So what comes to your mind when you think about link building? Directory submissions, link baits, link exchanges..?

Recently, there was this client of mine who had a wonderful website. It was beautifully designed, good layout, good linking pattern and all that. Onsite optimization was really good on the site. He would easily score a 9/10 on it. So why did he approach me?
He was running short of links. Incoming links that is. The client was already aware of the SEO metrics and suggested me that we go ahead with a link building strategy and source as many links as possible.

Now, in such cases the normal tendency is to go about link hunting. Ask/beg people for links, submit to directories etc. Well, this I’d call is the PUSH STRATEGY.

Some common characteristics of the PUSH strategy are.

- You already have rich content on your website.
- You go about marketing it to anyone and everyone.
- You beg for links to others.
- You submit to directories/ blog comments.
- You get good traffic.

Now there’s nothing wrong with this strategy except for the fact that its a short lifecycle, and you get no or less value to your business.

Imagine this, you have an “Online magazine” which has got amazing content. Now when you go about doing the “Push” strategy what happens is that you build traffic, you interact with the rest of the world, you get the attention you want. But all this happens outside your site. Right? And that’s where you miss the point.

You do everything to let people know of your product, and you get the attention you deserve. But what happens after that? The whole traffic is at your site and you “assume” that people will like your content. Does that ring a bell?

Not necessarily. Now that you’ve invited everyone to your site, all of them needn’t like the content on your site. They wont.

The problem here is “Null Targeting”

Coming back to the example. Your online magazine would’ve been a women oriented one, but while you were marketing your mag through link building, directories and all that, you missed a point. You went ahead calling everyone to your site and that included women, men, seniors …..and the like. So the traffic you got (although in good numbers, wasn’t the most appropriate one for you).

And what’s the result? An increased bounce rate.

Now, in my opinion, the best strategy in such cases would be a PULL STRATEGY rather than a PUSH STRATEGY. Let me explain.

A pull strategy is one where you focus on developing value on your site and naturally allow it to travel places.

In the online magazine example, what could’ve been a better strategy?

Stage 1
Study your target.
Who are they? (In this case, women)
Where can you find them? (Facebook/Orkut/Myspace?)
What content are they consuming right now?
What are the channels they subscribe to?

Stage 2
More time and focus should be given on developing value content (a.k.a kickass content).
Brainstorm with the team and develop viral content that matches with the content your target prefers consuming.
Make sure that once the traffic is here, you have all the content to “engage the visitor”.
Develop tools to subscribe the new visitors. (RSS, Video Channels, Email subscriptions, Facebook applications)

Stage 3
Go to the places or communities where your target is.
Go about delivering your viral content to them.
Spread it.
Do it again.

- Increased traffic (not one time traffic but recurring traffic)
- Reach to the right audience.
- Less bounce rate.
- Increased subscriptions.
- A complete vicious circle of target to conversion ratio.

So, essentially the point is, instead of wasting  time on pushing your content to the wrong target, go about developing value focussed on your target and naturally allow it to travel with a little bit of push through the channels and you’ll see better results, time and again.

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  1. That’s a valuable guide, and quite an accurate version of what’s been happening with my blog. I’d join the latest craze, experience a huge pike in traffic and then it tapers off into the usual handful of hits per day. I do believe my content is of fairly high quality, there’s just not much demand for it.

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  2. Another Great Post! I find myself doing quite a few of these things, not always successfully or to the extent I should be, I am glad to see your list in print. It really helped clarify several things I was thinking about.

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  3. I hope your new pull strategy becomes real popular. It sounds much better than the push strategy. Thanks for putting a name to this much more effective process.

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  4. The point we all miss mostly is when we fail to engage the visitors while we are busy attracting everyone to the site.

    More time spent on developing good content surely pays off much better.

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  5. Good post. I have found something new about the SEO.

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