Whitey - 12:49 am on Sep 6, 2013 (gmt 0)
Penguin was a spam penalty, and the site will have a bulls-eye painted on it. Google will certainly be monitoring for artificial link building.
Content very likely would need to be improved, design enhanced, and the site made more engaging... to the point where the site would attract natural inbounds. It then needs to be promoted socially. I don't think the process will work the other way around.
This is more or less what John Mueller says. I found this link / time which I'll paraphrase :
"you might want to bridge the gap by going out and getting more links, but this is tricky otherwise they wouldn't be natural. But by creating fresh content that users would want to link to" is probably the answer.
For approx time around 30:00: [ paste this link ] "http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DY6B2eEatbc&feature=player_detailpage#t=1835" found on [youtube.com...]
So, I find this comment significant in isolation, particularly with @Robert_Charlton's comment
Does Google mean you can't go ahead and pitch to someone, say, "hey, have a look at this site, which I think is useful to you because it could be useful for your audience - would you consider linking to it" or "referencing it with a link". And I'm not talking about making any payments along with it - which would be a clear paid link.
It looks like link building along these lines is no longer white hat.
If that's the case then the whole process of soliciting links is "off limits". We're no longer talking about paid links, this is any solicited links.
Perhaps now is the time to really think strongly about how you market your content for future proofing. And it does seem to dovetail into Panda for quality.
This is vital for survival and future link profile health, as any site that has been surviving off of old style linking has to move fast "to bridge the gap".
Can folks see a way to dig a little deeper along these lines and list how social media might work to build those links better?