Today I am going to show you how we build quality backlinks using 100% white hat blogger outreach.
This process allowed us to build over 80 links over the course of the last 3 months for all the clients that we had.
These links helped them to rank for new keywords and…their businesses made more money.
How We Build Quality Backlinks in 7 Steps
Here is what happens after you decided to try our service and reached out to us.
Step 1: We Assess Your Content
Here is the thing…
White hat (non-gimmicky) link building relies on top quality content.
In other words, we must have great content to build links to.
We use a couple of methods to find and assess it.
What if I don’t have great content…what can we do in my case?
We have 2 options for you:
- We build links using guest posting (here is our pricing and deliverable).
- We help you build great content and then promote it using our outreach packages.
Content Assessment With Ahrefs
We use Ahrefs, a leading data-driven marketing toolset, to decipher your website.
By doing this we want to check these 4 things:
- Your top performing pages. Why did they perform so well? Can we amplify and/or recreate that success?
- Your least performing pages. Why did they flop? Can we turn them into superstars? How?
- Toxic links coming from nasty websites. These usually come as a result of poor link building practices, negative SEO attacks, spammy links that accumulated over the years…
- Anchor Text Analysis. Is there any over-optimization for a given keyword? How do you compare to your competitors?
Content Assessment With Google
Ahrefs is great but it’s not a panacea so we use the one and only, Google, to show us everything you got.
We use a “site:domain” operator for unveiling everything that is indexed by the search engine.
And very often we find content we could use for link building:
Once we have something to build links to (and the payment is cleared), we get to the next step…
Step 2: Client Onboarding
Every client we work with gets:
- Pitchbox Project
- GDoc Reporting Sheet
We create a separate inbox for outreach purposes.
We will be sending a lot of emails (minimum 400 per week) over the course of our campaigns and the last thing we want is to get your company’s email get in trouble.
We also create an outreach persona (or, ideally, utilize your own name) that we use for the signature.
Pitchbox is an extremely powerful software we use to help our link building efforts (and a hefty $395 per month price tag speaks for itself).
This is the best tool on the market and you will get absolute best results with us, should you sign up.
It would be awesome to see you here, as one of our clients:
GDoc Reporting Sheet
We actually create 2 sheets.
Sheet #1: Reporting Sheet (this is the one you get)
You basically see the most important thing here – the links we build.
Here is what the columns mean:
- Live or Agreed. Before links go Live, they are Agreed upon – we note that in this column.
- Source URL. This is the URL where the link we got you comes from (you can always click and check the actual URL – your link will be there as soon as it’s Live).
- Destination URL. This one is your website’s URL to which the Source URL is pointing to.
- Anchor Text. This is the exact text the webmaster used when placing the link.
- Date. This is when the link went Live.
- Link Type. We build links using a bunch of techniques, so they are recorded here (Competitor, Resource Pages, Guest Posts…)
- DR. This is Domain Rating, a metric that was created by Ahrefs (we also use Moz’s DA for cross-checking). We use it to estimate the quality of a website (please note that it doesn’t offer the full picture so we are careful with it).
Sheet 2: Planning Sheet (the one we use)
This tab is a part of a fairly massive spreadsheet we use for planning out our campaigns.
And this is exactly what we do next…
Step 3: Campaign Planning
Give me six hours to chop down a tree and I will spend the first four sharpening the axe.
Even though there is a big doubt about whether Lincoln actually said that, the point is this – we take our time planning and thinking.
Every week (usually on Friday) we have a team brainstorming session where we discuss the angles we could explore in order to promote your content.
We also use these sessions for assessing how the campaign is going and whether we need to make an adjustment.
This is a fairly creative process and quite a few campaigns require thinking outside the box.
As a result of planning we get:
- A set of keywords we could use for finding resource pages (for resource page link building or guest posting)
- A set of URLs we could use to steal links from (for competitor (aka shotgun skyscraper) outreach)
- A schedule for when prospecting should be done (we usually do no more than 200-250 leads per week)
- An outreach schedule
- A set date for your campaigns assessment
Here is what our plan looks like more or less:
The benefits of this sort of planning are huge for our clients:
- First, they get the biggest ROI on their investment as we take the time to identify the best opportunities for them
- Second, they feel relaxed because they know the job is being done
- Third, they can focus on other business-growing activities like creating more content (for us to use).
The planning is done and now it’s time for action!
Step 4: Lead Generation
This is when we start looking for the opportunities to reach out to.
And we do it using Pitchbox.
Every week we look for around 350 leads per client (depending on the campaign).
This usually burns down to 200+ after we clean them up (again, quality and relevance are what matters).
So our lead generation process consists of these following parts:
This is when we actually look for leads.
And to find them, we also use advanced search operators which basically ask Google to search for specific footprints.
Here is what it looks like for every service we got.
Resource Page Link Building
To find a resource page we use the following operators:
- keyword inurl:links
- keyword inurl:resources
- keyword allintext:useful links
The “keyword” is the keyword/phrase that we come with during our planning session.
And here is what it looks like when done using Google itself:
Guest Posting Service
Unlike all the other guest posting services, we don’t generally use search operators to find opportunities.
Because they get abused by spammers.
Also, webmasters, because they receive such a massive influx of queries, often want a “posting fee”.
This is essentially paying for links, which is against Google TOS.
So instead we find ALL the blogs that write about a subject that’s relevant to yours.
And to do this we, again, use the keywords we came up with on Friday (gotta love those Fridays).
Competitor Outreach (Shotgun Skyscraper)
Here we actually look for URLs that:
- Are relevant to your content (so that people are more likely to link to you)
- Have a large number of referring domains (so that we know it’s good content)
And to find them we use a set of keywords that we come up with during our Friday planning sessions.
And again we use Ahrefs to actually see the domains that link to a competitor page.
Say, if you had a brilliant article on the Alexander Technique, then we would find other articles on Alexander Technique that also have many domains pointing towards them:
By the end of the Prospecting process, we end up with a lot of ‘raw’ leads.
These leads then need to be filtered out based on:
- Quality (i.e. real, non-spam/scam/PBN/Forum/Web 2.0…)
- Relevance (i.e. if we build links to a pet website, we don’t want any links from cement manufacturers 😀 )
Here is what it looks like in Pitchbox:
As we look through the numerous data points (like the actual URL of the lead we find, their DR/DA, Spam score, Page Title etc) we quickly tell whether the lead is what we need.
We divide all the leads into three categories:
All the NOs get deleted right away, whereas all the YESs and MAYBEs move onto the next stage…
The goal here is to make sure we have a perfect lead to reach out to.
We look closer at each and every one of them to confirm that:
- We have the correct Email and First Name available
- The website is actually quality & relevant
So at the end of this part, we end up only with all the solid YESs.
And here is what it looks like in Pitchbox:
Again, we look at the bunch of things and these 2 are just an example:
- Check the Email is right + the correct First Name is available.
- Check the Website. It must be legit! (or we delete it)
Personalization is the last part of our lead generation process – compose is next!
Step 5: Compose the Templates
Before we send any emails, we spend a significant amount of time on a custom template that we create for You and You only.
No one else uses the same template – we write everything from scratch every single time.
Why is having a unique template important?
Gmail is amazing at spotting spam…
And spam is a piece of something identical that’s being passed around at large volumes.
Rewriting a template every time helps us to maximize the results for Your campaigns, improves deliverability, builds more quality links for you and ultimately makes you more money.
And this is why writing templates it’s so important.
Our template’s content is also affected by factors like:
- Campaign type (we do crazy personalization for Guest Posts and great personalization for Resource/Competitor campaigns)
- Brand recognition (if people know you, building links is easier)
- Social following (the more the better)
This is why we take the time to discuss the campaign with you when we start.
By the end of this step we have 3 email attempts ready:
- Initial Email. This is the 1st email our lead receives.
- Follow-up #1. This is the 1st follow-up they receive should they not reply.
- Follow-up #2. This is the 2nd follow-up email, in case we don’t hear from them.
And now is the time to launch the campaign!
Step 6: Launch!
After all these preparations, it only takes 3 clicks and the campaign is on its way.
Here is what it looks like from our “Flight Control Unit” – Pitchbox:
As you can imagine, sending 570 emails is going to produce a hefty amount of replies.
It is now the time to get to the last step of our link building process.
Step 7: Reply Management
This is the hardest part for many people because, and I am honest with you, the absolute majority of replies are NOs.
Rejection is hard to deal with…
Fortunately, our clients don’t have to deal with any of that because we take the hit for You.
Just like leads, replies fall into the 3 categories:
A No is a “no” and a Yes is “Yes”.
This is straightforward.
But when it comes to Maybe…
Maybe is trickier because there are different scenarios:
- We will post your link when we update our website
- We will post your link if you will post ours
- We will post your link in a month (but then they change their mind)
Fortunately, we have a toooon of experience replying, negotiating and following-up with people.
We can’t turn every Maybe into a Yes but we persevere until everything is resolved (sometimes it takes more than a month of continuous reminders to get the link placed…but it gets done).
And here is the question:
Isn’t this beautiful?
Let’s build you some great links, shall we!? 😉
Learn More About Our Link Building Service (including Pricing):
- Guest Posting Service
- Resource Pages Link Building
- Competitor (aka Shotgun Skyscraper) Link Building
P.S. Got questions or need advice? Just ask.