Sage Lewis (Sage Rock ) - don't put the cart before the horse. All link campaigns start with content. Think win/win - in order to develop a local link campaign you must have some appeal for local sites. Link-worthy sites are hard to come by, they require time, dedication and commitment. So what's a linker to do?
- Integrate the community into your corporate events
- Create an offshoot service or product that helps the local community
- Promote the good work you are doing in your community
- Augment the values you have as an organization
You just don't build the site and hope the links will come, ask for the link!
Matt Stoddart (LinkWorth) - How do you get local links? Where do you find them? Get the obvious ones - the BBB, Chamber of Commerce links, search for "city/state + associations" to find relevant organizations.
Local is Social - local directories, calssified, review communities - citysearch, yelp, local.com, craiglist. Join region-specific groups within large social sites - facebook, myspace, linkedin. Find local & niche bloggers and interact - technorati, mybloglog.
Buying local links, search for relevant, non-competing businesses to buy directly from, ask them or offer to buy. Buy through broker, or buy a link from google - $1995 a year, buy the google mini - they give you a link.
Be creative - donate to local charities and request a link from their site. Sponsor a youth sports team. Local restaurants, churches, retailers ... any local businesses with a website - offer specific coupons.
Ian McAnerin (McAnerin Networks) - Seearch engines can be a great way to find links - its what they do! To find a relevant directory or links page try searching for one using "directory indicators". Look for "carpet cleaning" + "sumbit.php" or "addurl.asp" - "coffeed" + "submit site", "philadelphia add url".
Other places, DMOZ, local associations, charitable work, contests, related sites (ex. movers<>real estate agents), reciprocal links - stay on topic with these. How do you ask for a link? Wrong way - spammy emails to people. Don't send an email about "Page Rank" or "being important to seo". Right way - look for invitation (form, outbound links, etc.), stay on topic, get the address and name right - personalize it, explain why you're relevant.
Non-traditional - ratings & reviews, testimonials, press releases, contests, tools & utilities, entertainment. Evaluating links - don't evaluate just on PR, its not the be all and end all. Search position, # of other links on the page, context and relevance, neighborhood (good/bad), anchor Text, 302 redirects, cache. Watch Out For: nofollow attribute, frames.
Use the phone! More personal.