The Little Big Horn Strategy of Link Building

The Little Big Horn Strategy of Link Building

Are you in a niche that’s so damn competitive no one’s willing to link to you?

If so, the Little Big Horn strategy of link building might just be your answer.

Read on if you:

  • Are in a highly competitive niche
  • Struggle to get links from blogs within your niche
  • Want to outrank your competition quickly with white hat SEO
  • Want to know how to create a VIRAL TSUNAMI

This post is the latest update from my adventure to build a $9K/pm authority site and in it I’ll share how I’m using the Little Big Horn strategy of link building to get my new site shared by A-listers and create a Viral Tsunami.

If you read my last post Viral Carrots & Conversion Rabbit Holes you’ll know my aim was to make my new site go viral on launch day by promoting “viral carrots” (content that has potential to go viral) to the right people.

The goal was to attract links and shares from A-list bloggers both within and closely related to the niche.

Well on 17th December 2013, the site went live and I emailed a large chunk of the A-list bloggers from my little black book of 1000+ contacts.

But did they share it?


Freight Train Out of Nowhere

Freight Train Out of Nowhere

To cut a long story short, the site failed to create the waves I hoped it would and like a freight train out of nowhere it hit me – this niche is going to be tougher than I thought.

Nevertheless, I was prepared for this and didn’t base my entire strategy on becoming the next best thing since BuzzFeed overnight.

I knew it was going to be a struggle to get links and shares from people within the niche, which is why I’m using the Little Big Horn strategy to make a stand and:

  • Get white hat links from A-listers
  • Outrank my competitors FAST

The Little Big Horn Strategy

In the movie, The Social Network, when Mark Zuckerberg and Eduardo Saverin meet Sean Parker for lunch they explain how they used the Little Big Horn Strategy to attract students from Baylor (a college that already had their own social network) to Facebook, by putting Facebook on the campuses of all the schools within 100 miles of Baylor first:

To implement the Little Big Horn strategy for a new site, you first need assets you can leverage to attract juicy white-hat links from beyond the constrictions of your niche, in adjacent markets.

This way, it doesn’t matter if people within your niche aren’t willing to share your stuff in the first few weeks because you can always get links elsewhere.

The Little Big Horn Strategy is split into two key phases:

Phase One – Get links and exposure from adjacent markets

Phase Two – Get A-listers to share your content

I’ve almost completed Phase One by leveraging a certain type of asset that attracts white-hat links on drip feed from adjacent markets.

Phase One: Leverage Infographics

Infographics make excellent link bait and if promoted the right way, attract a heap of traffic, attention and links.

For this reason I decided to invest in creating not one, but two epic infographics to promote the blog and build links for Phase One.

And these aren’t just any old infographics.

The subject matter is 100% original because I collected the data myself from a 20 question survey sent out to 100 people using Survey Monkey.

Once the data was in hand, I used Lucid Chart to map the flow of how I wanted the infographics to look to save money on infographic designer costs, which only came to USD225 per infographic (on

Since the day of the site’s launch I have been submitting them to various infographic directories and reaching out to dozens of people in adjacent markets.

I’ve been implementing the tips from Brian Dean’s recent post on how to rank #1 with Guestographics.

He shared a strategy David Gross’ team from Inter Greater used to get their infographic way more attention than it would have if they’d only reached out to people within the niche.

As well as reaching out to a more diverse crowd of people, Brian also suggested you offer to write a unique introduction for each person – this way they’ll be more likely to share them, since you’ve made their job that much more easy.

I’ve done this and the response has been fantastic:

Offer to Write Unique Description for Infographic

Actually, because no-one in my niche is using infographics (but mainly use links from black hat SEO / grey hat SEO to rank) I’ve decided to invest in creating one new infographic every month, because after only 3 weeks of going live, the link juice from the infographics has helped our best money page rise up the SERP and appear on Google’s second page!

The funny thing is, that money page has NO external inbound links. So…how the heck is it ranking already?

A Rising Tide Lifts All Boats

I discovered that a rising tide lifts all boats when a couple of my older posts on clambr started ranking in the SERP after my expert roundup about the best SEO tools for link building went a little viral.

Its’ popularity and accumulated backlinks helped lift other posts in clambr’s harbour, especially this one: which is now ranking for quite a few free directories based keywords:

Ranking for Free Directories

I never even built a single backlink to it.

But what I did do was improve clambr’s inner link structure by sending link juice from my “star” pieces of content, to other pieces of content on the site.

I’m doing the exact same thing for my new niche site.

I’ve made sure the current star pieces of content (my two infographics) are sending link juice to my most important money pages.

That’s why one of my best money pages is already appearing on Google’s second page.

Now comes the final push: create a Viral Tsunami that lifts all boats in the harbour.

Remember how when I first launched the site no A-listers would share my content?

Phase Two: Expert Roundups

Now that the site has built up a solid amount of white-hat backlinks and social proof from its’ unique infographics, it’s time to reach out to the A-listers again, only this time, they’ll be more likely to help out.


Because I’m going to be inviting them to take part in an expert roundup!

If you’ve visited clambr before, you’ll know I’m a bit of an expert at expert roundups ;)

Hell, it was thanks to my first expert roundup about link building tools that clambr got noticed in the first place!

Expert roundups are KICK ASS because they have a habit of going viral since the content is EPIC and the people involved usually share them like crazy which gets you a flood of attention and organic white-hat links:

Expert Roundups Get Tons of Backlinks and Social Shares

And if you choose your target keywords wisely, once the social shares and backlinks kick in, you should hit the first page of Google in no time at all:

Expert Roundups Rank on Google

YES – I strongly believe that social shares play a HUGE factor in ranking content.

And because I’m so confident in the results roundups create, I’d be nuts not to use an expert roundup as Phase Two of the Little Big Horn strategy of link building.

Even if a lot of the experts in my niche are still unwilling to get involved in a roundup, it doesn’t matter, because I’m going to:

  1. Reach out to lesser known experts in the niche who’ll be more up for getting involved (thanks to Matt Gratt from BuzzStream for suggesting this)
  2. Create a question that can be answered by experts outside my niche (not just those strictly confined to the niche)
  3. This will mean I have a larger list of people to reach out to and thus, ensure a greater amount of responses (quantity is key because the more people = the more shares & exposure)

So even if the A-listers don’t get involved the first time round, I’ve still accomplished the task of getting on their radar simply because I am asking for their expert opinion.

And when the roundups go viral, the experts who don’t take part will be swept up in the Viral Tsunami, visit my site and be GAGGING to get involved next time round.

But what the heck is a Viral Tsunami?

Viral Tsunami

Viral Tsunami

image via:

A Viral Tsunami is a wave of social shares so vast and wide, that A-listers and Authoritative news sites can’t do anything but get swept up in it.

This will then bring a Tsunami of visitors to your site, which you can then funnel down channels (links) leading to whatever other content you want lifted as it ploughs through.

To create a Viral Tsunami you need to merge two huge waves of traffic together, to create one gigantic wave.

To achieve this, you don’t just launch one expert roundup and promote it like crazy.


You publish 2 expert roundups at the same time.

Imagine This X2

The expert roundups should also be on the same or similar topic so people involved in each roundup will be dying to see what the other group of experts said too.

Think about it.

If you and a friend were arrested on suspicion of vandalising a police car and then split up and interviewed in separate rooms you’d wish you could hear what your friend was saying about you right? Did he stick to the story you both agreed upon or did he rat you out? That’d drive you crazy right?!

Here’s some examples of how you could split groups up to pave the way for a Viral Tsunami:

Mommy Bloggers VS SEOs
Black Hats VS White Hats
Paleo Diets VS Vegetarian Diets
Strength Training VS Body Building
Men VS Women

Not only will this urge experts from each roundup to check out the other one, and share those too, but it will also:

  • Double your site’s exposure (because you can tap into the different variety of followers from each group of experts)
  • Increase each visitor’s time on site (great for SEO)
  • Allow you to direct waves of visitors to another fresh piece of content you want to rank (e.g. my money page stuck on Google’s second page)

But it gets better…

…As well as bouncing two expert roundups off each other, I’m also going to publish a unique infographic that compiles the data from both roundups to create an ultimate guide.

Imagine if you were one of the experts who’s answer contributed to the creation of an amazing and unique infographic?

You’d love it right? Because it would feel like your infographic.

In fact, you’d love it so much you’d share it like crazy and probably even publish it on your own blog.

So…this will in turn, give the infographic a huge chance of going viral, attract a ton of links and hopefully rank it for its own target keyword.

As part of my monetization strategy I’m also going to link to the money page I mentioned earlier in this post (the one that’s ranking on the second page of Google), because remember, a rising tide lifts all boats!

The impact of the Viral Tsunami should hopefully provide me with two expert roundups, one infographic and one money page that dominate the SERP.

In effect, this strategy could potentially kill 4 birds with 2 stones.

Think Viral Tsunamis ROCK? Click the bird to Tweet this:
“2 Expert Roundups + 1 Infographic = VIRAL TSUNAMI!” Tweet: 2 Expert Roundups + 1 Infographic = VIRAL TSUNAMI! via @clambr

Rinse and Repeat.

I am confident the Little Big Horn strategy of link building will work like magic, which is why I’m going to create one new infographic and two new expert roundups every single month.

The monthly infographics and roundups will not only boost my chances of getting noticed by A-listers in the niche, but also by Authoritative news sites.

In fact, I have already been asked by two radio stations to let them know when the next infographic comes out:

Radio Stations Love Infographics

Focussing on being a consistent publishing house for special types of content will, in a nutshell: make your site known as a go-to place for something special and establish you as an authority.

Pat Flyn is known for his podcasts about generating an income online, Matthew Woodward is known for his internet marketing case studies and video tutorials and Neil Patel is known for being kind of a big deal.

My new site will become known for its unique monthly infographics and expert interviews, (something nobody else in the niche is doing).


If you just do what everyone else is doing, you won’t stand out and you won’t get noticed, let alone linked to from A-listers.

The Little Big Horn strategy of link building gives you a solid way to get exposure, white-hat links and rank your site quickly after you launch.

Like the Little Big Horn Strategy? Click the bird to Tweet this:
“The Little Big Horn Strategy of Link Building” Tweet: The Little Big Horn Strategy of Link Building via @clambr

In my next post I’ll reveal exactly what happens when I implement Phase Two of the strategy (the expert roundups) for my new niche site and whether or not it creates the Viral Tsunami I’m banking on.

The email outreach has only just begun and the responses are already coming in:

First Response to Expert Roundup

Sign up to updates below if you want to see what happens, oh and if you love posts about link building check out the 3 Link Building Tools 55 SEO Experts Cannot Live Without here.

I hope you enjoyed this post and if you liked it be sure to give it a share! Do you plan to use the Little Big Horn strategy of link building in your niche?


    • Richard Marriott says

      Hey Alex,

      Thanks for your support! It is indeed a little long haha. Hope you find the strategy useful and I’ll be sure to update you in a couple of weeks to let you know how the Viral Tsunami performs.


    • Richard Marriott says

      Hehe yeah I guess it does look a little like a competition but just want to say I’m not actively building backlinks to try and outrank you. Your post is awesome and I’m content to simply be ranking within the top four results :)

  1. says

    Hey Richard,

    This is pretty cool. This was my first time seeing your “expert roundup” strategy and I really like it.

    You know a blog post is good when you have a bunch of ideas racing around your head after reading!

    • Richard Marriott says

      Thanks John! That’s what I hoped this post would do – create lots of ideas.

      Let’s see if publishing two expert roundups at the same time does indeed create the Viral Tsunami. It’s going to be well interesting to see what happens!

  2. says

    Nice idea man. Link building with shareable/decent content is so much easier than link building without. Yet another reason people should be making stuff on their own site…

    • Richard Marriott says

      Cheers Sean, and yes, there’s no point in making lots of mediocre content because even if you email hundreds of people it simply won’t get links. Also, one link from one high PR news site is worth SO much more than 20 self submitted links.

  3. says


    LOVE this. You really are the expert on creating (and promoting) roundups that get results.

    Just as everyone jumped on the roundup bandwagon — boom! — you come up with a completely new twist that takes the concept to the next level.

    • Richard Marriott says

      This is hands down the best comment on clambr ever! Thanks Brian!

      I’m really excited about how this “double down” roundup strategy will play out.

      Can’t wait to let you know how it all turns out and thanks for all your tips on creating and promoting infographics both from Backlinko and QuickSprout University. I’m literally addicted to making infographics now!

  4. Mike Wallagher says

    Great post Richard!

    I haven’t published expert roundups before, but this is something that looks pretty much lucrative in terms of getting links.

    And oh, I also noticed that I’m on your SERP image, competing with you, he-he.


    • Richard Marriott says

      For sure, expert roundups are the bomb!

      Your post about how to promote a blog is pretty sick mate and I think more answers the keyword people are searching for. As in, they want advice on how to do it rather than tools to help that process. So I definitely think your post deserves higher rank for that keyword. I’m sure the time spent on the page is pretty long right?

      Anyways, I’m happy to be simply on that first page! Keep up the good work mate :)

  5. Mike Wallagher says

    LOL richard, sorry for making one comment 3 times in a row.
    Your blog tends to “timeout” whenever I’m trying to comment, although it actually gets through.


    • Richard Marriott says

      Hehe no worries Mike. Yeah I totally need to upgrade my blog’s hosting. The comment time out thing seems to be a recurring problem.

  6. Mike wallagher says

    An auhtority blog like you have, you should definitely get a dedicated host (in case you are not using it already). I went for dedicated host and avg. page loading time went from 2,2 to 0,9.

    It’s also an important and often overlooked SEO factor ;)

  7. says

    Hey Richard, we really enjoyed this blog post and discussed it in detail on our podcast. I hope I didn’t confuse things because I got a little mixed up, but I think I recovered at the end nicely.

    ou can find it on Episode 069 – Flickr Cofounder Launches Email Killer, Little Big Horn Link Building Strategy, Landing Page Copy Tips for 2014 and Google Science Fair Kicks Offf

    Thanks again for sharing!

    • Richard Marriott says

      Hey Bryan! So happy you loved it and I listened to your podcast. You guys are fracking hilarious! You’ve just earned a new regular listener.

      I think you covered it pretty damn well actually. I do tend to write a little too much in my posts and could probably get the key points across in less words but you grasped the whole concept swimmingly despite my rambling!

      Can’t wait to show you guys what happens with this. The 2 interviews and infographic will be going live next Tuesday so expect a followup post on here soon to reveal what happens. Thanks again Bryan!

  8. says

    Hey Richard,

    I first heard about you on Backlinko, but this is the first time I checked out Clambr – I really love this strategy – I’ve published an infographic for my ecommerce site but wasn’t as persistent as you were with outreach, so I could have had more luck.

    Combining infographics with expert roundups is just genius, though. I’ll have to try it with my own blog, too. Looking forward to your first roundup+infographic combo – am signing up to your list!

  9. says

    Hi Richard

    This post help me think outside the box. Because with this new seo blog I want to promote my content and is very difficult. I will give a try your technic

  10. says

    It takes time, first need to gain trust, after content/brand should be rock solid. Achieving link bain or creating viral content is always 50/50, even on hottest topics.

  11. Amir Adnan says

    Hi Richard,
    First I’m going to apologise for my english. It is not my first language. But I still want to say thanks to you.

    I’m planning to create my own authority site soon and doing lots of research on how to successfully create one. I use my phone in class and read whenever I have time. And I found this site, the best one so far, full of tips that are proven!

    I can’t thank you more. Reading your posts here just like reading inspirational books. I wish you all the best and please keep doing your great sharing.

    You just got another loyal reader and subscriber.

    Again, thank you mate. Thank you so much.

  12. says

    I think very cool when you tell us about “Viral Tsunami” and I think you the first person you called that method Viral Tsunami.

  13. says

    Hey Richard

    I can only say I’m impressed with the quality and uniqueness of the posts you provide. There is always a new method (with a weird name by the way) every time I visit your blog.

    Just keep rocking man!


  14. says

    Hi Richard,

    It is really very amazing post about strategy of link building. you are right your mostly all post are ranking on first page in google search engine. i need to learn some secret strategy from you.

    Thanks to Share it :)

  15. says

    This is an astonishing eye-opener. Unlike many other posts “out there” in the blogosphere which mostly regurgitate about linking building what everyone does (and which therefore suffers from a law of diminishing return), this is a actually a fresh strategic concept. However, unlike in the early days of link-building, all these newer strategies take a considerable chunk out of any SEOers time budget and require monitoring. On the other hand this means only the sincere will master them, not those black hatters who throw bots around.


  1. […] notice. So don’t be bothered if you’re not seeing instant result as you might have expected. MUST READ: Richard Marriott on Tips on Link Building (This guy works hard, his post are always resourceful and interesting) DON’T HIRE AN EXPERT: Not […]

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