I was inspired to do a post on how to linkbait without using the social networks. That means not submitting to Digg, Reddit or any other of the big network sites and still having your piece go viral.
Too many people see the social networks as the only key to their success. If you spend several days creating a widget, great article or whatever. You want to make sure that it stands the best chance of gaining traction and getting a ton of traffic and hopefully links.
The key to your success is in two parts:
1) A fantastic piece of bait:
Good promotion on Digg, Stumble or some of the other networks can hide a crappy piece of bait. If you want your linkbait to gain serious momentum outside of the networks your bait needs to be exceptional. It really does need to be good enough so that you can gain some links without asking.
2) Good relationships with other bloggers: *
Getting some linkbait viral needs good exposure at the start, you need to get plenty of eyeballs on your bait. Once a small group of people start blogging about your bait more people should see their blogs and then those will catch on and all of a sudden you’ll have thousands of visitors and these should translate into links.
I think it’s hard to make relationships with influential bloggers, it’s also very time consuming. However, it’s something you should do as you develop your business. The most successul SEO’s and linkbaiters all have good relationships with each other. Aaron Wall from SEO Book is a big advocator of business relationships between bloggers.
There is a quicker way to getting high exposure on influential, busy blogs. The way to do that is to find bloggers who do sponsored posts. Imagine if your linkbait was mentioned on Shoemoney’s blog? It’s almost guaranteed to take off if the piece has been designed properly. I personally use this method for some of my linkbait pieces and it works very, very well. I’ve never used Shoemoney’s blog though as he is pretty expensive – at around $4000 per review.
The best way to find some people to blog about your piece is to use the blog networks, I’d say Review Me was the best. You could get your linkbait viral within a matter of days if you select the correct blogs to go onto. Stay away from the low end Blog networks like Pay-Per-Post as many of the blogs don’t have enough traffic to get your piece viral, and will make your linkbait look like spam should a Google engineer look into it.
Don’t forget to ask the blog owner to “nofollow” the post, so you stay within Googles guidelines. You don’t need to worry about not having those few links that have been “nofollowed” as your piece should go viral and you may get thousands of legitimate links.
Lastly, there is one more way of linkbaiting without the Social Networks, and that is to email relevant bloggers with your linkbait and see if you can get a few dozen links. It’s a little harder than using a blog network as the linkbait really needs to appeal to them. Building relationships with relevant bloggers doesn’t hurt either. I’ll save that for another post though.