digg is NOT Social Media Marketing

A recent IM chat session went like this,

“btw, digg is broken. i didnt get front with like 215 diggs, 107 comments”

It’s a shame isn’t it. is the party really over?

But what’s that I hear?


You mean the party is still going?

Digg used to be so easy to get to the front page, easy in the sense of after studying it for a year and spending more time devoted to it than trying to figure out what “Lost” is all about.

But it looks like those easy days by the pool are over.

But that’s not quite true is it. After all, digg is not the goal. If you think it is then you are missing the point. Digg, is a step towards the goal, a pretty good step, but still only a step. I can still get front pages but it’s harder and not really worth the time till I figure out that special move which gets my stuff in again.

Think about this: there are more people on my IM list working full time to game digg than are actually working at digg. And we are not doing it to be cool, we are doing it to pay the rent/mortgage/bookie.

Who do you think is more motivated?

More from my IM chat.

” maxyRo: still digg traffic is overappreciated
high bounce rate, poor returning visitors
me: agreed, but I think it’s the wrong question
it’s exposure, not traffic which is needed and exposure to the linkerati
diggers do blog, and it’s the bloggers we want, so they link to us
maxy.ro: yeah, but with a worthy amount of effort
you can get this from SU, reddit”

The chat was with MaxyRo
he’s a good guy, who “gets it”. I suggest you add him to your friend list.

The chat was a long and interesting one. Basically for me it came down to one salient fact.

I only need one person to read my linkbait.

That one person is a blogger from an authority site like the New York Times or the BBC or CNN etc. And for them to give me a big fat, juicy authority link. I don’t need the 3 million diggers with Dorito stained T Shirts shuffling though my blog. I just want that one golden link.

The reality is that 20 or 30 links from OK blogs and websites will do, even then, you only need 20 or 30 of the right people to read and then link to you.

It is that teeny, tiny group of people your linkbait should be aimed at, digg is simply a vehicle, a blunt instrument if you will to get those 20 or 30 people.

If a salesmen has to knock on ten doors to get one sale the nine doors which said no were not his objective, but it enabled him to get to that one. But, what if the salesman does a bit of research and profiles that one sale, enabling him to ignore the deadbeat doors.

He increases his success rate to 100%

Spending more time thinking about who it is you want to get a link from, building a profile of that member of the linkerati, finding out what they read, what makes them laugh, what they link to in the past, do they link to stuff that annoys them, do they like crunchy or smooth peanut butter. Knowing this will allow you to craft, hone, mould your linkbait to be the most irresistible piece of web content ever. Making them so excited to be able to link to you they knock over their coffee and ruin their latest issue of “Linkerati Monthly”.

The point being, digg is not social media marketing. It is the 10 kilo lump hammer of marketing, when what you really need is a laser guided missile.

So how do you do that? Well, maybe I’ll tell you later.

15 thoughts on “digg is NOT Social Media Marketing”

  1. How about now?
    Is it “later” already?
    I’m (half) kidding. This post is more than enough or as you said it:
    “you only need 20 or 30 of the right people to read and then link to you.”

  2. Apparently, I am way behind on my social bookmarking lingo. I don’t know what a linkerati is.

    Sounds like fun though.

    I love these posts. Makes me wonder how long before the big Public Relations Companies absorb the ‘social marketers’ of the world, because really, what you’re describing is nothing less than online PR (public relations, not PageRank).

  3. I dugg the article! 😉

    Seriously though, great discussion! If you know who you want a link from, why not simply reach out to them, rather than sending out to thousands of uninterested people, hoping he or she will read it.

  4. Hmmm

    This URL has been widely reported by users as being regularly used to spam Digg’s submission process and cannot be submitted at this time.

    is what came up when I tried to digg this article

  5. Nowadays I seldom log on in Digg.com..It’s because I find in uninteresting anymore…most of the topics that get to the top are useless (for me..^^)…Now I’m into SU and Sphinn…I just love the posts there..very helpful plus the users are mostly nice and friendly..^^

    By the way, I found this post in Sphinn and I’m gonna give it a Sphinn..^^

  6. @Daan, yeah this blog is banned by digg. You try and find one piece of spam on this site, it’s all decent material. I think it got banned after Zaibatsu got a front page for my blog post on blogging being dumb.

    But, I have no problem being banned from digg, as I give out information on how to gain an advantage at digg. But what I do object to is being told it’s because of spam.

    This site is totally spam free, my other sites however, well. Lol, that’s another story.

    Thanks for trying anyway. Propellor has also banned the site

  7. Nice article. I am one of those marketers with little faith in Digg. I do agree that Digg can be considered ONE COMPONENT of social media marketing though. I look at it as another distribution channel for content to reach your target consumer group (i.e. paid search, SEO, blogging, community marketing, display advertising, etc.). I also think that too many marketers spend their time trying to achieve front page placement on Digg and not enough time thinking about the conversations they will have with their visitors.

    It’s almost like all they want is a one night stand…forget the long term committed relationship. : )

  8. Hey Lyndon, wasn’t trying to imply anything. I kinda made the ‘I dugg your story’ comment in jest, but than figured it actually deserved a digg anyway and got that comment from them!

    I posted to figure out as to why you may have been banned, rather than pointing the finger and accusing you of spam. As for no spam being on here, I can testify to that. However, that doesn’t mean you haven’t spammed Digg 😉 Again, not implying you have…

  9. Daan, I didn’t think you were, I just wanted to put the record straight for anyone else.

  10. I always find you article sincere and well thought out. It seems to me that so many people want to game Digg. Do you think they are looking for a magic bullet and are not willing to do the day to day things to build a consistent base of traffic? Maybe I am being naive, but sometimes I think you just have to write a well thought out post like it is for yourself and then find the best audience for your voice. Just a thought.

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  11. I think people are constantly searching for a magic bullet, it’s why people by high priced ebooks rather than buying cheaper books from Amazon.

    At the end of the day there are no short cuts, it’s about how much time and work you are prepared to put into it. Which if you think about it makes it easy. Because if you are prepared to do that, you will be successful.

  12. This was a great article. Most social media marketing primers will mention how great Digg is and maybe Reddit, Del.icio.us, Facebook and StumbleUpon.

    While these communities may have massive user bases, it’s the networks that have the influencers that matters. And what’s the shortest social media path to an influencer? Their blog, their Facebook profile, their stumbleupon profile.

    Perhaps more effort should be spent on strategic relationships with influencers rather than pitching highly entertaining but low relevance content at guys with Doritos t-shirts. Or maybe 50/50 🙂

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