Anyone who has ever marketed a blog before will tell you, it’s not an easy task. Blog marketing takes a lot of time and energy. It also often feels like a never-ending project. However, if you don’t market your blog, very few people may end up ever reading it; especially if you don’t add categories and tags for search engines to pick up on. Advertising your blog may be time consuming, but it certainly isn’t difficult. Whether you are writing a blog for business or for pleasure, following these tips and tricks will help you gain readership.
Here’s what you need to do to successfully market your blog:
• Read other blogs that are similar to yours and leave comments. When you browse other people’s blog posts and leave comments with a link to your blog, they are very likely to visit yours. This will not only generate traffic to your blog, but if it’s a business blog, it could generate traffic to your actual Web site, assuming you link from your blog to your site (which you should, every post). Also, link to other people’s blogs when you can, and they will be more apt to link to yours. The more links leading to your blog, the more searchable it is, which will also help people find it.
• Post and update your blog often. No one wants to read a blog that isn’t up-to-date. Also if you only post once in a while, your readers will not know when to check back and they’ll lose interest. Post every other day, weekly, or bi-weekly and try to do it on consistent days. This way, when your readers expect a new blog post next time they visit your blog, they won’t be disappointed.
• Acknowledge your comments. When someone leaves a comment, make sure to respond to them or visit their blog and leave a comment. This will let them know that you appreciate them reading about what you have to say. If you have a bunch of comments and you haven’t replied to any of them, don’t expect to get many more. People write comments to start a conversation, and when they are only talking to themselves its very discouraging. If you get a rude or critical comment, don’t get angry, remain professional in your response, and if you can, use the criticism to improve on your own technique.
• Link to outside sources. If you are constantly finding up-to-date news stories that are relevant to your topic and linking to them, people will start to rely on you as a news source for the particular industry. Linking to things you think your readers will be interested in adds to your credibility and makes it more likely that they will return or even suggest your blog to their friends or co-workers. If you quote another person’s blog or a news source, always link back to the original source to avoid plagiarism accusations.
• Know where your blog traffic is coming from. Find out which keywords are bringing people to your blog and which search engines your blog is most popular on. Google analytics can tell you this information and once you have educated yourself about what keywords people are searching for to find you, the more you can include those keywords in your writing. This will lead your blog up the search engine page ranks and make it easier for your blog to attract more readers.
• Exchange ideas with other bloggers. While you’re reading other blogs and commenting, share ideas with other bloggers. This will encourage bloggers to share ideas with you. There are many different bloggers in the world with all levels of experience who are knowledgeable in all different subjects. Use them to your advantage to learn from them. Many blogs provide a contact email address. Email other bloggers asking for advice and sharing your ideas. Starting friendly conversation with other bloggers will up your status in the blog-o-sphere and help you gain more credibility and readers.
• Use a conversational tone, even when writing a business blog. No one likes to read boring corporate-speak. Don’t try to impress with huge words you may not even know the definition of. Instead, focus on expressing yourself and getting your point across using a conversational tone. One of the main appeals of blogging is that it can be more informal than a business Web site. Use your blog to start conversations with your readers and/or customers and leave your professional lingo for your business Web site.
• Encourage readers to subscribe. Most blog sites allow readers to “subscribe” to your blog, meaning readers will get an email every time you update your blog with a new post. Many people who are new to the blog-o-sphere don’t know what the subscribe button is for. At the end of every or every-other blog post, write something along the lines of, “Like what you’re reading? Subscribe and receive and email when I post something again. Click the link at the top of the page.” This will encourage readers to return back to your blog.
When you have a popular blog, whether it’s for business or for pleasure it can generate more money for you. When your business blog becomes popular, readers will most likely turn into customers and you will begin to see your sales steadily increase. If you are writing a blog for fun and it becomes popular, you may be able to get ads on your blog and earn a little extra cash from the advertising companies. Following the above tips for marketing your blog will help you gain popularity and credibility online.