How to Build Effective Links with Linkable Assets | Pros and Cons
Not all content is created equal, and it’s a fact that not every blog post garners external links. The process of acquiring inbound links for every blog post can be incredibly time-consuming, given the extensive outreach needed to secure links to a single article or page. However, the creation of linkable content assets can significantly enhance your link-building efforts, improve your outreach response rates, and save you time. This article aims to guide you through the process of creating linkable content, enabling you to build a natural link profile more efficiently.
What is Linkable Assets?
Linkable assets are high-quality content pieces designed with the intention of attracting backlinks from other websites. This could be achieved through promotional efforts or link-building outreach strategies. These assets can take various forms, including infographics, written articles, videos, online tools, or downloadable documents.
The ideal linkable asset is a comprehensive, long-form resource that outperforms top-ranking content in the same niche. It should offer value, be unique, and cater to the interests of your target audience. For effective traffic flow to your website, links should direct users to a specific webpage. Therefore, the asset should either be an HTML page or be integrated within a page.
A wide variety of linkable assets exist. For instance, the “History of Google Algorithm Updates” published by the Search Engine Journal (SEJ) is a prime example of a linkable asset. This page has successfully garnered nearly 3,000 referring domains, demonstrating the power of well-crafted linkable assets.
Does E-E-A-T Matters in Linkable Content
The effectiveness of a linkable asset often hinges on a site’s demonstrated expertise, experience, authority, and trust (E-E-A-T) within its domain. Google’s Search Quality Rater Guidelines introduced the concept of E-E-A-T, which helps users assess content quality. It has become increasingly significant in SEO, content marketing, and link building. To optimize a linkable asset, ensure it demonstrates each of these elements:
- Expertise: Display the author’s knowledge and understanding of the topic through education, experience, or publications.
- Experience: Emphasize the author’s firsthand knowledge of the subject via personal experience, interviews, or research.
- Authority: Establish the author’s reputation and credibility through credentials, affiliations, or the quality of their work.
- Trustworthiness: Show the author’s honesty and integrity through transparency, neutrality, or avoiding conflicts of interest.
Leveraging Generative AI for Content Creation
The advent of generative AI, such as ChatGPT, is revolutionizing how content marketers conduct research, develop ideas, and create content. These tools can significantly reduce research time and provide compelling content topics. However, as AI content generation is still emerging, search engine and publisher policies on AI-produced content continue to evolve. Incorporating subject expertise (SME), personal experiences, case studies, and in-depth topic exploration can ensure that AI-generated content remains authentic and avoids plagiarism.
Pros and Cons of Linkable Assets
While high-quality linkable assets can generate substantial links and traffic, this link-building strategy also has its drawbacks.
- Scalable link acquisition: Using informational content allows link opportunities across numerous topical areas.
- Enhanced organic visibility: Long-form informative articles can attract thousands of monthly visits across various keywords.
- Relationship building: Linkable content assets help establish relationships with influencers or industry experts, fostering collaboration and trust.
- Long-term value: Relevant and valuable content assets can continue to attract backlinks and traffic over time.
- Brand exposure and credibility: Linkable assets can boost your brand’s reputation as an industry expert, increasing trust and credibility.
- Links not targeting ideal pages: Links often target the asset itself, but it might be more beneficial to have them target a commercial page to improve ranking.
- Time and resource-intensive: Crafting high-quality linkable assets can be challenging for smaller businesses or teams due to the required time, effort, and resources.
- No guarantee of backlinks: Even high-quality content does not guarantee backlinks or SEO rewards.
- Difficult to measure success: Assessing the impact of linkable assets on SEO can be challenging, as it might take time for search engines to recognize and reward acquired backlinks.
- Competition: The increasing competition for backlinks and organic visibility makes it harder to stand out.
Utilizing Linkable Assets for Link Building
Content can be tailored for specific link-building techniques or audiences, or created for a general niche. There are two primary approaches to this: Technique-first and Content-first.
Technique-first: This approach focuses on creating content for a specific link-building technique and audience. Identify sites, forums, bloggers, or influencers interested in a particular topic, create content that appeals to them, and distribute it through email outreach or promotion to earn links.
Content-first: This strategy involves creating content for an audience or niche, then finding links for that piece. Use existing content or create new content that appeals to an expert audience.
Types of Linkable Assets
There are numerous types of content that work well for securing links. The options for content types seem limitless. Here are a few examples:
- Statistical Roundup Lists: These articles aggregate statistics from reputable studies and then organize them into appropriate categories so they are easy to search.
- Unique Research Study: These assets are unique studies with accompanying methodology and insights published in a blog article or a general webpage.
- Listicles Of Companies, Tools, Or People: These articles typically feature a bullet or numbered list with each item accompanied by a brief description, explanation, or commentary.
- Informative Infographics: An infographic is a visual representation of information, data, or knowledge designed to convey complex information quickly and clearly.
- Excel & Google Sheet Templates: Templates are simple ways to organize a project with many moving parts.
In conclusion, creating a linkable asset that publishers, bloggers, and general websites will leverage can reduce outreach time and even earn links without any outreach. Although these pieces are time-consuming to create, they can reduce the overall time to find links. An asset can be a complex research study or a simple Excel template to organize planning. So, the next time you’re launching a link building campaign, consider creating a piece that is easily linkable.