In order to create a fantastic social media buzz, making sure that the link bait you generate is captivating and relevant to your target audience is vital. Of course, the main objective you are going to strive to achieve is that your content catches attention and holds it, ensuring that leads are generated as a result. In this guide, we're going to give you seven great tips for creating great link bait that works.
1. Give them a reason to link to you
Before we begin to weigh into creating link bait effectively, it's worthwhile to remember what type of marketing strategy it is. The great thing about this technique when it's done effectively is that it will make other websites promote your online presence. And why would they do this? Mainly, they would be interested to promote you because it is an incentive for them. People share content that increases their social status in some way - that makes them look clever, funny, or in the know.
Strong and exclusive content from your website give their readers what they want, and when links are made back to your website, you get traffic and interest which will bring sales. As you can see, the first point is to give other blogs and web pages a reason to link back to you, offering something that makes you stand out from the crowd.
2. Link out first
The second point to creating great link bait is to make sure that you offer connections and references n to other websites, giving your visitors connections to other relevant online services. In a way, this could mean that the website you have helped will pay you back by linking back to you at a later date, meaning that you both generate new hits as a result.
3. Do the hard work to uncover great content
The third tip for making memorable link bait is one that many of us will follow begrudgingly: doing research to make our content have 'the edge'. You need to bear in mind your aims and cater to your core demographic. The things you produce should inspire a cathartic response in your readers - stirring the emotions in a way that makes them want to link their friends to view your website for themselves.
So, once you've done the planning that many of your competitors will fail to do, you need to ensure that the research you've done in advance is used to create a twist on the content that already exists. If you're writing about the travel industry for example, you won't want to produce link bait about growth in the tourism sector if another website has already done it.
Instead, you will want to develop and grow the content you create into something refreshing and novel that hasn't been done before. Why not use trends and analysis from experts to predict where the industry will be in a year's time? How about scrutinising how the tourism sectors here in the UK and abroad have done comparatively amongst British travellers during the economic downturn?
By including fascinating statistics, you could instigate a conversation and a debate about the industry that revolves around the facts that you found for inclusion in your article. Even though number-crunching in link bait will do you wonders, make sure that you obtain the findings from a reliable source, as there is nothing worse than feeding your readers untrue information and your reputation diminishing slightly as a result.
4. Keep their attention
Fourthly, a way to ensure your link bait is top notch should be to ensure that you don't let a word count define your content. There is nothing worse than when you have to write 500 words of content, but you only have 300 words of valid points to make. As a result, you find yourself padding out the information you have with the remaining 200 words.
Slimming down the length of link bait in favour of a more succinct, tightly-written and informative article is far more effective, retaining the interest and attention of the reader. The concentration span of many Internet readers is low, so you want to place the most hard-hitting information and objectives of your link bait first.
5. Think of the visual element
This brings us onto fifth pointer on our list. Even though the written word has the ability to blow Internet users away, an original image will bring just the same effect - potentially in a better way than relying on your descriptive gifts. Creating a summary to accompany the photo will be wise, and photo storage websites will ensure that the traffic your server is able to handle won't be breached by the increase in bandwidth you will use.
6. Make the headline re-tweetable
Number six is a relatively new point, particularly because of the developments that have been made in social media. Now more than ever before, you want to keep your headline 're-tweetable'. So: what does this mean? Many blogs and websites now allow visitors to post a micro URL onto their Twitter account, meaning their followers will be shown a hyperlink and the headline of your link bait.
With the few words you have to use, making sure that you make an impact and leave the reader intrigued is vital. First impressions are integral to your link bait's success, and asking a question of the reader is one way to establish that all-important connection. If you are re-tweeted by a user or service that has thousands (or even millions!) of followers, you will reap in the traffic afterwards.
7. Don't overcomplicate things
And finally, the last point which will get you on your way to making fantastic link bait is this: don't be afraid to keep things nice and simple. Sometimes, if you have a powerful message, delivering it very clearly and without gimmicks will get you far further. After all, if you have too many clichï¿½s, bells and whistles in your content, could the main points and objectives be detracted from?
Link bait is an art not a science, and using these seven tips will be the start of a long journey towards mastering it.