SEO in 2020 and beyond with Brian Dean of Backlinko

This episode is a discussion with Brian Dean – Founder of Backlinko (one of the leading SEO blogs on the planet) and Co-founder of Exploding Topics. We talk about what’s working today, how to rank a website from scratch, how big brands can leverage SEO, and where it’s going in the future (plus a lot more).


  • 00:00:50 Brian’s introduction to the Growth Manifesto Podcast
  • 00:02:39 What happened in the 5 years leading up to when you founded Backlinko?
  • 00:04:27 What hasn’t changed in SEO since you first started?
  • 00:06:23 What has changed in SEO in around the last three years?
  • 00:08:14 What do you attribute to your success in the SEO industry?
  • 00:11:05 The Skyscraper Technique
  • 00:13:20 How do you come up with SEO ideas and experiment them like placing animated GIFs in your blogs?
  • 00:15:52 Compete on a different dimension to rank your content higher
  • 00:19:34 Have experts write your content | “If you want an article on how to unclog a toilet, don’t hire a freelance writer. Hire a plumber.”
  • 00:24:32 If you’re willing to go that extra step and work a fraction harder than everyone else is, that’s where the best results are
  • 00:25:49 If you had to start again from scratch, what would your approach be to rank in the competitive space?
  • 00:28:46 What’s the first thing you would do to get links when you’re just starting?
  • 00:31:21 Does broken link-building still work?
  • 00:32:42 What would you advise bigger brands as a strategy to rank higher and increase overall traffic & sales?
  • 00:37:18 Have you ever seen a brand that had a “noindex” blog yet still rank high?
  • 00:39:20 Can you take down a website’s rankings with toxic links?
  • 00:41:23 Do blog networks still work?
  • 00:44:27 How do you see SEO changing in the next 3-5 years?
  • 00:46:49 What are your thoughts on Google’s Voice Search?
  • 00:48:16 Brian talks about Visual Search and Augmented Reality
  • 00:49:41 How did you figure out the video side of ranking on sites like YouTube?
  • 00:54:28 Would you prefer a top ranking on video or a top ranking on search?
  • 00:55:19 Brian talks about “Exploding Topics”
  • 00:59:51 Quickfire questions with Brian
  • 01:06:17 Ending the Interview with Brian


You’re listening to the 2020 Marketing Series on The Growth Manifesto Podcast, a Zoom video series brought to you by Webprofits where we talk about how to drive business and marketing success through the rest of 2020.

Hosted by Alex Cleanthous.

Now that you’re here…

Why not take a few minutes to see how Webprofits can help you achieve your growth aspirations?

We helped one company grow from $25M to $190M revenue in 4 years, and we work with challenger brands that want to make a serious impact in their industry and have the resources (and the will) to make it happen.

If you want a growth strategy that leads the way in your industry, find out how Webprofits can help you transform your digital marketing.

Adrian Clark

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