It’s done! You are excited about your new well-written and informative blog post. Hitting the “publish” button is cathartic and you’re certain that it will mean big things for website traffic.
So, you wait…and wait…and wait some more. But the traffic never comes. Discouragement sets in.
You have created a great blog post but you forgot a key element of blogging success – Promoting Your Blog Posts.
If you want your blog post to be read by a growing, interested audience then your audience needs to know that your blog post exists.
Important reality: how you promote your blog post is nearly as important as the blog post itself.
Not doing any promotion for your blog? Do any of these sound like excuses you’ve encountered?
- “I spend so much time creating the actual blog post that I don’t have time to promote blog posts”
- “I use keywords, so my blog post should reach a huge audience on its own”
- “My marketing budget is too small to promote my blog”
- “I’m a small business and don’t have a large audience yet”
To help with your blog promotion efforts we have put together an excellent list of 18 straight forward tactics for how to promote blog posts. The goal? To help you overcome excuses while building exposure and visibility for the excellent content you create.
And the best part is that these tactics are focused on small businesses and startups, so you won’t need a huge budget or a four-person marketing team to ramp up your promotion efforts.
18 Tactics to Promote Blog Posts
1. Post on Social Media
An important first step – social media. Blog promotion is effective on multiple social media channels and the opportunities are endless. One thing is sure…you will not hit a target that you never shoot at, so post your blog to every social media site that makes sense. Do not forget the big ones:
- Other new and growing social media platforms
Prioritize social media sites frequented by your target audience, but do not discount the less used platforms where you can spark additional interest. Make sure that your social media profiles include a link to your blog as well.
2. Share to Content Aggregator Sites
Aggregate sites, also known as content aggregators, are information hubs that collect content from sources related to specific topics. These sites allow users to share content, upvote content they like, and comment on the content of other community members.
Here are several useful sites to include in your blog post promotion routine:
- Reddit. Considered to be the “front page” of the internet, all niches are represented. Hugely popular and has great name recognition.
- Triberr. Dubbed as “an influencer marketing platform,” it is a great place for blog exposure and connect with other “tribe” members who share common interests.
- BizSugar. A great place to share small business news and tips, this platform is a very useful place to both post your content and to learn.
- StumbleUpon. A hybrid cross between social media and aggregate platform, this is a great place to be discovered serendipitously.
- Digg. A news driven, bookmarking site, many small businesses have suddenly realized thousands of visitors to their site as the result of Digg popularity.
- AllTop: Provides a wide range of content categories and ways to personalize your own view of what you want to see. You can submit your blog to have your content added and reach new audiences.
Some of these sites also have relatively low cost methods of getting increased visibility for your content. Think of this more like low-key, unobtrusive advertising.
3. Enlist Your Community
Each person who actively promotes your small business blog post multiplies the audience and extends it beyond its original exposure. Encourage all employees, friends, colleagues, and family members to share your blog post within their circles of influence.
Consider creating a simple social media scheduling template for employees to track their blog post shares. You may even design an incentive program for employees who promote blog posts the most frequently.
When asking for engagement like this it is a good idea to include some parameters around how, what, where you want your content shared. As a business you also have a reputation to maintain and manage.
4. Use Tools for Blog Promotion
Content sharing tools such as Buffer and Hootsuite are designed to automate and schedule blog post sharing in order to maximize the reach of content. For around $10/month, your small business can perform the following automated tasks:
- Connect social accounts.
- Integrate with content aggregate sites.
- Schedule blog post sharing for the most effective times.
- Integrate RSS feeds.
- Receive analytics about performance in order to continually improve.
There are a wide range of other more advanced tools available. These range from lower cost solutions such as Post Planner, Agora Pulse and SproutSocial to a growing number of higher cost, large business focused services.
5. Email Every Post
The team at Web Presence Solutions has stressed the need for small businesses to grow their email lists at every opportunity you get. Your Blog content is a great way to leverage your email marketing efforts.
Email lists are a great way to push your blog content out to your contacts and subscribers to gain increased traffic and sharing. For effective email blog content promotion:
- Send emails at the optimal time for click throughs based on past performance.
- Set emails to launch each new post and build excitement.
- Include links to past blog posts on the email to encourage on-going blog traffic.
- Resend emails to those who did not open them the first time.
- Include social share buttons in the email for quick and easy sharing.
6. Use Social Sharing Icons
Make it easy for people to share the quality content you have created. There are a number of different ways you can add social sharing capabilities to just about any website, regardless of the platform being used.
If you are using WordPress for your website or blogging platform you have lots of social sharing options. There are a wide range of WordPress plugins to add social buttons, available in both free and paid options. Most social sharing plugins provide a range of options for configuring the looks and style of the icons along with a range of on-page placement options.
Social sharing icons go beyond making it easy to share you content and actually encourage sharing. You can think of this a bit like crowd sourced blog content promotion.
7. Take Advantage of Trends
There is no rule that says that small businesses can only promote their blog posts one time. Promoting older blog posts can be tremendously effective when the content coincides with current events or a newly emerged trend.
For example, if your small business sells vintage toys and your blog includes a blog post written three years ago about Pokemon, now would be a great time to re-promote that blog post. Pay attention to current events and viral trends to evaluate whether now is a good time to promote an older piece of content for an increase in traffic.
8. Continue to Promote Older Content
Many blog posts have an extended lifespan which offers opportunities to promote blog posts over time. There’s nothing wrong with tweeting, posting, sharing older blog posts months or even years after they were originally posted.
Many well written posts can still be informative and useful to readers regardless of their age. This is another benefit of Evergreen content – content that is focused on topics that don’t go “out of season”
Exceptions to this tactic of sharing older content would be blog posts that were time related. This will include posts about events that take place on a given date (a conference, a sale, a seasonal special) or posts about a topic or technology that is no longer relevant.
9. Think Long Term
The way in which your blog post is originally created can promote the success of your blog in the long term. Neil Patel, a prolific writer, blogger and entrepreneur, is a huge advocate of integrating long-tail keywords into blog posts to maximize long term organic traffic. Neil’s experience has shown that long tail keywords generate an estimated 70% of search traffic over the course of a blog post’s life.
Learning to appropriately identify and integrate long tail search terms into each blog post can serve as a highly effective, long term blog promotion and visibility strategy. Plus, it’s free and takes a minimal amount of time.
10. Repurpose Your Blog Content
From one blog post, we challenge you to create three additional pieces of content. The three additional pieces will stimulate interest and link back to the original blog post. Additional content can include:
- Slideshare Presentations
Supplemental information and content formats will succeed in driving traffic back to the original blog post. Plus they provide an excellent form of SEO link building. The more links to your post from other quality locations, the more authority and visibility your blog posts will gain.
11. Republish Your Blog Posts on Other Platforms
This promotion step can take a little more time than some of the others but can provide strong dividends. Platforms such as LinkedIn and Medium provide members the opportunity to publish content on their site. They can create an opportunity to introduce your blog content to a new, and potentially large, audience.
Both of these platforms allow you to include links to the original content on your website as well and links to other relevant content on your site. You want to make sure that you publish your content to your own website first and wait a week or more before publishing on other platforms. This allows the search engines to recognize your blog as the original source of the content.
Note: it is always good idea to include a link back to your original post when you publish the same content on a secondary platform.
12. Use Internal Links
As you continue to write additional content, include at least one internal link to a previous blog post in each new post. For example, in this blog post, we have linked to a previous post about growing an email list. As you read this content, you may have clicked on the link and bookmarked it for future reference.
Creating internal links to relevant blog posts is looked upon favorably by search engines. Using internal links between relevant content helps show which content areas are related. Linking will also continue to drive organic traffic back to previous posts.
13. Engage With Your Audience
Once you notice that your audience is engaging, sharing, and commenting, encourage that behavior. Be sure to thank your social media audience for sharing the blog post.
Additionally, respond to each comment posted on your actual blog and create engagement. Suggest that commenters and sharers read additional posts and link to them.
14. Use Your Email Signature
How many emails do you send each day? Whether they are business or personal, if you are like us, you likely send between 10 and 100 emails per day. Why not use your email signature to put your blog post in front of your email recipients?
There is no need for a big flashy banner, just a link to your blog will suffice. You can use a link to a specific post (most current, most popular?) or a link to the home page of your blog.
15. Build Relationships
Build mutually beneficial relationships to help promote blog posts. Use your existing contacts along with contacts that you have made within business and internet communities, such as forums and social media community groups to build awareness of your blog posts. Agree to share the content of other’s in exchange for them sharing your content.
Many Facebook community blogging groups have specific days when blog posts may be shared. Take advantage of these opportunities to build and use relationships to extend the reach of your blog.
16. Convert Your Post to a PDF
After publishing your blog post, create a PDF with clickable links that lead back to both your website and your blog post. The PDF can be used as a “content upgrade” for people who want to download the article in PDF form for later reading. It also provides another opportunity for you to ask for their email address in return for the free PDF version of your post.
There are also a number of quality sharing sites that provide good opportunities to get increased visibility for your blog posts. These site can also be a source for quality link backs to your blog. Share the PDF on sharing sites such as Scribd and Dropbox.
17. Join H.A.R.O
H.A.R.O., or Help A Reporter Out, is a sourcing platform that joins reporters and “sources.” Journalists who are looking for sources will post an ad looking for experts or industry leaders. If you have recently published a blog post that is relevant to an advertised topic, that reporter may choose to use your blog post or interview you for their article. A good way to build visibility for your blog post, your business and the blog post author.
18. Include Your Blog Link in Your Social Media Profiles.
Most social media profiles have room to add one or more links. This can be an opportunity to get extra visibility and exposure for your blog content. Some social media platforms also have “more information” or “services” sections where provide additional information about your business.
Facebook provides both of theses. In the Facebook “About” section there is a field for a “Long Description”. A perfect place to add a link to your blog. They also provide a Services section where you could potentially position your blog as a service.
You can create incredible, useful, informative, well-written, engaging content, but will anyone know your content exists? The odds of new content being read continues to decrease as the amount of new online content being generated continues to rapidly grow. The need to promote your blog content is growing even faster.
Joseph Jaffe, a brilliant thought leader within the marketing community, suggests spending 54 minutes promoting your blog post for every hour you spent writing it. Derek Halpern of Social Triggers suggest that your time split should be 20% creation and 80% promotion.
The concept is simple: to get the most out of your creative efforts, promote your blog posts.
If your business needs additional ideas about how to promote blog posts and grow your business, contact a professional at Web Presence Solutions.