Social listening for link-building: how to find backlink opportunities with Awario

Anna Bredava
by Anna Bredava on July 20, 2023

Article summary

In this article, we explain how to use social listening tools like Awario to get more backlinks for your website. We run through the tool's setup process and show you how to work with the data you get.

10 minute read

In the article
  1. How to use social listening for link-building?
  2. Setup Awario for link-building activities
  3. Work with linkless mentions
  4. What to look for when running social listening for link-building
  5. Before you go

Is it easy for you to find backlinks to promote your website?

Perhaps, you let out a big sigh when you saw that question. Link-building, although quite basic in its principle, can be a tricky task.

SEO specialists employ various tools to help them but they often neglect social listening as a legitimate way to do link-building. And for shame – social listening software gives you a diverse set of tools to approach link-building from different angles.

Not only does it give you the ability to discover many link-building opportunities, but also evaluate your brand awareness, research your target audience, and establish PR relationships with industry media.

Let me explain how it works and attempt to convince you to try social listening for link-building.

How to use social listening for link-building?

So what exactly is social listening and how to use it for link-building?

In its essence, social listening is the process of scanning through the Internet to look for conversations of your keywords and analyze them. You can already see how it can be useful for your link-building strategy, right?

If you're still a bit lost, here's the main idea behind it. With social listening tools like Awario, you can find:

  • Unlinked mentions of your brand and company
  • Unlinked mentions of public persons in your company
  • Unlinked product mentions
  • Unlinked domain mentions (yes, they exist)
  • Relevant content and industry terms

Once you find them, you can contact the authors or the website owners and ask them to link your site or offer a link exchange.

Pro tip

Since Awario monitors websites AND social media networks, you can add them to your activities. Add links and comments to the posts mentioning you to raise brand awareness and get traffic.

Moreover, Awario's analytics lets you know from the get-go the domain authority of the website so you can decide right away if it's a good match for your link-building strategy.

As you can see, this is quite a sophisticated technology, even though the principle behind it is fairly simple. Let's break down the specific actions behind it and see how to set up Awario social listening tool for maximum efficiency.

Setup Awario for link-building activities

If you have never used Awario before, lucky for you there is a free trial! You'll need less than one minute to register and can start with link-building right away.

So the first step is creating the monitoring alert - a collection of keywords, keyphrases, and search conditions united in one entity that Awario will look for online. For link-building you'll need to create a Boolean alert, you'll understand why later.

A Boolean alert is a type of alert where you enter Boolean operators to specify what exactly you are looking for. Awario gives you a lot of tips on how to create them right on the page or you can read about it here.

Boolean alert settings
Awario's Boolean alert settings for link-building

First, you enter the keywords you want to find (your brand or product name, key personnel, industry terms).

Then add conditions to your search. For example, if you want to look for websites in specific countries or in specific languages, add these commands.

So you defined what you're looking for. The only thing left to do is to make sure that you only find linkless mentions. How do we do it?

After adding all your conditions, put them all in brackets. Now add the following command: AND NOT link:"*"

This will ensure that you'll only get the mentions that contain the unlinked keywords and phrases you added.

Without this command, you will find both linkless and linked mentions, which can be helpful for smaller brands to track their brand awareness but can muddy the link-building process.

If you don't want to receive any mentions from social media, be sure to check the sources and write the web and blogs-news as your only sources of mentions.

Now you click "Save settings" and you immediately get access to the feed of conversations containing your keywords.

Sometimes social listening scanning of web pages can take a little bit more time, but you are sure to have the results in no more than 10 minutes.

Work with linkless mentions

And thus, you have a feed of linkless mentions that can be turned into backlinks. Now what?

It's up to you! You can go through each mention or choose the top 10 with the most reach and focus on them. To do the latter, you can sort mentions by Reach on the top of your feed.

When you click on the mention, you can see the part of the article on your screen and some info on the website, and the author on the right. Here's the information Awario provides you with:

  • The Influencer score - how many views the website gets
  • Traffic
  • The Inlink rank, which represents the pages ranking power
  • Top authors for the domain
  • Top SEO keywords for this website
A linkless mention of Sparktoro
A linkless mention of Sparktoro

In most cases, Awario also automatically finds ways to contact the website owners on social media. You can decide whether the website's metrics fit your goals and reach out to them right away.

What to look for when running social listening for link-building

The keywords you put in play a major role in your link-building success. I already briefly mentioned different types of keywords you can monitor for, let's discuss them in a little bit more detail.

Brand, product, or domain mentions

This is the most obvious and straightforward option for tracking. If people are mentioning you on the web without linking to your website, you can spot it right away and ask them to add a link.

Basically, this activity requires a couple of minutes from you every day and you can get many backlinks in return.

As for the unlinked domain mentions, sometimes Internet users mention your website simply in the text they are writing. Or links can get broken for one reason or another. This can also be simply fixed by finding them with Awario and contacting the authors.

Names of public personas associated with your company

A screenshot from Awario's Mention Feed

People love to connect with other people more than with companies. The persons mentioned publicly can include:

  • Your CEO
  • Your PR representatives
  • Influencers that work with you
  • In-house content creators such as copywriters or video hosts and producers

Every quote or mention they get is an opportunity to promote your brand and get more traffic. The workflow is the same - you add their names to the Awario alert, find relevant online articles, blog posts, and so on, and ask the authors to add links, perhaps with their job title.

Pro tip

You can use the same alert to catch potential PR scandals connected to your influencers or public speakers - and nip them in the bud.

Industry terms

This one is a bit more complicated than the previous two but much more rewarding.

First, you need to figure out what phrases you want to target for anchors. Let's take CapVideo as an example.

CapVideo is an app that helps with video editing. Let's say the team behind it wants to get more relevant backlinks from pages talking about quick video editing. After a little brainstorming, here are the key phrases I came up with "video editing app for iPhone", "app for Reels", "app for TikTok", and "video editing for TikTok".

You just add them to your alert and find relevant articles and blog posts. Then you contact the authors to negotiate adding the links to their content, either as a part of a link exchange agreement or for a reward of some kind. Some authors may even be willing to do it without asking anything in return.

Quite conveniently, this is also a great way to find guest blogging opportunities.

Before you go

Social listening tools are unfairly forgotten when it comes to discussions about link-building and getting backlinks. The added advantage is that you can use tools like Awario in many ways to effectively accomplish your SEO, PR, and marketing goals.

Don't hesitate to add a new tool to your disposal and try social listening for link-building.


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