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Will Critchlow - The Future of Link Building


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  • 1. The future of link building WILL CRITCHLOW
  • 2. Here are the kinds of things we’ve seen today
  • 3. @hannah_bo_banna
  • 4. PsychographicOnlineMassPublishing
  • 5. Info vs plain graphic
  • 6. Much of What Makes Leaders Great Also Makes Them Great MarketersVia the White House Flickr Feed: - Inbound marketing in
  • 7. Where did my “submit link” button go?
  • 8. Links are deadI want to make it 100% clear that this is not what I am saying
  • 9. Links are deadIf you tweet that I said this, I will hunt you down
  • 10. It’s link building that is in troubleI’ve been answering SEOmoz Q&Asince it looked like thisAll the answers to “why don’t Irank?” used to be “you need morelinks”.Now?
  • 11. Dear GOD.Not those links
  • 12. I’m not here on a moral crusadeI just happen to prefer flywheels over explosive unsustainable growth
  • 13. …and I’m not risk averseI have invested in all kinds of risky things (defined as “things that might not work”)
  • 14. This is the last linklove
  • 15. The future of link builders
  • 16. There’s a bigger problem
  • 17. We broke directoriesThey used to be the best way of finding great things on the web
  • 18. We broke commentsNow we all have to run akismet
  • 19. We broke forumsMany legitimate forums and communities closed under the onslaught of forum spam
  • 20. We took a 150-year-old form of communication“Distribution of the slave population of the United States”, 1861
  • 21. As practiced by respected newspapers“The Ebb and Flow of Movies”, 2008
  • 22. And ruined it Thanks @ChrisLDyson
  • 23. Try to make the design support the dataPlease tell me this was a joke
  • 24. Incidentally, a good use of PinterestMaybe the only one I’ve found yet -
  • 25. Guest columns have existed foreverDoes your process look like this? Please tell me no. [Hat-tip Carson Ward]
  • 26. We can’t even clean up after ourselvesWithout hacking people off
  • 27. information tied to verified onlineprofiles will be ranked higher thancontent without such verification Eric Schmidt, Executive Chairman, Google
  • 28. You think:“how can I game that”
  • 29. There’s an even bigger problem
  • 30. Ad agencies are better than usHonda Cog
  • 31. Artists are better than usOK Go
  • 32. Celebrities are better than us@ladygaga
  • 33. Celebrities are better than us@willcritchlow
  • 34. Brands are better than usRed Bull has videos of pigeons doing backflips
  • 35. Loss leaders are hard to compete withSnow Fall – How they made it
  • 36. STOP
  • 37. Stop worrying about your hosting IP address
  • 38. Start worrying about CDNs, edge nodes and site speed
  • 39. Stop worrying about linking C-blocks
  • 40. Start worrying about how manyjournalists you have in your address book
  • 41. Stop worrying about anchor text
  • 42. Start worrying about being misquoted
  • 43. Stop worrying about nofollow
  • 44. Start worrying whether anyone will click
  • 45. Stop calling it link juice
  • 46. For the love of GODstop calling it link juice
  • 47. Link equity plays much better in the board room
  • 48. The future of link builders
  • 49. Hire the right VP Marketing or you’lljust end up with a bunch of blue pens with your logo on them
  • 50. We understand amplificationFrom Thomas Baekdal
  • 51. If you aren’t naturally technicalStart here – incredible deck from Jamie @ SEOmoz
  • 52. Earn attention instead of shares
  • 53. Measure links based on engaged visitorsI made you a custom report and advanced segments for non-bounces and >2 pages
  • 54. Engage spidey sense
  • 55. We can instantly tell Mom & Pop from Thin Affiliate
  • 56. We know why no-one is linking to youYour site is ugly, your content sucks, no-one knows who you are
  • 57. We know how influential a person isHaha. Just kidding.
  • 58. Power searchingWe can find out who people are, where they write, what they own
  • 59. Homework time
  • 60. Inspired by Entrepreneurial DesignBy Gary Chou of USV - Course here and blog post write-up here
  • 61. Make yourself uncomfortable
  • 62. = 1 hour or less See here = an afternoon = day or more
  • 63. Not extrovert?
  • 64. Get a journalist to run a story based on your tipCall 3 journalists & tell them you thought they’d be interested in a story you found online
  • 65. Present to a crowd of 200+ people See Justin Briggs’ explanation of how
  • 66. Present to a boardBonus points for getting shouted at
  • 67. Negotiate with a salespersonGet more than 10% off retail price of something (doesn’t have to be a car!)
  • 68. Record a screencast or webinarGet it watched by more than 20 people. Camtasia / Google+ Hangouts on air
  • 69. Reach out to a hero get an answer
  • 70. Visit a newsroom
  • 71. Debate a business caseWith 3+ colleagues who you don’t normally work with. We have enjoyed 2078 & 4168
  • 72. Sell something door to doorDon’t want to go outside? Make 10 cold calls
  • 73. Run a live usability testOffer to buy a stranger a coffee. Resist the urge to coach them
  • 74. Answer 3 customer calls
  • 75. and website instant chatI highly recommend
  • 76. Read to a childIn some ways, they’re an easy audience. In others…
  • 77. Not technical?
  • 78. Install a web serverI’d start with Apache. Send enough traffic that it breaks. Fix it.
  • 79. Build a web crawlerCrawl 10,000 pages. Discover how little of the web is nicely-formatted HTML
  • 80. Search through some log filesFind 3 crawlers on your site that aren’t googlebot, slurp or bingbot
  • 81. Build a tool
  • 82. Contribute to an open source projectGithub makes some parts of this really easy. The hard part is working out git
  • 83. Make something and sell a copy online
  • 84. Work out who someone anonymous is
  • 85. Run a conversion rate test end to endI recommend Optimizely. Don’t worry if you don’t get significant results
  • 86. Install and play with rTake some Google Analytics data and strip seasonality
  • 87. Not creative?
  • 88. Film and edit some videoPhone camera. iMovie / Premiere Elements. Lower third. Cut a scene. Improve audio.
  • 89. Make a graphic Get 20 shares
  • 90. Make an interactive graphic
  • 91. Build a wireframeTry Balsamiq. If you can’t think of anything, rework homepage & send me it
  • 92. Remove someone from a photoBefore After
  • 93. Rewrite / redesign a landing pageCheri Percy wrote about our own conversion rate trials and tribulations
  • 94. Write for a publication you’ve previously boughtBonus points for calling yourself a “published author”
  • 95. Thanks. WILL @willcritchlow
  • 96. Image credits TrakAxPC_Video_Editing_Software_Screenshot.png