The common misconception about SEO nowadays is that if you publish quality material on your site — you’re pretty much guaranteed to get loads of traffic. Sorry to disappoint you, good content is essential, but there are lots of other things that you need to take into account.
Basically speaking, the skyscraper metaphor implies that you need to find the tallest building in town and building a skyscraper that is a couple of stories higher. This will make your “building” the highest in the area, which implies that you’ve done the most thorough research and your piece will be referenced many times. That is pretty much the end goal of a successful Skyscraper Technique — backlinks. But it’s not all that simple...
Before You Start
The word “technique” often associates with a sort of a “tip” or “trick,” which doesn’t imply all that much effort or intellectual input. Well, the truth is that it’s nowhere near to be just a quick adjustment to your SEO and content strategy. First and foremost, just like with most things on the Internet, you need to provide actual value to your users.
Simply finding a thousand-word article and making it two thousand words long won’t do the trick by any means. The word count doesn’t equate to depth or thoroughness of your research. So before you commence looking into “skyscraping” a piece of content, think about whether you have the qualifications to add something of value to the “highest building in town.”
Furthermore, it’s essential to keep in mind that the skyscraper technique may require some time to provide you with backlinks. You should not expect links to be pouring overnight. It takes a while until your article will gain traction and become relevant in the niche. So if these two aspects don’t bother you, feel free to look into the skyscraper technique. Otherwise, you should probably stick to other methods.
Source The Most Linkable Content In The Niche
How do you create a high-impact piece of content that will ensure a massive flow of backlinks? Source something that is already getting a load appreciation in your industry. You can always find the best content with services like Buzzsumo, Moz, Ahrefs, and so forth. Search for relevant queries and research them. Choose bigrams and trigrams (combinations of two or three words) that sound “natural.” Take these for example:
rank higher in Google
how to get more links
Finding articles that already perform very well in search engine searches are an excellent foundation for an even better article. If a specific topic attracts hundreds of thousands of interested Internet users, why wouldn’t it do the same for an improved and more thorough article?
Scan For Potential Improvement
So the next step in executing a promising “skyscraper” is to carefully scan the aspects that are worth improving in the “highest skyscraper” currently on the Internet, but also the totality of articles that touch on the said topic. You need to fill in the gaps that previous content had failed to fill.
Even the best articles have weak spots and finding them is your key to large numbers of backlinks and references. Make a list of things that you feel that need to be improved. Read an article once, throw your thoughts on a piece of paper. What does this article lack? How will you tackle this issue in your own article?
Extend and expand
Writing longer pieces isn’t synonymous with just making the same point in a more extended form, but instead using the possibility to write more thorough and meaningful articles that will provide readers with a broad spectrum of topics and more in-depth analysis.
Don’t sleep on rich content
First off, infographics make your content more digestible. You get the chance to organize everything you’ve mentioned before in a way that is easier for the brain to memorize and comprehend fully.
Secondly, it makes your content more readable. It promotes reading ease. The reader’s eyes can rest from the constant focus on small text.
Study the topic
Study lots of topics in depth. The reality of search engine results is that often the first page is stuffed with irrelevant articles of poor quality. Do not hesitate to capitalize on that.
Spread the word
When it comes to pitching your “superior” content, you can also use the tools you’ve used for sourcing “linkworthy” content. Ahrefs and SEMrush have convenient tools to track what websites have backlinked your competition’s articles.
What you’re intending to do here is basically replace your competitors’ links with your own, by sending it to the websites that have previously published them. You need to market this piece of content as if it were a product.
But here’s the catch
There is a large number of attempts of executing the Skyscraper Technique documented on the Web, and they haven’t failed in a technical viewpoint. Chances are that maybe they’ve written cold emails that weren’t sufficiently enticing to the site owners. What if the successful cases of implementing this technique into your SEO strategy had proper wording?
What if what separates us from gathering a boatload of our competitors’ backlinks is a cleverly worded cold email that will sound inviting enough to make site give your content a shot.
Be a wordsmith
It is most probably the case that you’ll need to apply the best email marketing tactics. Make sure you research the best ways to increase the open rate of your email and focus on using the current best practices of email copywriting. But from a general perspective, make sure you follow these simple guidelines:
Craft a captivating subject line, since it’s the very first thing a person sees in their inbox, and what basically compels someone actually to open your email. If it’s not good enough, it’s marked as spam and deleted (ouch).
Be brief. Spare the reader of being too cordial. Just get to the point. Have respect for their time and attention.
Do not send out automated campaigns, because this will eventually damage your open rate big time. If you have around 200-300 email addresses in your list, it’s worth trying to personalize each email. Otherwise, you’ll just bury all the effort, since none of the sites will consider publishing your link.
Get back to them in a day or two. Here you can get away with a template message. Following up will extract the maximum potential from your campaign efforts.
Generally speaking, the Skyscraper Technique has excellent potential. There are many articles on the web which state that this technique doesn’t get you anywhere. Furthermore, they provide their failed attempts as evidence for it. And while every experience is valuable and essential, we’re probably wrong of thinking that the Skyscraper Technique in its current form is ideal.
Most probably we need to add our experiential input to the equation and attempt to add a few extra steps to the method that would ensure a higher chance of success. Furthermore, it takes a lot of time and effort to make your “Skyscraper” content up to par, and most probably it takes considerably more than we expect to make things work.
Another important point about the quality of the outcome is that even if you get 5 links out of this campaign, let’s not forget that you’ve been targeting high-quality sites throughout the campaign, and this is the right way to go. By prioritizing quality over quantity — you’re on the right path to success, even if it takes you slightly longer to get there.
About The Author
Erica Sunarjo graduated from South Texas College majoring in Marketing and Creative Writing. She used her knowledge to make a difference in the realm of business copywriting and invested heavily in traveling and language learning. At present, Erica is fluent in French and Spanish, studying Chinese and working her way to being a multilingual copywriter. She keeps track of the latest trends in IT and technologies, blogs about efficient strategies in education and business coaching, holds educational webinars. Right now Erica is the most effective writer at The Word Point.