Tools to Boost Link Building Strategy with Anthony Randall @tonyxrandall #vcbuzz

Tools to Boost Link Building Strategy with Anthony Randall @tonyxrandall #vcbuzz

Link building remains the most tedious, yet the most important digital marketing tactic.

The thing backlinks bring traffic and rankings: You depend on them but how do you scale them?

You don’t. What you can do is to make it easier, better organized and better informed with tools.

Let’s discuss!

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About @tonyxrandall

Anthony Randall @tonyxrandall got his start in SEO at a large link building firm where he built links and promoted content for some huge (and not so huge) brands.

Currently Anthony manages the link building and SEO efforts at a more “boutique” agency, working primarily with small niche ecommerce stores.

Questions we discussed

Q1 How did you become a digital marketer? Please share your career story!

When i was 14 I built a forum for guitar players and grew a couple thousand members in a few months. If I was smart I would have kept working on it because it could have been a legit ultimate-guitar competitor. Then later I built a site for my grandpa’s glass shop.

Got his address listed everywhere I could. I didn’t know at the time I was doing a very crude version of local SEO. Eventually I got a job at @pageonepower and the rest is history.

Mostly because I got grounded from the computer hahaha

Q2 What are the best tools for competitive link building research and how do you use them?

I’m mainly an @ahrefs guy these days but I’m pretty loyal to Majestic too. Simply, Ahref’s interface is incredibly efficient, so that’s where I do the majority of my day to day research. However, I also couldn’t live without @screamingfrog.

One way you can combine these to get a ton of work done in a short amount of time: find something that’s performing well and throw it into ahrefs. Use their search box for things like “/resources” and “/links”, then export. Do this multiple times.

Just make sure you’re maintaining relevance for the content you’re going to be pitching. “Configure” menu in screamingfrog, then custom > extract and paste regex: ([.\w-]+@[\w-]+\.\w+) This will allow you to gather any email addresses on those pages.

Now make sure all of your targets are relevant and high quality (this is important), paste into screamingfrog List mode and hit crawl. If you do this right, you’ll have gathered dozens, possibly hundreds of qualified targets to pitch in a very short amount of time.

Of course, you need to make sure the targets are relevant and of acceptable quality. I’ve gotten good at reading URLs, so I can make a good guess without even visiting the page. However @dovidfarkas‘ tool is great for quickly examining these.

Q3 What are the best link building outreach tools and how to make the most of them?

Now that you can schedule emails directly in Gmail, I find myself just using that most of the time. However, Yet Another Mail Merge is great for sending bulk outreach, especially if you’re on a budget ($28/yr for full license, up to 50 emails per day free).

I do hardly any guest posting (MAYBE one every 3 months or so). Personally, it’s incentive to write good emails so people aren’t flagging me as spam. Otherwise, yeah, google won’t hesitate to deactivate email addresses for sending a bunch of emails.

Q4 How to organize your link research and building data? Do you use any spreadsheet templates or tools for that?

I keep track of everything in Google sheets. Other tools like Buzzstream are great for this as well, but I love spreadsheets, I can manipulate and sort them any way I want, use custom formulas, etc. so that’s where I keep track of most of my work.

Q5 What are your favorite link building resources?

Twitter, honestly. I just follow people I consider geniuses (@juliejoyce, @garrettfrench). Other than that, another @ahrefs recommendation but their content is genuinely incredible.

Our previous link building chats:


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