In this blog, I’m gonna show you exactly what link building techniques work today. But here’s what I’m gonna do differently. Most of the time, in blogs like these, you’ll get a list of basic, link building strategies: guest posting, broken link building, skyscraper outreach. But I’ll straight up tell you right now.


The vanilla, basic-ass versions of these link building techniques do not work anymore. Techniques, like guest postings, still work but they need to be upgraded to be effective in today’s SEO environment. The techniques website audit services about to show you have helped me land links, like these, from The New York Times, a DR 94 website, Forbes, also a DR 94, and Inc., a measly DR 92. 

Most SEO content creators will tell you how things work at a high level. What is a guest post? It’s when you reach out to a website you want to link on, offer to write free content for them in exchange for a link in that content. 

Guest Post Pitch

Here’s an example of a guest post pitch I received in my inbox, not too long ago. But I have a feeling that people who teach basic-ass stuff like this don’t actually do link building. Vanilla link building approaches don’t work. You get thousands of emails a day with boring link requests, like these, don’t you? In order to be effective, you need to stand out. You need to be different. 

You need to be better. “Simply asking someone to link to you because their audience might find your content valuable, works great”, said no one ever. In this blog, I’m gonna show you which link building techniques work the best today. 

Affiliate Lab

How to execute them step by step, including the email scripts that you can copy to get great results. These are techniques I typically save for my students at the Affiliate Lab or ones that we use for getting links for our clients at Authority Builders. 

I’m opening things up for you. Now make sure to stick around to the end because the last technique is one of my favorites. Now, before we get started, I’d like to give a shout-out to the sponsor of this blog, the YouTube “Like” button. The “Like” button sponsored this blog with the mere hopes of getting smashed by fine folks like yourself. 

You Like Content

In all seriousness, if you like content like this, and want to help out my channel, I’d really appreciate it if you smashed the “Like” button. The first SEO technique that I want to fix for you is guest posting. You know what it is already. It’s when you offer to write content for someone for a link in exchange. And you already know that, this sad piece of **it of an email doesn’t convert at all. 

The reasons why this doesn’t work are totally clear. First, it’s not unique. 99% of all guest post pitches look like this. Second, why would I let this person, that I don’t even know, write for my site? I’m more likely just to link to them than to have to worry about their crap content on my site and have to edit it. So here’s what you do instead. You’re gonna find sites with outdated content that needs to get updated. You’re gonna offer to fix it for them. 

Get A Link From Shopify

Let’s say you wanted to get a link from Shopify, a tasty, DR 92, treat of a website. Google “ intitle 2020” to bring up a list of articles on Shopify that have 2020 in the title, meaning that they’re probably not up to date. Here we find this Best Markdown Editors of 2020 article. Let’s open it up. This article is out of date A-F. Some of these editors don’t even exist anymore. 

Here’s what you do next. Figure out the right contact email address at Shopify with a tool like, which gives you 25 free requests per month. Then send them a template like this. “Hey Bob, I was just reading your ‘Best Markdown Editors of 2020’ article and saw that it’s become out of date. A couple of the tools you’re recommending are end of life, and some of the features of others have expired. I’m well versed in markdown editors. 

How I Write This Article For Free

How about I write this article for you for free and get you all sorted out for this year? I’ve done this before for with. Let me know when you’re ready to proceed.” A template like this works because you’ve just saved someone’s ass from referencing content that isn’t true anymore. Plus they probably need to get this rewritten anyways. 

Just sneak in your link and you’re good to go. I actually covered two more, outside-the-box, guest post angles in another blog. I’ve left a link in the description, so make sure to check it out after you finish this blog. The next link building technique that still works today, but definitely needs a revamp, is responsive editorial link building with HARO. What is HARO? 

HARO Stands For Help A Reporter Out

It’s a platform that allows journalists to request quotes from experts to use in their articles. Let’s say that a journalist is publishing an article on on millennial entrepreneurship and wants a quote from an actual millennial on how they got started in business. Well, here’s where you step in and tell them about this awesome guy. Who got you turned onto this super cool thing called SEO. 

Use Your Quote 

Kidding. But, let’s say, they use your quote. When they quote you, they’ll link back to your website. The main issue with HARO is that any link building technique, that gets this good of links and is free, is gonna get flooded with bazillions of SEOs trying to tap into that sweet, free, link juice. When that opportunity to get an MX link comes up, literally thousands of quotes roll in. 

Because of this HARO is a grind. Sure, it’s free, but you’ll trade your time, and a lot of it, because you’ll just get drowned out most of the time. You’re lucky if you even see a 5% success rate. Here’s what you’re gonna do instead, that literally flips the script. To do this, you’ll need two websites in the same niche. We’re gonna set up a three-way link exchange. 

Expert Quotes On Your Site

You’re, instead, gonna take the role of a journalist looking for expert quotes on your site. You do this at HARO’s Submit Query page. Let’s say you have an affiliate site promoting golf equipment. You’re gonna write an article on the best places to golf in the United States for beginners. And you’re gonna have HARO help you get expert quotes from golfers on their favorite beginner courses. You’re gonna get a bunch of quotes, tons of them, from people that are looking for links to their golf sites. But, here’s what you’re gonna reply, instead. “Hey Bobby, thanks for your submitted quote. 

Quotes For This Article

We’re, unfortunately, full on quotes for this article, but if you could link to from your site, I can sneak you into this article for . Let me know.” This is diabolically sneaky because it converts crazy as hell. If Bob doesn’t give you this link, then he knows he just wasted his time crafting a quote. To him, there’s nothing to lose and a link to gain. 

Affiliate Tip Contest 

I first heard about this technique when I was judging WPX Hosting’s Best Affiliate Tip contest. I made a blog summarizing the amazing entries from that contest, so make sure to check it out after this blog. By the way, I’d like to give a huge thank you to the sponsor of this blog, and that’s Ahrefs. 

Ahrefs is an all in one SEO tool that many search engine optimization professionals, including myself, use to get their job done. It really does do more things than I can count. But for me particularly, I use it for: site audits, which help me evaluate the technical SEO health of my websites.

Google Love Them

Google will love them, competitor research, in particular, reverse engineering the keyword research and backlink strategies of my competition, and Content Explorer, which helps me figure out high search volume, low competition, topics to write about. This kind of data is absolutely critical for doing SEO these days. 

It’s nearly impossible to get by yourself. And best of all, just because you hit the “Like” button, Ahrefs is offering a free version, called Ahrefs Webmaster Tools, or AWT. Just go to to check it out today. Now back to the blog. The next technique I’m gonna show you how to beast mode, is link insertions. A link insertion is when you ask someone to update an existing article with a link to your article. 

Link Insertion Request

Here’s an example of a link insertion request, fresh from my inbox. “You linked to one of our competitors.” Cool story. Why does it matter to me? “We’re trying to build a bunch of back links.” Again, cool, so am I, what’s new? “It would really help us, if you placed a link to us.” – What? – Sorry, threw up in my mouth a bit. The reason this doesn’t work, it’s because it’s all about them. 

They’re so focused on their own link, that they forget that it’s me they’re asking a favor from. So how can we make this work? When we pitch, how can we make it about them, and not us? Money talks. Note that this technique requires you to spend a bit of money, but let me tell you it converts like crazy. 

Write A Typical Pitch For A Guest Post

The reason you’re mentioning guest posts is because everyone knows what that is. Not many people know what link insertions are. In the first line, ask how much the price is. This is what’s gonna get people’s attention. As soon as you mention money, your response rate skyrockets. As soon as they reply, no matter what their price is, say that it’s too expensive. Ask them if they can do a quick link insertion, instead, for half the price. 

Also Read: How To Capture Inbound Leads Using HubSpot?

They’ll do it because they’ve already spent time responding, and they realize, that updating content with a link takes 1% of the time compared to reviewing and editing guest post content. If you want a script, check out the Affiliate Lab. To be honest and clear, most of the time, I save the best nuggets for Affiliate Lab members. This is just a taste. The next link building technique that still works, extremely well, but literally everyone is doing wrong, is broken link building. 

Broken Link Building

Yes, I’ll repeat, that it still works very well. Broken link building is when you identify when a site links out to another URL, but the URL they’re linking to is dead. Maybe the other website deleted that post, or the website is completely shut down, itself. Either way, the link is broken and that’s bad for SEO. So typically you see a pitch like this. “Hey, Roberto. In your article, you’re linking out to, which no longer exists. I recently wrote an updated, current-year version of that article here. 

If you’d like to update your broken link, we’d really appreciate it, if you considered our article instead.” You know what’s wrong with this pitch? Absolutely nothing at all. It’s perfectly fine. The problem is that people don’t care about their old articles they wrote in 2018. They wrote it ages ago and they could give two. 

Links Are Perfect Or Not

But if they recently wrote an article and it’s incorrect, they’ll actually care. Here’s how you find broken link opportunities on recent articles with Ahrefs. Find a big site, in your niche, that has a lot of links going to it. So, for me, let’s use Backlinko. Plug them into Site Explorer and search “Best by links”. Then set up the HTTP filter to “404 not found”. This will bring up a list of articles that don’t exist anymore, ordered by how many domains linked to them. 

This “prevent Google penalties” article at the top has 32 domains linking to it. Clicking on that number, you get a list of all those referring domains, but if you order by “first seen”, you get the most recent articles first. These are your target sites. I got this tip from Brian Dean, who I interviewed on this channel. Make sure to check it out, after you finish this blog. 

Unlinked Brand Mentions

This still works very well, in this day and age, if you do it the right way. An unlinked brand mention is when someone references your name on your brand, but they just don’t link to you. Like this guy, here, who only ranked me 18 on this list of best SEO blogs. Terrible, I know. So at this point, you expect me to write an email to him saying, “Bro, you used my name. Please link to my site.” But the reason this doesn’t work, is because if they would’ve linked to you, they would’ve done it in the first place. 

So again, we’re gonna flip the script. Hold my beer, please. ♪ Shake the ground, shake, shake the ground. I’m gonna have my VA create a complete list of someone else’s unlinked brand mentions. Someone I want a link from. Then, I’m gonna deliver this to them as a favor, and ask if they could do me a favor back. After all, I did all this work for someone, it would only be polite. Here’s how to get a quick list of unlinked brand mentions. 

Go To Ahrefs Content Explorer

Type in the brand name, here, at the top. Then, minus the URL. Then highlight unlinked domains. Now down below, you’ll have a list of sites that mention HubSpot, but don’t link to them. Now send HubSpot this script. “Hey, Bobba the Hutt. Being a fan of HubSpot and the SEO you do over there, I wanted to do you solid. I created this list of unlinked brand mentions of where people used your quotes, expertise, and research, but didn’t give you credit via the link. I hope this helps. If you could do me a quick solid back, I could use a link to my site.” 

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How to Get Powerful Links in 2022

Find out the 5 techniques that will help you land HUNDREDS of high quality DR90+ backlinks in any niche.


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