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Content Marketing vs. Link Building: Linklove Boston 2012
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Content Marketing vs. Link Building: Linklove Boston 2012


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Rand Fishkin's presentation from Linklove Boston 2012 on Content Marketing vs. Classic Link Building

Rand Fishkin's presentation from Linklove Boston 2012 on Content Marketing vs. Classic Link Building

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  • 1. F#$%! Link Building. Content Marketing FTW.Rand Fishkin | CEO
  • 2. Classic Link Building
  • 3. Discover Link Opportunities
  • 4. Brainstorm Acquisition TacticsTravelpod built an embeddable quiz that universities use… What can I do to get .edu links?
  • 5. Pound Head Against WallFeel free to use this high quality link acquisition email. Effectiveness not guaranteed 
  • 6. Keep Pounding But, I really want a link!test
  • 7. Damage BrainManual link building has a surprising amount in common with stuffing crayons up one’s nose.
  • 8. Earn Links… Painfully1-2 links per hour of link building is fairly common, particularly if you don’t have a great site to work from.
  • 9. Give In to the Dark Side
  • 10. Buy Some LinksAlways a fun time:
  • 11. Go OverboardOnce you’ve gone to “supreme link pyramid elite,” you know you’re desperate.
  • 12. Get Burned
  • 13. Retreat and Try AgainBTW – If you need a simple meme generator: is pretty solid
  • 14. Why Links Are in Danger
  • 15. Links Were Never Really Votes Does the author mean to endorse this page? Does he mean to say it should rank better for “a very similar thing?”Search engines found links useful as a proxy, but most of those linking on the web don’t intend to contribute to the link graph.
  • 16. The Algo Wasn’t Intended to Benefit Marketers
  • 17. But SEOs Are Better at Links than Everyone ElseLinklove London Last Friday via:
  • 18. WebSpam Struggles to Keep Up
  • 19. Many Links are a Thorn in Search Engines’ SideAn enlightening example of spammer mentality:
  • 20. Google’s Clearly Trying to Move Beyond Links Individual link metrics have lower correlation over time, while social signals rise.Via
  • 21. Sharing on the Web Has Evolved It used to be that the “Linkerati” controlled the web’s sharing.
  • 22. Today, the “Linkerati” are a Far Bigger GroupVia (Pew Internet & American Life Project)
  • 23. Tactical SEO
  • 24. I Want to Rank Higher For This Query Ranking here will bring me more customers
  • 25. Decision Time OPTION A: Create lots of great content, start OPTION B: a blog, shoot some videos, build Point some @#$%ing up a community via social links at my page. networks, participate in forums, try to earn some press…Option A sounds like a lot of work…
  • 26. Most SEOs Make the Obvious Choice YEE-HAW LINKS!!Option B can certainly work.
  • 27. Strategic Marketing
  • 28. What Really Matters to a Business on the Web? Competitors Tactics: Avg Cost of Acquisition: Paid Search $95.00 Banners & Display Ads $150.00 Brand Advertising $Unknown Television, Radio & Print Media $180.00 Contextual Ads $115.00Paid forms of acquisition are easier to measure, optimize and invest in. Management’s comfortable with them.The engines/platforms make it easy to buy them. Why wouldn’t you use paid acquisition?
  • 29. What Really Matters to a Business on the Web? “Inbound” Tactics Avg Cost of Acquisition: Organic Search $15.00 Social Media Marketing $35.00 Blogs & RSS $60.00 Community / Forum Participation $20.00 Video Content $70.00If you invest in inbound tactics, your cost of custom acquisition can be dramatically lower than the competition’s
  • 30. What Really Matters to a Business on the Web? COCA / CLTV = This Ratio. Strength here means you have more to invest in every other part of the business.Thanks to Cascadia Capital for the chart:
  • 31. Decision Time OPTION A: OPTION B: Content + SEO + Social + Point some @#$%ing Community + Press links at the page. Which one of these truly results in lower COCA?This time, Option A looks a lot more appealing.
  • 32. Five Reasons I Invest in Content vs. Links
  • 33. #1: I Want to Invest in Multiple Channels at Once More Long Higher More Brand Tail SEO Conversion Rate Visibility Higher Organic CONTENT! Stronger Social Search Rankings Following More Direct & Bigger Fanbase & More Referring Bookmarking Traffic Community LinksContent, by its very nature, creates multi-channel marketing opportunities and wins.
  • 34. #2: I Want to Be Proud of My WorkAm I making the Internet a better place?
  • 35. #3: I Want Strategies that Last No Matter What If this is the future, I better build a memorable brand that has positive signals of every kind.I want marketing that will last even if Siri replaces Google, social replaces search, apps replace the web, etc. (note: I don’tactually believe any of those things will happen, but I do like to be prepared)
  • 36. #3: I Want Strategies that Last No Matter WhatWho knows, maybe DDG is really on to something:
  • 37. #4: Content Builds Links While I Sleep Virtually every link here is editorially-given because of content we’ve produced (qdr:h at the end of the query narrows to results from just 1hr)
  • 38. #5: Content Builds Brand Loyalty & Trust play 4:45 - 5:45
  • 39. OK. What Content Should I Make?
  • 40. Don’t Limit Yourself to Content About Your Subject This blog might work for them, but IMO, it’s far too topically specific and not “interesting” enough to be consistently share-worthy.
  • 41. Discover What Your Audience SharesThree tools:,, and Google’s Discussion Search
  • 42. Brand Your Content to Align with Your Business/ProductsFiskars Scissors ( runs the amazing Fiskateers blog (; a great example of alignment.Though, for SEO, I wish they’d gone with or
  • 43. Or Brand Your Product to Align with Your Content? Coudal Partners is a fascinating example of this.This is basically what we did at SEOmoz – created a product that fit with the content + audience we’d built
  • 44. Remember, Content Can Mean: Actual Content Community Products Platform/DataThe “content” you produce and market can be much more than just a blog (though blogs are pretty awesome at this)
  • 45. After London, Lots of Blog Posts Appeared…
  • 46. And My Presentation’s Online
  • 47. So, I Decided toChange Things Up a Bit
  • 48. Content Brainstorming &Concepts for Your Websites
  • 49. After Landing in Boston, I Tweeted:My tweet
  • 50. Gentlemen’s Hats from a Bygone Era and
  • 51. The Fedora Store
  • 52. We Need Some Content Branding
  • 53. The Infographic of Hats!This - – is the best I could find
  • 54. The Infographic of Hats!This - - is what I’m talking about.
  • 55. Online Hat-Selection ToolThis - - is the best I could find 
  • 56. Rank Top Hat-Donning Social Media ParticipantsI used, but you’ll also want to check blogs, Facebook, etc.
  • 57. Coffee Beans & Espresso Machines
  • 58. NeedCaffeine’s Website
  • 59. Erasable, Caffeine-Monitor Board Next to My Desk - but simple/erasable on a mini-whiteboard
  • 60. Caffeine Tracking/Contest Mobile AppMake the leaderboard publicly accessible for those who opt-in, and then link to the social accounts of the most caffeinated members.
  • 61. Rating Drinks on an Official “Caffeine Scale”Rate every beverage from every store possible on caffeine content, taste and caloric content and have a monthly dynamic leaderboard.
  • 62. Weird Foods and Drinks that Contain Caffeine Ugh… And this is one of the best articles I could find.Rate every beverage from every store possible on caffeine content, taste and caloric content and have a monthly dynamic leaderboard.
  • 63. Costumes Beyond HalloweenNo domain given, so I’ll just work on the concepts. BTW – that Yodabot is awesome.
  • 64. Analysis of Hollywood Costumes - buy this blog, or re-create it.
  • 65. Give Awards to the Best “Street-Spotted” Costumes You can set up an alert/search, watch for these, tweet to the winners and ask for permission to feature their photos.!/search/realtime/costume%20twitpic – you can use a few modified versions of this query, too
  • 66. Coverage of Non-Halloween Costume Events – there’s tons of these.
  • 67. The Best Part…
  • 68. I Came Up With All of These Between 5:30am-7:30am this Morning.
  • 69. Imagine What You Can Do with Time, Effort and A Full 8 Hours of Sleep 
  • 70. Rand Fishkin |