I’m happy to chat backlinks; it’s been the basis of all my SEO strategies since the late 90s.
The ‘easiest’ options aren’t chasing people, IMHO. If you’re new, I suggest:
– creating unique and fun “best of” content in your niche that highlights movers and shakers; send them a note (tag on Twitter, IG, whatever) and let them know you’ve given them some love. It’s not new or the quickest to create, but it’s a win-win for everyone (you’ve got fresh new content, they’ve got someone new advocating for them). I want to also say…. not the “big” movers and shakers, household names, but rather the folks that aren’t so big they’d appreciate the plug.
– same goes for review content, especially if it’s favorable. Find high-intent keywords and review relevant items in your niche, then again let the person/place/thing you’ve reviewed know about it.
– use HARO, or sites like it, extensively.
– this is my favorite ‘secret’ way to get high ROI backlinks fast: publish content about research in your niche that no one else is. I don’t mean create your own research (but of course do if you have those resources). I mean contact multiple PR folks and academics in your niche and ask them to share their newest and greatest findings with you. While you’re waiting for those emails to roll in (they will), use something like Google Scholar to find published research related to your site. Write up a real-world synopsis (or synthesize if you’re a great writer) and get those stats and facts out there. Why? Because .edus will link to you, including the original researchers. People will use your info on Wikipedia over the scholarly work (because it’s easier to read, quote and digest for the average layperson). Books will quote you, media will contact you, you’ll have links for decades…. I literally have folks contacting me about research I covered 14 years ago because none of it’s still live and available.