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04 Feb 2011

How Link Building Resembles Real Life

How Link Building Resembles Real Life

Motivational speakers often espouse the virtues of making meaningful connections, putting yourself out there and never giving up no matter the odds. But did you know they could be giving you a link building lesson along with that pep talk on life?

That’s because in many ways being successful in link building mirrors how to be successful in life.

First off, one of the best ways to build links is to forge a connection with the webmaster linking to you. In an ideal world the webmaster in question possesses some connection to your brand to begin with (perhaps he or she went to your school or has used your product) but some kind of a bond can be created through casual conversation. Showing that webmaster that you’re an actual human with some personality can go a long way as you kindly let them know about the value of your web site in a link request.

This is just like how people who sell themselves and create that connection with a hiring manager often have the upper hand for a job or how a student who can make a connection with the admissions board might get in over a student with a superior GPA that just doesn’t possess the same moxie.

In link acquisition, getting a job and receiving admission to your dream school, it’s imperative to make an impression on the webmaster/hiring manager/admissions board. But then you need to pack some punch and have a quality web site worth linking to (or a solid resume) to seal the deal.

In life as in link building, it’s also imperative to really put yourself out there. As Wayne Gretzky once said, you miss 100 percent of the shots you don’t take.

That’s not to say you should blindly spew out link requests across the interwebs, just never be afraid to request a link on a relevant site. You never know where your best link of the month might come from.

Just like in the dating world, you can’t fear rejection when building links. Hopefully nobody’s love life involves the multitude of rejections that inevitably occur when requesting links. Nonetheless just like you can’t get too down on yourself when your significant other calls it quits, you’ve got to just move on to the next one when a webmaster tells you: “It’s not you, it’s me.”

There will always be more link opportunities out there waiting for you to give them your heart, and one day you will find that one special link that makes you forget about all the webmasters that said no to you before.

However, you must take care to stay out of bad linking neighborhoods in link building just like you need to stay away from bad influences when navigating through life. In both life and link building you largely are judged by the company you keep.

In link building this means staying away from sites with gobs of spam on them and only acquiring links from relevant, authoritative sites. In life this means finding a good crew of friends you can trust and not getting swayed by mean-spirited people who use peer pressure to get you to take part in activities against your better judgment.

In essence, life is about building quality relationships with the right people. Doing this can lead to jobs, lasting friendships, intimate relationships and everything else that makes life meaningful.

In the same way these relationships can help link builders build links that lead to an equally fruitful existence at the top of the SERPs.

6 Comments

  • Bede Fahey Feb 04, 2011

    Thanks for the post, Michael. You’re right, it can be tough hearing no regularly when it comes to link building.

    I like the comparison you make to real life. And, I think it’ll drive me to take another look at what’s going on in a relationship with a webmaster who answers “no” when I expected a “yes”.

  • Life Feb 06, 2011

    Been saying that for years. And not just for link building.

  • Pittsburgh SEO Feb 07, 2011

    Life, link building (online and off)… and social media too. All about meaningful connections.

  • Pete Lavelle Feb 14, 2011

    Hi Michael,

    Great post! In fact I tend to ignore the fact that I’m link building when I’m link building. Instead I see it as going out and talking to people! It’s much more fun that way. : )

    Thanks!

    Pete @ Pure FX

  • Alex@luxury kuala lumpur hotel Feb 20, 2011

    Excellent post! Really appreciate the way you have correlated the real life and link building exercise.Very well said we must be careful to stay away form bad linking neighbourhoods jjust the way we stay away from bad influences when navigating through life. It is very true that both life and link building are judged by the kind of company that we keep.