What we’ve seen over the recent years is that Google is increasingly favouring larger brands. In Google’s Search Quality Rating Guidelines they state, “Would you recognize this site for an authoritative source when mentioned by name?”
Google determines the actual size of a brandname in comparison to the other parts of the market in the given niche (or a particular keyword group) by checking out what are called Brand Signals; indicators to Google that you will be an authority with your field – that men and women within your market know your identiity and they trust you.
The analogy I usually want to use to spell out link building packages is the one about textbooks…
You do have a number of textbooks inside a field that all have citations and references with other resources, so you are aware that if numerous textbooks in a given field indicate exactly the same resource, it’s a resource which is relevant and high quality.
Exactly the same applies online.
You want references, citations, links, even brand mentions along with other signals… and you need many of these in a way that, a) Google sees, b) Google likes, and c) Google allows.
I really like to make reference to this combination and strategic direction as…
Search Relations (PR for search engines)
Google wishes to provide the best experience for its users, which explains why it would like to rank the big brands for as numerous searches as you can.
To see the actual power of SEO, you have to become among those brands. To achieve that, you should build up your brand awareness so that you reach your audience across multiple resources.
If they’re reading an article in the newspaper linked to your service as well as a company is interviewed, you ought to be that company. If the article in a blog references a niche resource, you ought to be that resource. If you find a summary of providers of your own service somewhere on the related website, you ought to be on that list.
By putting yourself facing your audience and establishing your brand presence in your marketplace, Google will recognise you like a strong brand among your competitors.
That’s where real SEO success can happen.
The unfortunate reality of big brand SEO
The times of personal blogs or small mortgage brokerages ranking for that keyword ‘home loans’ ahead of the largest banks in a country have ended. You can’t pretend to become big brand in SEO anymore and in the rare cases that ‘pretending’ does work, it doesn’t benefit long.
Realistically, this may not be such a bad thing for users – if they’re hunting for a product or service, they must see the firms that get the highest capacity and industry trust for delivering that service or product, like a bank or lender when it comes to ‘home loans’.
So if you’re not one of the strongest brands, you have only 3 options:
Select a different keyword group
Target longer tail, more specific keywords and traffic
Become one of those particular brands
If none of people can be accomplished, pick a different service or purchase non-white-hat SEO at your own risk.
How to become a strong brand that Google favours
If you would like develop into a strong brand that Google favours, you can find three key areas to focus on (dependant upon what exactly is available and applicable for your situation):
Leveraging existing relationships, marketing & resources
Participating in the industry & community
Directly promoting your site content, brand & products/services
Here are 10 samples of each…
1. Leveraging existing relationships, marketing & resources
References from the suppliers – Many product suppliers have lists of their stockists or distributors on the websites, and service providers often list clients or client logos as types of previous work completed. In any case, ask your suppliers or providers to add you on their site within their lists, by using a branded link to your site.
References out of your clients (B2B) – Similarly, many distributors, stockists and clients list their suppliers on their site, sometimes using a profile of your suppliers’ brands. Ask your customers to add you on their website within these lists or like a preferred supplier.
Testimonial contributions – When there is no list with a supplier’s website, they might still include testimonials on their site. If you’re content with them, give you a testimonial to enable them to include on their website using a link to your company.
Leverage radio/TV advertising – Some media outlets have a listing of their advertisers on their site. In case you are advertising with any radio or TV stations, check if they have this feature and be sure you will be in the list.
Leverage other sponsorships – Many businesses that accept sponsorships display the sponsors on their website, generally by using a logo and sometimes using a link. In case your company has or can have any sponsorships – whether charities, organisations, clubs, events etc – be sure to request or confirm the addition of your brand or logo on their site by using a link back to your website.
Non-linked brand citations – As the brand awareness grows and you earn a media presence, your name brand will begin to be mentioned in articles or content and news articles. In case your company is mentioned by a writer or journalist, they are aware your identiity and have already promoted your brand name with their readership, so just why not ask them to alter the existing brand mention to some hyperlink? You can even take advantage of this to build a partnership for future collaborations.
Leverage press releases – While the old bulk press-release-syndication SEO strategy (where your press release is published to some tonne of PR directories haphazardly) should be avoided, there are several high-quality press release websites which are still valuable when your release is newsworthy. Additionally, if you have company news that is certainly worthy of a press release, you are able to get in touch with local or industry journalists who will find it interesting, and perhaps even provide an exclusive interview.
Leverage existing content resources – Find out what content on your website has become successful in past times. If the content has recently generated interest and traction, there is a reason so find in any manner easy to market it further.
Reverse image/Content lookup – If you do have successful content, often key statistics, phrases, charts, tables or images can be re-used or quoted by other writers. Sometimes they might forget to cite you like a source or maybe they actually do site you, they may not backlink to you (similar to non-linked brand citations). Reach out to the authors, thank them for the compliment of using your information and ask them nicely once they would mind including a citation in your original part of content.
Lost link outreach – Most alternative party link analysis tools offer a list of pages that previously linked to your site but for which the page or link is removed. Websites like these have previously related to you in the past so the relationship is established. Reach out to them, discover why they removed the link, what can engage in re-establishing the link or tips on how to come together in the future.
2. Engaging in the industry and community
Scholarships – Education institutions often list any scholarships highly relevant to their students, which can help them financially. Figure out which courses, diplomas and degrees are relevant for careers in or connected with your industry and build a nominal scholarship program for students in those fields. Ensure you do have a description and application page on your own website, then get in touch with the institutions offering those courses to add the scholarship within their listings.
Internships – Similarly, many educational institutions want to have partnerships with companies where they are able to place their students for Work Experience or Internships. A few will list these companies on their site like a sales pitch to take more students in. Furthermore branding, you are able to boost your work capacity with an intern and you will definitely often find some good future employees through internship programs (since we ourselves have realized repeatedly through the years).
Guest speakerships – Many of you will remember at some time or other that a guest speaker stumbled on your school, college, university or TAFE to provide a talk related to the course that you were studying. If you’re an expert with your field and they are comfortable looking at sets of students, offer the services you provide as being a guest speaker to supply insights to the industry or educate them on the specific sub-topic. Many institutions would include guest speakers in addition to their companies inside the course outlines, which are often available on the internet.
Event sponsorships/suppliers – If there are actually any upcoming events inside your industry, in particular for the target audience, contact the celebration organisers to offer you either a sponsorship or, should your goods and services are suitable, to turn into a supplier from the event. Most events provide an online presence and will list their event sponsors and suppliers somewhere on the webpage.
Host an industry event – One challenge, particularly with smaller events, is finding funding to purchase venues. If you cannot offer financial support or supplies, or if perhaps the case is smaller in general, you may offer your facilities to host the big event. You will find that venues are usually listed on event details pages, and so they may link to your Call Us page if this has details on how to arrive.
Charity sponsorships – There are lots of charities that happen to be in urgent need of funding. Leaving aside that each and every company should be giving to the community, some charities will even list sponsors on their website. Locate a charity that may be in step with your enterprise ethos and acquire involved.
Join industry associations – Most industries offer an association of some sort that will require membership from companies, and several of these associations have got a directory with their members. These web sites might be super relevant and, as they offer an application process, have only legitimate businesses listed. You have to be some of those businesses. They could have events coming up that one could become involved in.
Competition prize contributions – On sites like HARO and SourceBottle, people operating in media sometimes list requests for competition prizes to get donated in return for referencing the emblem within the competition ads and channels. When the levels of competition are relevant and can come with an online presence, you can offer services or products as a prize to take advantage of that branding.
Industry forum engagement – Forums obtain a bad rap, but some industries have great forums the location where the community and experts are actually engaged. Develop a real profile to get a real person and initiate participating in the conversations; offer your industry expertise, advice for resolving issues, feedback on comments or questions. Should you publish content, you can also share an overview using a hyperlink to the initial in the new thread and get people for their feedback. Though I do believe it obvious, it’s worth mentioning that you should never spam a forum with links and get away from using your website in your forum signature – even if this could possibly have worked before, you will definately get banned from any good quality forums and overdoing it would likely provide you with issues with Google penalties.
Offer interviews – Bloggers and journalists are often looking for experts to interview on difficult or controversial topics. Keep a lookout on HARO and SourceBottle for requests, as well as get in touch with journalists or bloggers you know to be interested in your area of expert knowledge and give yourself like a source. Some media outlets also have a standing ask for interviews.
3. Promoting your brand, products, services and content to industry resources and influencers
Note that this place of brand promotion is really what most closely resembles SEO of the past, but it ought to be evolved for the present and future.
Linkable content creation & promotion – Put simply, create content that folks in your field would like to hyperlink to. Much like technical onsite SEO, there are many resources available on the internet that discuss creating content that may attract links and ways to promote that content to purchase links. Brian Dean offers a detailed explanation of the items he calls the Skyscraper Technique for creating linkable assets and Noah Kagan undergoes the same strategy but elaborates much more on content promotion.
Egobait aggregator lists content – People like recognition. When you curate a list of the “Top/Best XX Anything”, and will include links to each blog, website, or company in the list, potentially using a snippet or description, you can then reach out to them and make sure they know. Small to medium sized websites especially would like to brag about this, particularly if it’s an award, and might include internet marketing solutions on their website to a list.
Egobait citations/references content – Similarly, you can quote or cite a targeted author within your high-quality happy with a link back to their site, then reach out to them and tell them. They may or may not link to it soon enough, but more often they may share it using their followers and one of these might end up linking with it.
Host webinars – An underrated and underused medium in many industries is video content. If it’s within your capacity, host webinars to coach the industry on difficult topics, or offer beginner sessions. Record and publish these as videos, and even create independent informational videos, and promote the recording as you would some other linkable asset.
Offer sample products for review – Bloggers love free samples and many will review products within their field anyway. Provide a sample in exchange for an impartial (unbiased) review of your products or services published on their website. Obviously here, you have to have an excellent product to obtain maximum enjoy the review.
Blogger relationship building – Identify the best blogs and data resources within your industry. Start engaging because of their content; add valuable comments on their own site; share their content and hyperlink to it where possible; promote them on the social websites profiles. Begin a positive relationship before you decide to demand anything and then, when you have a dialogue, you are able to share your posts and request their feedback, or brainstorm other methods to collaborate.
Social influencer relationship building – Identify the top social profiles and influencers in your industry. Start engaging with them across their social platforms; favourite and retweet their tweets; share and similar to their Facebook posts. Establish a positive relationship before you demand anything then, after you have a dialogue, it is possible to share your site content and request for their feedback, or brainstorm other methods to collaborate.
Industry resource lists – In lots of industries, there are actually lists of providers, suppliers, tools, etc – by way of example on ‘Useful Resources’ pages. If you locate a listing of the competition all using one page, you need to be on that list. Contact the internet site owners and ask them if they would come with you one of the selection of providers. Once they have only a shortlist of the most popular brands, they may not include you, however, many need to have a thorough set of all 94dexmpky providers and you will be pleased to keep the list fresh.
Off-site aggregator lists – Similar to industry resource lists, there are websites or webpages in many industries which can be committed to aggregating specific types of companies or websites. If you have a list connected to your merchandise, services or company type, contact the aggregator and request them what can engage in getting listed. Comparison sites (loans, insurance, accommodation) are an excellent demonstration of aggregator lists, but often it’s as simple as a blog article listing everyone with your field.
Viral competitions/offers – Build a competition or a special offer that is so outrageous people may wish to share it with their social followers. Or, taking it to a higher level, produce a competition or possibly a discount specifically for target bloggers – if the incentive is high enough, it can entice these to share it using their social profiles and backlink to it from their website.
Get creative and decide what will work for you. Audit your resources and make sure you are doing your best with all your marketing channels. Find unique methods for getting involved in your particular niche or industry.