Everything You Need to Know About Link Baiting (Part 1 of 2)

Posted on January 27, 2012 by
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If you do it right, link baiting is not necessarily evil. Although some less ethical bloggers go beyond the commonly accepted methods, link baiting is both a legit and powerful method to gather inbound links. Link baiting actually represents the organic nature of the internet. Traditional link-building methods can now extend to social networking websites. Although it is unlikely for you to directly obtain do-follow links from these services, they can help you to attract inbound links. Driving traffic to your websites is now much easier, but you need to employ specific strategies and understand basic rules of effective content marketing.

Of course, link baiting has negative connotations, as it often involves deceptions, traps, clever tricks and even frauds. Link baiting is often viewed as an attempt to manipulate people to link, even if they don’t want to.

In reality, it is not what link baiting is all about. You can use link baiting ethically to reach target market, gain reputation and present your ideas. On the other hand, you won’t get a loyal following if you concentrate too much on link baiting, successful website concentrate solely on their audience. This is an important requirement in successful blogging.

Many new bloggers are curious how they can use effective link baiting techniques. However, they should be aware that some techniques lie in grey area and some can even be considered as illegal practices. Successful bloggers use only fair and smart strategies, present their ideas properly and find the audience effectively. You should also choose techniques that match your principle. You don’t have to use all techniques presented in this article as some can be inappropriate to your unique condition. You should provide something valuable instead of using methods purely for the sake of gaining links.

You should be concerned about the quality of your contents and understand that you carry the responsibility for every idea you publish online. Handle your readers with respect. You should employ most effective principles, rules, strategies, techniques, examples, methods and resources.

What is link bait?

These are various definitions of link bait:

  • It is content placed on a website whether it is a blog post, article, picture, video and others, that is designed to attract links from various sources.
  • It is practices that are aimed to generate incoming links from other websites.
  • It is a website element that is provocative, useful and unique; and that readers respond to by sharing with others.
  • It is content that aim link-friendly readers. The intended results are increased visibility and traffic.
  • It involves the combination of traditional viral marketing methods and latest online techniques.
  • It doesn’t involve manipulation. If other websites link to your websites, it is because their readers can benefit from content. You can attract incoming links to your website by offering useful tools and present an idea that can provoke good discussion.
  • It is an attempt to make people evaluate your contents favorably. Your webpages will be linked to if they’re worthy of attention; and if you have the authority and the credibility as content provider. A good website is also worthy of subscription, generally because it is worth visiting again.
  • It is regularly distributed. After content is released, it is shared among prominent bloggers and submitted to social bookmarking and social networking services. If the content is engaging, it should gain visibility and traction at more popular websites. Even after the initial buzz has died down, your site will continue to receive smaller residual traffic as people circle back to the webpage. This will attract a massive influx of links and continue to increase the popularity of your contents. Additionally, search engines usually reward sites that gain plenty of traffic.

In general, link bait is an engaging content that describe something controversial or doing any act that encourage people to link to your site. Once an interesting post is published in your website, you should try to get it picked up by other websites. Social bookmarking services can give your content a massive visibility to many Web owners who will be glad to link to your webpages.

Unfortunately link baiting has its limitations, for example, it is not appropriate for websites that seek higher conversions and use CTR-based advertising. The benefits of link baiting is largely sequential, first you’ll get decent inbound links and these will help you to achieve publicity as your website rank better in search engine results. Consequently your products and services will benefit from an increased branding.

Link baiting is unlikely to give you a direct financial benefit, but its indirect values are enormous. Even if many refuse to link to you, you still benefit from brand awareness and recognition from respected individuals in the industry. This will definitely improve your search engine ranking, because many search engines such as Google is using the authority-centric relevancy algorithm. Editorial links are considered as signs of trust or votes. Any link you get from a respective website will make your own website more authoritative.

Rules of link baiting

Create unique and original content on topics that others are reluctant like to touch and you should do it properly. If you choose to make claims or counter-claim then you should back them up with substantiated data. At the end of the day, everything boils down to one fact; you need to have amazing contents. You should hit possible sweet spots and those links will start to roll in.

Some people released free, useful tools that attract plenty of links. You should be aware that useful content may not be enough. Quality content won’t automatically attract links, specifically not by itself. You should place your contents in the best possible places, especially where people can easily see them. Everything should be shaped in a way that encourages desired actions from readers and fellow bloggers. Web marketing is essentially a huge popularity contest, thus it demands a good marketing strategy.

Your content should be compelling, memorable and universally valuable. High quality contents are usually well targeted; they are also able to keep a significant percentage of traffic they attract initially and can lure in a sizable amount of links.

You should also prioritize the value of your website by providing benefits to users by addressing need, desire, concern and problem that they may have. Capitalizing on vital ideas is often critical; you should aim to make your ideas spread rapidly. If your contents are complete, tempting, easy to swallow and well visualized then they might go viral. You should strive to achieve good first impression as it demands further investigation and this will encourage users to invest their time.

When you are baiting for links, you shouldn’t act like salesmen. You should give, instead of asking for something. People are unlikely to link to your content unless it is very unique and engaging. Spam will also ruin your link baiting goals. By spamming bloggers with requests you may actually burn bridges and eliminate future opportunities.

It is essential to understand what subjects, features and contents are in. It is an important piece in a great puzzle. If you search through popular social bookmarking services you’ll easily find pages and sites that are gaining a lot of traffic and inbound links. These sites should serve as your inspiration when searching for the latest crazes in your niche. This should give you an idea about trends that are influencing the industry. Many online tools and applications are also successful in gaining inbound links. Average bloggers simply can’t resist to point on something interesting to their cohorts, in a hope that they will become a source of references later on.

A very effective technique to get direct response is by using storytelling style, especially if mixed in with powerful psychological trigger and a polished copywriting technique. The real magic should happen well before a word is typed; which is during the formulation of the content itself. Normally, you need to build content that is targeted to your visitors; people who want to get specific information, buy your products or use your service. However, during the link baiting process you are targeting an entirely different audience, those that can elevate the online presence of your site by giving you some link love.

Try to be connected with your readers and appreciate their feedback. At least, every month create a poll to ask your visitors about your site’s progress. What new features they want? What type of content they want to get?

Continue Reading Part 2 here….

About: This Article was Contributed by Raja. He is a Web Hosting industry watcher and writes regularly on Dedicated Hosting Reviews and Reseller Hosting Reviews.

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