How to Build Backlinks, Gain Referral Traffic & Establish Thought Leadership


Quality backlinks are the key to getting a consistent stream of referral traffic. Here, Vinati Kamani, content writer at CurveBrea, guides you in formulating a rewarding content strategy for building links that bring organic traffic while establishing you as a thought leader within your niche.

The more content you produce, the more likely you are to get traffic.

This marketing myth is quite prevalent in the industry but things rarely work out this way.

A well thought out strategy is needed to ensure that the content you produce generates impact, reaches the intended audience and ultimately contributes to your business’ bottom line by generating conversions and ultimately revenue. Establishing yourself as a thought leader within your niche is going to be a by-product of this method.

An organic link building strategy needs to be in place to ensure that your content gets adequate backlinks to rank, gains referral traffic, and actually delivers results while establishing your thought leadership within the industry.

While it may feel unrealistic to expect so many returns from a single strategy, it is actually an achievable goal when implemented correctly. There are several link building strategies you can experiment with for building backlinks to your blog but when you want to ensure that you get maximum returns with minimum efforts, there is only one strategy that can deliver the results.

Learn More: Three Ways Content Intelligence Can Benefit Your BusinessOpens a new window

How to Build Backlinks: A Step-By-Step Guide

Formulating an effective link building strategy for generating referral traffic and building authority is key. Backlinks are the secret sauce for ensuring that your content ranks in the search engine’s results page. Here is a step by step guide for building backlinks, generating referral traffic and establishing yourself as a thought leader within the industry.

1. Have a Content Strategy That Converts

Building backlinks to your website is a futile exercise if the referral traffic that yo`u generate does not convert and provides real business value. Revenue generation has to be at the core of every marketing strategy you formulate and content is no exception to that.

Understanding the buyer’s journey and mapping content to each stage of the marketing funnel- from awareness to consideration and finally, the decision phase is a sign of a solid content strategy but according to a research studyOpens a new window , only 41 percent of marketers are actually doing it.

Conversion optimized landing pages that target the bottom of the funnel, buy-intent keywords are the pages that need to rank for ensuring that your content strategy generates a stream of predictable revenue. Building backlinks to these pages is the surest way to get them to rank but here’s the catch- building links to landing pages can prove to be a tough nut to crack.

Create content layers over the landing pages by building content pieces around the middle of funnel keywords targeting customers who are in the consideration phase of their buyer journey. This not only drives organic traffic, but it also makes it easier for marketers to build backlinks to the website.

Keyword research needs to be the framework of your content strategy. You don’t want to be publishing piece after piece of content in the hopes that it would eventually rank. Having a conversion-focused keyword and content strategy that organically drives visitors down your marketing funnel and brings in a constant and predictable stream of revenue is what hockey stick growth strategy is all about.

2. Know Your Target Audience’s Pain Points

Know who you are targeting before coming up with a marketing strategy. This is one of the most basic rules for any marketing discipline, yet surprisingly, many marketers miss out on this. If you are pushing out one generic piece of content after another expecting to build backlinks organically that actually bring in revenue, your efforts are not likely to bring the desired results.

The problem of proceeding without establishing the audience personas is that you are casting too wide a net to really see any results. You need to know your audience before strategizing for them.

Know who is it that you are going to be writing for, determine the problems they are facing, discover the questions they are looking to be answered, and analyze their pain points. This research takes precedence over everything else.

3. Write Quality Content Pertaining to This Audience

Once you have discovered what your customers are searching for, the next step forward is providing it to them. Perform competitor research to discover what information already exists, find out the gaps and then create content to fill those gaps.

Publishing well-researched informational content pieces is one of the best methods to ensure organic or natural link building but that happens only when the domain authority of your website is already high.

Building backlinks for high authority industry publications is the way forward to ensure that your content actually ranks for white hat SEO techniques to be effective and organic link building to take place.

The content that you write needs to nurture the readers at every stage of the buyer’s journey by giving them access to the information they are looking for and get them to convert.

4. Build Backlinks from High Authority Industry Publications

Once you have linkable content on your blog that adds value for your readers, the next step is ensuring that it reaches them. Building relevant backlinks from high authority industry publications is key to that.

There may be several publications which accept guest blogs but identifying and targeting the ones which would result in high-quality backlinks is crucial for the success of your strategy. Pick the publications that target the same audience as you for ensuring a stream of referral traffic that is relevant to you and would likely be interested in your offerings.

Once you have a list of publications that are relevant to you, drop them a message showing your interest in writing for them. In my experience, I have found both emails or social media platforms like LinkedIn are equally effective in getting responses. Keep the pitch brief, get to the point in the minimum words required and make sure you add samples of your previously published content to maximize your chances of getting a positive response.

Pitch 2-3 topics for the publications to choose from based on keyword research. Medium difficulty, high volume, middle of the funnel keywords are the ideal choice for generating a high volume of referral traffic to your own blog.

Contextual linking to further value-adding content to your own blog from the articles you write as guest posts not only brings you relevant organic traffic but it also goes on to build your authority within your niche, thus establishing you are a thought leader.

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Establishing Thought Leadership

By formulating an effective content outreach and link building strategy, you automatically bridge the gap for becoming a go-to resource for your audience and start your journey to establish yourself as a thought leader. Thought leadership is an ongoing process that organically establishes your authority. To accomplish that, the content you create needs to set you apart from the rest.

How do you rise above the noise and make your voice heard? Simply by adding comprehensive content and adding your unique perspective.

You need to build the audience’s trust in your expertise and the best way to do that is to provide them with better answers to their questions. Having a solid conversion-focused strategy behind the content you produce not only builds quality backlinks for your website but it also generates relevant referral traffic while simultaneously building your authority as a thought leader.