Linkbait is one of the crucial types of Internet marketing. Linkbait takes some time to create, but the results can be both viral and effective. However, with all types of Internet marketing methods, publishers must be willing to spend a significant amount researching, prepping, formatting, and creating linkbait that is going to be strong enough to attract the attention of the masses. This includes creating fresh linkbait on a regular basis, making sure links are still live, and ensuring linkbait is being used properly. Ideally, your website and/or company should aim to become known for its linkbait, whatever type you choose to create. Consistency is key.
Linkbait can come in many forms, including articles, widgets, multimedia, quizzes, badges, and more. A website can specialize in one or use several types of linkbait. This depends on the type of website, the available resources, the target audience, and what needs to be accomplished.
Viral Video: Requires Genius For Great Potential
Producing videos to publish online can be a relatively low cost and effective link building method. However, creating the perfect formula of a viral video can be difficult. Look for original ideas, a current event or pop-culture icon to coattail off of, and above all, give viewers something they can’t resist sharing. Some great examples include online only commercials, extended scenes from television commercials, and guerrilla videos that look like they were done by amateurs.
Videos need to look organic and the ideas need to be ingenious, unlike most Hollywood produced videos. Some great examples of viral videos that were created with the intent of promoting a product, business, or website include “The Landlord” (contains some strong language), which was posted by funnyorDie.com and starred Will Ferrell and Adam McKay. This video, which starred Adam McKay’s toddler daughter as a vicious landlord was uploaded to funnyordie.com right as the site had been launched. Other examples include the series of Mr. T. Snickers commercials (one example: The Speedwalker) and the Old Spice commercials with “the man your man could smell like”.
Besides commercials, videos of people performing extraordinary feats were being placed in awkward situations with the intent of promoting a brand slogan or concepts are also quite popular.
Infographics: Difficult Creative Process, Easy to Share
With a good graphic designer, infographics are one of the easiest pieces of linkbait. Users appreciate being able to digest complex information and statistics in a graphic format. Because of this, infographics on all kinds of topics are growing increasingly popular, especially if they are easy to share (e.g. placing the HTML code to share the infographic at the end of the display page).
Infographics must contain relevant information and statistics that have been published fairly recently. Users that are online a lot are more likely to share content that is enjoyable to them, so they appreciate statistics about things they are interested in, like social media use, Internet activity around the world, or how technology has affected everyday life for the human race.
The following are a few good examples of effective Infographics. Besides being a useful info byte, infographics can also be humorous, as illustrated by The Oatmeal’s example.
A s you can see from the link, effective infographics need to flow information well, have an interesting subject and statistics, and have a great design. To reinforce this point, the above “17 things worth knowing about your cat” infographic has been shared on Facebook over 53,000 times and has been tweeted over 5,000 times.
Content: Easy to Create, Great for SEO, Exposure, and Establishing Credibility in Your Industry
Articles are one of the original types of linkbait. Publishing great blog posts, articles, and other online content will not only keep readers coming back to your site but will also increase the probability that they will want to share what you’ve just published. Make any content that brings something into a new light, voices an opinion, teaches how to do something relevant to your industry, or makes a compelling point in a strong argument.
Besides having the content itself be strong and well written, it must also be chunked accordingly (with headers or sections) and contain applicable statistics, photos, or graphics. Make sure to validate any argument with evidence and always cite your statistic and photo sources.
Along with posting on your own website’s blog, being a guest author on other industry blogs and websites is also a great way to create content linkbait. In addition to providing a link back to your website at the end of the guest post (usually an author bio), blog guest authors also have a chance to establish their online presence, increasing credibility and overall industry influence. Seeing a professional’s work published on respected websites makes them more trustworthy to potential customers or clients.
The most important aspect of content is to make sure that it is updated regularly. Website blogs should be updated once a week at minimum and should always be about current news in the industry. Furthermore, creating a dedicated guest blog image means writing posts for other websites at least once a month, if not more.
The Grand Finale: Sharing Your Linkbait Online
Once the linkbait has been created, it must be shared online in all available mediums. This includes posting to social media profiles and bookmarking sites, dedicating a blog entry to the linkbait (if it is a new video, infographic, etc.), including it in a regular E-newsletter, and promoting it on the main website homepage, if possible, etc.
A July 2009 online study by econsultancy reports that 90% of consumers online trust recommendations from people they know; 70% trust opinions of unknown users. This shows that internet users are more likely to read or recommend something online that has been recommended to them from a friend or online contact. Making online linkbait easy to share means that there are more recommendations online which will attract new users and potential customers to your website. Make high-quality linkbait a priority in your Internet marketing game plan and be rewarded with steady traffic.
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