SEO

Inbound links: we all want them, but how do you get them? One SEO tactic is to create Linkbait.

Linkbait can be anything that will get website owners, social media mavens and bloggers across the Internet linking to you. You can use video, images or good old-fashioned words to get the link love flowing. But for now I’m just going to tell you how to write great linkbait in 5 easy steps:

1. Solve a Common Problem

First up, pick your topic wisely. One thing that people love to read about (and link to) is a simple solution to their everyday problems.

Are you a mechanic? Tell us how to pass our MOT. An account? Give us a budgeting trick that’ll make our money go further, or discuss the government’s most recent budget. And photographers? I think everyone wants a few secrets for how to look great in every photo.

Think about the questions you get asked time and time again and turn that into great linkbait.

2. Entertain us

Or why not just entertain us. Do you have a shocking/funny/stupid story to do with your product or service? Can you compile a list of the most ridiculous accidents with/misuses of your product? As long as it sharing it won’t harm your brand go right ahead.

3. Create a Catchy Headline

You need to give your article a title that will stand out in a crowd and make people want to read on. Something short and descriptive should do it. If you’re really stuck “How to…” is often a good place to start.

4. List It Out

People, especially Internet users, love lists. Numbered lists especially. They’re easy to read, easy to digest and you know roughly how long it’ll take to read.

Whether you’ve decided to be funny “Top Ten Mobile Phone Disasters” or helpful “How to Pass Your MOT in 5 Easy Steps”, use a numbered list. It’ll help you to write short, snappy paragraphs that people will want to read.

5. Be Controversial

Love it or hate it, being controversial is a sure fire way to get you noticed. You might just decide to deliberately leave someone out of your top five to get attention. Or you might write a bad review, create a “Top 5 Worst…” or just add an alternative point of view to an ongoing debate.

Warning! Don’t be rude, abusive or libellous just to be controversial. It won’t get you the right kind of attention – and may get you into trouble legally.

There are lots of ways of creating linkbait for even the most unexpected products and services. The Will It Blend? videos by Blendtec prove that it just takes a bit of creative thinking. Get brainstorming, trying to see what you do from a different angle and soon you’ll be creating some quality linkbait.

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Katie Saxon

3 responses to “How To Write Great Linkbait In 5 Easy Steps”

  1. Mike Hunter says:

    Hi Katie, great article. We’ve tried this approach ourselves. For example a lot of translation agencies offer free translation tools as link bait, the trouble is that they are undermining their own work, because as we all know, the result is rubbish! We countered this by writing a web page optimised for the key term “free translation”, and giving an explanation of why it is flawed. This has become one of our best read pages, and most readers go on to look at other parts of the site. Regards Mike

  2. Jayne Lloyd says:

    Great article! Any suggestions how to get your article published once you have written it? Are you suggesting just doing it as a blog post on your own website?

  3. Katie Saxon says:

    Thanks Jaynet. Your aim in writing linkbait is to encourage other people to link to your website, so yes, if you have a blog hosted on your website that’s a good place to put it. You may also need to use tools such as twitter and delicious to promote your linkbait and get the ball rolling. Hope that helps.

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