At Wordtracker, we live or die by what our customers (you guys) think. That sounds a bit cliché and hack, but it’s also true. We’re a small company and we need to give you what you want and fast. You’ve been asking for better and quicker ways to find sites that might link to yours. So that’s what we’ve done. But why make changes if we don’t talk about them? This is a quick look at how you find the best sites you can blog for. We call this feature ‘Guest Post’ and here’s how it works in the recently updated Link Builder, our link building tool.
What is Link Builder?
A quick recap first. Link Builder makes link building easy. Or rather, easier. We take your site, the keywords that you’re optimizing for, then get you prospects – other sites that are more likely to link to you.
But to get those sites to link to you, you need to build relationships with them. This can take many forms, but usually it should involve a healthy dose of strategy. You don’t want to fire off very generic "Please link to me, Mr(s) Site Owner" emails to thousands of people, because it’s spammy and lazy. People will read it and know that you’ve sent the email to thousands of people.
A better approach is to group your prospects according to what kind of site they are, then approach each one with a relevant and personal email. Obviously this takes time to do properly, but that’s why we built Link Builder. It goes through all your prospects and groups them, so academic sites go with other academic sites, news sites with news sites and so on.
That means that when you’re ready to start introducing your site, you can do it quickly, but also accurately. You’ll only be sending relevant emails to relevant people. Guest posting is a part of this. We’ve added it so you can build up better relationships and get more quality links.
How can Link Builder help?
Guest posting is my favorite link building strategy (that’s not to say it’s the most effective, I just like it). It allows you to write for a new audience and it helps get your name out to more people. It gets a link too, so that’s nice.
The problem with guest posting is that it’s not always apparent whether or not a site accepts guest posts. You might look at a blog, think it’s perfect, but actually working out whether or not they would let you write for them is tricky. (I know because I’ve spent YEARS doing this. It’s painful.)
You first have to look for some sign of guest posting. So you might see whether the site uses multiple authors, then look at whether those writers are in-house or from other sites. Once you’ve done that, you need to find the site owner’s contact details so you can get in touch. And so on. By the time you’ve done this for 10 sites, you’ll be bored and frustrated. When someone finally asks you to write for them as a guest blogger, you’re kind of over it. Your blog post will have no passion, no love. It won’t be any good.
The new guest post feature in Link Builder helps save hours of time. We reduce all that trawling of websites down to one click. Link Builder gives you a list of sites, you pick the ones that interest you, then you get the contact details automatically. It’s easy and it’s fast. (We won’t let you send spam emails because we limit the number of contacts we release at one time. So doing best-practice, above-the-board SEO becomes even easier).
How to use it
Log in to your Link Builder campaign. One of your ‘Strategies’ is called ‘Guest Post’.
This is a list of relevant sites that we’ve crawled and found evidence that they accept guest posts. Link Builder does this in moments, but it would take you hours to do it manually.
At this stage you might notice a number of sites that you’d like to group together. Say, if a lot of technology blogs accept guest blogs you might want to approach them in a very similar way. In cases like this, you should use our tags feature. It’ll make this work a breeze, and I‘ve writtten an article to walk you through it.
Whenever you’re ready to start approaching sites directly, choose one you’re interested in, and click ‘Contact data’. (I’ve gone with Mashable.com because it’s a site many of you will know).
We’ll then go ahead and find the contact details for you. And return them like this:
We’ll look for names, Twitter handles, email addresses and Google plus accounts. Where these things are available, we’ll publish them, otherwise we won’t.
You can then check the boxes you’re most interested in, and we’ll save them for you to use whenever you like. You can edit them if you want to. And add more information, or notes to help you remember who they are. Say ‘Spoke to this guy about our new product’. Whatever it is, you can put it here:
And it’s super-easy to search for the contacts you want (if you have loads), just type a name into the search bar and you’re away.
Once you’ve got a contact, you can then use it for whatever link building strategy you like. Tweet your contacts, email them, Google+ them. Link building is all about managing and building up contacts and now you have the tools to do it. Hoorah!
But as this is a post about guest blogging, have you read How to be a successful guest blogger? It’ll give you some great tips on how to get started. Or maybe you’re not convinced? Then read our interview with the author on why it’s the only link building she does
What do you think?
I said at the beginning that we make our tools to make your life easier, so what do you think? Have you used the new feature? If not, why not?! And if you do, how are you finding it? Let us know in the comments and we can use your feedback for future developments.
This is the third in a series of articles on new features in the Link Builder tool. Here are the other two:
Try Link Builder free for 7 days
It can be done. There really is a tool for link builders that will help you research and find your best blog prospects, plan your campaigns, and monitor targets.
It’s called Link Builder. You can register now for a free 7 day trial