The key is to understand that acquiring links should be done organically, by providing high-quality content that other sites link to. There are some additional organic ways to build awareness of your content and links.
Paid media: Paid search or content promotion vehicles can drive a significant amount of traffic to your content, which can yield links or shares of your content.
Social media updates: Sharing content on social media channels (Twitter, Pinterest, Facebook, etc.) can be a great way to bring awareness ofyour content, particularly if you have a robust following.
Email newsletters: For brands that publish email newsletters and have a large email list, adding a link to a new article can be a great way to build awareness and attract views of content that may lead to links.
Digital news releases: For brands that drop online press releases, consider using a newswire service like PR Newswire. These services push out your release to hundreds of news publications at once and typically allow for embedding links to content and other owned media assets that you are trying to increase links to in the release. Including search terms in the anchor text is an excellent way to build links. It's a really quick and passive way to bring awareness of your content and your site.
YouTube videos: YouTube is considered the second most popular search engine according to the New York Times. For brands that have videos on YouTube or a program on YouTube, they should employ SEO best practices (to be discussed later) to maximize free views of video content. They should also include a link to a relevant web page for each video.
While the factors that affect search engine rankings are constantly changing, I've found that the three pillars of good SEO that I just outlined have lasted since the beginning of Google. I am confident that if brands focus on optimizing the three pillars of good SEO and optimizing the factors underneath them, they will see significant improvements to their organic traffic levels and search engine rankings. If you turned your small business into an SEO Agency you would surely see brilliant results.