How I Get Social Shares And Links From Influencers Just By Asking
That’s not always a bad thing – unless you’re an SEO, marketer or involved in business in any way.
Throughout my childhood, my mum used constantly repeat certain phrases – words of wisdom, words to live by.
The majority of them were quite profound; however I’ve been able to apply one of the less profound to my work in SEO and marketing.
If you don’t ask, you don’t get
It’s a fact…
The truth is that most SEOs and marketers have been doing things the wrong way for a very long time, well I say the wrong things – but they worked, that’s why people did “naughty” things.
When I say “naughty” things, I’m referring to blasting thousands of dirty links to get your sites ranked.
Google left the door wide open, and it’s unfortunate but in some industries, if you didn’t use naughty tactics, you just wouldn’t be able to rank.
Where are the majority of sites that did this? Dead, lost or just forgotten.
I suspect that there are going to be those that are still doing this although I imagine that the number has dwindled since penguin 2.0 rolled out. (Check out this post by Jason Brooks from UK Linkology to learn the kind of links that are going to work moving forward).
This means that as SEOs, marketers and bloggers, we’ve got to fight, not only harder but also smarter and start thinking about what will work in the future, rather than just what’s working now.
Link building is only going to get more difficult and really, that’s a good thing.
It’s time to get creative and it’s time to be more cheeky because … nothing easy was ever really worth doing.
Below are a few examples of how this has worked well for me, you need to remember that you won’t get links and shares every time you ask but it does happen and if you don’t ask, then chances are you won’t get anything.
The examples below are from right here on Blogging Wizard (sure it’s cheesy, but that’s part of it’s charm, and don’t tell me you didn’t want to become a wizard when you were younger or after you watched Harry Potter).
Ask and get your content shared
The inspiration behind this is an unusual one, it’s not something I read on a blog post, in an SEO or marketing course or anything like that.
Although, that’s not to say that someone hasn’t written about this at some point.
Back when I was at university, I wrote a dissertation on music marketing – my lecturer at the time was an inspiration. We had endless discussions about the music industry and how to market music. I learnt a lot.
This was before I had a blog and before I got involved in marketing and SEO – I didn’t know enough to really put what I had learnt into action.
Fast forward to now – I’ve run various successful blogs and I’m operations manager at a digital marketing agency – I help businesses succeed online and I build marketing and SEO processes designed to last for the long haul.
A few weeks ago I thought back to something my lecturer said.
Create a resource, find a community that would value your resource and ask the people at the helm of that community to share it with the community.
The idea of creating a resource and sharing it with a community isn’t anything new, but it’s surprising how often opportunities stare us in the face and we are so pre-occupied with something else to take action.
A few months before I noticed that Namecheap.com were sharing articles from a number of different blogs.
I joined the dots and immediately emailed Namecheap to ask them if they would like to share one of the articles on my blog to their fans on Facebook.
And the result?
The post was shared to a targeted audience of over 82,000+ webmasters and site owners – sure Facebook won’t allow the post to reach all of them but still a pretty sizable number.
Why did this work? – I only allow in depth and valuable content on my site.
The other factor is that Namecheap.com already shares content from other blogs that will be valuable to its audience.
Sure, it’s another list post of WordPress themes but the fact is that WordPress themes are constantly in demand and list posts still work – sure top 5 or top 10 list posts don’t do that well anymore but top 50’s are still doing well .
It works and people dig the content – what more do you need?
(Big thanks to Stacey Corrin who wrote the huge article on personal blog themes for WordPress).
Ask and get more shares ..
This is nothing new, but a lot of people are still missing a huge opportunity.
Have you mentioned someone in an article?
Tell them and ask them to share!
This is all it takes – “mentioned one of your articles in my post here: [insert link] would love if you could share it”.
Why do people like to share content where they’re mentioned?
Social proof and trust.
If your followers start seeing that you’re being mentioned in a bunch of different posts, this validates you and what you’re saying (providing they’re not negative mentions).
It also makes your audience perceive you as being more authoritative in your field.
Why say no to that?
In one of the first posts I wrote, I tweeted Majestic SEO, the SEO Quake Team and BuzzStream and asked them if they’d share the article.
They shared it …
Ask and get links
It’s a lot more difficult to get a link than to get a share simply because clicking that tweet or G+1 button just takes a lot more effort.
I write a lot about WordPress plugins on my blog right now, so I asked Dev from WP Kube if he’d include one of my posts in a weekly roundup of his.
Why did this work? – I put time and effort into building a relationship with Dev, we are at the point now where we share each-others content and help each other out where we can.
All this stemmed from a single email – something you can repeat with anyone.
How can you make this work for yourself? Search for industry roundups in your niche, ask other bloggers to include your article in their roundup and offer to share it in exchange and promote it to your followers.
Generally the more followers you have the better this works.
Give and you shall receive
While this isn’t really related to the title of just asking to get shares and links I felt it was very fitting to include this because it’s not done often enough.
When you help others, people help you – it’s a cycle that repeats.
Sharing other peoples content is a great way to do this, but there’s a way you can do this better – link out and mention them on your blog.
Here’s an example –
A while back I published a huge article on reader engagement (you can read it here).
One of the things that I did was link out and mention some very influential bloggers that do a great job of building reader engagement.
While a lot of the bloggers I mentioned, shared the article – there were a few that also linked out and blogged about the post.
So what happened?
Adrienne Smith included me and my site as an example in a video she published about finding trackbacks in Google Analytics.
Dino Dogan (co-founder of Triberr) reblogged the post on his blog, where it received shares and a really nice amount of comments.
Ana Hoffman mentioned my post in an article she published about Triberr recently. If you want to learn more about Triberr then this post should be your first port of call.
I want to say thank you to Devesh, Adrienne, Dino, Ana, Namecheap and everyone else for their support – I really appreciate it.
In this post I’ve shown you real world examples of how you can get shares and links by just asking or being nice and helping others out.
This is how you build relationships online and get in front of the right people.
There are so many opportunities out there staring us in the face, so make the most of them and take action.
What’s the worst that could happen? They could say no.
That’s not so bad is it? Worth a try right?
What’s worked well for you in terms of asking for shares or links?
I’d love to hear some examples in the comments.