It seems like everywhere you look, someone is arguing that “Content is king” online. However, the “if you write it, they will come” mantra fails much more frequently than it succeeds.
Last week, I received an email from a legal professional who has been blogging for several years. He bought into the “Content is king” and “If you write it, links will come” mantras. Here is what he had to say:
As a slightly separate but related issue – and perhaps I’m blinded by my own high estimation of myself (ask my wife of course) but the reason I’ve neglected links as a separate area of high-end pursuit thus far is because I have read at least a 1000 times that if you create great content, the links will come.
I have to say it’s been disappointing, because I’ve worked hard on my blog and website, but the links really haven’t come to the degree I’d have hoped.
I can already hear the responses of, “well maybe he’s just not producing great content.” Since the author of the email would prefer to remain anonymous, I am unable to let you be the judge.
My purpose is not to convince you to abandon writing useful content on your blog. Instead, it’s to help you understand that content-based link building is more complex than merely writing posts.
Before I leap into content-based link building, I want to pay homage to the “two-percenters”. These are the blog superstars for whom simply writing has worked. There is no doubt that some bloggers are “just that good.” They write, people listen, and link. On behalf of the other ninety-eight percent of us, we salute you.
There are very few bloggers that are that talented and/or skilled enough to create a highly linked-to legal blog on content alone. However, that doesn’t mean, as some have suggested, that you should abandon blogging altogether.
It also doesn’t mean that you should ONLY work on writing better content.
Great Content vs. Link Worthy Content
Implementing content-based link building strategies isn’t about writing “great content” it’s about writing “link worthy content”. There is a difference. Not all great content is link worthy content. As a simple example, think about all news you read every day. While at least some of it could be labeled “great content”, much less of it is “link worthy”.
Great content is worth reading and will bring readers back for more. Link worthy content (at least some link worthy content) is worth linking to. Reading does not demand the same commitment as linking.
Another common misconception of the “if you write it” crowd, is that everyone has the same readiness, willingness, and ability to link to you. This is simply not true.
SEO guru Rand Fishkin, coined the term linkerati back in 2006. Linkerati are the people capable of linking. They include bloggers, forum posters, resource editors, and journalists just to name a few.
It could be that your content is link worthy, but it just isn’t getting in front of your linkerati. This is one of the ways that social media and social networking play such an important role in your law firm Internet marketing.
By connecting with and engaging your linkerati through social networks like LinkedIn, Twitter, and Facebook, you will get your content in front of those who are ready, willing, and able to link to you.
Content-Based Link Building
The truth is, for most of us, content-based link building requires more thought than simply setting up a blog and starting to post. Does “just posting” work for some? Yes. However, just because it hasn’t worked for you doesn’t mean that you can’t build a successful web presence. It just means that you will have to work a little harder and be a little more creative.
Luckily, there are a vast array of proven strategies that work to increase the effectiveness of your content for attracting links.
While there is no doubt that quality link worthy content is a very important component to online success, crowning it king sends the wrong message. Perhaps it is a Senator, or maybe even the President. But without publicity, distribution, social media, and links, it is far less valuable in terms of building your professional reputation online.
Photo By Tambako the Jaguar