Link Building expert Garrett French asked if I was interested in the Ontolo.com “Link Building Interview Project.” I thought it would be fun, so here goes.
Day-to-Day Link Building Questions
- As an inhouse SEO, what are your top 5 most important link building tasks and responsibilities? There isn’t 5, there are 2. Two tasks. 1. Get good high quality link prospects and 2. Get them to link to us.
- What, if any, link building tasks would you be comfortable outsourcing?
I would outsource the service of getting the other sites to link to us as long as I know they are good sites.
- How much of your time is spent on link building related tasks on a day to day basis?
Between article writing, directories, and site communications, I average about 2 hours a day.
Link Building Tool Questions
- What are your top 5 most important link building tools?
Yahoo Site Explorer (reviewing competitors backlinks) and our Social Media Manager (building relationships with site owners and discovering new sites/technologies related to our industry). Luckily I have one of the best Social Media Managers, Chris Moody, to help with this.
- What are the most valuable tasks or functions of existing link building tools that you couldn’t live without?
Yahoo Site Explorer
- What are the biggest let-downs of link building tools you have used or currently use?
Accuracy and redundancy. Pain trying to weed out sites you are not interested in.
Inhouse Link Building Campaign Design Questions
- If a fellow inhouse SEO asked for help in developing a link building campaign, what questions would you ask them?
What terms are they looking to rank for, what is the vertical, are there any major brands or authority site partners, how much time will you be able to devote to linkbuilding, do we have a team of SEO copywriters.
- What link building tactics work better for inhouse SEOs than agency link builders? Why?
I think product knowledge is the advantage here. In some industries, I am currently in telecom, it is very difficult to explain VOIP, SIP Trunking, and other terms to an agency. For us, inhouse may be best. For another company that does not have as complex products/services or ability to hire an in house staff for these specialized functions, an agency may be best.
- As an inhouse SEO, what link building techniques have you found that scale (if any…)?
Finding the right converting keywords and dissecting the competitors that are ranking for those individual terms. Deep linking, not just for the homepage.
Internal Credibility and Influence Questions
- Can you describe techniques or tactics you’ve used to grow your internal trust and credibility with colleagues?
I give them an option. I say to them:
”This is your last chance. After this, there is no turning back. You take the blue pill – the story ends, you wake up in your bed and believe whatever you want to believe. You take the red pill – you stay in Wonderland and I show you how to deep link and rank websites.”
- How do you get colleagues to perform tasks related to link building?
Education. You have to explain to the employees involved why link building is important and train them to identify quality backlinking opportunities. Once the campaign is executed, the results will speak for themselves.
- How have you grown your colleagues’ ability to identify and act on link opportunities?
Again, education. Understanding SEO and link building is the key. If they understand, they will come to you with opportunities you may have never thought of.
- What metrics do you use to convey link building success to upper management?
Showing the baseline, number of backlinks what starting and showing the rankings compared to top competitors. Then showing the rank increases and number of new backlinks.
What Crucial Questions Did We Miss?
- What questions did we leave out? What are your answers to these questions?