This is a guest post from our friend Mike at Echo-Factory.
Link building is an essential part of a strong SEO strategy. It can feel like one of the most in-the-trenches SEO activities, but a solid reputational base for your site will provide payoffs far into the future. That said, there are lots of different moving parts to a link building campaign, and it can be intimidating even to know where to start; this is a perfect opportunity to use Trigger Systems.
What’s a Trigger System? Glad you asked! In its most basic form, a Trigger System is a marketing and communications plan built around recurring business events that are ready to go before you need it. What makes it special (and the reason we’re so excited to talk about it!) is its flexibility and adaptability, and the efficiencies that are created by thinking through and documenting a communications roadmap that you can use again and again.
If your company is embarking on a link building campaign, think about how helpful it would be to your future self to create a clear and replicable set of tasks that get “triggered” every time you need to build backlinks! Now, think about how you could use that same system to maximize the reach of each type of recurring event your company needs to communicate about.
Below is an example of how you might employ Trigger Systems to help you get the most bang for your marketing buck when your company releases a new white paper.
1. Social media promotion and outreach
Social media can be one of the easiest outlets to amplify the audience for your content — but you need to make sure that you “translate” the value of your content so that it speaks to the audience on each specific platform. This aspect of your plan can include social posts, updated account imagery, and pay-per-click social ads.
2. Outreach to outlets offering related guest posts
If your white paper is as compelling as you wrote it to be, there should be plenty of outlets interested in guest articles exploring similar themes that link back to your original white paper. After all, who would say no to free content? You’ll need to do your research, make a list of outlets, bloggers and publications, create a compelling pitch, and carve out time to create variations of your white paper when you land all those pickups!
3. Email campaigns to your subscriber lists
This is the low-hanging fruit: the people who have already opted into receiving information from/about your company. The folks on your email list are very likely the audience most interested in reading your white paper, but you should still put the same amount of work into “selling” them on clicking through. Successful bloggers create a compelling set of email blasts, thoughtfully written, beautifully designed, and with a clear call to action. And make sure that you create a follow-up email for the people who open the white paper to keep them engaged and provide them with next steps.
4. A link building campaign promoting the new content as a resource for appropriate outlets
Guest posts will offer a good number of backlinks, but they require a lot of upfront work to create. Think through all the audiences that would benefit from the information in your white paper. Then, think through all the outlets that those audiences frequent, and sell those outlets on giving your white paper a brief mention, citing it as a source for engaging statistics or working it into an article on a similar topic.
5. A range of other activities customized to your goals and niche
As we mentioned before, Trigger Systems are (nearly endlessly) flexible and adaptable, so whatever is going to help get your white paper in front of the right audience and get them to click through can be added to your Trigger System. Be thorough, get creative, and make sure you document everything you add so that you’re ready to hit the ground running the next time you need to use your Trigger System!