Founders Friday: Resurrecting Killer Articles From the Founders of Performancing

Reading Ahmed’s recent blog reboot reminded me of something I’ve wanted to do for a while. From here on out, I’ll be highlighting one of the many timeless Performancing articles from founders such as Nick Wilson and Chris Garrett.

The post that first drew me in as a Performancing reader was Nick Wilson’s The Art of Linkbaiting. Nick’s main point in the article is that if you want to succeed at linkbait, you need a hook.

The fact is, if you want to succeed on the web with white hat principles, you need to give people what they want. Not only do individual linkbaits need hooks, but your entire site needs a hook. You should always aim to differentiate your site and offer something interesting or useful to your site visitors; something they can’t get anywhere else.

At the end of the day, hooks only work when they are original, interesting, substantial or useful. Top 100 lists work better than top 4 lists. But a top 100 list that borrows 98 items from another list just doesn’t cut it.

Be the first to get the scoop on the Barack Obama Sex Scandal and you’re golden, but tell me that Bush is the worst president in American history….well, I agree, but I’m snoozing.

Give me a simple but extremely useful web app that works 99% of the time and I’ll use it, but give me a powerful but bloated web app that only works 25% of the time, and I’ll go somewhere else.

So what’s your hook? How does your site differentiate itself and get people’s attention?