I am going through some of my competitors links, and aside from having alot of natural links acquired through (and deserving so) quality content, I noticed they have alot of mentions in random articles from a number of news websites. Some are simple credits for using content they have/own, and other are mentions like "John doe from [insert competitor link here] states..blablablabla". They don't seem to be the kind of links where, ABC.com for instance, would of contacted my competitor to get them in the article or news page. It seems they are actively seeking out these kind of links.
I have been pondering ways to go about acquiring these, without paying for cookie-cutter press release services. I'm thinking you have to either have really great connections, or your content just has to be THAT good at attracting natural links. Lately it seems the issue of getting links naturally by focusing on content has been debatable, as many fellow SEOs would argue that it takes proactive and link "hunting" efforts to really get worthwhile links. But how? It seems just finding the right person to contact on those sites can be overwhelmingly time consuming, and how to maximize your outreach efforts?
Is there a way to get your content in the forefront of some of these media/news site editors, without being a big brand? What are ways, if any, to actually pursue the right individuals? My guess would be to send well written, properly addressed emails...but I doubt the efficiency of that is going to justify the time it will take.
Anyone else feel like digesting this topic with me? :)