Best outreach tools for 2015

To say there are a lot of components to modern Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) practices is an understatement. It can be equated to spinning plates – there are several things you have to do, all at once, in order to run a successful SEO campaign.

One part of it is outreach. This is the practice of going out to other sites, besides your own, in search of value. This value can come in a multitude of ways, from sourcing links to building relationships with other sites. It can also highlight things that can have a negative effect on your SEO campaign, such as unnatural links.

Luckily, there are a lot of tools a SEO practitioner can call upon to make spinning those several plates just a little easier. They all offer different services, but all of them can combine to give your campaign the highest chance of success. Here are a few of the absolute essentials.

Majestic and Mozbar

To begin with, you need to check for websites it is worth “getting into bed with”, so to speak. While some websites may seem fantastic on the outside, there may be negative practices at play behind the scenes that mean any relationship is likely to just bring you grief. You can build this list manually, by using search engines. Buzzstream, which we’ll mention later, includes a service like this.

We recommend two browser plug-ins that can help you cut this list down quickly, before you dig a little deeper. The Mozbar plug-in can tell you instantaneously if a site is worth your time. In its most basic form, the Mozbar will spit out a number out of 100 – Domain Authority. The higher Domain Authority, the better. Generally speaking, any help you can get from a website from 40 up is good. The 90+ websites tend to be huge authority sites like (Facebook, Google, BBC etc.), so it is likely to be very difficult to target these outlets. Similarly, anything with less than DA 30 is unlikely to pay long term dividends.

Mozbar will also generate a second number, representing Page Authority. This tells you how authoritative the current page is within a website. It is a common practice to focus on PA when it comes to blogs on subdomains, such as Blogspot.

Complimenting that, we have the Majestic browser plug-in. This too generates two number out of 100, but this one focuses on power and  trustworthiness of the website. The metrics that Majestic generates are called Trust Flow and Citation Flow . Citation Flow represents the potential power of a link from the domain, whereas Trust Flow is trustworthiness of the website.

Best Outreach Tools

In the “ideal internet”, Trust Flow will be higher or equal to Citation Flow. In the real internet, it is OK to target sites where Citation Flow and Trust Flow are quite close. If the ratio is heavily skewed towards Citation Flow, and the Trust Flow is low, avoid it.

Buzzsumo

With the websites in place, you now need to produce content they will want to use, mention or link to.  Buzzsumo is a fantastic diving board to use for this step, and beyond. Essentially, when you type in a keyword, Buzzsumo will show you the top trending related articles or videos to do with that keyword.

It opens up plenty of avenues for exploration straight from the get go. If you type in “Burgers”, and everything trending is about healthy burgers, that should dictate the content you hope to produce. Ideally, you’ll be able to produce something close to the topic, but also unique in it’s approach or insight. If the content is out of your skillset, don’t worry – that’s what freelancers are for!

BuzzStream

All that’s left is perhaps the most difficult step of all – forging the required relationships. This can be a very tedious task, as websites can often be vague with the internal information of the company, which means you won’t know who exactly is the best person to contact. BuzzStream looks to bridge the gap between you and your targeted websites.

You can select and add these desired sites, and the Buzzstream will then look for contact information. Once this obtained, you can start trying to contact them. You can add a “relationship status” to each website you add, that allows you to mark how well the working relationship is going (from no contact to links acquired ). You can do this for multiple sites, and organise them into separate projects, with synched up email to boot.