Post any ideas, hints, and experiences in attracting birds to your (back)yard. Not only can they be melodic, help with pest control, and beautify the area, they can be soothing and run to watch, too.
1) Let the backyard naturalize (i.e. go wild). This provides a more natural habitat for them to hide and live in. There is a straggly looking spruce, a previous owners' Christmas tree, in the backyard that provides cover, shelter, and a hiding spot for the birds as they come to the feeder. All the trees in the back (Sweet Gum, Pine, Cypress) provide nesting spots and areas to search for food. This has drawn in Crows, Grackles, Titmice, Chickadees, Wrens, Nuthatches, Goldfinches, Woodpeckers, Sapsuckers, even Barred owls for us to watch or listen to. Our arbor has had Cardinals and Robins nesting in it.
2) Plant attractive plants. Catnip is a great plant to put out. Goldfinches like to pick at it and, provided it is the right type of catnip, it can provide somewhat of a barrier between neighborhood cats and the feeder. Note that there are some cats who are NOT affected by catnip so it is a hit or miss proposition to stopping cats. Also be aware that bees and butterflies are also attracted to catnip which can provide great photo-ops for amateur photographers. Black-eyed susan is also a great plant for attracting goldfinches, who love their seeds. Several years ago, we had a bumper crop of Black-eyed susans, thanks to the Goldfinches, who used to hang on the flowers in such numbers that all the flowers in our yard were bent over almost touching the ground. It was funny driving up and seeing all the finches fly off and all the flowers pop back up.
3) Nesting boxes. We have had Titmice, Wrens (really messy nesters), Chickadees, and Blue Birds living in our yard thanks to nest boxes we provided.