Link Building 101 teaches you to leverage all of your client’s existing relationships. Look for business partners, current vendors, technology partners, employee blogs, customer blogs, and your friends’ friend’s website. After you reach out to all the obvious people, link building gets a lot harder. The easy wins are gone. Now you have to consider things like guest blog outreach, attempt to utilize broken link building or perhaps you just grab as many easy to obtain links as possible. The content within this post falls in the head-smacking tips realm. So simple and obvious.
Find Your Brand’s Hidden Connections
What if there was an entire list of connections for your brand that you didn’t even know existed? An entire set of relationships ready to be built. People, brands and websites that have already endorsed you. You just need to find them and make contact. They will be happy to hear from you.
Social Media is for Building Relationships
Mining social media profiles is a tactic that has been covered a lot. Wil Reynolds and SEER have been preaching this for quite some time. Ethan Lyon has a great post on using Twitter to Build Links (one that I commented on almost a year ago! Time flies). It’s not a new idea, but I still see a big gap out there. People talk about using Twitter, Linked-In, even Quora to look for connections. Yet they miss one obvious giant social network.
Stop Ignoring Facebook for Building Relationships
Most people completely gloss over Facebook. For years, Facebook was so deep-rooted in connecting businesses to consumers that people in the industry don’t effectively utilize it for finding B2B connections (business/brand/blog whatever B you want those to be). Correctly mining Facebook for brand connections is quick and easy, and will lead to a huge set of great leads.
Find Brand Connections via Your Facebook Page
In the example below, I’m going to take a look at one of the Facebook pages I’m an admin of. You need Admin access to the Facebook page to get the information needed. What we’re looking for is the list of Facebook pages that ‘like’ your Facebook page. All names are blacked out for super top-secrecy.
Three Easy Steps to Building Relationships via Facebook
Next, click the drop-down menu to change it from People to Pages. You will now have a large list of other Fan Pages that have endorsed your Facebook page. Most of these pages will have a corresponding website to go with them. This list is the people you want to connect with.
This last screen shot is just an example of the Pages that will show up after you make the switch. The list is no longer full of people, instead full of companies, brands, websites or whatever else a Fan Page may represent. All of the links on this list represent Facebook Pages that have ‘liked’ your own page. Following-up with them is a no brainer.
Is there an Easy Way to Export Facebook Pages that Like Your Page?
No. Not that I know of. If you can hack a way to export the Pages that ‘like’ your Facebook page, I’ll update this post and give you a link. You can highlight, drag and copy and paste the links into an excel sheet. Not the most efficient, but possible.
Update 12/17/12: You can easily export the pages that like your Facebook page using the Scrape Similar plug-in for Google Chrome. Simply right-click on the top page that likes your page and select scrape similar. Then export to a Google doc.
Are these Quality Leads?
Most websites that think it’s a good idea to set-up their own Facebook page are decently established. No one wants to have that Facebook Page out there with 4 total likes. I have a private Facebook page for this site. No need to make it public until I produce a few dozen pieces of good content and the demand for ‘liking’ it on Facebook actually exists. So anyway, I’ve found that most Pages that like your Facebook page have a pretty non-spammy website that has been around for quite some time. Prime link targets.
How Many Leads Will I Get?
Depending on the size of your brand and Facebook following, you should get anywhere from a few hundred to a 1,000+ leads. If your Facebook presence is still starting out you may only get 3-10 new leads. One qualified lead has value to your business. Don’t miss out on these obvious ones.
More Outreach? For Realz?
The next step is to visit these sites, look for contact information and reach out to them. Ask for a link, submit your infographic, pitch a guest post, whatever makes sense. Most of these pages will be in your niche and since they already endorse you on their own, will be happy to work with you.
Working Smarter, Not Harder
Will this technique result in a ton of quick, easy links? No. SEO isn’t quick and easy. It’s hard work. This technique is about working smart. It’s about spending your time contacting more people who will say yes to your pitches and less people who will say no.
The ideas and opinions in this post are entirely my own. Do you use Facebook for link building? If so, leave a comment and let me know how.