While I’m not an expert in linky parties (link parties), I’ve hosted and participated in enough linky parties that I want to talk about Linky Party Basics – For Host(s) and Guests.
***Party Host(s) I have a few questions at the bottom of my post for you***
What is a linky party?
A linky party or a link party is hosted by one or more blogs where you can link up your latest blog post. The link or links you share are in turn shared with the readers of the blog you ‘linked’ up on. If there are multiple hosts, your link is shared with the readers of the other host blogs too.
These link parties usually reoccur weekly and start on the same day and time each week. Every link party will be open for you to drop your links for 1-3 days, but may be open for a longer or shorter time.
How do linky parties benefit you and the host?
Well, blog linky parties are a two way street. Linky parties help the host(s) generate added traffic from the guests visiting their blog to leave links on the link party. All this added traffic can help boost the host’s visitor stats, generate more income, and possibly create more followers.
Linky parties can benefit the linking up blogger (guest) by providing blog exposure to the host’s blog readers and other linky party participants. This is especially true if there are multiple link party hosts because you’re blog post link will be seen on several blogs. For example, when I hosted the Merry Monday Link Party (I retired the party), we had 6 to 8 hosts and every blogger that linked up would have their post(s) seen on all the host blogs.
Are There Linky Party Rules?
Yes. Most linky parties will have “rules” to follow if you choose to participate. The rules can range, but the host(s) will usually ask that you follow them in at least one social media platform, post no more than 3 links, link only certain type of posts, visit at least 2-3 other link ups, and in some cases ask that you link back to their blog. Don’t participate and drop links if you aren’t comfortable with the link party rules.
When the host of the link party asks you to link back to their blog, they are asking that you place a link to their blog somewhere on the post that you linked or create a link party page with their link. For example, at the bottom of the post that is shared on the link party, you can write AND link the host post wher you linked up (more info on this in the guest section).
This post is shared on these link parties:
- Merry Monday
- Crafty Party
- Tasty Tuesday
Tips and Basics for Linky Party Guests
o Follow the host(s) on at least one of their social media platforms.
- I prefer to follow on Pinterest, Twitter, and/or Instagram.
- If their social icons don’t function properly, please let the host know so they can fix it.
o READ what type of posts you can link up.
- Some link ups only want specific types of posts. For example: recipes, crafts, decorating, etc…
- Many do not want you to add your own linky parties, contests, giveaways, Etsy shops, etc…
- Linking up inappropriate posts creates more work for the party host(s) because they have to go through and delete these posts.
- Don’t link up more posts than you are allowed. Why? Because it takes the spot of another link up guest and we’re all there to try to get equal exposure. Placing more link ups than allowed will push another link further down the link up or onto another page.
- Although rare, some host(s) will create separate sections for specific types of links. For example: A section for crafts and a separate section to link recipes. Check to make sure you are linking in the correct section.
o Link to your post.
- WRONG = http://mypinterventures.com because this leads to my blog in general.
- CORRECT = http://mypinterventures.com/easy-no-craft-supplies-bunny-silhouette/ because this leads directly to the blog post.
o Text link back, display a party button on your post, or create a link party page.
- Why? Because it takes a lot of work to host/co-host a linky party. You are receiving the benefit of added exposure and you should do the same for the party host(s). Not to mention, in order to have a “featured” post, most hosts will ask that you display a party button or text link back to the party.
- For me, instead of adding a link party button to each post that I link to a linky party, I prefer to add the host party button to a link party page on my blog. The reason I prefer a page is that it is easier to update when parties or blogs shutdown. If I listed a party button on every post, I would have to go through every post to delete old parties or blogs that no longer exist. Update: Since I no longer run a link party and have cut back on linking to parties, I no longer have this page running.
o If you’ve been featured at a linky party, link back or display the “I was featured” button.
- Many hosts will ‘feature’ posts from the previous link party. This is a way to thank participants for linking up to the party. If the host has a feature button, feel free to display it on your sidebar or on a dedicated link party page. It is totally up to you if you want to share a feature button on your site.
o Visit at least 2-3 other link ups & comment.
- I know it’s hard and takes a lot of time, but it does pay off. I will often visit the bloggers that posted comments on my blog and will periodically go back through my comments to visit them again. Why? Because if they took the time to visit and comment, they may have similar interests to me and I may find something I like on their blog.
- If you’re at the beginning of the party and don’t find anything of interest, check back later.
Misc. comment tips:
- If you have captcha, please turn it off. I’m not sure why this is necessary if you can moderate your post or make it so only registered user can comment? It makes it harder for people to post a comment on your blog.
- Make sure your comment section is easy to find. A fellow blogger told me that my comment section was hard to find and hopefully I corrected it 🙂
o Follow your fellow bloggers on their social media.
- If you click on a link you like and you like that blog, go ahead and follow them on their social media sites too.
- When you get notified that someone followed you on one of your social media platforms, take the time to check them out and see if you would like to follow back.
- Don’t link up on social media link ups (ie. twitter, facebook, pinterest, etc…) if you aren’t willing to pay attention to your notifications that you have new followers and follow back, unless the account is a totally different niche than what you are interested in.
o Share link ups you like.
- Sharing helps your fellow bloggers get more exposure. Share on Pinterest, Twitter, Facebook, or whatever social site you prefer. Just share… sharing is caring.
o Visit other blog’s party pages. This is a great way to find other link parties.
o Use your best post picture.
- I’m not saying you have to be a professional photographer, but when there are over 100+ link ups, a good picture will provide more clicks/visits. Pictures are important and you can use PicMonkey or Canva to spruce them up.
- Adding text to your image may be useful for those link ups that have a limited amount of description text available. I’ve been to a few parties where I could not type out the entire title of my blog post because there was only 15 letters allowed in the title.*
o Make your pictures easily shareable and pinnable.
- Have you provided share buttons that are easily seen?
- Check to make sure you have filled in a description for your pictures and changed the title. The easiest way to check this is by trying to pin one of your images and see what is filled in on the Pinterest box. I know I’ve forgotten to do this numerous times.
o Tweet, Pin, Facebook, the linky party.
- If the host has provided you with a tweet link, go ahead and tweet about the party or share it on one of your social media sites. This will help grow the party. You’ll get more views and the host will get some exposure too.
o Thank your party host.
- Thanking your party host every single week may become redundant, but if you find a lot of link ups that you like, you may want to let the party host know. *Would love to get feedback from party hosts about this one.*
o Thinking of hosting your own party?
- Parties are a lot of work, so before hosting your own party, try being a temporary co-host at one of the linky parties you attend. Most have sign-ups that will allow you to apply. This will help you get your feet wet and a feel at how parties are run.
Tips and Basics for Linky Party Hosts
o Make sure your social media icons are grouped together at the top of your blog and have working links.
- I’ve been to several blogs where I’ve had to scroll down to find social media icons for sharing and/or the icons don’t work.
o Make sure your link party co-host(s) text links are linked to the correct place & visible.
- If featuring the co-host social media links, make sure the links are working and go to the correct social media platform.
o Make it clear on what type of posts are allowed.
- Make it clear what type of posts are allowed on the link party.
- If you do not allow certain types of posts, state that clearly.
- Optional – Specify how many posts you allow per blog. Many hosts limit each blogger to 3 links per link party.
- Random link up settings helps make sure everyone gets equal exposure. This is especially good for link ups that have over 150+ links. This setting should be available if you use Inlinkz for your party link ups.
- Reverse order link up settings is great to ensure those that linked up later will always have a chance to be on the first link-up page. Another setting available for those the use Inlinkz.
o Follow back your party participants on social media.
- Think about hosting a themed party that will attract link ups with a similar niche. This way you’ll find blogs to follow that will interest you too. For example, if you run a cooking blog, host a recipe link-up.
- If you are hosting a social media link up, you should be willing to follow new followers. Pay attention to your notifications.
o Provide a party button with a “no follow” link.
- Party button are easier for participants to grab and display. You can create a button on a html button creator online. Make it “no-follow’ so Google doesn’t think it’s a link building scam (see post linked below).
- Make sure the html button codes work and links to the host(s) blogs.
- If you want people to grab your button to display on the bottom of their post, make your button a reasonable size – resize the images to 90×90, 100×100, or 150×150.
- Design a party button that doesn’t have too many small details and can easily be identified as your party logo.
- Read this article by Moms Make Money – Linky Party Buttons Under Attack by Google?
o Visit your party guests and comment on their blogs too.
- I know that this can be overwhelming if you have a large amount of participants, but the task can become manageable if split it between several hosts. Visit each blog that participated in the linky party and have at least one host comment. There are many parties that I’ve been to and never hear from any of the host(s). Come and visit me at least once 🙂
o Don’t set your social media to “private”.
- I’ve clicked on link party hosts’ social media icons that are private! Setting your blog social media to private will drastically limit the amount of followers you gain through link parties. No one wants to feel like their request might be rejected.
o Pay for InLinkz or Linky Tools so that the thumbnails show on your page.
- Okay, this isn’t a must or deal breaker, but it’s so much nicer and easier if all the link ups are visible on your page. Maybe it’s because I’m a visual person and why I have a Pinterest addiction. If each host doesn’t pay for the link service, the link party participant images won’t show on that host’s blog. Instead, it will just be a clickable text link that will need to be clicked on in order to view images of the the links.
Hope you enjoyed the post. I’m by no means perfect, but I hope that these tips on Linky Party Basics can help others too.