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Link Building: 5 tactics to build a better SEO strategy
From: MarketingSherpa - Adam T. Sutton | Thursday, 22 March 2012 10:34   
SUMMARY: Search engines use a torrent of factors to rank your pages. Marketers have guessed at which are the most important for years, and one continues to top the list: inbound links.

We interviewed three SEO experts to get their best tactics for attracting valuable links. Find out how to uncover competitors' search marketing tactics and how to keep links pouring in for years.

The links pointing to your website have a huge impact on its search rankings. Your site can have beautiful design and optimization, but without inbound links, it will struggle to reach the top of search pages.

"Links are very, very powerful and useful. Google and Bing continue to rely on them as primary signals," says Rand Fishkin, CEO, SEOmoz, an SEO software and resource provider.

Google and Bing power more than 94% of all searches in the U.S., according to comScore, which means links are important to almost every search query in the country.

To attract more links to your site, we interviewed Fishkin and two other SEO experts. They shared these five tactics.

Tactic #1. Repurpose someone else's data

Many universities and trade groups publish great research. But researchers are not marketers. Their reports can be confusing. You, on the other hand, are a skilled communicator. You can turn that data into juicy link bait.

Start by searching for research on your industry. Google Scholar, for example, will let you search academic publications. You can also use commands in regular searches to target your inquiry. Examples:

  • Search for specific types of documents with "type:pdf" or "type:doc"

  • Search specific types of websites with "site:edu"

  • Search a specific website with "site:example.org"
Once you find good information that is poorly presented, reach out to the organization and ask if it is acceptable to reference the data. You will likely be asked to cite the organization, link to its site, and perhaps follow other usage guidelines. Be careful you do not violate anyone's copyright.

After you get clearance, clean up the data. Pull it into a fantastic article or use it to create good charts or an infographic (see an example of an infographic in the 'useful links' section below).

Earn high-value links

The benefits of this strategy, Fishkin says, are the high-value links it can earn from universities and other organizations. Be sure to show the researchers what you created, because they will likely link to you work.

Also, remember that your goal is to find potential customers, so make sure whatever you create is relevant to their needs.

"Infographics, clever data visualization, and cool charts -- these kinds of things get shared across the Web in industries of all kinds," Fishkin says.

Read the full story here