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Tuning Content For the Digg Audience

In my last article on Social Media I said getting more Digg traffic means understanding and appealing to the peculiarities of the Digg audience without alienating your own.

What do Digg users like?

  • Pro Apple, Anti-Microsoft
  • Pro Open Source, especially Linux, especially Ubuntu
  • Anti George Bush, pro Ron Paul
  • At least half seem to be Atheist, or at least anti-creationist
  • Big on gadgets … iPhone, Wii and Xbox 360, PS3 not so much
  • Webmastering, Freelance Design, Programming and Photography
  • Anything mentioning Kevin Rose, Steven Colbert and Jon Stewart
  • Cheeky/NSFW, especially celebrity NSFW (edited, originally had “Nudity” but “cheeky” is perhaps more appropriate)
  • Geek TV and cinema, such as Battlestar Galactica, Star Wars, Lost, 24, Heroes
  • Anti “The Man”, hate DRM, RIAA, Rupert Murdoch/Fox News …

Connect your topic somehow to bashing Fox News, containing celebrity nudity, or top 10 ways X is like a Heroes character and you will get more votes. Basically if it will appeal to a middle class white male teenage/college geek, then you are probably going to do ok!

Rather than just talk about theory, here are a few examples of articles that succeeded.

How have you tuned your content to make it appeal to Digg users? Can you think of other topics Digg users like? Let me know in the comments …

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Comments

  1. Digg seems like it would be far to off topic for me. Maybe on a future site that is more tuned to blogging rather than seo. thanks for the info.

  2. Digg seems like it would be far to off topic for me. Maybe on a future site that is more tuned to blogging rather than seo. thanks for the info.

  3. It is amazing how people manage to relate their topic to the digg crowd, don’t rule it out if social media could be useful to you :)

  4. It is amazing how people manage to relate their topic to the digg crowd, don’t rule it out if social media could be useful to you :)

  5. Do not forget the most important magic word on Digg: SEO! They hate it! They won’t notice it if you don’t mention the word. Otherwise you’ll get buried instantly.

    Besides that your article shows to me how ugly opportunism works and being true to yourself and your believes won’t make it.

    So getting on the Digg front page is all about posing as somebody else.

    That’s why Digg gets less important and less traffic for months now.

  6. Do not forget the most important magic word on Digg: SEO! They hate it! They won’t notice it if you don’t mention the word. Otherwise you’ll get buried instantly.

    Besides that your article shows to me how ugly opportunism works and being true to yourself and your believes won’t make it.

    So getting on the Digg front page is all about posing as somebody else.

    That’s why Digg gets less important and less traffic for months now.

  7. Not so much being someone you are not but it can take some real hard lateral thinking to appeal to that audience while staying on topic

  8. Not so much being someone you are not but it can take some real hard lateral thinking to appeal to that audience while staying on topic

  9. I’ve been paying less attention to Digg these days, although this is one of the more interesting posts I’ve seen about the mob (I mean users).

    Personally, I focus more on my current readers, and don’t actively go out attempting to attract Digg traffic. I realise there are a lot of intelligent, influential people who use it, but mostly, I’ve found the average users to be people I never want to meet.

    I do have a little Digg button below each post, through the Feedburner flare, but that’s about the height of it.

    Maybe I’m not making the most of it. Either way, I’m happy to continue as I am.

  10. I’ve been paying less attention to Digg these days, although this is one of the more interesting posts I’ve seen about the mob (I mean users).

    Personally, I focus more on my current readers, and don’t actively go out attempting to attract Digg traffic. I realise there are a lot of intelligent, influential people who use it, but mostly, I’ve found the average users to be people I never want to meet.

    I do have a little Digg button below each post, through the Feedburner flare, but that’s about the height of it.

    Maybe I’m not making the most of it. Either way, I’m happy to continue as I am.

  11. You do the right thing David :) To be honest concentrating on YOUR audience is the best advice, but social media can be useful to reach more people or gain links. Thing to keep in mind is that it should be complimentary, not your WHOLE strategy :)

  12. You do the right thing David :) To be honest concentrating on YOUR audience is the best advice, but social media can be useful to reach more people or gain links. Thing to keep in mind is that it should be complimentary, not your WHOLE strategy :)

  13. Like David, I try to just focus on writing content that is of interest to my readers and if the post attracts the attention at digg all the better.

    On my personal blog, I had a post about a CD exploding inside my DVD drive get quite a bit of attention on digg. I think it was all of the pictures that pushed that post.

    On my Dad Balance blog, I had a post about how the school system attempts to paint parents that take their kids out of school for vacation as irresponsible get a little digg attention. But it got buried after a round of diggs and fizzled out.

    You’re absolutely correct that the social media should be a complimentary strategy and not to think you’ll make it or break it based on whether you get dugg.

  14. Like David, I try to just focus on writing content that is of interest to my readers and if the post attracts the attention at digg all the better.

    On my personal blog, I had a post about a CD exploding inside my DVD drive get quite a bit of attention on digg. I think it was all of the pictures that pushed that post.

    On my Dad Balance blog, I had a post about how the school system attempts to paint parents that take their kids out of school for vacation as irresponsible get a little digg attention. But it got buried after a round of diggs and fizzled out.

    You’re absolutely correct that the social media should be a complimentary strategy and not to think you’ll make it or break it based on whether you get dugg.

  15. Thanks for doing the research and turning in this

    1.Informative
    2.Entertaining
    3.& useful post.

    I’ve been test driving your blog for awhile (via e-mail subscription) and this posed has convinced me to sign up via rss, which i think is a bigger commitment:)

  16. Thanks for doing the research and turning in this

    1.Informative
    2.Entertaining
    3.& useful post.

    I’ve been test driving your blog for awhile (via e-mail subscription) and this posed has convinced me to sign up via rss, which i think is a bigger commitment:)

  17. I don’t think Digg marketing is as simple as creating content along tangents of interest. There are lots of off beat and interesting stuff that work on Digg as well, which don’t flow along these lines.

    Any content can work on Digg if you have the correct launch + push strategy and have in depth day-in day-out experience of how their algo works. Sometimes you don’t even need to tune it specifically for the Digg audience.

    Some of what you’ve listed don’t actually work now. Gadgets have a very short popularity run so you’ll need to get in early to ride the buzz.

    Same goes with political figures. Ron Paul and anti-Bush stories aren’t too hot now although Diggers will always reserve a special hate for Bush throughout the seasons.

    Nudity NEVER WORKS on Digg. Don’t even try submitting nudity or very NSFW content. Editors will remove it and your account will often get an immediate ban. It happened to me once and recently, an active and long term Digger was banned for submitting a pic with some nudity too.

    If you really want to go the nude route, try Reddit. :)

  18. I don’t think Digg marketing is as simple as creating content along tangents of interest. There are lots of off beat and interesting stuff that work on Digg as well, which don’t flow along these lines.

    Any content can work on Digg if you have the correct launch + push strategy and have in depth day-in day-out experience of how their algo works. Sometimes you don’t even need to tune it specifically for the Digg audience.

    Some of what you’ve listed don’t actually work now. Gadgets have a very short popularity run so you’ll need to get in early to ride the buzz.

    Same goes with political figures. Ron Paul and anti-Bush stories aren’t too hot now although Diggers will always reserve a special hate for Bush throughout the seasons.

    Nudity NEVER WORKS on Digg. Don’t even try submitting nudity or very NSFW content. Editors will remove it and your account will often get an immediate ban. It happened to me once and recently, an active and long term Digger was banned for submitting a pic with some nudity too.

    If you really want to go the nude route, try Reddit. :)

  19. I think yes Digg is important but like David mentioned, your current and future readers are more important.

    So in looking at the sterotypical Digg user, are Stumble, delicous different?

  20. I think yes Digg is important but like David mentioned, your current and future readers are more important.

    So in looking at the sterotypical Digg user, are Stumble, delicous different?

  21. I know that Digg can send a lot of traffic to your site so many bloggers try to write articles specifically geared towards the Digg reader. But I think many of us would really have to sell out our blogs in order to write articles that would actually appeal to Digg readers on a major scale.

    The truth is, I don’t feel like the Digg traffic is quality traffic. I don’t feel like it’s worth it. Even if they visit my site and subscribe to my RSS they wouldn’t stay subscribed long once I start publishing my regular articles…articles that are not in tune with the opinions associated with Digg users that you mention in your article.

  22. I know that Digg can send a lot of traffic to your site so many bloggers try to write articles specifically geared towards the Digg reader. But I think many of us would really have to sell out our blogs in order to write articles that would actually appeal to Digg readers on a major scale.

    The truth is, I don’t feel like the Digg traffic is quality traffic. I don’t feel like it’s worth it. Even if they visit my site and subscribe to my RSS they wouldn’t stay subscribed long once I start publishing my regular articles…articles that are not in tune with the opinions associated with Digg users that you mention in your article.

  23. @Derek – Absolutely, your main goal has to be building and serving your own audience. Social Media has its uses but that has to be complimentary to what you are really about, not instead of.

    @ming – Thanks, I hope you keep subscribing too :)

    @Maki – I edited for your point about nudity, I hadn’t put it quite right so thanks for the feedback. Even with the best push in the world it is still possible to get buried, I have seen stuff get to the front page then disappear while really bad non-stories get hundreds of Diggs. All we can do is monitor current trends, base on good advice and what works for us.

    @Jermayn – All are different, each have their own biases and trends. I find SU the most forgiving.

    @Jason – Digg can bring benefits, such as links, attention, but it can also be damaging. In fact the links can be proof or poison, as it can show up as an unnatural growth to Google.

  24. @Derek – Absolutely, your main goal has to be building and serving your own audience. Social Media has its uses but that has to be complimentary to what you are really about, not instead of.

    @ming – Thanks, I hope you keep subscribing too :)

    @Maki – I edited for your point about nudity, I hadn’t put it quite right so thanks for the feedback. Even with the best push in the world it is still possible to get buried, I have seen stuff get to the front page then disappear while really bad non-stories get hundreds of Diggs. All we can do is monitor current trends, base on good advice and what works for us.

    @Jermayn – All are different, each have their own biases and trends. I find SU the most forgiving.

    @Jason – Digg can bring benefits, such as links, attention, but it can also be damaging. In fact the links can be proof or poison, as it can show up as an unnatural growth to Google.