26 Jan 2009, Posted by admin in Greyhat, 0 Comments
Linkbait is probably my favourite part of SEO. I love it. All you have to do to create successful linkbait is to have the capability to think of successful linkbait. Read that sentence again.
In a world with no linkbait, SEO can become a bit monotonous. It’s all fun and games when you’re working on a cool site, but when you’re working for a client that wants to rank for car insurance or property investment it becomes a lot less interesting.
Now back to the world where linkbait exists. All of a sudden, that car insurance website that you were working for suddenly becomes a lot more interesting.
Know Your Audience
Different people and different sites link to different types of content. As a result, when you’re designing a piece of linkbait, you need to understand your audience. You need to understand what they would link to. As we all know and love SEO, lets use that as an example. The kinds of content that I, as an SEO, would link to would be:
- Useful – Like Aaron Wall’s SEO for Firefox plugin
- Interesting – Like SEO Scientist’s experiment with link placement
- Controversial – Like Johnon’s “Just Make Good Content Is Bullshit” post (which rocked)
- Authoritative – Like SEOMoz’s Web Developer SEO Cheat Sheet
- Newsworthy – Like the hyves discussion about finding link penalties
- Anything that confirms my point of view – Like Matt Cutt’s view of linkbait
Incidentally, speaking of linkbait Matt Cutt’s said:
I think of “linkbait” as something interesting enough to catch people’s attention, and that doesn’t have to be a bad thing.
If you’re planning on creating linkbait for a client, think first about your audience – find what they already link to, see if they’re linking elsewhere because it’s authoritative, because it’s interesting or because the source makes them look good. Maybe it shares their point of view?
What Makes Linkbait Successful?
Going back to Aaron Wall’s SEO for Firefox plugin – 14,506 backlinks according to Yahoo site explorer. This was hugely successful. Hugely. Probably because it’s so incredibly useful, most SEOs use it and love it.
Mediadonis’s Hyves post managed to get 333 backlinks already so far, which isn’t bad going for a story that only broke last week.
When you’re creating linkbait, you need to know your audience. You need to understand what is going to interest people – Aaron did well because his tool is really useful for SEOs, Mediadonis did well because his find was really interesting….to SEOs. If you know your audience, you can make something that they’ll want.
Spend some time exploring the sites in your niche, find the ones that get linked to most and ask why. Why do people love them so much? What are they doing so well?