Every blogger on the face of the earth wants more traffic. But, what are the most effective ways to get it? What are the best promotion strategies that are working in 2017?
In this episode of Coffee Break Blogging, we dive into the world of blog promotion yet again… this time covering the top 10 most effective strategies for promoting your blog.
What Works… What Doesn’t.
We are most definitely leaving behind the content “hamster wheel” that most bloggers run on to try to promote their blog. You know the one. It goes like this:
- Post a new blog post.
- Share it on social media.
- Rinse and repeat as often as you possibly can.
Simply put… this technique doesn’t work. Not anymore. Content volume shouldn’t even be a thing in your mind at this point.
What IS working are things such as:
- The Redwood Strategy
- Paid Advertising
- Guest Posts
- Guest Podcast Interviews
- Facebook Live
- Building Your List
- Link Building (correctly)
- Content Worth Sharing
- Product Launch
I discuss each of these strategies in much more detail in this episode of CBB.
Hello there! Thanks for joining me on another episode of Coffee Break Blogging!
Today I want to get right into the meat of the topic as we have a lot to cover today. And I want to talk about something that a lot of bloggers; well, pretty much all of us are concerned about, and that is getting more traffic. And so, to that end, we are going to talk about the Top 10 Most Effective Ways To Promote Your Blog, something that we all have an interest in doing, right?
Now one thing I definitely want to make clear at the outset is that I am not going to sit here in condoning to you what most bloggers end up doing to try to build their traffic and that is to post to your blog really, really often, sometimes even everyday; go to social media and post it and then rinse and repeat, because that right there is not a real solid, strategic way to grow your blog. Okay? It is really an old school way of thinking. And so, what you are going to find today with this Top 10 Most Effective Ways To Promote Your Blog is that we are thinking in terms of a much bigger picture. A lot of this is going to involve in getting out of your blog and doing things that most bloggers don’t do; and quite frankly, that is why they work.
So with that in mind, let’s go jump right into it…
Tactic #1: The Redwood Strategy
So here is the nutshell of what the redwood strategy is… If you go out to California, you’ll see or maybe you have seen if you have been out there, the redwood trees. And these are really, really big trees that are much bigger than the average tree. I mean, they are big enough where you can drive a car through it. And these are called Redwood trees, they are called sequoias. So that idea is that those trees did not get that way right off the bat. They have been there for hundreds of years. And if you would have cut one of those things down like any tree, you would see these tree rings inside the trunk. And each one of those rings is a representation of the age of the tree.
So with that as our metaphor, we look at the redwood strategy for our blog. The redwood strategy is one where you write a really killer resource post, a really killer ultimate guide type of a thing for your blog and then instead of just publishing that thing and letting it go back into the archives over time, you treat it like a redwood tree; you keep adding new rings to it by coming back and updating that post on a regular basis over time. So every few months, you come back and you just freshen up that thing and you add some more to it and over time that post is going to become a pretty major pillar post of your blog.
Now, in order to take it into the full traffic getting realm, we go into what is called the Expanded Redwood Strategy which is where you couple this with Facebook Advertising. Now, I am not going to dive that deep into that topic right now, but I have a full piece of training on this inside the Blog Monetization Lab which is the Training portion of the Blog Marketing Academy where it is called the “Expanded Redwood Strategy” where I literally walk you through step by step on how to do this; how to create those big pillar posts, those redwood posts and then how to couple that with Facebook Advertising.
Tactic #2: Paid Advertising
So, paid advertising is a very effective way to promote your blog, but I want to make very, very sure that you understand that I am not condoning that you just simply throw money at it. The thing I love about paid advertising is that in order to use it, you have got to take into account the business end of the blog. And basically, you got to have your ducks in a row in order to make this work, otherwise you are just going to be throwing money at a blog and it is going to be a waste of your time and your money. In order to utilize paid advertising and not go broke doing it, you have got to have some way of making back the money.
And so, that is all stuff that we talk about around the Blog Marketing Academy… Creating offers, you could even create offers out of services, selling your time, you can create pre-offers, you could use affiliate offers… There are multiple ways to structure a funnel that will allow you to get a return on investment. And when you have that capacity around your blog that enables you to go out to Facebook or Twitter or any of these places and actually invest money into bringing you traffic. And then, it will not just be throwing money away. You actually have the capacity to make it back. And that enables you to take control over your traffic. That is why paid advertising is such a great strategy because it allows you to take control over your traffic rather than waiting for lady luck to be on your side.
So in order to dive deeper into that, I really recommend that you get in to the Lab. This is not supposed to be just a big promotional thing for the Lab at the Blog Marketing Academy, but you know, the whole point of the Lab is to put that business engine into place behind your blog; to not only show you how to get traffic to that blog but also allow you to make money with it. And this all goes hand in hand… Your ability to monetize directly funds your ability to get traffic. And if you don’t have that monetization set up, it really cripples your ability to get traffic. And that is why I really recommend you get into the Lab so you can bring this whole thing full circle.
But that brings us back to number 2 again, which is paid advertising as a highly effective way to promoting your blog. And it is a pretty fundamental part of the full redwood strategy because, yes… You can actually pay to advertise your blog post. Something that you would never do otherwise, but if you are doing it in a strategic way and you have got the funnel behind it and you are building that list, then you can actually pay to send people to a blog post and it will be pretty cost effective because that is the ideal type of ad from Facebook’s perspective; rather than… here, gimme, gimme… it’s more like, here… here’s some value. And that is what Facebook loves. And so for that reason, you will be able to send click to that blog post much cheaper than you would otherwise. But because you have that strategy in place, you are not just throwing money away.
Tactic #3: Guest Posting
Now, this is certainly nothing new, and I am not going to probably tell you anything new here that you haven’t heard before, except that I want you to be strategic about how you do guest posting because, trust me I am on the receiving end of a lot of really stupid request for guest post. And I pretty much come out with a blink of policy that I don’t do guest posting at the Blog Marketing Academy. I don’t allow people to post at Blog Marketing Academy other than me and it is because most of them come in here and they truly suck. And that is the thing!
And so, if you are going to go out there and do guest posting, you got to be strategic. First of all, you want to make sure your post is truly knocking it out of the park. I mean, it really needs to be some of your best stuff. Don’t hold back and say “Ah, I’m going to keep my best stuff for my own site” no… Put it on somebody else’s site. Okay? The other thing is that you really need to pay very special attention into which the audience of that site is, to make sure that those are going to be people that you actually want over on yours, because they need to be the right fit. And then thirdly is to pay special attention to your call to action, do not send a backlink to your blog’s homepage.
You are not worried about link juice and all that kind of old school stuff. Instead, what I wanted you to do is I want you to send them to a custom landing page that you created solely for the audience of that other blog and the purposes of landing page is going to be to get them some type of a content upgrade; lead magnet that is related to the blog post they just read and you are going to get them on your email list in order to get it. That is how you are going to get your highest ROI for the time spent guest posting.
Tactic #4: Guest Podcast Interviews
So, what I mean by this is that you are not the one doing the podcast, as in I am not telling you to go and start your own podcast right now although that is certainly a way to go, but instead to go out and pitch yourself as a interview guest for a podcast that somebody else is doing. So you have your area of expertise; most interview driven podcast, which let’s face it… many of them are out there, they are always looking for guests.
And it is not like you got to be some big-wig to appear on this podcast. In a lot of times, if you can just say that this is what you are going to be able to provide that is of value to that audience, they will be on to it. I mean, the host of that podcast would love to have you. And so, that is a way of doing guest appearances on other people’s podcast, it really gets people to get to know you in a way that might not be able to be done via a written guest post. And in a lot of times you are going to find that it is a lot easier to do.
It doesn’t take much to get you listed as a guest on somebody else’s podcast because those guys are always looking for interviews. So go out, find some interviews that are in the niche that you are serving and just present yourself as a potential guest. Let them know what kind of value you can bring to their audience; you might also let them know about your following and just be honest about it, even if it is a small one and just let them know and they only need to say “yay or nay”.
Tactic#5: Facebook Live
Now, Facebook Live is not something that I have personally done much of, but it is on my list here of doing in a very short future, here. Facebook Live is live streaming video and we are in this time period with Facebook that they are really doing a lot of the leg work for you to distribute this stuff. Your options of getting noticed when you go live on a Facebook Live Video is very high because Facebook is going to notify everybody that you are live.
I was on my phone the other day and I actually had one of my Facebook friends go Live and it came in like a little picture in picture thing on the bottom of my app and I’m like “You gotta be kidding me!” I couldn’t even make it go away! It kind of went away on its own after 10 or 15 seconds, but I was like “What the heck?!” I mean, it was like you could not miss it.
And so, that is something that I need to look into myself personally, here, but Facebook Live; especially if you have a following, is a really great way to get out there and build up an audience. And then of course, you put calls to action in that Facebook Live, direct them into a page where they can get on to your email list, visit your blog… maybe something as simple as if when you post a blog post to your site that you schedule a Facebook Live video for a day or two later and you basically just tell everybody upfront, “Yeah, I’m going to do a live video, come check this out at this particular time” and then have the people show up and then you do a live presentation on the exact same material that you just wrote in a blog post, you know? Kill two birds with one stone, right?! But you are going to take advantage of that distribution of Facebook Live can give you right now. I don’t know how long Facebook is going to be that liberal with spreading this live videos around, but hopefully for a little while.
Tactic #6: Building Your List
This is not so much of a tactic except it is something that we just all need to be doing constantly.
Now, why is this an effective way to promote your blog? I mean, it seems a little like “cart before the horse” kind of a thing here, and it is kind of is, but here is the thing… When you are building your list, what you are really building is your leverage. It is all about that leverage. It is also that over time, the more this asset builds your ability to command attention whenever you want it and at whatever you want is going to increase.
And so, the more effort you put in to building that list, it is definitely going to be a traffic vehicle for you. It allows you to fuel any viral promotion that you might be wanting to do because you can sieve it with your own community from your list and then they can share it and things like that. If you are going to do a Facebook Live like we just talked about, email your list and let them know you are going to do a Facebook Live at a particular time and give them the link and then they can go and share that. And it allows you to pick up new people, but you are sieving it with your list. And so, for multiple reasons here, you have heard this before; the importance of building your list, and I just want to reiterate that because it is highly important… it tips your ability to build your leverage and promote your blog moving forward.
Tactic #7: Link Building
But… I am not talking about link building the way some people do it and that is… “Hey, can you put a link on my site and I’ll link to you back”. Don’t do that crap. Don’t do link exchanges and stuff or emailing sites just out of the blue. You want to be strategic. It is just like guest posting. Guest posting works but only if you treat it in the proper perspective and you are strategic about it. If you are just flooding the internet with guest post opportunity, it is not going to work.
And it is the same thing with link building. And in fact, if you do it the old school crap way, you are probably going to end up wanting to go and undo it later because Google’s going to find out and they are going to be pissed off about it. So, link building in a strategic way is where you actually go out and you find places where linking to your post actually makes a lot of sense.
An example of this will be other people who are posting resource post; where they list out like ” A 101 Ways to Blah” and if your post is truly a good fit for that, email the author of that blog post and say “Hey, I saw your blog post! This is awesome! I want to share it out to my community as well, but I just want to let you know I have got this blog post here… If you think it is a good fit, maybe you want to include it on your resource post” something like that. You might not ever hear from them or maybe you will. But at least there, you are being strategic; you are not being deucy about how you do it. So that is link building.
Tactic #8: Create Content Worth Sharing
Now again, this is probably one of those “Duh?” But you need to really think about this because what I find is that a lot of bloggers, when they are trying to build their traffic, they tend to concentrate more on quantity than quality. And it is much better to slow down and not post to your blog so often than make the stuff that you do create really matter. It needs to be content that is truly worth sharing. Now, if you combine this with the very first tactic that I told you; and that is the redwood strategy, it could be really effective. What it is going to mean is that you are not actually creating a whole ton of new blog posts, but the ones that you are going to create are going to be much more valuable.
And not only that… Instead of creating a brand new blog post from scratch, you might simply go back and update one that you have already made and then you treat that update to the blog post like it is a brand new post and you share it on social, you email it out to your list and all the stuff that you would normally do; it is just you are doing that to an update, rather than a brand new blog post. But it is all about treating your content; every single thing that you create, as a long term asset and something that you are actually put some thought into, not just something where you are like “Man, I got to give something out there today so I can appease the Google gods.” It is just not a way to think. So that is content worth sharing. Like, look at yourself and the types of content that you typically want to share out with your social media following.
Usually it is going to be the type of content that is impressive; that you are so impressed with the amount of material on that blog post and how many things are there that you want to clip it into your Evernote account or you want to bookmark it. That is the type of post that you want to make because it will inspire other people to do what you want to do yourself and that is, share it.
Tactic #9: Launching A Product
One of the things that really got me started in this market of talking to other bloggers about blogging, essentially, was launching a product. When I came in to this market, one of the first things that I did was I launched a pretty large scale product into this market. And it is called the Blog Masters Club.
And in fact, if you are a member of the Lab at the Blog Marketing Academy, you have access to this training right now… Blog Masters Club. But when I originally launched it, it was a $500 course! And it went pretty well. I think at the time; I think this was probably 7 or 8 years ago, now. But it ended up being about an $80,000 product launch at the time. And the reason I was able to do that was because a: I had experience, obviously, before I came and started this website; the second one was that I had connections. I knew a lot of the people that had blogs in this space and so I was able to get some affiliate relationships going with them right off the bat.
So it was basically that I had set some ground work for that, right off the bat. But when you do a product launch, there is this thing that Jeff Walker; who is the Product Launch Formula guy, he calls it “The Launch Echo” and it was a really good term because it basically means there’s a lot of non-financial, positive effects that come out of doing a product launch, namely… building buzz; building the awareness of you and your brand. And that is all stuff that comes in to play really, really well when you are doing a product launch. Even if you are not making a lot of sales, you are making a lot of people out there aware of you. And so, even if they don’t buy, they can become a reader of you, later.
And so, for that reason, I definitely recommend that you do some type of a product launch. Also, having those offers out there, like we mentioned earlier, is a really important thing to allow you to utilize things like paid advertising. And so, for that reason, if you don’t have something to sell, it is something that really needs to be a very top priority for you at this point.
Tactic #10: Webinars
Again, not a new topic, but something that I find many people don’t do that much of because they are nervous about it or what have you, but just do them. And here is the thing… If you feel as if the only way to do a webinar that has some highly polished thing and you got some nice product launch on the end of it and you are trying to be really good at it like Amy Porterfield or something like that, don’t worry about it! Just start doing webinars. You will get better at it over time. You don’t even have to have a product for sale. It is ideal, but you don’t need one. Just use webinars as a way to go out there and help some people and build up your brand. And you can do that just by doing things like… It could be a simple Q&A webinar, it could be one that is based on actual topic where you tell them exactly what you are going to talk about and you just do it… Just do it.
You record it, you could turn that in to a future blog content if you want; there’s a number of things that you can do with it, but definitely do some webinars! The other thing that is great about webinars is that if people are on there listening to you and maybe even seeing you if you are doing a YouTube Live or something like that, they get to where they really see you and know, like and trust you. And that is something that is really hard to pull off if you don’t get out of behind the written word and you just interact with people as a normal person.
And so for that reason, I highly recommend that you just start doing some webinars. And if you are worried about again that it is not all polished and beautiful like some of the people who have been doing webinars for year, just don’t worry about it, just throw one out there and say “Hey, I’m going to talk about this…” and just don’t sell anything on the end of it if that is like a big roadblock to you. Just get the cold feet out from under you and get out there and give it a whirl; just answer questions, it will be helpful. And at the end you can just point them in to an opt-in if you want or whatever. You don’t have to sell them anything. Pretty soon you are probably going to want to because webinars can be very effective for that, but you don’t have to. Just start doing them. And we will take it from there.
So those are the Top 10 Most Effective Ways To Promote Your Blog. These are all things that are a lot more strategic, a lot more effective than just simply throwing out more and more and more blog content, sharing it out on Twitter and then doing it again.
That is not going to be a great way to promote your blog. You are going to find that it is pretty annoying, actually. And so the ways that I have spilled out for you here on this podcast episode is definitely the direction I think that you should be going. And then you will actually see results. You will be building that list, you will be getting more traffic and not only that; you will be making more money, especially if you build that business engine behind that blog which is something that I definitely, definitely recommend that you do.
So with all that said, I want to give you what I think would be a really nice next step for you and this is something that I talk about a lot; I have mentioned it several times here on this episode, and that is the Lab at the Blog Marketing Academy. This is the full-on training site of the Blog Marketing Academy. And there is a lot going on. In fact, in the last couple of months, I made some huge changes inside the Lab. It is a completely different place than it was just a few months ago. We got a really hoppin’ new community which is not on Facebook anymore, it is on a private, in-house forum and the response there has been awesome. We got a lot of cool stuff going on.
We have also got some training in there that is very much relevant to what we have just talked about including the Expanded Redwood Strategy, The Blog Post Traffic Plan as well as the upcoming Facebook Ads Blueprint. It is all going to be inside the Lab. So if you would like to get invited into a trial where you can give this a try without a full investment to the standard monthly thing right off the bat, go on over to blogmarketingacademy.com/listeners. And it is exclusive for podcast listeners to head on over there. You will need to opt-in but I will send you a special link where you can get on to a trial membership on the Lab and check it out for yourself.
With that said, hopefully this was a valuable episode of the podcast and I will see you next time! Thanks for being here! 😉