Social media marketing guru Ryan Caldwell recently wrote about the pyschology of linkbait on SEJ. The article itself screams of linkbait. It’s got those classic linkbait cues, indeed. I, myself, have tried to steer clear of these types of posts, but who could resist, especially if one might gain to benefit from a few good ideas.
I would agree that the best types of links are the natural ones–called “editorial” links. These don’t seem forced, because the writers themselves wholeheartedly link to your content because they like it. But it’s sometimes difficult to determine what kind of content people would actually like and link to on their own.
Ryan has defined these under two categories. First, you can evoke reactive emotions–write something that you know people will feel strongly about, whether positively or negatively. Secondly, you can appeal to reason–make yourself appear as the expert so people would listen.
Folks might think that linkbait articles are essentially those list-type articles that are fun or make for good reference. But remember, next time you try to come up with content that you feel should be link-worthy, make sure that it does appeal to the senses and to emotions. This way, people have a reason of linking to your site.