10 GREAT WAYS TO PROMOTE YOUR BLOG
Whether you’ve just launched your big, beautiful blog baby (and popped the champagne) or been churning out heartfelt posts for months — or years — the question that’s forever on your lips is this:
Is there anybody out there?
Is anybody listening?
If you’re obsessing over your Google analytics or comments section day in day out and feeling a little disheartened with every refresh of the page, there’s something you need to know:
Unless you’re hustling hard to make your blog readable and valuable, and actively pushing your content onto people’s screens, there’s a big chance your blog traffic and product sales will never really soar.
It’s true — as a successful blogger, you also need to think and act like a marketeer, because the success of your blog isn’t solely dependent on your words, design and branding (although it’s important to consider those too).
That’s why today on The Daily Guru we’re sharing 10, straight-forward and cost-effective strategies you can use to help spread the good word about your blog, drive more clicks to your page, build brand awareness and boost sales.
Know your target audience
Let this one be a weight off your shoulders: you don’t need to be everything, to everyone.
So, don’t get bogged down in reaching and attracting everyone in the world to your lil’ corner of the blogosphere — just think about your niche and strive to attract the people who are genuinely interested in what you’re writing about and selling.
Define the audience you want to service and then build a strategy around how to reach them.
“Who has a real desire, need or interest in my message, mission and products?
“Where do they ‘hang out’ (online or in the real world).”
“How can I connect with them?”
Leverage social media
The social networks — particularly Instagram, Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest — are by far one of the most powerful ways to promote your blog by sharing your content and brand identity, connecting with your readers and showcasing your biz products and services.
Social media can shine the torch on your blog by providing a steady stream of traffic from those subscribed to your updates — and even those who aren’t. Beyond simply regurgitating your blog posts into your followers’ feeds, using hashtags, sharing a behind-the-scenes peek at your brand, participating in relevant groups and having other users share your content are all effective ways to promote your blog posts with social media.
Earlier this year, we ran a popular article series on The Daily Guru, called Let’s Get Social, where we picked the brains of some of the most experienced and knowledgeable Social Media and Digital Marketing gurus to offer to some brilliant insights, tips and step-by-step guides to help you leverage and get the most from Instagram, Facebook and Pinterest. Check the three articles out!
Get out there and rub shoulders — either in person, or virtually — with your ideal readers, blog idols and other key influencers.
Just like in biz, networking should be a key blogging activity, too.
You can learn a lot and leverage your own work by hanging with the people who are already successful in your field, so pull together a list of the top blogs in your space and get yourself acquainted.
Read them. Engage. Connect. But always do it with authenticity and sincerity.
Plenty of opportunities for collaboration — and more — can arise by building beautiful relationships with other bloggers.
Leaving comments on other blogs is also an essential activity for building your own online presence, because blogs and other forums offer you the opportunity to join the conversation and get your name out to an already-established target audience. Don’t use these comments sections to be ridiculously over-promotional, salesy, spammy or to blatantly say, “Hey! Come and read my blog too!” Just use your real identity or handle, leave helpful, valuable and relevant comments and genuinely participate.
Likewise, when you receive comments on your own blog and social media pages, be responsive and appreciative. Always be sure to interact with your readers on a personal, individual level.
Study your analytics
There’s a lot to be learnt from Google Analytics and your blogging platform metrics, so always get amongst the data and always be measuring the level (or lack thereof) of engagement with your website, blog and social media pages.
Consider the response your receive in terms of:
- Likes and comments
- Sales conversions
- Traffic source
And so on.
Knowing your stats and leveraging them to test, learn, set goals and implement new content, schedules and other strategies is golden.
Be consistent with your posting schedule
It’s hard work and takes a lot of organisation, but successful blogging requires regular contact with your readers – via your site and social media channels. Whether this means blogging twice a day, three times a week or once a week, you readers should know when to expect to hear from you.
Don’t disappear for weeks at a time without explanation or post sporadically.
Set up a blogging schedule and post accordingly. It helps to map your post topics/headlines out in advance and have a bit of a stockpile to work with.
When it comes to your actual schedule, the best time to actually hit ‘Post’ is during the week, when more readers are online.
If you’ve been successful in the networking and relationship-building efforts we outlined in tip #3, you should take the opportunity to reach out to those other bloggers, site owners and influencers to share your blog posts, ideas and knowledge in a way that is mutually beneficial for both of you. You need to be submitting to blogs that are aligned with your work and philosophy and have a substantial following. Invite other like-minded bloggers and experts to share their wisdom and insight in guest posts and interviews on your site, too.
It’s also incredibly worthwhile to contribute to other online industry publications that hold space for your target audience. For example, if you’re in the business of writing about health and wellbeing or personal growth and development, then consider reaching out to publications such as Mind Body Green, Huffington Post, Elephant Journal, and of course, The Daily Guru!
Each publication will have its own, specific submission criteria, so research this before approaching them individually.
Getting one of your existing blog posts or articles published on a well-known and influential blog or publication is a great way to drive loads of curious traffic to your own blog archives.
Get Google friendly
Optimising your site and its content for Google and other search engines is crucial. Much of your content will go to waste if people can’t find it when they come to look for it.
SEO is an intricate beast — a science of its own — so invest in learning more or outsourcing this job. In essence, search engine optimisation is about ‘manipulating’ the visibility, searchability or accessibility of a blog site or page in a search engine’s unpaid or organic results.
It’s about identifying the key words for searching for a page’s subject matter and then figuring out the best way to incorporate them into the blog’s title and body.
Build and use your email subscription list
Beyond hitting the ‘Post’ button and waiting for your readers to come to you — there ways to actively spoon feed your blog content to your tribe.
A brilliant way to do this is by the power of your email list. If you can entice your blog readers to subscribe to your blog or website newsletter, you can alert or hand deliver your blog posts straight to their inbox — and be sure they never miss the opportunity to read a post.
Depending on your posting schedule, you can send a newsletter or email alert every time you blog, or send a weekly, fortnightly or monthly digest of all your recent content.
Of course, when it comes to building your list, you’ll start at zero, but offering an enticing opt-in or the incentive of other exciting and exclusive content will help it grow quickly.
It makes sense to display your email subscription form in a prominent place on your blog and insert a call-to-action at the end of each post to encourage people to join your email tribe.
Recently, online business coach and content strategist for rising entrepreneurs, Jenna Black, shared with us some secrets around building a profitable and engaged email list as well as creating email opt-ins that pack a real punch. If you missed them, go back and check these two helpful articles out!
Invite people to share your work
Strive to build a community of followers that celebrate, advocate, participate, contribute to and share your blog content.
Capitalise on the power of word of mouth — whether it’s in person or through social media and other channels.
The easier you make it for them to engage with and share your content, the more likely they will — so give them a nudge or heads up.
Through clear calls-to-action.
Ask people to share their thoughts and opinions in the comments section of your blog. On social media, encourage them to tag a friend who might resonate with the story. Include social media ‘share’ buttons for Facebook, Instagram and Twitter at the end of each post, so all it takes is for readers to share your wisdom with the click of a button.
Create compelling content
You can put in place all of the above nine strategies but if you’re not creating valuable content in the first place, then what’s the point?
At its core, blogging is about offering something useful to your audience.
Something that moves them. Educates them. Helps them solve a common problem, issue or challenge.
Make their life easier, better — more inspired.
It’s not just about slamming them with propaganda and marketing material, you see.
You need to serve your readers.
Once you start consciously creating content that is completely and authentically aligned with your expertise, values and mission — content that people want to read and share — you’ll find that you’ll begin to turn heads more effortlessly.
Put simply, don’t make your blogging strategy, or ‘Why’, about self-promotion. It should be about cultivating and serving your target audience.
Are you working to grow your blog following and share your content? What are some marketing strategies that have worked for you? Share with us in the comments below!