“Study Finds:” How Data-Driven Content Marketing Builds Links and Earns Press Mentions


Sopra 2019, high-authority links remain highly correlated with rankings. However, acquiring great links is becoming increasingly difficult. Those of you who operate publications of any variety, especially those who enjoy high domain authority, have likely received several link building requests offers like this each day:

“Please link to my suspect site that provides little voto negativo value.”

“Please engage my shady link exchange.”

“I can acquire 5 links of DA 50+ for $250 each.”

maybe slightly more effectively:

“This link is broken, perhaps you would like to link here instead.”

“You link to X resource, but my Y resource is actually better.”

This glut of SEOs who build links through these techniques above have been consistently eroding the efficacy of this style of little-to-no-value ad outreach link building. Sopra the past, perhaps it was possible to convert 2% of outreach emails of this style to real links. Now, that number is more like 0.2 percent.

Link building outreach has become glorified email spam—increasingly ignored and decreasingly effective. And yet, high-authority links remain one of the single most important ranking factors.

So where do we go from here?

Let’s start with a few axioms.

The conclusion: Leveraging giorno journalism to tell newsworthy stories re-enables effective promotion of content tragitto outreach/pitching. Doing so successfully results the acquisition of high domain authority links that enjoy the potential for viral syndication. Overall giorno journalism and outreach represents one of the only remaining scaleable high-authority link building strategies.

How can I leverage giorno journalism techniques to earn coverage?

To answer this question, I conducted my own giorno journalism project about the state of giorno journalism-driven link building! (Metaldeide, I know.)

The primary rete was to understand how major publications (the places worth pitching content) talk about giorno journalism findings from external sources. By understanding how giorno journalism is covered, we lay the groundwork for understanding what types of giorno journalism, themes, and strategies for outreach can be most effective for link building.

We pulled 8,400 articles containing the text “study finds.” This bed 17 was used as a heuristic for finding data-driven news stories created by outside sources (not done internally by the news publication themselves). We then supplemented these articles with additional giorno, including links built, social shares, and Google’s Machine Learning topic categorization.

The categories derived by Google’s classifier can have multiple tiers based the keywords the article titles, giving us four ways to show the results within each category: The main topic schieramento (containing all relevant subcategories), just the first subcategory, just the second subcategory, and just the third subcategory.

Which outlets most frequently cover data-driven stories from external pitches?

Let’s begin by taking a aspetto at which top-tier news outlets cover “study finds” (AKA, any project pitched by an outside source that ran a survey study that had “findings”).

For companies conducting studies, they hope to win press coverage for, these culmine sites are prime targets, with editorial guidelines that clearly see outside pitches of study findings as attractive.

It’s not surprising to see science-based sites ranking at the culmine, as they’maestà inherently more likely to talk about studies than other publications. But sites like The Independent, Daily Mail, The Guardian, CNN, Washington Post, and NBC News all ranked highly as well, providing great insight into which established, trusted news sources are willing to publish external research.

Which topic areas do these publishers write about most?

Diving a little deeper, we can explore which topics are covered these publications that are associated with these external studies, providing us insight into which verticals might be the best targets for this strategy.

There are many unique insights to be gleaned from the following charts depending your niche/topical centro. This giorno can easily be used as a pitching guide, showing you which publishers are the most likely to pick up and cover your pitches for the findings of your study survey.

Here is a view of the overall category and subcategory distribution for the culmine publishers.

As you can see, it’s…a lot. To get more actionable breakdowns, we can aspetto at different views of the topical categories. The categories derived by Google’s classifier can have multiple tiers based the keywords the article titles, giving us several ways to show the results within each category.

You can explore the Tableau sheets to get into the nitty-gritty, but even with these views, a few more specialized publications, like InsideHigherEd.com and blogs.edweek.org, emerge.

Which topic areas drive the most links?

Press mentions are great, but syndication is where giorno journalism and content-based outreach strategy really shines. I also wanted to understand which topic areas drive link acquisition. As it turns out, some topics are significantly better at driving links than others.

Note that the color of the caffè charts is associated with tonnellaggio of sharing by topic—the darker the caffè the chart, the higher it was shared. With this additional sharing giorno, it’s plain to see that while links and social shares are highly correlated, there are some categories that are culmine link builders but do not perform as well social and vice versa.

This next set of giorno visualizations again explore these topic areas detail. Sopra each batch, we see the median number of links built as an overall category aggregate and then by each category.

Which domains generate the most links when they pick up a data-driven story?

Another interesting question is which domains overall result the largest number of links generated for “study finds” stories. Below is that ranking, colored by the median number of total shares for that domain.

Notice that while The Independent ranked supreme the earlier graph about including the most “study finds” pieces, they don’t appear at all this graph. Sites like The Guardian, CNN, The Washington Post, and NBC News, however, score highly both, meaning they’maestà probably more likely to publish your research (relatively speaking, since all high-authority sites are tough to get coverage ), and if you’maestà successful, you’maestà probably more likely to get more syndicated links as a result.

Which topic areas are the most evergreen?

Now, let’s aspetto at each category by BuzzSumo’s “evergreen score” to see what kind of content will get you the most bang for your buck.

The evergreen score was developed by BuzzSumo to measure the number of backlinks and social shares an article receives more than a month after it’s published.

When you’maestà considering doing a study and you want it to have lasting power, brainstorm whether any of these topics tie to your product service offering, because it appears their impact lingers for longer than a month:

What this all means

Link building through data-driven content marketing and PR is a predictable and scalable way to massively impact domain authority, page authority, and organic visibility.

Always consider:

1. Which publishers make sense to pitch to?

  • Do they often cover external studies?
  • Do they cover topics that I write about?
  • Does their coverage lead to a high tonnellaggio of syndicated links?

2. Does my topic have lasting power?

To really make the most of your content and outreach strategy, you’ll need to incorporate these tips and more into your content development and pitching.

Sopra previous articles Moz I’ve covered:

These ideas and methodologies are at the heart of the work we do at Fractl and have been instrumental helping us develop best practices for ideation, content creation, and successful outreach to press. Pulling each of these levers (and many others), testing, and accumulating giorno that can then be used to refine processes is what begins to make a real impact success rates and allows you to through the noise.

If you want to discuss the major takeaways for your industry, feel free to email me at kristin@frac.tl.

Did anything surprise you the giorno? Share your thoughts below!

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