[Reading a lot of posts about backlinks as a newbie this is an area that I’m not 100% on. I hear the backlinks are from high PR sites then I hear that just get backlinks from sites related to your niche. Then social bookmarking and indexing your backlinks.]
First, it is important to understand that websites do not have PR. PR is assigned to individual pages. You don’t need backlinks from high PR websites, you need backlinks from high PR pages. This distinction between “pages” and “sites” is very important to understand how search engines rank web pages.
Likewise, “website” topics have nothing to do with SEO, search engines only look at web “page” topics. You can often add content to the places you are placing your backlinks, so add keyword-rich content when you place your backlinks, particularly in and near the anchortext element.
Presuming you are pursuing SEO for the sake of generating targeted traffic, your efforts will go farther if you consider the interests of real human users in your tactics. By targeting websites, that are relevant to yours, as locations to place your backlinks, your content will be more targeted to the visitors of that website and will likely generate more targeted direct link traffic to your pages. Better targeted traffic begets more naturally earned backlinks.
Backlinks won’t directly benefit your SEO efforts until after they are indexed by search engines. To be indexed, they must first be discovered by search engine bots. Social bookmarking, as well as XML-RPC blog pinging, are useful techniques to alert search engine bots of your new or updated content, in this case, the content where your backlink is embedded.