Some beats just stick. One thing that can make a beat leap out to the listener is by tying a harmonic sound to the key of the tune. This is of course one job for the bassline, but apart from that, some strong grooves use a percussive element with a clear pitch to anchor the beat to the tune. (You did tune your 808 kick properly, did you?) One way of doing this, is with resonators.
To emphasize a part of the song, try routing the snare, or another percussive element through a resonator, blending the original sound with the resulting pitched sound, adjusting the pitch to the key. Use this effect throughout the song, or to emphasize a part (maybe the chorus). Modulating the decay of the resonator effect allows you to change the groove, as does modulating the filter and resonance.