Ask an SMXpert: Link prospecting and helpful tools to manage outreach



An expert in PPC and content-led link building campaigns, Paddy Moogan, co-founder of Aira, was a panelist for the “How To Drive Inbound Links In The Age Of Content Skeptics” panel discussion during SMX East. There were a lot of questions from attendees about link building tools and strategies and he took some time after the event to answer a few more.

1. What have you found to be the most effective tools to manage link building outreach?

Moogan: At Aira, we still rely a lot on Google Sheets and have a few customer formulas/scripts which allow the team to effectively collaborate on outreach campaigns. We also use BuzzStream for some campaigns and are currently looking at expanding our use of that across several teams. We also use Streak to help monitor when emails have been read and opened and some of the team use Boomerang to schedule emails.

2. What tools do you use to determine the quality of a site you want to request a link from? Particularly interested when it comes to influencers/bloggers. Is a high number of page views enough?

Moogan: A lot of our link prospecting is manual which means that a member of the team manually checks and reviews a website before we add it to our outreach list. This means that the quality of the websites we add to outreach lists are naturally very high without the need for metrics or tools. We do use the Moz Bar to keep an eye on Domain Authority but that’s more a rough guide to the quality of a website and we don’t stick to exact numbers too much.

3. Have you seen email addresses using a client domain have better results in outreach?

Moogan: We haven’t seen too much of a difference when we’ve used a client’s email domain instead of our own. Most of our clients don’t require us to use their own domain and as a result, the default is to use our aira.net email addresses which so far, doesn’t appear to have held us back at all.

4. Do you believe we need to concentrate more on social shares instead of “traditional” link building from websites? Like 25% on social shares and 75% on links?

Moogan: It depends what your goal is and what industry your client operates in. Social shares can be great for brand awareness and for some consumer industries in particular, they can be good for generating good traffic. When it comes to link building, I think a good chunk of time needs to be spent on it if organic search is a key channel for you and you want it to grow over time.

5. Do you feel that evergreen content will ever become oversaturated with major pubs like Guardian and Refinery29 investing more in it?

Moogan: I don’t think so as long as the quality of the content remains high. Evergreen content is all about depth, quality and relevance and if you’re nailing all of these, then your content will stand out amongst others, even in a saturated market. So there is a danger that things will become very saturated, but the same was said with infographics and they can still work well if the quality is high.

Search Engine Land’s SMX West, the go-to event for search marketers, returns to San Jose Jan. 30-31. The agenda, packing more than 50 world-class speakers, teaches you actionable search marketing tactics you can implement immediately to drive more awareness, traffic and conversions.

About The Author

Wendy Almeida is Third Door Media’s Community Editor, working with contributors for Search Engine Land, Marketing Land and MarTech Today.

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