Digital content doesn’t just exist for content’s sake, or for the sake of an abstract concept like “providing value to your customers.” There are real, measurable metrics and attributes for the importance of the assets you create that will improve your branding and SEO performance.
One of these attributes is linkability, a key objective of much of the search engine optimization world. Linkability is all about how effectively your content promotes organic backlinks that send traffic to your site, and build a profile of your content that is trusted and authoritative.
Some types of content are more linkable than others, and certain practices improve linkability. Combining the knowledge of both will help you create linkable assets that your audience will not only click on to learn more, but will also share and spread virally, and which will be valuable to promote.
What are linkable assets?
Linkable assets are content that is designed for the express purpose of maximizing linkability. Linkable assets are highly shareable and can get a lot of viral traction even without an advertising boost. Such assets types act as an authoritative source, occupying the niche that your site and content strategy is targeting.
Linkable assets form a big part of the foundation of a solid link-building strategy, making them a key component of SEO.
What makes an asset linkable?
Linkable assets follow what we’d call amplified versions of the rules for any kind of content, in that the traits that make content linkable are what you focus on when creating them.
It shouldn’t promote itself excessively
Advertisements are great for the purpose they serve. Unfortunately, people tend to get turned off by a promotional tone when it’s found in content that is otherwise not billed as an ad. Linkable assets focus on the value they provide to the viewers, and set aside selling a particular product as either a minimal concern or no concern at all.
The most that a linkable asset should contain will be your logo and branding, which are essential parts of deriving value from creating linkable content.
It catches attention
Any time a potential lead sees your content, you only have a few seconds to get your point across. Linkable assets are on the bleeding edge of attention-grabbing, making a case for themselves in an instant while not sacrificing on the quality of the content within.
It solves problems
A linkable asset can be designed to address a specific problem that your audience has, whether by informing them about possible solutions, providing a direct DIY solution that they can follow, or by providing background information about it that can be useful.
A helpful asset greatly improves authority, and will be shared organically again and again inside your niche!
It teaches new things
Any time you legitimately learn something new, the recall value of the information source is boosted beyond belief. Creating linkable assets that provide valuable knowledge will ensure that people keep coming back for more and that your content will go viral all by itself.
A funny piece or a riveting narrative will always resonate and engage more than plain old informative content. Having something like this will lead to more clicks and more shares overall.
The benefits of linkable assets
Linkable assets have several tangible benefits for your site that are all about visibility and authority.
They increase link equity
Linkable assets have a certain authority to them, and when people follow them back to your content, this authority is implicitly passed onto your site and the other pages. This link equity improves the rankings of several pages at once.
They improve your branding
Linkable assets are designed to be authoritative and easily cited as a source. With your company branding proudly emblazoned on it, this authority will be associated with your brand, improving its recall and its standing inside your niche.
They produce leads
As linkable assets are interesting and eye-catching, they generate a lot of leads and exposure through the buzz that they generate in turn, as well as the organic sharing that takes place through them.
With the right placement, linkable assets can be picked up organically by publishers and big websites, further extending your reach!
They broaden visibility
Overall, linkable assets simply make your brand more visible, through recall due to authoritative presence, social media sharing, and greater SEO performance resulting in more search engine clicks.
Linkable assets in the form of art and infographics
Studies have shown that visual content such as video, art, and infographics generates twice as many views as primarily text-based content, like articles and blog posts. With this visual advantage as a baseline, we can immediately see the value of creating art and using infographics as linkable assets.
Infographics have long been a staple of linkable asset creation. By themselves, they already grab attention quickly, are highly shareable and indeed stay shareable for long after the average shelf life of an article, and provide a lot of very SEO-friendly organic reach.
Of course, text-based content has its own value that can’t be compared to visual elements, and it will have greater importance in certain niches and to certain audiences, but in this article, we’ll take a look at art and infographics and how they can be leveraged for linkability.
1. Build infographics that inform or address concerns inside a niche.
You want to innovate with your infographic and make sure that people share it because it provides value. You have a greater chance of that if you narrow down the scope of your infographic within your niche.
The broader the scope of your infographic, the more likely that it has some overlap with previously created content that is either already in circulation, or is still fresh in the memory of your niche’s audience.
On top of that, you only have so much space to work with in an infographic, and attending to every piece of data in your niche will leave you unable to tell your story. Make it concise and straight to the point about a single concern.
2. Produce How-to-style infographics.
The Do-It-Yourself mindset has taken the world by storm, and everyone wants to save money, personalize their work, and feel like they participated in the creation of a product, or feel the fulfillment of completing a service on their own.
An infographic that instructs your audience with complete information and easily-understood, step-by-step instructions will provide plenty of value, either through simple educational value or by explicitly addressing a problem that your viewers have.
Such infographics are very shareable and will rack up those organic backlinks quite easily. In addition, people who benefit directly from the information in your infographic will associate it with your brand authority. It’s hitting a whole lot of birds with one stone!
3. Create infographics that stir up discussion.
Some of the best content out there rouses emotions and inspires conversation. Broaden your viewers’ horizons with content that generates visceral reactions and engages them. Create controversy and dialogue wherever possible.
The result of this buzz will be viral shares, incredible engagement, and a level of brand awareness that you can’t beat with plain old informative content.
4. Create a narrative.
An essential part of contemporary data visualization is a storytelling sort of style that presents events and ideas in a narrative fashion, which clearly indicates cause and effect. It’s easy to follow, attractive, and guides your viewers towards a helpful conclusion.
Having a narrative in your infographic will create a more enticing, inviting image for your audience that will make it more linkable, as they’d like to find out more about the topic. You’d even do well to create a sequence of related infographics that link to each other.
5. Be mobile-friendly!
With half of all traffic on the Web coming from mobile devices, it’s a no-brainer that your content should be easy to read on mobile.
Users who catch your infographics and art on a mobile device will want to be able to understand it at a glance without having to zoom and pan, or even rotate to landscape. The harder it is for them to consume your content, the less likely they’ll be engaged, and the less likely it is that they’ll share it.
A Linkable Strategy
While linkable assets are specifically designed to optimize how they create organic backlinks, you can use the advice we’ve presented as the foundation of the linkability of any content you create. Everything you do should be linkable to some degree, after all.
Your aim should be to maximize your reach, authority, and visibility, with everything that you do. Follow our guide to linkable assets and you’ll be a marketing leader inside your niche!