Infographic Case Study: Links from CNN, HuffPost, Wikipedia, etc

I love this infographics case study from Wordstream about how they just got into using infographics as an internet marketing tool. I've been recommending friends of mine to small businesses who want to get in on it. The potential for links and traffic is huge.

You can see how Wordstream tied social media into politics and the actual infographic here:

I wish they would post some of their best performing infographics to illustrate their points. It's a long post but worth the read as they give a lot of helpful tips. They tell you about the design part and how to do research.

Here are a few quick tips for creating a killer infographic:

  • Make your infographic relate to your business.
  • Don't just use Wikipedia as a source of research – pick up the phone. “I'm not slamming Wikipedia. It's great. But I don't understand why some people in the field rely on flaky sources when it's so easy to call a University or news source and say, “Hi, can I just verify something?”
  • Create a killer headline. “A strong title, illustrative header section and recognizable theme are very important when trying to grab a user's attention”
  • Promote your infographic. Do some Google searches with your keywords and the word “blog” then send a person note to each. This related post has more detail about tweeting and promoting your content.
  • They confirm what I've seen, the links and traffic aren't as high from sites like Digg as they once were – finding an influencer to tweet or blog your infographic works wonders. But be realistic too. “While everyone would love a mention by a superstar (like Seth Godin), it’s probably not going to happen. I would advise talking to a few slightly less famous people whom are likely to help out if they find what you’ve done interesting.”
  • Send out a press release about the news (something I always do before and sometimes after if it performs very well – they used Market Wire).

What should your infographic be about? Emotion sells.

And like really great link bait, infographics that go viral seem to evoke some sort of emotion, be it humor, fear, lust, shock, empathy, etc.

My favorite advice is this: For your link baiting to be effective, you must be willing to promote the living crap out of it. Even great content doesn't go viral on its own. It often needs help.

This is important because some people give the bad advice that you just have to create good content & it will spread. It will — if you're Seth Godin. The rest of us have to work for it – or if you hire someone – pay for it to be done.

It's one thing to write a press release but you need to do the extra work to push the news or pay for the extra work to promote the content. Sometimes people get confused and think creating and promoting the content is one in the same.

I know I summarized a lot of the post – but it's still worth reading them both – there's a lot of details I didn't cover.

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