Despite many mistakes, I’ve managed to rank for some okay keywords, lots of long tail keywords and even managed to attract a good number of powerhouse links from top-tier sites (no outreach or guest blogging).
How did I attract those powerhouse links?
It boils down to 2 types of content.
The first type is research based.
The second type is… get this… images.
While the first type can be done in any niche. The second type is awesome because it can be used to attract links directly to affiliate promotion content (not an easy feat to achieve naturally).
1. Research data-driven content
I want to focus on the first approach – the research approach because anyone can do it and it can be done in any niche.
The content that worked for me was researching the cost of something related to my niche.
Pricing and costs are data points that are included in articles related to the niche.
The thing is, you want to be able to come up with accurate cost data based on your research.
Let me illustrate with an example:
- Niche: Personal finance
- Research data: Cost of getting a Last Will & Testament drawn up by a lawyer in the USA.
- How to get the data: Call a few law firms in each state asking the cost of getting a will drawn up.
- Target Keyword: “How much does a will cost” (Ahrefs.com reports 1,100 monthly search volume with $3.50 per click. Plenty of additional keywords. Ahrefs.com keyword difficulty is only 11).
I know you’re thinking that the search volume isn’t high. You’re right. I wouldn’t get too excited ranking for that. But, you can promote will kits as an affiliate (they pay well).
Ads will pay well. Most importantly, if you attract a pile of excellent links, you can link from this article to other articles on your site.
Getting that data will require at least 200 phone calls to law firms around the country which isn’t a ton of fun. But if you set up your spreadsheet correctly, you could come up with a lot of awesome data points. Moreover, this could very easily be outsourced and shouldn’t take longer than 2 days.
Here’s what I would assess:
- Cost of the Will (average and median).
- By state (average and median)
- Rural vs. urban (for each state and nationwide)
- Size of law firm (not number of lawyers on website when getting the phone number).
You could publish a terrific data-focused article. Include a map graphic or even an interactive map. Toss in a video, slideshow and infographic and you have the makings of an amazing linkable asset.
Finally, be sure to explain how the data was obtained. This is important because it adds credibility to the data. The fact you contacted 200+ law firms is compelling evidence.
Invest time in making the post look amazing and include all the multi-media.
Once published, search in Google “how much does a will cost”. Note down all websites that cover the topic but don’t have any solid research. I checked a few of the sites and many don’t have solid research backing up the statistic. This is where your post could be an excellent reference because you did the research.
Then expand your Google search to “will” related articles. Contact those sites notifying them of your article.
If you have an infographic or some form of media the other sites can use, offer it to them.
Works in so many niches
My Last Will & Testament example could work in many niches. That article could be published on a parenting blog, personal finance website, real estate website, investing website, mommy blog, law blog, tax info blog, etc. because a Will is relevant to many aspects of life.
2. Using Images to attract links
I’ve attracted a lot of links to my sites because of images. I don’t do outreach. I don’t do guest posts. I do nothing except get the images. Better yet, I use images to get links to content blatantly promoting affiliate products.
Here’s how you do it.
Step 1: Buy physical products you promote
Suppose you’re promoting a physical product such as a high end blender. What you do is you buy it and take loads of excellent photos.
Use some of the photos for your site.
But take extra photos so you can offer “never-published” unique product photos to other publishers that mention or write about that blender. If they’re using a photo provided by the manufacturer, perhaps you can offer close-ups and different angles.
Since it costs nothing to get hundreds of photos other than the cost of the product, you can get 5 or 6 of each angle and offer unique photos to several publishers in exchange for a link.
Step 2: Create a dedicated Pinterest board for that product
You want get the images out there. If the product is Wonder Blender 3000X (made up name), create a Pinterest board showcasing 15 to 30 images of that blender that you took. Of course link to your site.
Publishers yank images from Pinterest all the time and most will provide you link attribution.
Step 3: Reverse image look up
Just to be sure no publisher is using your images without providing a link, do a reverse image search (try TinEye as well) to see if it’s been used. If so, that’s great news. Just ask that the publisher link to you as the source. Do not go in with blazing guns threatening to sue blah blah blah. Be super nice, but also firm that you do require an attribution link.