How to Use Social Media to Market Your Blog (and Yourself) Effectively
June 1, 2012
Becoming a blogger is not hard. All you need is to sign up with a content management system such as Blogger, WordPress or Tumblr and start writing. You can write about whatever interests you, add pictures, video or links and create a fancy design layout to make your work stand out. But this is not enough to make you succeed a successful blogger. Without key components such as quality content, industry credibility or a using social media to market your blog, you are unlikely to gain much (if any) return on investment (ROI).
What you absolutely don’t want to do as a blogger is try to get noticed by stuffing your content with keywords and key phrases you think will improve your SEO. This goes completely against Google’s latest Panda and Penguin updates and will ultimately hurt your blog in the long run. What will get you noticed, however, is great content.
You don’t necessarily need to be an accomplished writer with degrees from prestigious universities to create great content, although it certainly helps, since people usually trust bloggers who use correct grammar and have a knack for good storytelling.
A Few Blogging Tips
ProBlogger offers a few more tips for crafting a quality blog post that may attract viewers. For one, before you even begin typing, make sure you’ve developed a topic that you believe matters to readers. Next, create a catchy title. It should pull readers in, engage them and make them want to read more. This is what will show up on search engine results pages, so do your best to make the title noticeable. Also, the opening line is sometimes seen on results pages, so take the time to create an interesting hook in the first sentence. Within the body itself, try to work toward a specific point, don’t just ramble on for paragraphs on end. Finally, try inserting a call to action somewhere in the post or at the end (ex: “Follow me on Twitter!” or “Check out this link to another reputable blog!)”
“Driving readers to do something cements a post in their mind and helps them to apply it and helps you to make a deeper connection with them,” the news source states.
However, as Site prebuilder notes, crafting great content is just the tip of the iceberg. If you want people to be drawn to that content, you need to gain credibility.
“Credibility is something other people infer on you, it’s not an intrinsic quality of your writing and character,” explains the news source.
The reason some blog posts can generate a multitude of tweets and get people talking is because they’re featured on a blog or site that users with related interests respect and read regularly. This isn’t a knock on your ability to create great content—you very well may be doing so—but your next goal should be to either establish yourself as an expert in your field or get your content on the site of someone who’s already earned that label.
“When thousands of blogs are being created every day and the internet is filled with scams and poor-quality products, having credibility in the online world becomes lot more important than ever before,” the media outlet adds.
The Performancing blog explains that the first step toward creating credibility is transparency. For instance, are you being compensated for writing your posts or pushing certain products? Readers trust bloggers who disclose this type of information, as it establishes them as actual human beings rather than scammers.
Another way to display your humanity is to add an “about” page to your blog. This is one of the first things readers click on, because they typically like to learn about who is writing what they’re reading. A photo works well here too, giving viewers a face to attach to the name. Add in any degrees, accomplishments or other publications you’ve been featured in to further ingrain in readers’ minds that they can trust you.
Finally, it’s extremely important to network with other bloggers in your field and develop relationships with more prominent writers whom people may already trust. This increases your propensity to look like an expert—especially if you’re granted the opportunity to write a guest blog on a reputable site.
Site prebuilder notes in a separate article that guest blogging not only associates you with other high-quality sites, but also exposes you to new readers, increases your own page rank because of the backlinks you’ve created, helps drive highly engaged referral traffic and, most of all, establishes you as an authority and source of information in your field. It wouldn’t be shocking to see your blog’s page views or your social media follows quickly skyrocket as a result of a guest blog, so try to network with others if you can.
It’s important that you don’t take a “me against the world” approach to blogging, notes the site. If you have the funds, try to put together a social media marketing team to assist you in all the other aspects of creating a blogging presence outside of actually writing the content. Primarily, this involves creating Twitter and Facebook posts on your behalf to drive a social media presence which is intrinsically related to your blog. Blogging can be a tireless job, and it only gets more hectic and confusing once you actually start to gain a following, so don’t overlook adding a few team members to help maintain what you’ve worked so hard to build.
You know you’ve made it (or you’re at least on your way to making it) when you begin to see an increase in positive comments about your posts, a rise in retweets and substantial growth in social media connections. If you’re not seeing any of these things, it may be time to re-evaluate your strategy and begin asking others who have been more successful for advice.