Last month I teased the Madison Daily Leader for not including hyperlinks in their news stories. I even offered to help them learn how to include a little a href tag ("the cornerstone" of Web coding) in each online story.
The response from a Madison Daily Leader employee (and I do quote): "Screw you." (Really. I'm not making this up.)
I extended a further offer to come and demonstrate link creation in person. I noted that hyperlinks drive Web traffic and improve functionality and visibility.
No response. Apparently, the idea of linking to other websites is too upsetting to the closed, hierarchical mindset that dominates Madison business and politics. Sigh.
Meanwhile, I can point to a somewhat happier beneficiary of hyperlinking. The Madison Area Arts Council reports that a single post here on the Madville Times last week doubled their web traffic for the day. The handful of hyperlinked mentions of MAAC on this blog have produced 40% of the referrals MAAC's website has received. The next biggest referrer to MAAC is another local blog, Horseshoe Seven. MDL and MadisonSD.com combined have produced maybe 1% of MAAC referrals.
When you use hyperlinks, you let the linked sites know that you're paying attention. You also give them concrete evidence that it was your material that drove them to the linked site. That makes the owners of the linked site like your site all the more. They probably link back, and then everyone gets more traffic.
Hyperlinks. Use them. They rock!
(And if you'd like a big bright hyperlink in the Madville Times ad bar, just give me a shout!)
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