Well I started in 2008 as a Blogger and become an SEO with the old white hat techniques which is focus on off page like Directory Submission, Tons of Social bookmarking submission, Article and Press Release, Sitewide links, and others but because of that I won different SEO contest starting 2008 to 2015.
I focus more on Link Building because this is the only thing I know effective and powerful to gain higher rankings on search engines. Because for me no “rankings” no “traffic”, why? because traffic that comes on social networks will not become your clients but traffic that comes om search result will become your clients. I know that other old methods was replace by new methods like Social Media Marketing but still old methods will bring you the things you want on search engine.
As I read on Searchengineland.com the topic of Manual Link Building and SEO I read and understand what they said and still Link Building has the role in SEO. Because Links has an important ranking signals which is search engine wants, with the combination of content marketing and other methods then SEO will be perfect.
Links for me still the most powerful because continues of links as a signal.
Too many websites get penalized this month with Spam links but as others say’s before you get penalized and you think your links are too many Spam then time for you to disavow links and if you get caught and gain penalty then you can email Google for reconsideration.
As expected an update before end of 2016 Links will never be obsolete but a role of SEO as signals.