5 Characteristics of successful Linkbait

Maki over at Doshdosh has a make money online blog and he has outlined four characteristics of successful linkbait, which got me thinking and inspired me to add my own.

What are the characteristics of successful linkbait?

1. A killer headline

A headline is not 50% of the equation. It’s 100% of the first step in the equation, the second being the content that the user consumes. Not getting past the first step means the second step is wasted.

2. Emotional response.

Actions are based on emotion, not rational thought, although some people like to think that. The act of linking to someone requires emotional stimulas. People need a reason, the reason does not have to be rational and the linker does not even have to aware of why they are linking as calling to their sub-conscious is a lot more effective than persuading their conscious.

3. It has to be targeted at linkers.

Linkers as a tribe follow a code, a pattern of behaviour which if followed and cracked can be very profitable. A linker links based on what the content is perceived to provide, not on the reality. Multiple factors come into play when tickling the link out of the linker. Find out who links, why they link, who they link to. Is there a pattern? Follow that pattern.

In psychology there is a technique called modelling, apply that to the linker. Psychologically profile them, hey if Cracker can do it you can.

4. It stands out.

Sometimes you can’t put your finger on it, other times it’s blatantly obvious why it works and you kick yourself for not thinking of it first. You know good linkbait when you see it. It whipsers, “link to me”, gently in your ear. After a while you can tell profesionally written linkbait from the guy who just got lucky.

5. Links make successful linkbait

Seems obvious doesn’t it, but it’s not about getting on the front page of digg. It’s not about any social media front page, it only works as linkbait if someone pulls the trigger and fires a link at you. Other than that it’s just ego tripping. Which is cool to a point, I’ve had front page diggs that got hardly any links. But what a rush getting to the front page of digg for the first time.
Just don’t confuse a front page digg with success.

Comments

  1. says

    Likewise I think point number one is very important, although I had not been consciously aware of it until you put up your Marty Weingberger post. If the title is not obvious or interesting, it can leave you stumped when reading the article, so no comment and no links.

    However the most important has got to be point four. If your SEO blog is full of old crap that the SEO dinosaurs have been covering for years, why would they bother with your little bog? Currently I am working on something that no one else has ever done before and there has been in demand for at least a couple of years. Hopefully, with a bit of hard work, it will be grade A link bait. The only hint I will give is it is a resource that provides probably the biggest ?SEO shortcut?.

  2. says

    Linkbait has to be regurgitated junk that they have read 3 or 4 times before but didn’t understand the first 3 times.

    Alternatively it is something they never will read because their lives are so disorganised that they just fill up their bookmarks and then when they are too cluttered they create new accounts.

  3. James Dalton says

    Im trying to work on my link bait and I guess i am getting better as time goes along, but he is right when it comes to linking the bait.

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