Well since it seems some of you out there don’t know what Link Baiting and Social Media Optimization exactly are I decided to put together a simple little post of links explaining each.
First Link Bait or Link baiting. WikiP defines it as follows: Link Bait
Link bait is any content or feature within a website that somehow baits viewers to place links to it from other websites. Attempts to create link bait are frequently employed in the overall task of search engine optimization. Matt Cutts defines link bait as anything “… interesting enough to catch people’s attention.”  Typically, users on bulletin boards, newsgroups, social networking websites, or blogs place a link to a website in some copy that further encourages another member or visitor to click. It can be an extremely powerful form of marketing as it is viral in nature.
Their are some great articles out there on Link Baiting right now. Here are some highlights:
Linkbait Definition #1 – “Link-Worthy, Linkerati-Targeted Content”
Linkbait Definition #2 – “Attracting Link Attention with Controversy”
Link Baiting & Effective Link Building
News hook, contrary hooks, attack hooks, resource hooks and humor hooks all described here.
–Talk about a specific community.
–Give people a way to feel important about themselves, someone they care about, or something they feel should be important.
–Take recent events and scale them out to others in your community.
–Be provocative or controversial.
–Be a contrarian.
Now we have Social Media Optimization from WikiP:Social Media Optimization
Social Media Optimization (SMO) is a way to optimize web sites so they would be more easily connected or interlaced with online communities and community websites, also called social media sites. Methods of SMO include adding RSS feeds, adding a “Digg This” button, and incorporating third party community functionalities like Flickr photo slides and galleries or YouTube videos.
Here are some great links describing SMO:
Also, social media can be considered anything that can help build a community to rally around. Companies/websites such as Digg, Delicious, Facebook, and Revver all fit the bill. These are all websites that can now be used as places to put out your marketing message.
1. Increase your linkability
2. Make tagging and bookmarking easy
3. Reward inbound links
4. Help your content travel
5. Encourage the mashup
6. Be a User Resource
7. Reward helpful and valuable users
9. Know how to target your audience
10. Create content
11. Be real
12. Don’t forget your roots, be humble
13. Don’t be afraid to try new things, stay fresh
14. Develop a SMO strategy
15. Choose your SMO tactics wisely
16. Make SMO part of your process and best practices
I feel both are pretty difficult to conduct, but if you can get good at either, the SEO sky is limitless.