Megan: One of the first pieces of advice using research phrases, and this is something I think a lot of new users to the link prospect are getting confused about, is we really encourage users to go outside of sales and SEO keyword space. I have this example here of this person, for their campaign, they are trying to sell or they are trying to…links to some sales pages on sunglasses or maybe some content on sunglasses. But the key phrases that they use, sunglasses, Ray-Ban, eyewear are all high salesy and just very…not very often used in real links pages.
The advice I would give is before you put this kind of research term into the link prospector, you’re going to want to go your favorite search engine, go to Google, and type your phrase plus site.edu, or site.gov. That way you’re taking away from all the .coms and you’re seeing what the edu and .govs are saying about your keywords. And that’s just a great way to understand the terms and the phrases people are using that aren’t salesy in your space.
As you can see with this person, when they did this first report with a lot of sales based keywords, even though they were looking for links pages, what they got back were sales pages, a lot like eyeglasshouse.com. These aren’t all about vision.com. These aren’t people that are necessarily going to link to them because they are trying to sell their own sunglasses.
Ken: Of course. That’s frustrating if you’re doing this type of work. It’s frustrating if you get results like this, but the reason that these results appeared was because of the keywords used.
Megan: Yeah, exactly. I think that’s just something that knowing to break out of the sales and SEO space with your research phrases is important. You’re looking for opportunities, which means you’re not looking for people who are using your SEO keywords. You’re looking for something different. And so that’s important to remember.
Like I said, the best way to do that is just go to Google, do site.edu, site.gov, and find phrases around what you’re talking about. It can help generate content ideas for content to create that’s tangential to sunglasses, or whatever it is.
Ken: Yeah. It’s so wide, the number of phrases that you will find in terms of doing that, you know? It’s really inspirational when you do those searches and are able to pick out words that you just wouldn’t have thought of by yourself.
Megan: Another very important thing to think about when you’re using the link prospector is to consider using advanced operators. Intitle, and inurl: specifically, are really, really helpful. And I’m going to show you how using them or not using them can really change your search. In this specific example, we’re looking for bloggers with cats. Maybe we have a cool cat toy we want them to review, or we just want to engage with people with cats.
Maybe we would be searching things that a blogger with cats might say, such as, “my cat”, “our cat”, “my cats.” When I look for bloggers, one of my biggest tactics is looking for…searching for blogs, but then searching for phrases on that blog that will target exactly the kind of person that I’m looking for. Things that they might say. We’re not using advanced operators and we’re just searching for people who say, “my cat,” “our cats.” The results that we got here…there are probably some good results, but then there’s also a lot of mess in here.
For example, blog post on Skype, which is, “Stay in touch with cat over Skype.” This is a corporate blog, so this isn’t exactly what we’re looking for. And what you’re finding here is that someone’s writing in the comments about “my cat.” Then we have another example found from this list. It’s a Huffington Post article, but in the comments, again, a person is saying, “my cat.” Because we’re not using advanced operators, because we’re being less specific, it’s searching on page for these terms.
And that means we’re searching in the comments. That means we’re searching in the sidebars. We’re searching potentially in advertisements. We’re searching all over the page for terms that are important to us. Meaning we’re just going to get less specificity and maybe some results we don’t want.
Megan: If we search with…if we perform the same exact search but with advanced operators, in title, “my cat,” in title, “our cat,” in URL…what we’re going to find is that… The way that in title works, or in URL works, that means that…so we know that this is something that the author of the page, the writer of the blog, the creator is talking about their cat, as opposed to someone in the comments. And then when we did this search, then we found a lot more blogs related to just people who are talking about “my cat.” So we have bloggers with cats, which is exactly what we’re looking for. And then one thing you’ll notice, too, is that in the original search without in title we had 890 domains in the results, whereas with this one we have 359.
So it really cut down on the noise. It really made sure that we were just targeting bloggers who were specifically talking about their cats. The next piece of advice I’d love to offer is that you can use multiple keywords in one search box. What I mean by this is, I think people who are new to the link prospector might see each research phrase box as a place where you’d put one word or one phrase. And that’s actually not true. The way that it works is that these research phrase boxes are unique…each one of them is unique search.
So it’s like within one report, you get up to five mini searches that you’re bringing back. You can use multiple words. You can use in URL, in title, and then something in quotes, and something out of quotes. You can put as much as you want in that box, and nothing in one box will affect something that’s in another box because they all happening on their own.
Ken: Okay. What are you trying to get here in these searches?
Megan: So, for my example I’m reflecting a Google search that I did. So recently in the United States, on the East Coast, we had a pretty severe winter storm called Jonas, which means that we’re going to get people talking about snow storm Jonas and not their friend Jonas who got stuck in a snowstorm. And how searching for New York city specifically is going to pull up vastly different results from searching Raleigh, which is a city of North Carolina. So the more specific you can be about location, about in title, specificity, about exact words within each search, is going to help you find the most specific results that you can.
You can also use phrases. And this is something that I’ve been trying recently, as I mentioned with blogs, how I’m finding really just a wide variety of blogs, but also finding every blogger at a certain space that I’m looking for. When I search for bloggers, one of the best ways I found to do it, instead of searching for travel bloggers, which might get me to someone talking about travel bloggers or a website that sells travel equipment mentioning travel bloggers, I’m searching for the exact phrases that the bloggers I’m searching for might use.
Megan: So for this specific search, I’m using the word “I” a lot, like how I used previously “my cat.” Here I’m using, “how I find cheap flights,” “how I fly cheaply.” I feel like these are phrases that a blogger who’s talking about how they travel would use in the article about how they travel. Again, you can see I’ve used in title because I want to make sure that’s it’s not just someone in the comments, or someone in the sidebar, an advertisement talking about cheap flights. That it’s really an article that’s about travel and about flights.
Ken: Okay. There in the first part there, like, “how do I find cheap flights,” you’re trying to get inside the mind of the blogger.
Ken: And then putting in in title, “flights.” Make sure it’s specific in that…the article or the content that you find is about flight. So those two parts to it, very different parts, but put them together and, wow, they’re powerful.
Megan: That’s exactly right. Those two things together are helping you, like you said, pinpoint who you’re looking for, but then make sure it’s not just noise. So, I have a couple of examples of bloggers that I was able to find with this exact search, and, as you can see, they’re all…these are people that popped up in the result. All three of them are travel bloggers. They’re real people. They’re not a sales page.
They’re somebody you want to reach out to if you’re looking for travel bloggers, and they all wrote articles about how to find cheap flights. This is just a great way, again, to…and all of them in the past year. So if you really want to pinpoint specifically bloggers, or even I can see this working with news articles as well. I think the best way to do it is think of short phrases that would be on these pages, and then specifying it with an in title search is just going to find you exactly what you’re looking for.