useful and beneficial is the winner. Content Marketing and building backlinks are SEO and Social Media’s favourite children. In order to grow these tactics to their fullest potential a creative strategy must to implemented into your marketing efforts.

Instead of simply telling you great ways to execute building backlinks, we decided to find out how from other industry experts are generating their awesome backlinks! We asked nine link-generating experts the following question:

“In the past year, what is the best followed backlink you’ve gained for your company? Explain how you earned this link and how the link benefited your company.”

Check out their responses below.

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Jeremy Rivera – Raven Tools Twitter: @RavenJeremy

  “Last October, Raven released a redesigned version of our marketing site. We took full advantage of the WordPress platform to provide a great experience for visitors and surface more of the tools and marketing tasks that our platform helps Internet marketers tackle.

It became one of those instances where simply creating quality content triggered some of our best backlinks. Shortly after our new site design was released, we were featured on the WordPress Showcase – a link that has consistently sent relevant traffic and created a good number of conversions.”

Luke Summerfield – Savvy Panda Twitter: @SavvyPanda

“This is a tough question because we’ve earned a number of high ranking PR website backlinks, however, there is one that sticks out in my mind. Being a Joomla CMS web design agency, we decided it would be a good idea to start writing for the Joomla Community Magazine. As an author we received a backlink in our author bio.

The reason this stood out to me is because with it we accomplished three things. First, our articles helped educate the readers and establish ourselves as authorities in the Joomla space. Second, we received a very high power backlink that carries a lot of link juice. Lastly, with our closed looped tracking system, we were able to track the results and have closed new customers as a direct result of finding us through this link.”

Lewis Sellers – Pinpoint Designs Twitter @lewissellers

“The most valuable backlink we have gained for our website would be from Moz for this blog post: Lifting A Manual Penalty Given By Google (Personal Experience).
We earned this link by producing high quality content that helped others in similar positions to ourselves. Google penalties are hugely relevant at the moment, and by writing an informative guide that helps people managed to get this post accepted and promoted to the Moz Blog. This link benefited our company because it was shared on social networks more than 1600 times, received over 100 comments and provides a strong link back to our website. We also were able to add in Google Authorship which now links us as a contributor to SEOMoz, which has in turn increased our rankings. The article took a while to write, but provided good content that has helped people to learn more about how to remove penalties and the effects of having poor quality links.”

Amanda DiSilvestro – Higher Visibility Twitter: @ADiSilvestro

“The backlink I was most excited to earn for my company was from Search Engine Watch on my post titled Yelp Optimization: How to Claim and Optimize Your Business Listing. Writing guest articles and earning backlinks in order to improve visibility is my full-time job, so I know better than anyone the hard work that goes into earning a link from a very authoritative site. I worked long hours to create that article and perfect it with the editor, and I think the social shares I earned and the many responses I got (not only in the comments, but in my own inbox and my own social accounts) were a great reward.

Search Engine Watch is a website that I have been looking to for information for years, so to become a part of that community was very exciting for me personally. That backlink also opened up the doors for me to contribute to many other sites. People read that article and have asked me to contribute content similar to their sites, which is helping me achieve my goal faster and easier. Yelp even contacted me and I was able to set up an interview that you will see on the Higher Visibility blog very soon.

In the end I think this backlink meant a lot to me because of the visibility and the connections it was able to give me in the industry (the link juice I earned was just an SEO plus). Amazing what one great article can do!”

Chris Mayhew – Marketing By Web Twitter: @marketingbyweb

“The most powerful backlink that I have earned over the past 12 months would be for one of our clients called Sport 4 Kids from the authoritative news site The Huffington Post. I acquired the link by first sending the editors some examples of my previously published writing along with a brief background of myself.

After my proposal was reviewed and accepted, I was given login details to the Huffington Post site and was able set up an author bio and upload this post about girls’ football coaching. This article was then screened before being published live on the site.

This link has benefited the client mainly due to the fact that the website receives millions of visitors a day and has a very high domain authority. The site also puts the article in a very relevant community as it has a whole section dedicated to sport and is also linked to the American site which has even more subscribers. Something else that makes the link beneficial is the fact that The Huffington Post has a great social media presence and articles are constantly being shared on multiple social platforms.”

Dorian Travers – Wpromote Twitter: @Wpromote

“In a follow up to the “Evolution of the Geek” infographic that successfully made its way around the web, we took it upon ourselves to recreate our own version of the infographic. Only this time we included the one thing missing from its predecessor: female geeks! After interviewing all of our female employees, we successfully constructed a flow chart style infographic, “Which Female Tech Influencer Are You?” which mapped out 5 distinctive tech influencer personalities. It was time to start the outreach process.

When an infographic goes live, we like to pour all of our focus and resources into one client as a team. We have learned through experience that this collective effort produces the best results. We had a few key target influencers in mind we would reach out to as well as some celebrity/tech blogs. The goal was to create a ripple effect that would trickle down and sustain the life of the infographic. After a few days we realized we were getting a little more traction in the pop culture space so we decided to put a little more emphasis toward that niche with social media outreach.

One of our team members ended up catching the attention of an author for CNN Showbiz who covered the entertainment industry in a weekly blog. A few days later, she posted the infographic with a link back on CNN.com. The infographic slowly but surely did finally catch on and acquired links on Techcrunch, Jezebel, and Computerweekly. Not only did this link give us at Wpromote a huge ego boost, but it also gave our company an air of legitimacy and professionalism. It also reminded us to set lofty goals, be creative, and perhaps most importantly, to have fun.”

Matt Burns –  Matts Backpack Twitter: @MattsBackpack

“Ooo..that’s a tough one! I suppose I’d probably have to go with this one from econsultancy.com, which links to an article I published about how I use Scrapebox for whitehat SEO: A day in the life of a… Head SEO

The really awesome thing about this link is that it shows you just how vital good quality content is to your digital marketing campaigns. I did next to nothing to promote the post, aside from throwing out a tweet. And because the article was original and useful, my readers loved it! And now it also comes with a big endorsement from Matt Sawyer too, which is pretty cool But most of all I love this link because it was truly organic. To the point where the first I knew that the link was there was when I saw a small mountain start to grow in my referral data. I always put blood, sweat and occasionally tears into making sure every article I write on the blog answers my readers’ questions and helps them out. So when I see my stuff getting shared in this way, well that’s a pretty cool feeling right there!”

Jason White – Dragon Search Twitter: @DragonSearch

“I found a newspaper that was in the client’s geography who wrote feel good stories about local people doing good things within the community. I interviewed the client to figure out the angle and started pitching the story. Normal outreach wasn’t yielding any feedback but the editor had a twitter account. He wasn’t super active but I set up alerts, hunkered down and waited it out anyway. It took two months to find the opportunity but one morning he tweeted about how much he enjoyed Chai made by ‘local corner cafe’. I gave them a ring and made it so that Jason at DragonSearch bought the next round. My next outreach was returned and resulted in both print and digital exposure for the client.

Another client; I was scouting a blog for contact information and stumbled on a post advertising summer internships with the internet team for the Mayor’s office in one of the East Coast’s major cities. Using LinkedIn, I was able to find one of the people who earned the internship, connected with them and noted a few site issues. It made them look good internally so when they thanked me I asked them if they could include our client on one of the resource pages. A .gov link was quickly given and high fives ensued.”

Kris Dietz – RankPop Twitter: @RankPop

“At RankPop, we strive to find new and innovative ways to get people excited about the stuff we produce.  After all, our goal is to develop content for our clients that gets them noticed.  One of the ways we’ve found works incredibly well is to generate anticipation.  Offer your followers the promise of an awesome payoff, then follow through!

Our “Send Matt Cutts to Space” campaign was an experiment: will the excitement generated by the promise of a potentially explosive payoff (literally) would match the success of a video promoted on its release. At the point of outreach we had nothing short of just a concept.  We started creating a buzz about what we were going to do before we did anything else.  As we started to find that it was gaining interest, we continued to build anticipation by doing a countdown.  The concept was simple, and we said nothing other than “we’re going to send Matt Cutts into space and we’re gonna videotape it.”

We were pleasantly surprised at how well it worked!  In the end, we launched a model rocket with a custom-made Matt Cutts doll inside and provided a live webcast.  The lesson we took from it is this: fans feel invested in your end product when they feel like you’re producing it for their benefit.  Convince them before your content is produced that this is something they’ll love to see, and follow through in a big way.”

Our Story – Tyler Shannon – Product Manager

“The best backlink of 2013 so far has been an excellent article written in AllFacebook.com about our Facebook image text overlay tool for promoted posts.

We had put together a tool to help Facebook page managers and other agencies in determining what constitutes 20% text in a Facebook promoted post image. According to Facebook’s policy, no more than 20% text can be present in these images.

We approached author Jeff Lafferty in hopes of writing about the helpful tool, as Jeff has consistently been a thought leader when it comes to Facebook Advertising policy.

We were lucky as Facebook had not yet released a tool of their own (they now have one) – and were fortunate to capitalize on.

This tool has consistently been our highest source of traffic since the article was released on May 6th. It’s helped position us as leaders in the industry and continually contributes to the growth of our online communities.

The Takeaway

Link-building in 2013 boils down to two things: hard work and creativity. The work comes from the research, finding an angle, perseverance, attention to detail and follow up. Creativity is all about originality and value. What can you present to readers that will entertain and empower them? This is type of content the builds the best links. Gone are the days of link spam helping you to rank. Pandas and Penguins reward websites that make the internet a better place. So I were to give you any advice for the year ahead it would: be build relationships first, then opportunities earning links will follow.

Post By Vanessa Copeland (111 Posts)


Vanessa is fresh to the world of Internet marketing but as a digital native, she is quickly catching up to speed. Working with a strong focus on social media, Vanessa aspires to learn all aspects of this fast-paced industry.

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TechWyse Asks SEO Experts: What Was Your Best Backlink of the Year?

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