How to Use Content + Social Media for Link Building

SMS Text

Have you ever wanted to send out a link request to thousands of people without being a spammer? Now you can, thanks to social media. Let’s look at the ways you can use great content + social media to establish trust, build an audience of bloggers who love to link out, get exposure for your link worthy content, and learn how social media really affects your link profile.

Establish Yourself on Social Networks

Whether you are sending out standard link requests, link exchange requests (not advised, but still happens), guest post requests, or any other types of link building correspondence, you will have more success if the webmasters and bloggers see you as a real person, not a nameless, faceless link builder. Simply including a link to your Twitter or Google+ profile in an email signature adds a personal element to your request, giving the recipient a chance to check you out and learn more about you.

For email recipients using Gmail, this is especially true as emails are connected to Google+ profiles, making it easy for Gmail users to spot a real person vs. someone who is using a throwaway email. Note that your Google+ profile picture and latest updates make a big difference for Gmail users – just having an account doesn’t cut it as this is what they will get.

interest to guest post

Build a Network of Bloggers

As you are building your social audience on Twitter, Google+, and other networks you set up, aim for bloggers in verticals that align with the websites you are building links to. Google likes editorial links, and there’s no better in-content link than those that come naturally from bloggers. Note that I didn’t say blog networks like the ones Google has shut down lately, but links from real bloggers.

Aim for bloggers that are active on Twitter, retweet others often, and engage directly with others. You can start your search using the Followerwonk profile search for your vertical keywords plus blogger, blog, etc.

insurance blogger

You can perform a similar keyword search to find blogging connections on Google+. As you build this audience, be sure to engage with them and retweet / share their posts often. The more bloggers that have you on their radar, the more links you are likely to receive.

Create Content for Particular Social Networks

The more social visibility you get on social networks, the better your chances are of getting links to your content. Try creating content in your verticals that will be instant winners on particular social networks like The Top 50 People Tweeting About _____ and 25 Great Google+ Communities on _____. Topics like those tend to do well on their related social network.

Make Your Content Shareworthy

Don’t just expect your content to do well based on your own promotion. Help your content out by making it easily shareable on social networks by using social sharing buttons. WordPress users can install the Digg Digg plugin to quickly add a variety of social sharing buttons to their posts and pages. No matter what you use, make sure your plugin includes the official Twitter, Facebook, and Google +1 button.

Share in Social Network Groups

Expand the reach of your content even further by sharing your content in social network groups – Facebook groups, LinkedIn groups, and Google+ communities in particular. Check the rules or latest activity for the groups you join first. If you see lots of content sharing, and those shares tend to have reactions (likes, +1’s, comments, reshares, etc.), then it’s a safe bet that the content you share (assuming it’s relevant and quality) will get noticed.

While there are many tools to post updates to your social media accounts, there aren’t many to post to social groups. Oktopost is a great tool to post status updates to LinkedIn groups and see click stats. PlumSocial supposedly helps you update your Facebook groups, but their website is confusing and their own Facebook is auto-updated and covered in spam, so I can’t guarantee this is a legit tool.

Reach Out to Bloggers Who Link Out Often

Recap posts are popular in the online marketing industry, and probably in other verticals as well. Some examples of recap posts include SearchCap, Marketing Day, Fresh Pressed, 5 Links, Fetching Friday, Brilliant Bloggers, and SEO Content Marketing Roundup.

Find the bloggers who post regular recap posts like the examples above and really start engaging with them. If you create quality content, chances are those bloggers will start to notice your content and will start to link to you.

If you get to know the blogger behind the recap really well, and you have a piece of content that you know they will love, you can even make a personal request via their contact form to consider your content for their next recap. Aim to send your request as soon as your content starts getting social traction from other social promotion. This way, the blogger will see that the content has a lot of shares already, making it irresistible for their recap.

See How Social Affects Links

So does creating link worthy content and then promoting it on social media really help increase the number of links to your website? Now you can find out. CognitiveSEO has added social visibility analysis that looks at your number of incoming referring domains vs. the social shares of your pages on Twitter, Facebook, and Google+.

referring domains

You will also find charts for the total number of social shares your website has received, the pages with an increased number of social shares within a specific time period, the pages with the most number of social shares throughout your website, and the individual networks vs. referring domains. You can also sort a full chart by number of shares each social network and referring domains.

number of social shares

This can help you determine if ongoing social sharing is making a difference on your link profile. It can also help you easily monitor the success of your content on social media.

How do you use link worthy content and social media to attain more links? Please share in the comments!

Kristi Hines
Kristi Hines is a freelance writer, ghostwriter, and blogger who develops high-quality content for businesses.
Kristi Hines
Kristi Hines
Get the latest news from Search Engine Journal!
We value your privacy! See our policy here.
  • Great post, Kristi. Lotta good advice in there that I definitely need to do more of! The one thing I do try to do regularly, is remember to @mention on Twitter or Facebook, any users that I’ve referred to in the article. They don’t always respond, but a decent number of times they will share my article and help move it along.

    • I used to do mentions with my Fetching Friday posts on Twitter of people in the posts. It ultimate led a lot of people to write about the series and garnered a nice little set of backlinks. 🙂

      • Hi! Kristi I love your contents, I just learnt from you about link building. Thanks a lot.

  • Great Post Kristi!
    I read quite a few of your post on various sites and you always offer practical advice, so people can really get going with the blog promotion.
    I am currently looking into link building for bloggers in this post penguin/panda era and I am looking forward to checking out some of the sites and tools you mention here. Thanks!
    I think link building is still an important part of promoting your blog, except, like you say, it is now requires a personal/human touch not just faceless link reciprocating.

    • Yes, link building is definitely important. I like to think if you are building links with the goal of traffic back to your blog, you’ll simultaneously be building links with strong SEO value.

  • Hi Kristi,

    Thank you for sharing this great post. I agree with you. The more social visibility you get on social networks, the better your chances are of getting links to your content.


  • I love to use Followerwonk because i can
    “Compare your social graph to competitors, friends, or industry leaders.”

  • Its really interesting post about content + social media and link building

    Thanks for Sharing Kristi Hines 🙂

  • Emilio E.

    Great article @Kristi Hines!

    Lots of great advice on best practice on acquiring back links on a more natural way. This article would be beneficial to any individual looking for ways to start a link building strategy. I know I have found it very useful, it has provided me with ideas I have not thought of before. I applaud you on a structured article, thanks for sharing your knowledge.

  • Give links to get links! Not that everyone you link out to will notice or link back, but many bloggers are more inclined to include a post in their roundup if they can also get a link out of the deal as well. When you help someone build up their own brand/social presence more often than not they are happy to return the favor.

  • Great post Kristi! Raz and his team over at cognitiveSEO are straight geniuses. I highly recommend checking out cognitiveSEO if you haven’t already.

    Content creation + social sharing = natural link building

  • Hey!

    Good writing you got there. Thanks for sharing. I really enjoyed the part you talked about retweet and check on those who RT a lot.

    Very good idea indeed.



  • Great article kristi ! But i must ask will this method of link building increase your ranking for long term or short?

  • Great Post Kristi!

    Very helpfull and very innovative idea . Thanks for sharing Seo insights .

  • Link building is the fuel for your site. It will come in handy when you will get organic traffic.
    Thanks for the great post Kristi!

  • Great tips thanks for sharing! We are currently exploring the relationships between link building, community outreach, blogger relations and PR tactics, like you mention here with creating relationship with recap bloggers.

  • Thank you for this article, really got my attention. I’ve been using this strategy without even thinking at it, specially on the Google+. After analyzing i found out that over 100 people followed me from some posts in a page!!

  • I could not agree with you more that today’s link building strategies are unthinkable without proper level of social media visibility. With today’s tough competition, building connections online is as important as creqting quality content and products.

  • waw, thank you so much mrs. Kristi Hines

  • thank you for the article, I agree to smarten website by creating good content, social media and link building
    once again thank you Mrs. Kristi Hines