Mar 18, 2010

Using Social Media to Build Out Inbound Links

There are many creative ways referred to as link-baiting to get people to link to you without you even having to ask. The easiest way to sum that up is engaging, original content. And there it is again, that word. Content. In the context of social networking, use a combination of a blog, article directories, press releases, Squidoo, Wet Paint, Hubpages, paid links and online charity donations. If you are surprised about the last item on that shopping list, you’re not alone. But it’s true: The “.org” status of charity sites is highly regarded by Google — and thus gets an almost immediate indexing to the search pages.
Here is a little insight into how a campaign is constructed and what results can be generated. Let’s assume you are trying to attract attention to your site and build dozens of relevant links in the process. Creating hundreds of new links is the whole point of a link-bait campaign. These campaigns are similar to PR campaigns where the quality of the content and the distribution list are the critical success elements.
Step 1: Research your market and develop content that is relevant to this audience. In many cases these articles launch on, which is visited primarily by young tech-savvy males. The choice of a catchy title that would immediately appeal to that target market is critical.
 Step 2: Create a page on the main site that looks like an ordinary article page. Use images where appropriate.
Step 3: Invite all your friends and colleagues, individually – not in a spammy email, to Digg the article. Start with our own personal and business networks and then expand to other acquaintances and friends-of-friends as much as possible. This is the hardest and most laborious part of the link-bait campaign. It can take hours to send out all the individual emails and chat notifications with the link embedded.
Step 4: Be patient and watch the Diggs grow and the traffic swell.
As you write your next blog posting, comment, article or press release, heed the words of the experts and don’t get too greedy. Follow a rule of thumb that you need only to optimize for one phrase per content item in these socially connected sites, and never have more than two outgoing links.
 It is generally agreed that the more outgoing links a web page or a press release has, the more diluted the effect becomes. With the second generation of websites, or “Web 2.0? social media, like MySpace and Facebook, are only relevant or applicable to some marketing strategies, and even then require startling creativity in order to make any difference. Choose your off-site content pages carefully. Not only could they be a misplaced marketing effort, but also the cost of maintaining such a site with up-to-date and relevant content can be exhausting.

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