How awesome is your blog? It’s undoubtedly an incredible corner of the internet. The only problem is that without a map, no one can find your little corner of the internet. Before getting frustrated by a lack of unique visitors, it is important to remember that content creation is just one component of an amazing blog. You’ve also got to promote it.
Knowing how to promote your blog can be the one determining factor that draws in a huge fan base or leaves you sitting in your virtual breakfast nook with 3 fans who demand you write something fresh and new just for them. Here’s how you can become a big fish in the big world of the modern internet.
1. Don’t Hoard Your Awesomeness.
Writing for other blogs is one of the easiest ways to gain exposure for yourself. Is it kind of cruddy to spend 45 minutes on a blog post that another blogger is going to receive a ton of hits on? Yeah, it can be. It’s important to remember that those unique hits can also come your way if your guest blogging agreement includes a link to your blog.
Here’s what you’ve got to do so that you aren’t hoarding your awesomeness.
- Make sure that your blog name gets a feature mention and that you receive a byline for your content that includes a link to your blog underneath your name.
- Another link should be included near the end of your guest post for a second chance to refer traffic.
- There’s a guarantee that the blog post will be published by a certain time and will stay active on the site.
This helps you to promote your blog with your own level of awesome, just on a different blog. Keep those bullet points in mind when talking about this type of opportunity.
2. Learn How To Massage a Press Release.
Many bloggers are looking to the national or global community as a way to gain attention for their blog. When there are potentially 4 billion people who can access a blog post, it’s understandable to feel like this is the best course of action to take.
It just isn’t the best course of action to take. Being a little fish in a big ocean means that your best chance for survival is to avoid being eaten by the bigger fish. Stay local and learn what your local media sources like to see in stories. Craft a press release that presses those buttons so your press affiliates will want to interview you about your blog. Massage that verbiage to be as perfect as possible.
3. Put Yourself Out There.
Of course I’m going to put myself out there. I’m marketing my blog.
Except most people don’t actually put themselves out there. They’ll put a portion of themselves out to the rest of the world, but they’ll keep a lot who they are in reserve as well. It’s scary to put a new idea out to a bunch of strangers. They could ridicule it. Their criticism could be forceful and negative. Have you seen the backfires that have been happening with Twitter marketing over the last few years?
You can’t hold anything back when promoting your blog – except maybe your address and direct cell phone number, that is. Anything less will be considered a lack of authenticity and that will cause the demise of your blog faster someone spitting out a mouthful of chunky milk.
4. Social Media Is Just One Ticket To Fame.
Social media sharing is a great way to expand the presence of a blog. It’s also a great way to remain unnoticed. It is important to remember that sites like Facebook, which has 1.9 billion people and growing, are just one piece of the marketing pie. If you put all of your eggs into the social media basket, you’ll find a bunch of Angry Birds stealing them back from you over time. Eventually someone will come along with a better post and it’s usually sooner rather than later.
Absolutely have social sharing buttons on your site. Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest are the Big 3. StumbleUpon shouldn’t be ignored because sites that include a share to SU receive up to 4% more traffic than those who don’t. Reddit is another top option. Just don’t share only your content on the latter two sites because that’s actually against their TOS.
5. Pay For It.
If you’ve got a few bucks in your pocket and that cash is burning holes in your thrift-store jeans, then consider paying for some of your marketing. Advertising online can be a pretty effective way to grow a targeted base. Facebook in particular has a filtering system that allows bloggers to target ultra-specific demographics in certain geographic locations to effectively build a following.
Let’s say that you spend $5 per day on Facebook ads. That’s $150 for 30 days of promotion. A steep chunk of change for some, to be sure, but in the realm of professional services that’s about a day’s worth of work. In return, your message can be sent to the specific population demographics that are likely to be interested in the content you’re posting.
Luis Lopez Automotive is a classic example of this type of marketing success. They are a LA based automotive shop who used Facebook ads simply to increase local awareness of their business. The result was a 4% increase in sales at a CPM of $2.82.
6. Do Something Absolutely, Positively, Ridiculously Crazy.
Going viral today means going to the extreme. Instead of creating a polarizing effect like Memories Pizza did with their views of same-sex marriage pizza catering, consider doing something that everyone can enjoy in some way. Here are some options for you to modify to apply more directly to the content of your blog.
- Take a bag full of pummelos out in public with a camcorder and ask people if they’d like to touch your large grapefruits.
- Create a large rubber band ball and invite your neighborhood over for some street bowling that you live tweet.
- Do something for a local charity that raises money in a unique way, like swimming naked from San Francisco to Alcatraz.
Pushing the lines is fine. Going over the lines can be filled with danger. The goal of blog marketing isn’t to turn a bunch of people off to what you’ve got to offer. It’s to make it more attractive to the general population and your targeted demographics instead.
7. Get Into The World Of Business Training.
Morale is something that affects every business in some way. A negative morale can affect productivity and in the modern cubicle-filled working environment, positive energies can be difficult to find at times. Take your content and turn it into an afternoon presentation that can get a working force fired up for an upcoming project.
Just being a presenter won’t be good enough marketing for your blog. People aren’t going to remember your blog’s website because most can’t even remember what they ate for breakfast. You need to have “blog swag” to hand out to people. Business cards are great, but not super. T-shirts fit into this category. The best swag is the kind of swag that is useful every day in some way.
When was the last time you saw an iPhone case given away as swag? Or a coffee mug? Even candy makes better swag than a business card sometimes. Know your audience, make the memories be customized, and you’ll make a memorable marketing impression.
8. Pull out your inner guerrilla.
Because marketing must be memorable in order to be effective, the best blog marketing tends to be guerrilla marketing. The good news is that these marketing efforts tend to be the most cost-effective, especially if you don’t mind pushing the gray lines of the local law every now and then.
For the record, all bloggers are highly recommended to get local permission to perform these guerrilla marketing efforts.
- Moss paint for your blog’s logo. Paint the moss on the side of a building and your logo will literally grow out from the side of the wall.
- Use sidewalk chalk. Put your website on street corners throughout your community. When it rains, the chalk goes away.
- Paper recommendations. You know those “Help Wanted” signs that have tear-away numbers on local bulletin boards? Use them for your blog to get a better local following.
- The random t-shirt giveaway. T-shirts as swag are not a great options. Someone randomly giving strangers a t-shirt with your blog’s website on it? That’s promotes curiosity.
Even something as simple as creating 100 stickers and putting them up in prominent community locations can help your blog gain an awareness. As long as the encounter is positive, it will be beneficial.
Knowing how to market your blog means being creative in how you approach your targeted communities. Use these options today to get started and you may be able to expand that virtual breakfast nook into your own little piece of internet paradise given enough time.