Even with all the focus Google is placing on developing legitimate backlinks, there are still bloggers out there who think it’s perfectly fine to email other bloggers and ask for a link.
They’re half right – it is still perfectly fine.
But you gotta do it right.
Today’s bloggers aren’t going to just link out to every Tom, Dick and Harriet who sends them an email.
Here are 11 strategies to earn links naturally from other bloggers.
1. Create something worth linking to: No blogger, no matter how small and no matter how powerful, is going to risk his blog by linking out to poor-quality or non-relevant content. First of all, he’ll lose credibility with his readers. And second, he’s risking his rankings with the search engines. If you want another blogger to link to you, you have to create fresh, unique and original content that’s worth linking to.
2. Give them a link to a specific post: Don’t just ask him to link to your homepage, give him a link to a specific post. It’s much easier for the other blogger to recommend you based on something you said in one post than it is for him to recommend your entire blog.
3. Build a relationship: If you’ve built an online reputation for yourself you may be able to get away with asking for a link in your initial email, but most bloggers won’t give a link request from an unknown blogger a second look. Take time to establish a relationship. Comment on his posts so he sees your name. Send him an email telling him how much you liked a recent post and how you used the information.
4. Read the other blog: Get to know the other blogger and read his blog. He’ll be more open to giving you that link if you can show him how your post is relevant to him and his readers.
5. Do the research: Spend 5 or 10 minutes doing a little extra research. If that blogger hangs out on Twitter it might be easier to connect with him there. What types of posts and blogs has he been linking out to lately? Do you have relevant content of the same high-caliber quality?
6. Add value for the other blogger: The first thing he’s going to ask is, “What’s in it for me?” Will linking to your post add value for his readers? Can he legitimately cite you as a reliable source of information and help build his own credibility with his readers?
7. Be relevant: If your post isn’t relevant to his readers don’t even bother asking for a link. It’s just that simple.
8. Promote your best work: Don’t try to get that blogger to link to your recent poor-quality post just so you can give it a boost with some link authority. You’ll be much more likely to get a link if it’s going to the best post on your blog.
9. Scratch his back: If you do get a link, (and even if you don’t) don’t just take it and run. Let that other blogger know you appreciate his help. Send him a guest post for his blog. Promote his content in your own social circles. Send you readers to his blog to leave comments and help engage more readers.
10. Keep moving forward: If you get a link, keep building on the relationship. If he thought you were worthy enough to link to, maybe he’d be willing to accept a guest post or maybe you could help him in some way with promotion or with a project he’s working on. If you don’t get a link, take that as your cue to sharpen your pencil and work on the quality of your content and your blog and try back again once you’ve made some improvements.
11. Always be ready for an incoming link: You never really know who’s going to see your next post and it might just be that A-List blogger you’ve been trying to connect with. The best way to increase your chances of being linked to by a blogger is to always be prepared. Always publish nothing but fresh, unique, high-quality content and you won’t have to beg for links, they’ll automatically come roaring in.