If you’ve never worked for a client who also has other people doing the same thing you do, just wait…you will. For particularly large or especially competitive link campaigns, it has become more commonplace for a company to try various options, sometimes all at once.
While covering several angles is definitely a smart marketing move, it also can lead to a bit of confusion on the part of each person involved as to how exactly to determine whether or not results (good or bad) have come from his or her own specific efforts. Hopefully your client is measuring ROI as well, but it’s definitely best if you do keep track of your own results.
Before becoming involved with something of this nature, you might want to ask a few questions in order to determine whether this is the type of link building that you feel comfortable doing. Considering the mess that can come about from a poorly executed cooperative link building effort, you’ll want to make sure that you keep the following 10 tips in mind if you’re considering this.
1. Determine whether a group link building effort is the right fit for you.
It may not be something that you’re comfortable doing, for whatever reason. If you have expectations in place (such as open communication and honesty) then you may find it difficult to deal with this situation if you’re not “allowed” to speak to other parties. In some cases, you won’t have a clue that others are working on the same campaign, for example. If this isn’t something you can handle, don’t get involved. If you are involved and then find out after the fact, just do your best to work around it, or, if you feel that you have to, lose the client.
2. Establish which methods are being employed by others, and let everyone know which ones you’ll be using.
If you’re lucky enough to have a smart client, this should be a well-planned link campaign where everyone brings a different strength to the table, but it’s best not left to chance.
3. Work together.
For example, if one team is doing a big content release and you’re working on emailing and asking for links, time it so that you’re pointing to their new content. For large campaigns, you can move faster if there are more hands on deck. If you can work together, you benefit from bouncing ideas off each other. There can be several different types of link building going on at once (content writing, social media promotions, emailed link requests, etc.)
Some people excel at different forms of link building than others, and if you put together an ace team, your results should be stellar. Communication within the various groups is an absolute must if you want to avoid stepping all over each other and entering into deals with the same site from different angles.
4. Check to make sure that no one is negating your efforts and that, in turn, you aren’t negating anyone else’s efforts.
If you have a particularly strong belief in link building without going against Google’s guidelines, for example, you may find yourself working on a campaign that’s also employing people who are buying links. You could be buying links and doing it in what you think is a very low-risk and natural manner, and then discover someone else working on the campaign who is blatantly buying horribly spammy ones that are risky and exceptionally obvious.
The odds of two or more entities working on one campaign and having the exact same mentality about what is and isn’t ok are very low, of course. My guess is that if this situation does arise for you, you’ll find that determining that the good that you think you’re doing may be negated.
5. Create a master list of who’s doing what, and stick to it.
Just as with any group effort, there needs to be a set list of responsibilities and assignments that you can refer to when necessary. List out method of communication (team calls, emails, run everything through the client and let him/her handle it, etc.), critical due dates, and absolutely anything that’s relevant to keeping this all running smoothly for everyone involved.
6. Set your own conversion goals and figure out how you’ll track them.
I talk about marketing different keyphrases below, but what I mean here is that you should first determine what you will consider to be a successful effect of your own efforts. Is it an increase in traffic, a sale, more links on a certain social media platform, and so forth? If you don’t typically ask for access to a client’s analytics, now’s a good time to start.
7. Market different keyphrases.
If this is possible, do it so that you can get a better idea of results from specific rankings and traffic data. In accordance with making sure that no one is negating your efforts, however, I’d also advise routinely checking on keyphrases that other teams are working on just to make sure everything’s all proceeding nicely.
8. Create timelines for different link releases.
Just as development follows a schedule of releases, so should a large link building campaign. The last thing you want to do is sabotage your efforts by creating link spikes that throw up a red flag.
9. Keep everyone informed beforehand.
It’s better to be able to make alternate plans if what you’re doing will have an adverse effect on someone else’s work, and vice versa. It’s not fun to rush to clean up a mess that could have been avoided.
10. Be open to suggestions, revisions, and criticism from others.
It’s entirely possible that another person will see a problem with your method, so listen to what he or she has to say without flaring up. The criticism may be well-warranted.
As is probably obvious by now, working in such a collaborative way definitely has its challenges, but if you’re making an effort to stay involved and on top of things, it may prove to be a very fruitful experience. You can definitely learn from people who do things in a very different manner, especially if everyone is able to bounce ideas off of each other.
Opinions expressed in the article are those of the guest author and not necessarily Search Engine Land.