Link bait refers to a component of search engine optimization. More specifically, it’s an inherent aspect of the third part of the SEO Triangle, which is depicted in the video, Driving Website Traffic with the SEO Triangle.
The third part of the SEO Triangle has to do with establishing inbound hyperlinks, which is what linkbaiting is all about.
Another way to describe link bait would be to refer to it as a publicity garnering process that results in other websites linking to your own.
Link Bait is About Generating Inbound Links
The reason that establishing and expanding the quantity and quality of inbound links to a website is valuable, is because inbound links are an important part of how search engines determine which websites to deliver to searchers.
Inbound links are a criteria that search engines evaluate to determine how relevant a website may be, for any given search query.
All things being equal, if a searcher is looking for information that might be answered by lots of different websites, the search engines will feature websites with the most inbound links at the top of the search queries. In reality, the operation of search engines are more complex, but this example does illustrate the importance of inbound links.
From a practical perspective, linkbaiting is not only creating unique and interesting content, such that others would want to link to it, link baiting includes any publicity campaigns that can generate attention.
When an article, or video, or photo(s), or contest, or a useful resource, or some news item, or something controversial, or provocative, or something entertaining captures the imagination of bloggers and social media users, the result can be a cascading expansion of links created that point to a single web page.
Lots of inbound links not only raise the search relevance and authority of any specific page that is receiving all the attention, it also raises the exposure of the entire website in general. In other words, all the attention results in more traffic!
Link Bait Publicity
The necessity for establishing inbound links for SEO benefits, and the process of creating linkbait to achieve that, comprises a creative and public relations component of search engine optimization, that is a different skill set than the purely technical skills required for on-site optimization.
Some ways to gain initial exposure for potential content that is created for inbound link building is to:
♦ Publish Press Releases
♦ Gain the Attention of Influential Bloggers to Write About Your Content
♦ Through Email Marketing to Your Own Database
♦ Coordinate Joint Venture Email Campaigns with Others
Or in any way possible to bring your content to the attention of enough people who will start the process of inbound link propagation to your content.
Of course all this presupposes that your content is valuable enough that people will want to link to it. Although fantastic content, may or (more likely) may “not” be found by the public at large without concerted publicity, the best publicity in the world will not result in a successful linkbait campaign if the content does not inspire the online public to link to it and tell others about it.