The power of infographics to boost your clients link profile is astonishing!
In the following guide we’ll show you how to use this underrated method to pepper the internet with stylish, salient and powerful image content that links back to your website of choice.
If you use our clearly laid out method, you’ll be able to attend your next client meeting with a smile on your face; a spreadsheet of new inbound links, and ideally an analytics report showing a marked increase in inbound leads.
Here’s how we’ll do it.
Why Use Infographics for Linkbuilding?
So what do we mean by an infographic?
We mean any image that conveys information, data or knowledge in some form.
The iconic London tube map is an infographic, but any graph or map also qualifies. It may be a complex piece of data visualisation right the way through to a simple emoji with a few lines of text beneath it. Sometimes a picture speaks a thousand words.
Truly great infographics are difficult and time consuming to create but it is possible to build a decent one with the help of a good concept and a moderately talented graphic designer. What we urge you not to do is to produce one in five minutes with a poorly customised template. This won’t do your client any favours and it will waste your own precious time. Only attempt this if you’re prepared to dig deep and create something which enriches your client’s brand.
Now of course you could, if you have the inspiration, create a new infographic based on original data and then release it with a powerful online PR campaign. That would be amazing and is exactly what top level SEOs do! But that isn’t always possible when you’re working on a client’s account with a limited budget and timeframe. We’re looking for a slightly easier path to success, so we’ll look to copy something that’s already seen some success.
Step 1: Research Highly Linkable Infographic Ideas
1. Research the subject
Let’s say your client is a coffee roasting company interested in increased brand awareness and sales via SEO. You decide to use infographics to help them, but first you’re going to need to ensure others have already paved the way.
Here’s how to research top performing infographics in your niche.
Ahrefs Content Explorer offers an excellent way to do this.
- Go to https://ahrefs.com/content-explorer
- Type in your keyword + infographic
- Select minimum domains of 50 in the filter section
- Filter Explicit Results
- Sort by referring domains
- Filter homepages
- Select One page per domain (optional)
2. Export the Data
Even with these filters, there will likely be some spam or unrelated domains in the list, so the suggestion is to export your list into a Google Sheet, then use your own due diligence to manually remove these.
In this example, that leaves us with a number of great examples which we could consider copying for our own client. Now we have a clean sheet of potential targets that’s been reviewed.
3. Choose a Concept or Title
Now you’ve got your list of examples, spend some time checking them out. What makes them good? How much work did they take to achieve on the design side? What type of websites are linking to them?
Obviously, if the infographic is about public housing figures for the year 2020 and all of the referring domains are .gov, you’re not going to be able to replicate this.
So take time with this part of the process, if you choose upon a concept in haste, you will repent at leisure!
In our example sheet, here’s one which looks possible. Young Americans are Ditching Coffee for Tea. With 146 linking domains, this tells us we might have a good candidate.
Here’s why this might be a good choice:
- The infographic itself is incredibly simple, therefore you can improve upon it
- It won’t cost a fortune in graphic design
- It’s based on open source information and they show you where they found the data
Here’s another possibility. The Countries Most Addicted to Coffee
This one is going to be slightly trickier to copy because the creators used their own data to create it. So your options here are:
- To copy this directly, citing Statista as the source
- To find updated data sources.
Option B is a much better solution here and more likely to result in a successful campaign.
If you can find a current data source, you can simply update this graphic for 2022 and then you have an even better reason to publish it. It will be fresh, updated, and much more linkworthy than a straight copy.
4. Look up Data Sources
Of the examples given, we’re going to choose ‘Countries Most Addicted to Coffee’ as the right choice for our client.
But this is based on old data, and we need to revamp it.
Let’s go through the process of updating this with some current statistics. We’ve researched this idea now, and we know that people have linked in good numbers to an infographic on this subject. So if we can do a new version, with a nice design, we stand a good chance of getting some high domain authority links.
Google Search is your friend here and, in this case, the top result gives us exactly what we need:
Simple search ‘Countries that drink the most coffee’
If you don’t get so lucky, simply type in your keyword followed by modifiers like ‘data’ or ‘trends’ or ‘statistics’ and you should have some data points that you can pull into your infographic brief.
Step 2: Create an Infographic Brief for Your Designer
Graphic designers do best when they have clear instructions. So here’s how we put together our infographic requirements ready to hand over.
- We keep it simple.
- Sources must be included, with hyperlinks.
- Include your clients logo
- Show the designer examples of designs or styles you like
- Agree on a price beforehand, including 2 rounds of revisions
Here’s how we might lay all that out in a design brief.
NB:If you don’t Have a Graphic Designer: You can easily find one on Upwork.com
The Finished Infographic
Well done, once your designer delivers the goods, you now have a finished infographic.
This is a fantastic achievement and you can present it to your client as stage one of the process.
You will now need to:
- Publish this on your client’s website
- Include ideally 500 words of text
- Create an embed code for shares and links
- Don’t forget to optimise the article for SEO: you might pick up future links if people are searching for this topic.
- When live, grab the URL, we’ll be using this in the next stage of our process.
- Publicise the page via your clients social media channels to get the PR stage underway
Step 3: Build Links to your Infographic with Outreach
We now have a valuable visual asset which will form the basis of the next stage of our process. But people can’t link to our infographic unless they know about it. In this stage of the process we’ll explain how we build an email outreach list.
1. Build Your Outreach List
- Ahrefs site explorer -Grab your list of ‘successful infographic URLs’ and paste them one by one into Ahrefs site explorer.
- Export the backlink list to an Excel spreadsheet or Google Sheet. Google Sheets are more useful if you’re working collaboratively with a team. Again, use your common sense with these lists: exclude coupon sites or anything else which isn’t worth replicating.
- Build the outreach list which should look something like this:
- Use a Chrome Extension like Hunter to find the appropriate email address, or failing that try the brand’s LinkedIn or Facebook. Don’t be afraid to pick up the phone if the site advertises a number.
- When the work is complete you should have a detailed list of targets with up to date contact information of those sites who have linked before.
Top Tip: take time to research each website properly, don’t just grab the info@ email and consider the job done. The quality of your asset combined with the quality of your email list will determine your success.
2. The Reverse Engineered Stock Image Trick
Here’s an alternative process that could save you a tonne of time. If we imagine the potential audience for a coffee infographic, it’s actually much wider than just those who’ve linked to an infographic previously. Technically, anyone who has written about coffee or included a coffee image is a target!
Here’s how to find them.
- Go to google image search and type in ‘coffee’
- Find obvious examples of stock images from well known stock sites
- Right Click on the image and search with Google lens
- Click ‘Find Image Source’ to see a list of all the websites which are using this stock image.
- Each of these is a potential target. They’ve linked to a generic coffee image, but maybe they’d like your new infographic?
3. Send Emails with a Link Request
Now you have your email list, set up your email templates for sending. You can send these from your regular email account but you’re better off using a dedicated piece of outreach software such as Mailshare or Buzzstream. These make it easy to manage big lists, upload templated emails, and manage responses.
But even when doing this at scale, keep in mind the golden rules: emails should be personalised, polite and short.
Here’s the kind of approach we recommend.
I noticed you linked to a great infographic last year about Countries that Drink the Most Coffee within your own article: (URL)
Just wanted to reach out quickly to see if you might be interested in an updated version with current data for 2022.
Our design team has worked hard on this, and I hope it would add value for your own audience. You can see the piece here: (URL)
Just let me know if you want a high res version, or any other info from me.
Have a great day,
Your website URL
4. Follow Up Emails
We suggest following up twice, because a lot of people will miss your email first time round but be persuaded into action the second or third time over.
But don’t do more than that and include a clear unsubscribe link.
FInally, do remember to say thank you for those that link. Share their link on social media as a gesture of appreciation. And add their contact details to your list of webmaster contacts, you never know when they may be useful again.
Talk to Us About Building Your Own Links With Infographics
Here at Dream Digital we specialise in helping marketers and agencies build links at scale, and with minimal hassle. If you’re looking for a way to diversify your website’s back link profile, or to create an evergreen visual asset that establishes your brand as a thought leader, please get in contact to discuss our service.
We can handle the entire process on your behalf: from ideation through to publication. We’ll then conduct the outreach on your behalf (using a branded email, if you wish) and will provide a white labelled report you can deliver in your next client meeting.
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