Wonder why there’s so much effort expended by search marketers to “make” the Digg homepage?It’s straightforward, really: once you’ve impressed this discerning group of users, your content has a chance to be seen by hundreds of thousands of people, bringing your site traffic, and more importantly, links.
Delivering content in a way that Diggers like is half the battle to making the Digg homepage. Here’s a rundown of six things that work right now.
In each of the examples below, I’ve linked directly to a Digg post, rather than the content that was Dugg, so you can get an idea of how the community reacted in each case.
1. Lists (of course). People like to get down on lists but the simple fact is that lists work. Long before Digg or any other social network came around people were gobbling up lists (Mr. Blackwell’s Worst-Dressed List anyone?), so there was no reason to think that the social landscape would be any different. Present your content in a simple list format (I always recommend using images) and in a lot of cases it will perform better. Diggers (like most people absorbing tons of content at once) have very short attention spans and a list helps make it easier to skim through and grab the content they want to read. Heck, some of the most popular and linked to posts are simply well put together resource lists.
2. Videos. Digg recently launched a new site design that integrates videos into the main homepage. This means that videos are getting more views then ever and are able to generate much more traffic. Think your company is too boring for video? Just get creative like Blendtec (a blender company!) with their Will It Blend series (4 homepages and over 16,000 diggs), and then you can go popular simply highlighting someone else using your product.
3. Images. Images have always been a huge part of Digg, and there will be a new images section coming in October. A well-placed picture or animation can drive massive amounts of traffic and links— even if you want to redirect the page later….
4. Tools. No matter what type of business you run, there are probably online tools you can develop (for a relatively low cost) and get plenty of link love in return. Tools do really well on Digg because Diggers love 1) free stuff 2) things that make their lives easier. Whether you are a translation company or a university, tools can work for you. People that find them helpful will bookmark them and return to them often (returning to your site in the process).
5. Tips. Help show people how to do things better and they will be eternally grateful (well probably not eternally grateful but they will at least get you to the Digg homepage). Posting content that offers tips on how to do things or how to do them better has been a consistently winning formula on Digg. The great thing about this is that there is a way for almost any business to create tips that are relevant to someone. Whether you are a graphic designer, a sunglass store or a small business website, tips can work for you.
6. APIs. Getting creative with an API is a great way to get a lot of exposure on Digg and is an excellent link magnet. Taking advantage of the Digg API in a cool way is almost a surefire way (they even had a contest around it at one point) but there are lots of other ways as well. These guys used the Google Maps API to do a World of Warcraft mashup, a ‘green’ use of the Facebook API or combine digger’s love of lists and API’s in this exhaustive list of 300 available APIs ranging from mapping to video.
Chris Winfield is the President and Co-Founder of 10e20, an Internet marketing company that specializes in social media & search marketing services and is based in New York & Florida. The Let’s Get Social column appears Tuesdays at Search Engine Land.
Opinions expressed in the article are those of the guest author and not necessarily Search Engine Land.