I was chuffed to bits to be back at BrightonSEO a few days ago talking about securing links before you go and invest in expensive content production.
For anyone interested, the slides are here:
Securing Your Links Before Producing Your Content – Stacey MacNaught -BrightonSEO September 2018 from Stacey MacNaught
A very concise version of the talk:
- Outreach failure is common. Only around a quarter of people I surveyed say they hit their outreach targets “all the time,” or “often.”
- Failure can happen before content production, during or after but by improving things beforehand, you can at least save the expensive design, copy and maybe even development resource required to bring your content to life
- In most of the particularly successful pieces I’ve worked on, lots of the key coverage originated from an interest acquired before production
- Before you produce content, you should have validated your idea (ideally with journalists or people you’d want to share your content), gotten journalists interested already and devised a really thorough email list
- One of the most common causes of failure in outreach is misunderstanding the target audience of the publications you want to feature on. Use media kits to help you truly uncover insight about audience that you can use when pitching the publication
- Some media kits also include feature calendars that would even go as far as telling you the most important topics for these publications at any given time of the year
- Contact journalists early on in the process and get feedback on your ideas. This often results in really great snippets of information that help you to improve your ideas. Similarly, it can help you to avoid potential mistakes. I shared a few examples of this
- Approaching journalists shouldn’t feel like asking someone for a favour. If you’ve got a good story and you’re targeting the right people with it, then there’s something in it for the writer too. They’re in the stories trade, after all.
- Read this book. It will help you no end in approaching journalists. And just in getting your way in general.
- Consider the long term demand and potential for the piece self generating links over time
- Consider whether you really need to create content to achieve the link goals you want to achieve
- Don’t rely on one single method to acquire links