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The importance of Link Bait in your Link building campaign

If you have been around on the internet for long, you must be aware with this term, if not totally educated with the term. To put it simply, if your “supposed-to-be linkable assets” are not getting links, it is not link bait. Okay, too much of this. Let’s go on straight to understanding what is link bait.

What is link bait?

Well, its meaning can be inferred to a little extent by the name itself. A link bait is nothing but, a logical placement of content/product/service of your website for the purpose of tempting other webpages/websites to voluntarily link to you. Mind you, these websites link to you, not because you had asked them to, but because they want to! Link bait can in the form of a great piece of content, evergreen blogs, a logically designed e-book, a viral video, a quiz, infographic etc.
In my opinion, bloggers have an edge over creating link baits as they are the ones, who can create an amazing piece of interesting content.

Reasons that justify link baiting is the thing to go for!

If you have been doing SEO for quite some time, you would know what a pain link building is. Most webmasters fail to understand as to what could be the most effective, yet simplest technique of link building. If you ask me once, I would totally go for this technique- link baiting.
Why, you may ask? Here’s why!

  • You don’t have to ask for itIt’s so much better than going around asking, requesting and begging (sending bulk messages) the webmasters to link to you. Instead of all this grinding, you just have to make your hard work and creative skills do the work for you. I totally accept that this could be a pretty hard task too, but if you look into the bigger picture, it is totally worth it. You can showcase to the world your hard work and let them link to you. In the long run, it can effectively contribute to building your brand and reputation as well.
  • It’s one wayLink baits make the websites link to you voluntarily. It means people are linking to you because of the great stuff that your website has to offer. Hence this link is one way, which is absolutely much much better than link exchange or what you know as, reciprocal linking.
    Also, one way links pass all the link juice directly, giving you a very good edge in SEO.
  • There is no conditionThere is no catch in link building. It comes naturally, without having to pay for anything to some other party or writing a review for them or reciprocate the linking. Isn’t it so much better?
  • You do not lose anythingIf your link bait is not successful, you can go ahead and try for it again. You do not stand to lose anything as you don’t have to pay for it anyway. It won’t get you penalized, and it wouldn’t result in losing any of your existing links as well. So you see, it is completely safe play.
  • Your content goes viral and spreads like fireWhenever people like your stuff, they immediately share it on a social media platform. And, you know the power of social media, right? Soon, the viral content will fall on everyone’s ear, contributing to your brand establishment at the same time.

Techniques of link bait
Infographics

Nothing looks better than useful information carved around a beautiful graphic design. Who would want to miss on that? You might be wondering, what is so good about infographic, that it can serve as link baits. The answer can be compiled in two points; one, that it has a beautiful graphic design, tempting people to read. Second, it can present the most complex information to consume in the most interesting and easy form (easy to understand graphs and statistics). This link bait technique goes a long long way in acquiring links. You just have to research for a good and attention seeking topic of your niche, prepare your infographic and place it at the right spots, subtly saying, ‘Hey, I just created an interesting infographic and I see that you write about this topic a lot. Would you like to share this with your users?’ Just see the magic after this work!
Perrello too, created an amazing infographic on the Future of SEO, asking 25 experts in the industry (including Rand Fishkin, Neil Patel, Barry Adams etc), four very intriguing questions and carved this on a beautifully designed graphic.

Videos

What if the people are not interested in reading a long post or seeing a beautiful graphic? Here, videos solve a problem. Now, you can have your video production on any of the following grounds:

  • Expressing your opinion on a controversial topic
  • Interviewing an expert in your industry
  • Tutorials on how to use a product or access a service
  • Webinars

The viral nature of this piece of content makes it very effective in acquiring links. For example, whenever you post a link of a video from youtube to your Facebook, the entire video is played on other people’s feed (they are easily embeddable). Hence, with the right usage of keywords, ranking your videos on youtube and Google video results is not a far thing.
Great content

There is no sure-shot rocket science behind writing great content. However I have some ideas for the same:

  • List posts: Nothing beats than a resourceful list to get more traffic, social shares and bookmarks. The reason that they grab attention is that they form a one stop shop for all the information, people would want to know. Additionally, they are much easy to read and engage, when compared to long posts. The longer is the post, the much better it is.
  • Writing on some controversial topic: Nothing grabs more attention than an article expressing individual views on a hotly debated topic of your niche. But be very careful with this, as this can also get you a lot of hate comments. Carefully select a topic, safely provide your view on the same and wait for people to see it. You will get a mix of positive and negative responses to the same, but either ways there will be people who would link to your thoughts.
  • Timeless content: This is an evergreen bait of content. It’s better to concentrate on timeless content than on time sensitive content. For example, if you write on “Link building factors to consider for 2015”, it would be irrelevant after the lapse of this year. On the other hand, “Link building factors you should totally consider to ease out your link building campaign” will be effective today, next year and the year after that (of course, other factors remaining constant).
  • E-books: E-books as downloadable resources are a very good source of link baits. This does not only provide valuable information to the users but also helps them share it with their community, hence giving you backlinks.
  • Interviews: Interviewing a highly renowned expert and asking the most hotly debated question in your niche, grabs the most attention. Well, if you can get Matt Cutts to get interviewed, trust me, nothing can beat that!

Contests

Contests are another good way of creating link baits. You can run a contest by awarding a free subscription of your SEO software (just and example) to a person who writes the best blogs on a particular topic of your niche or creates the best tutorial video explaining some of the important concepts of SEO or who gets the maximum social shares on its blogs. This way, the participating contestants are bound to link back to your website. The best part of this is that it does not even cost much.

Marketing your Link Bait

If you think that after creating your attention grabbing link baits, you can sit back and wait to see people link to you, then you are sadly mistaken. People will not directly link to you, you are required to market your link baits as well.
Whether it may be sharing your content on various social media platforms, creating a press release on the launch of your product, placing your links at the right spot, the initial steps to market your link baits/content are responsible for its discovery.
The content should be placed at all such places, where your users are likely to visit.
It’s very important publish or your content or link baits on your own website and then go ahead with sharing the same on various social media platforms like Reddit, Facebook, Twitter etc. Make sure, you make your posts interesting and beautiful enough to appeal to the users. Additionally, you can make use of twitter cards, GIFs, preview images etc to make your posts appealing enough to gather links.

Summing it up

Link bait is anything and everything that can voluntarily get you quality backlinks. People will not link to you, until you provide them a good reason to do so. For this, do not concentrate on anything but, providing the greatest value you can, to your users and you will ultimately land up
creating great content to serve as link baits.