The Paris Hilton Approach To Link Building

    October 31, 2006

There are many things you can learn about search engine marketing from infamous rich girl Paris Hilton, who some have called The Queen of Links. Rand Fishkin of SEOmoz puts it another way – “This falls under my ‘Paris Hilton Law of Visibility,’ which states that even the least attractive content can be the most visible with the right media attention.” As you can see, Hilton’s affect on the marketing world has been noticed.

But how can you take the Paris Hilton marketing lessons and apply it to link building? Before we get into that, I should probably provide a little context. Fishkin’s latest post compares link building against creating valuable content and he contends that in today’s search environment, well-linked sites with poor content will, in all likelihood, rank better than sites with excellent content and little-to-no links pointing to them. While it’s probably true well-written content is a very attractive option for inbounds, having such content in no way guarantees good rankings, unless you are producing this content for a non-competitive keyphrase area of the web.

This is where Ms. Hilton comes into play and like Paris has demonstrated, the key to a successful media presence depends on the amount of people paying attention to you. This theory can easily be applied to search engine marketing: your site, unless it’s in an non-competitive area, will not be considered “popular” unless there are a number of unique links pointing to it.

What Fishkin recommends is to develop good content, which will make you more attractive to social networks (Digg, Once these sites take notice, the amount of inbound links should improve. However, there is a caveat:

Great content is merely a means to an end, not a ranking strategy by itself. In fact, I have little doubt that much (possibly most) of the very best content on the web today ranks nowhere in Google because it hasn’t been well-marketed.

This means even though Google, et al, are opposed to link farms and the buying of links (and they’ve adjusted their algos accordingly), the amount of links pointing to your site will usually trump the quality of the on-page content.

Chris Richardson
Staff Writer | WebProNews Blog