One evening back in early January, I got hit by a flurry of incredulous instant messages wondering how we managed to get a certain Tubetorial video to the Digg home page. The video was about Akismet, the anti-spam plugin that helps bloggers keep their comment sections free from ads for porn and male enhancement products.
It’s not that the video wasn’t good or useful, because it is. What people where amazed at was the fact that something as “old news” as Akismet could get promoted to the Digg home page. This was not (for once) a “targeted” Digg from us… it just happened on its own, although the fact that a top Digg user submitted it certainly helped.
This is what was submitted:
The headline and description never mention Akismet, but they do prompt curiosity and communicate a clear benefit without dovetailing into the kind of hype Digg users hate. In short, it worked.
So how did this top Digg user come up with the headline and description?
He cut-and-pasted it from our post.
The wonderful thing about Digg power users is they want to submit content to Digg and get it to the home page. Their goals and yours are completely congruent, and the easier you make it for them the better.
You’ve got to have good, relevant content… sure. You also have to catch attention, whether it be your own subscribers or competitive Diggers. If you get passed up in the feed reader all is lost.
And finally… you’ve got to make it brain-dead easy for the content to be submitted. That means your headline and opening should be ready to submit “as is” or with only small tweaks for the site’s community.
Some things remain constant… the headline and the opening are the most important words on the page. Check out how Andy Hagans uses these headline cheat sheets in his viral link building practice, but don’t forget about the importance of your opening paragraph.