Wondering how to promote your blog posts?
I know how hard it is to create content for your blog. Getting traffic to your blog should not be that hard and time-consuming.
In this post, I’m going to share a simple & manageable plan on how to promote your blog posts.
In this post you’ll find:
- Popular blog promotion channels.
- Why you should focus on 1-5 best ones & ignore the rest.
Let’s get started!
1. Popular blog promotion channels
You can find endless ways to promote your blog posts. However, the challenge is to pick 3-5 best ones because we all have limited resources.
Every promotion channel requires investment in terms of:
It is important to explore the best blog posts promotion channels and pick not more than three to focus at one given time. Less is always more in my opinion if it gets the focus & attention it requires.
To make it simpler, I’ve split numerous channels into the following categories:
- Search engine optimisation
- Social media
- Email marketing
- Paid promotions
All of these categories are massive individually and it is crucial to choose wisely to maintain your focus and use your bandwidth wisely.
Search engine optimisations (SEO)
According to BrightEdge research, out of 68% of all trackable website traffic, organic Search contributes 53%.
Let’s take a look at some of the most effective ways of gaining traffic through search engines.
a. Keyword research
Keyword research is the foundation of SEO and helps you look for words and phrases that people are actually searching for so you can include these keywords in your content, with the ultimate goal of ranking in search engines.
There are several tools available for keyword research. Some popular keyword research tools are:
- Google keyword planner
- Google search console
- Moz Keyword Explorer
Following are the three important metrics that you need to keep in mind while carrying out a keyword research:
- Search volume: How many people are searching for a specific keyword every month.
- Keyword difficulty: How difficult it is to rank for that keyword. Lower the better.
- CPC: Cost per click marketer’s are paying for a keyword. Higher the better.
Depending on your niche, typically a keyword with a few hundred searches a month, with lower keyword difficulty & higher CPC is the killer combination of a winning keyword to target.
b. Content creation
If we say search engine optimization is bread then content creation would be flour and rest of the SEO elements would be salt.
As per my experience, content creation is the main ingredient of SEO.
Good thing is that being a blogger you are in luck because you are already creating content. However, on the contrary there are already millions of blogs out there and it is difficult to get traffic from search engines with another mediocre blog on the web.
Following are the best practices of content creation that generates traffic:
- Write helpful content
- Publish niche focused content
- Create evergreen content
- Publish list posts
- Create attractive headlines
- Use skyscraper technique
- Improve old posts
Above list will not only help you create useful content but also help your content earn deserved ranking on search engines, which will bring in traffic and customers to your business.
c. On-page SEO
On-page SEO is something all bloggers can control. It includes optimizing your blog posts for:
- Content length
- Key phrase length
- Key phrase in title
- Key phrase in slug
- Key phrase in the introduction
- Key phrase density
- Key phrase in subheadings
- Key phrase in meta description
- Including images alt attributes
- Internal links
- Outbound links
- Sprinkling related key phrases
Off-page SEO will not do you any good if you don’t focus on on-page SEO alongside as well.
d. Technical SEO
Another important part of SEO, which you can control.
Technical SEO means optimizing your blog for Google’s crawlers. If they can’t find and index your blog, you won’t rank and no ranking means no organic traffic from search engines.
Your blog’s technical SEO includes:
- Having a silo blog structure and navigation.
- Specifying your blog URL with or without www
- Removing or blocking duplicate content
- Fixing crawl errors
- Removing 404 errors
- Optimize your blog’s page load speed
- Using Google search console to improve technical SEO
- Making sure it is mobile friendly
- Use structured data
- Use 301 redirects deleted or moved pages
- Set up canonicals
- Use HTTPS encryption
Don’t stress yourself too much after taking a look at this, but it is best that you slowly take care of all these if not at once.
e. Off-page SEO
Off-page SEO is something which holds the biggest value in terms of getting rankings in search engines following quality content creation. However, you have the least control over it.
You can do following things to improve your blogs off-page SEO:
- Publishing guest posts
- Commenting on related blogs
- Trying to intersect broken links
- By doing blogger outreach
- Submitting your post to aggregating sites
- Syndicating your posts to medium, Facebook notes & LinkedIn
- Giving interviews or going on podcasts
These are some of the popular ways bloggers improve their off-page SEO.
Social media traffic
Social media has become very powerful over time and just like search engines, you can get a lot of traffic through social media as well.
According to research, people spend almost 2 hours and 24 minutes on social media every day.
Possibilities of getting traffic from social media networks are endless but here is a list of some important ones that you should explore to pick that suits your needs:
Trying to get traffic on social media at the start can be nerve racking. To avoid that, you can research other blogs in your niche to see what they are doing and how they are getting traffic from social networks.
You need to look for all important aspects like what kind of content they are sharing, how often they are posting, what time they post, who they follow and so on.
Various tools are available for this purpose including:
In my experience in researching popular bloggers it is not about tools & techniques which make or break your blogging success. Instead I found the following things common in all of them no matter what social media channel they are using:
- They all have a story to tell
- They are clear who is character/hero in the story
- Who has a problem to overcome to become a better person
- They represent themselves as a guide for hero to transform
- Ship their content regularly
- Share how hero’s life be better with their content, products & services
- Point out the consequences on missing out their offers
You’ll see success stories on every social media platform who are applying the above elements in their content. However, you rarely see one blogger dominating every social media channel.
It’s not impossible to achieve and some have done it. However, in my experience they stack piggybacked success from one channel to another.
Let me share details about the few popular social media channels, which might help you pick the right one for your blog promotion.
Facebook is one of the most powerful social media platforms worldwide. At present, there are about 2.8 billion monthly active users of Facebook which makes it the biggest social network.
With such a large audience available, it is difficult to ignore Facebook for your blog promotion. However, it is important to consider your audience and see whether their favorite social media platform is Facebook or not because you have limited resources and you want to pick the best social media channel for your blog promotions.
Let’s take a look at some of the best practices if you end up concentrating on Facebook promotion:
- Best time to post: Ideal time to post on Facebook is from 1- 4pm and the best day is Wednesday according to studies. There is no rule to not post otherwise but you can save your best content for this time.
- How often should you post: Again, there is no fixed rule for this but it is recommended to post once everyday at least. If you have a huge following you can post twice a day. But be consistent and keep your profile active.
- Use hashtags: Hashtags play a similar role as categories or tags for discovery purposes. It makes people understand what your post is about. But don’t get overboard with them, using 1-3 hashtags are considered to be ideal.
- Facebook groups: You can join multiple Facebook groups related to your niche and post your content there and participate in it, as a result you would establish good relationships with other people in your community and gain an audience. The other option is to create your own group and invite people to join where they can participate as a community.
- How to share a post: You can use images, videos and quotes in your post. Keep them to the point, if it’s too long and pointless, people will lose interest. Also, you can ask questions which will engage your audience.
Your ultimate goal of doing any social media promotion should be driving traffic back to your blog.
Facebook may be the most popular social networking site but Instagram is the fastest growing social media platform with more than 1 billion active users monthly and still growing everyday.
Instagram can be a great way to generate traffic if utilized properly. Here is how you can use Instagram in the best way possible:
- Bio and profile photo should be appealing and self explanatory.
- Don’t forget to add your blog link in the bio.
- Upload images and videos that are relevant to your content.
- Use proper hashtags that are also relevant.
- Follow accounts related to your niche.
- Be regular in sharing your posts and be as engaging with your followers as possible.
- Post at the best day and time which is also Wednesday anywhere between 11am-4pm.
Instagram is very popular especially among young people, so if you are looking to target a younger audience, this should be your go to.
Each platform attracts different audiences. Twitter is said to have about 145 million daily active users. Given that you use it efficiently, twitter can drive a lot of traffic back to your site.
Here are some best practices for using twitter to promote your blog:
- Best time to post: Best days and time to post on twitter usually are Wednesday and Friday at 9am according to my research.
- How often should you post: Unlike Facebook and Instagram, the tweets on twitter are short lived. And with twitter, it is not advisable to only post once a day, you can post up to 15 times a day depending on the content that you have to share.
- Use appropriate hashtags: Hashtags can change the game on twitter for you. Make sure to use relevant hashtags and lots of them to become more visible.
- Share multiple times: Share your new post right away but don’t just stop there. You can share it multiple times using different headlines and descriptions. And don’t forget to re-share your older content every once in a while.
- How to tweet: Add an insightful description, use a quote from your blog, use images, ask questions, add statistics or post about relevant news every now and then.
Promoting a blog is as important as writing one. So make the best use of Twitter to promote your blog.
Pinterest is a social media which is more focused on sharing images. It is known for discovering new brands and products. Although it is a social media, it can also be looked up as a search engine.
Pins on Pinterest are long lived and shared over time unlike twitter. Let’s take a look at how you can use Pinterest to promote your blog:
- Pinterest business account: Make sure to sign up for a Pinterest account as it will give you access to Pinterest analytics.
- Best time to post: Best time to post on Pinterest is before or after working hours or during weekends.
- How often should you post: This is often argued on, but you can post on Pinterest as many times as you want as long as it makes sense and doesn’t look like you are going overboard with it.
- Pin descriptions: Since Pinterest is more like a search engine, you need to write detailed descriptions to get people to click on your post. Longer descriptions with proper keywords and hashtags are desirable.
- Use attractive images: Pinterest is all about images. Your chances of getting more traffic are directly related to the effort you put into making your images more visually appealing.
- Pinterest group boards: Pinterest groups are very similar to what you know about Facebook and Linkedin groups. It’s a community built around a specific topic. You can contribute to it, share your thoughts and get feedback. This can help to increase your followers and more followers mean more traffic to your website.
Linkedin is best known as a professional social network. It is said that over 50% of all social traffic to B2B websites & blogs comes from Linkedin.
It is a professional social networking site unlike any other which may also be used for fun so this should be your go to if you are looking to drive serious traffic to your blog. Here’s how you can use it:
- Best time to post: Ideal days to post on linkedin usually are weekdays. Especially in the first half of the day, before work or during lunch breaks.
- How often should you post: Linkedin is mostly used during working days so make sure to post at least once a day throughout the week.
- Linkedin Group: You can create your own Linkedin group or join a few related to your niche. They can help to promote your content, engage with people and get some feedback to improve your work.
- Republish content: Unlike any other social media, you can republish your articles on Linkedin to reach more people. Don’t forget to add a bio at the end that will take people to your actual blog/site.
Linkedin is all about serious professionals so make the best use of this specialized marketing network.
YouTube is the second largest search engine after Google and the second most visited site after Wikipedia. It is however still categorized as a social platform for driving traffic to your blog.
But it is important to use it wisely, because it can take up a lot of your time and resources.
Here’s how you can use YouTube to generate traffic:
- YouTube is all about videos, so you need to give them a reason to visit your blog such as exclusive content and so on.
- Include your link in the channel header and video description.
- Use a clear CTA.
- Don’t forget the importance of YouTube SEO.
With millions of videos being uploaded on YouTube every day, it is highly likely that your content will get lost in the crowd. So it is important to create videos, which are focused around your area of expertise.
Quora can often be confused as a search engine but in reality, it is a social platform which can greatly help you to promote your blog and company.
Here’s what you can do with Quora:
- Create an impressive profile with a thorough bio description. Quora shows the first 50 characters as a tagline above your answer which you can use as a great branding opportunity.
- Find the questions related to your niche that you think you can answer well.
- Keep an eye out for questions that haven’t been answered yet or only have a few answers.
- Also look for questions with a lot of upvotes which means they are popular and answer them better than anybody else has.
- Add a link to your blog at the end of your answer and invite people to learn more.
- Quora also provides you with an option of creating a blog which you can use to republish your content. It is ideal for both, people who have no audience and people who have an audience but want to reach more people.
People ask all types of questions on Quora, you can use it to showcase your expertise by answering them which can prove to generate some referral traffic to your blog.
Promoting your content is equally important as writing it in the first place. So whether you like it or not you need to spend your time or/and resources for promotion. However, paid promotions can be expensive and you should jump into this cautiously.
There are various ways you can use to get paid traffic, here are some of them that you can use:
- Facebook Ads: We are all familiar with Facebook ads. They can actually be quite effective and budget friendly but make sure to target the right audience.
- Google Ads: Google is the number one search engine so if you are planning to spend some money on ads, it should be on Google as it will take care of most of the audience.
- Promoted tweets: Promoted tweets are tweets that you pay for with a target of reaching more people and generating some traffic back to your site.
- Instagram Ads: Instagram ads are very similar to Facebook ads, they are also cost effective. You can choose to run ads as images, videos, stories, slideshows and so on. But don’t forget to pick the correct audience.
- Pinterest Ads: Pinterest ads work like any other social media ads, they are used to get your content in front of a larger audience.
- Linkedin Ads: Linkedin ads should be used to target professional audiences. If your target isn’t the professionals, you should save money on this one.
- Quuu Promote: This is a paid tool used to drive traffic by promoting your content to the people who have signed up to get suggestions from this tool.
Unlike social media, this kind of promotion does not require you to invest your time only but your money as well. So make sure to use it sensibly or don’t use it all. You don’t want to waste your money targeting a wrong audience or on platforms that are not right for you.
You focus on one or all of the above promotion methods, email must be the foundation of your blog promotion. The ROI for email marketing can be as high as 4400%. That’s $44 for every dollar spent on an email marketing campaign.
Also, in the digital world email & your self hosted blog are your two most valuable assets, which you own and have a high degree of control over.
All social media channels are like rented places. You are always at the mercy of some sort of algorithm and you can lose your account for violating any terms of the platform.
If President Trump can lose it, surely we can too.
Best use of social media channels is to drive traffic to your blog and build your email list while those channels are working for you.
Here is how to get started with email marketing.
- Sign up for an email marketing software such as Mailchimp or Aweber
- Start capturing email addresses in exchange for free useful information
- Send regular emails to help them achieve their goals
- Build rapport
- Don’t forget to ask them to buy your product/services with regular intervals
It is that simple. However, we usually make it a lot complicated. Starting an email list as soon as possible and starting sending emails regularly is the elephant in the room. You master these two things and then move onto email segmentation, auto responder, funnels, etc slowly.
Why you should focus on 1-5 best ones
Let me share a story of Warren Buffett’s personal pilot, Mike Flint. He was Buffett’s personal airplane pilot for 10 years & has also flown four US Presidents in the past.
Here is the story
Buffett asked him to go through a 3-step exercise, when Flint, asked advice about his career priorities from Buffett.
Warren Buffett uses the simple 3-step productivity strategy to help his employees determine their priorities and actions.
According to Mike, the billionaire gave him the following 3-step exercise to prioritize his goals:
- Step 1: Write down your top 25 career goals on a single piece of paper.
- Step 2: Circle only your top five options.
- Step 3: Put the top five on one list and the remaining 20 on a second list.
Seems simple, right?
However, according to Buffet the key to get the most out of this strategy is to put the 20 things, which didn’t make it to the top five, into not to do at all list.
This is what I believe our monkey trap is in most things in life and blog promotion is no different.
Here is how I believe you can apply this strategy to your blog promotion:
- Step 1: Write down your top 25 blog promotion channels
- Step 2: Circle only your top five options.
- Step 3: Put the top five on one list and the remaining 20 on a second list.
Put all your blog promotion efforts on your 3-5 top promotion channels on list one and make sure you don’t spend any time & efforts on the promotion channels on your second list.
All the best!
We all have limited resources & unlimited desires. It is a law of nature and it is important that we understand and respect that to get the best out of our limited resources.
Playing to your strengths is one of the best life lessons I learned playing cricket throughout my life.
Which blog promotion strategy/channels worked best for you?
It will be great to learn from you in the comments below.