If there is one key to the survival of a blog it has to be the content. Without it, there really is no blog. However, you can write all the best content you can, and if you don’t get traffic, who become visitors, who then become regular readers, your blog is going to die an agonizing death. You are going to blame everyone but yourself too. Why do I say this, because I have seen it happen.
For Day-16 in our 31-Days to Kick Your Blog in the Butt, I want to take us beyond just the content. I want us to spend some time looking at what we can use to promote our content and how we can promote it. One warning, blogging and making it successful is not an easy task for anyone to do. It takes work and it takes a solid commitment on the part of the blogger. However, it is hard work and commitment that will pay you dividends time and time again. And I am not just talking monetary rewards. Good relevant, up-to-date content is going to get you noticed. But, before that happens, we have to get your content noticed.
What and how you promote your content may just depend on how much time you have each day to spend on taking care of this very important task. Besides sitting aside the time it will take you to draft your blog post during the week, you must be willing to set aside some time on a daily basis to promote your content. And this is going to have an impact on where we focus our time resources. One of the keys to getting your content noticed is to build your community. Your community is made up of readers who you have built a relationship with. Your community is made up of people who have come to trust you as a reliable source of information too.
Seven ways to promote your blog content by building your community
1. Social Networking
Let me first give you a caution on overdoing self promotion on social media. Don’t. You should not just promote yourself, you business, nor your blog on social media like twitter. If there is one golden rule you should live by on social media, give way more than you ever expect to receive in return.
With that said, let me continue to say twitter is one of the best ways to promote your blog post and content online. Each and every time I post a new blog post to this blog, it is fed to twitter with a great web based app, EasyTweets. Once it is set up, you have to do nothing but post. EasyTweets picks your blog’s RSS up and sends the new post right to twitter.
As long as you are doing more than just sending your post to twitter, there is absolutely nothing wrong with using twitter to promote your blog content. I also do the same with Facebook. Each time I post to my blog, it is picked up by Facebook. Each of these two social media tools add a lot of traffic to my blog.
If you keep just one thing in mind when it comes to social media. Using social media like twitter will gain you visibility in your niche or target market. And, if you take at heart that you should be giving more than receiving, social media will not only promote your blog, it will build your own credibility. You will become known on twitter for example, just like you should be on your blog as a trust place to go for up-to-dat and relevant content. Finally, doing it right will drive traffic to your blog and content.
If you run a business or service firm, you more likely than not have some way to keep track of clients and/or customers you have email address for. One of the content production tools you should be using is answering questions asked by your clients and/or customers. Why not notify these same people when you do a post you feel might be a benefit to a large group of your clients or customers. Just keep it brief and provide them a link in an email. Is it SPAM, no. You already have a relationship with these people and you are just providing them with information you feel might benefit them. Don’t forget to remind them in the email to subscribe to your blog and provide them with a link to your email subscription page.
3. Newsletter subscribers
While we are going to spend an entire lesson using a newsletter. Let me just mention that you should be promoting your blog content to your newsletter subscribers. They have already filled out an opt-in to get your email newsletter. GIve them what they want and that is information.
4. Commenting on other blogs
Each and every time you post a comment on another blog you are given the opportunity to provide a link to your blog. What you can do to target specific content is to put the link to a specific blog post in this space. Especially if you are commenting on a blog post which is relevant to something you have already written about.
5. Guest posting
We discussed the advantages and best practices of guest posting in yesterday’s lesson. You will be given the opportunity to provide a brief bio and usually a link or two. Similar to what we discussed in number 4 above, if you are guest posting on something relevant to a post you have written before, use this opportunity to put a specific link to that post in a textual link in your bio. I know I would not care as a host blogger if one of my guest posters did this.
6. Linking to other blogs
One of the best ways to get noticed by another blogger in your niche is to link to their blog with a relevant link to your own relevant post. The other blogger will know and will some visit your blog. If they like what they see, and if they are twitter, they just might tweet about your blog post.
7. Call in favors
If you have been building your own network of other bloggers and your social media network, there is nothing wrong with calling in a favor from time to time. However, make darn sure you pay it forward and do so when you are asked too. Or even better, you should be tweeting the blog post of those in your network when you feel you should. And you will know when you should.
If you are needing to get some attention to your blog, ask. Especially on twitter. Ask a few of your more familiar followers on twitter to tweet or retweet your blog post. They will do it for you.
I have given you seven ways you can promote you blog content. I would suggest you pick three and give them a try this week. Better yet, do it a couple of times this week. Remember, you can’t just throw up content on your blog and expect it to magically be read. Be proactive and promote it.