SEO

10 Ways All Employees Can Contribute to Link Building

It’s not a hidden secret that link building is an essential part of SEO, but how you go about building links can make a huge difference in your organic visibility. Having your company buy into the fact that actively building links to your site can help your bottom line can help make your efforts a lot easier. Instead of having an in-house SEO or marketing department focused on link building, why not leverage the power of the entire company and have everyone contribute.

Roles and Responsibilities

Depending on each department within your company and each employees roles and responsibilities, everyone will play a different part in your link building. Let’s break down different departments within an organization and see how each can help with the execution.

Management/Executives

Your upper management will most likely not have the time to do the grunt work or heavy lifting of your link building. However they can provide direction and guidance into industry websites, key influencers, and overall messaging that will help with the messaging and places to acquire links from. Your executive team usually will have a key role in business development, so use their name and position in the industry for helping to finding opportunities and building links. We will discuss how in a bit.

Subject Matter Experts

If you add up all of the knowledge across your entire organization, that can be extremely powerful…you just need to know how to maximize it. Product Managers, Department Heads, and Specialists all have expert knowledge in their specific field of expertise. The idea is to get their knowledge and thoughts out on the web.

Administrative

Admins usually are in charge of a lot of the day-to-day tasks and heavy lifting. Depending on the structure of your company, admins or interns can be a perfect fit for helping to promote content on the web and building the actual links.

Types of Link Building Content

1. Presentation Decks

If an employee creates a presentation deck or slideshow, spread that content across the web. If it was presented at a conference, see if they will add it to the appropriate section of the conference website. Submit it to sites like Scribd and Docstoc, post it on your blog, social bookmark it, share it on your twitter and facebook profiles. It may be that an executive or subject matter expert created this content, however someone like an admin could market it. The person that created the presentation should be aware that the content could be great link bait and to pass it off to someone that has more time to market and promote it.

2. Event/Seminar/Conference Participation

When employees participate in different industry events, usually there will be a website or page that gives more information about the event. Ensure that the website has all of the correct information about your company and the employee contributing. See if you can control the anchor text of the link pointing back to your site. Promote the fact that an employee from your company is speaking or participating at the event. Use different event websites, tweet it, tell other friends in the industry, etc.. to help spread the word.

3. Personal Profiles/Blogs

Now days, I’m sure many employees have their own personal website or blog. Encourage them to add a brief snippet about the company and a link back to the site. Also try and get all employees to create accounts on places like Linkedin, Facebook, Twitter and link to the company site.

4. Leverage Employee Networks

Everybody knows someone. Try to tap into your employees networks to see if there are opportunities to acquire links. Maybe someone is a member of the local chamber, is part of an organization, runs a directory, etc… See if there are ways you can get free marketing and inbound links.

5. Website Opportunities

It may seem almost too simple, but employees are visiting lots of websites whether they are at work or at home. If you consistently reinforce people to look for opportunities to gain a link, market the website, promote the company…by all means make sure they tell someone within the company about it.

6. Expert Article

Pull together company experts and create an authoritative article, whitepaper, or piece of content that can be a great form of linkbait.

7. Guest Blogging

Reach out to industry bloggers and see if they accept guest posts. If you setup a internal blogging schedule, try to work posts for guest blogs into the mix. The best results I have noticed is if the marketing department or admins spend the time reaching out to the these bloggers who accept posts, while subject matter experts focus strictly on writing posts. This helps to break up responsibilities and makes it easier to create more great content.

8. Blog/Forum Participation

Some employees already do this, but encourage employees to read industry blogs and forums. Not only encourage them to read these sites, but to participate. Ask them to leave insightful comments or answer a question someone may have about the industry. If people are going to take the time to stay up-to-date with their industry, you may as well maximize that time by asking them to contribute and act as an industry leader.

9. Re-purpose Old Content

If you company has been around for a while, you probably have tons of content just sitting around (in both electronic and hard copy formats). See what you can dig up and try to repurpose it. Gather all of your hard copy articles and content and put them into electronic format. Work that content into your blog and content submission sites.

10. Social Media

Encourage all employees to engage on social media sites like Facebook, Twitter, and Linkedin. If you launch a new blog post, have all employees share that content with their network of friends. Socially bookmark the content in hopes it goes viral on places like Digg, StumbleUpon, Reddit, and Delicious.

Constantly connect with people in your industry. If employees attend networking events, encourage them to start following the people they met on Twitter, Facebook and Linkedin. Create a Social Media Monitoring plan and respond to people talking about your company, products, and industry.

I think that everyone needs to be a marketer to some degree. It does not necessarily mean that is going to be your full-time job, but it does mean that you need to keep in the back of your mind, how you can help market and promote the company.

 10 Ways All Employees Can Contribute to Link Building
Mark Thompson is the creator of StayOnSearch, a blog dedicated to Marketing Professionals, SEO's, and Business Owners. He also is the President of Search Creatively, an Internet Marketing and Consulting company.

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18 thoughts on “10 Ways All Employees Can Contribute to Link Building

  1. awesome article and most of the points would require maybe an extra 1-2 hours a week, so breaking tasks up to different departments means its not all down to the PR or marketing team and people in the company feel more involved in what is happening.

    just have clear rules about spam, last thing you want is a good intention of an overactive staff member turning into a blog war or being flagged and reported as a spammer….

  2. It really depends on the company, companies that are not as tech savvy will really struggle with the concept and not know where the line is drawn between link building and spamming. Although it is definatley good to spread the tedious job of link building, we share this out in our team as well as keeping the blog up to date.

  3. These are excellent ideas for link building. I do agree with Joanne that not only are some companies not as tech savvy and also you would need to have someone in charge of setting messaging and monitoring activity (even if it is just to circle back and make sure folks are participating and if not why not).

  4. Nice article, Mark. Not only will employees contribute to link building using these methods, but will also become brand ambassadors who increase company awareness and can act as customer service should they run across something negative. As long as the organization has a online/social media policy in place, I see no reason why all employees shouldn't be engaged in these link building strategies.

  5. Wow, pretty clever post! These are excellent ideas. It is much more powerful when you have a team of people working toward the goal. This provides great link diversity and will explode your serp results in time. Bookmarked!

  6. I guess I am the the only negative guy here, but I found this to be pretty much:

    9. Re-purpose Old Content

    If you take away #1 (Presentation Decks) there is not even a slightly innovative idea in the bunch.

    I know there is a publish or perish mentality in SEO but I would really like to see some fresh insights!

  7. That will surely add some value to my strategy of link building I'm putting together right now. Even making employees aware of the impact of links and overall online knowledge sharing would provide some good results, they don't necessarily need to be active in the field. But when the opportunity comes, it should be leveraged.

  8. There are no easy ways to get staff to actually do all these things, however, if you stick at it, they will eventually get into the habit of pro-active SEO and you will see the benefits pretty quickly.

    Good Post!

  9. I really am impressed with how much you have worked to make this website so enjoyable. Thanks a lot for your effort. Many thanks to the person who made this post, this was very informative for me. Please continue this awesome work.