Whitey - 5:11 am on Dec 29, 2012 (gmt 0)
I think SEO is about enabling a good marketing proposition online. Focus on what users want and then enable it with good SEO, as g1smd indicates.
Old school SEO where the most links won, has long gone and can actually have your overall site health badly compromised, if not totally removed from the index.
Google see's this type of thing as manipulative and although there are reports of folks gaming the system,sometimes with links, it looks like Google has a good handle on how to deal with sites in most verticals that matter, that do it.
Historically and again generalising , heavy link building was only required in very competitive verticals. But only strong branding signals saved the most heavy users from penalties in more recent years.