A New Take on Contact Info Finding
In the pursuit to make link building a more scalable process, there's a few roadblocks that we always run into when trying to expand our efforts and become more efficient. One inevitable and time consuming part of link building is the need for finding correct contact information of websites for broken link building, guest blogging, or any other link building strategy you have in your arsenal.
I always find myself visiting a link prospect and then spending a minute or more trying to figure out where their contact information is buried on their website. Although it usually isn't all that time consuming when working with 5-10 websites, it becomes a significant time expense when numbers start reaching the triple digits. I've become more impatient lately, and have found myself doing a quick Google search using ~contact site:examplesite.com to see if I can quickly find contact information that might be listed on a page that I wouldn't normally expect.
That's why I've put together this Google Doc that does that on a much larger scale, which I've been using to help speed up my contact finding process.
How does it Work?
Assuming that you've already mustered up a list of link prospects that you would like to contact, make a copy of the Google Doc to edit (file -> make a copy...) and list your link prospects in column A. Columns B and C will populate with root domains and search queries for finding contact information on a website. I've found that "~contact" works well for me, but you can edit the query in C2 if you're not having any luck, or would like to try something new.
Once the formulas are completed, throw in up to 25 search queries at a time in SearchOpener.com, and voila! You have lists of contact pages for those websites.
Is It Actually Faster?
It really boils down to personal preference and your link prospects. Admittedly, it isn't as effective for larger websites, or sites that list the editor or webmaster on the URL that you are trying to get a link from. It does quickly list websites that require using a contact form, and I've rarely found the contact information of an irrelevant person. Additionally, if you are unable to find any indexed pages that display contact information, then you most likely won't find correct contact info by manually navigating the website. I would use it as a way to quickly find 75% of the contact information for your link prospects, and as a way to flag websites that you most likely won't be able to find contact information for.
Where I Reference Other Materials
If your goal is to find the email of one particular person, then I'd recommend using BuzzStream's Email Research Tool with Rapportive to find more information about contacts. I would also strongly recommend trying out Citation Labs' Contact Finder, if you haven't already done so, as another way to find contact information in bulk. Most importantly, realize that if you're having trouble finding a person's email, then there's probably a reason for that, and be sure that you use tools that help you find information that is publicly available. If you have any ideas or suggestions, leave them in the comments!
Michael Hall is an Online Marketing Specialist at Netvantage Marketing, which specializes in SEO, PPC and social media.