If you want to attract a strong readership for your blog, it’s obvious that you need to create great content. But that’s not sufficient: amazing content that doesn’t get read might as well not exist. To build a thriving blog, you also need to learn to drive traffic to it.
So what methods do the experts use? We’ve compiled a list of 13 tried and true ways to build your audience.
- Send your blog post to relevant people/organizations/blogs that would be interested in reading it and sharing it with their networks. You can simply send a message such as, “I recently published an article on the top apps for entrepreneurs and thought your readers might find it interesting.” Offer to reciprocate by sharing or linking to a relevant post of theirs.
- Send your blog post out to any person or entity mentioned. It’s not just social influencers – if you mention a local bakery or car dealership or a software company in your post, send them a link and alert them. It’s likely they’ll be interested in reading and promoting it, as well.
- Share your article on other social networks. Pinterest, Vine, Storify, Digg, Quora, Reddit, StumbleUpon, and Care2 are just some of the many options for sharing your work.
- Share your article on social bookmarking sites. Plenty to choose from here, as well: Newsana is a new, good site, and you should also consider Paper.li, Delicious, Ebaumsworld, Newsvine, Scoop.it, Technorati, and more.
- Tweet your post multiple times, with different teaser quotes. The first time you tweet about your new post, merely make it the title of your article (“13 Innovative Ways to Drive More Traffic to Your Blog”). The second time, you can quote from the article or summarize key points (“Tip to increase blog readership – send a link to anyone you mention in your post”). For your third, you can pose a question (“Do you want to dramatically increase your blog readership?”). This prevents you from looking like a spammer, and different headlines may capture different readers.
- Utilize LinkedIn groups. Post the blog via relevant LinkedIn groups. You can join up to 50 groups and many have thousands upon thousands of members—dramatically increasing your potential reach. For instance, if you’re a woman in social media who lives in New York, you might consider joining the “Social Media Marketing” group, with over half a million members.
- Include visual content and videos. Study after study has found people engage more with images, infographics, videos, and the like. It’s a powerful way to get readers connected.
- Make your blog SEO friendly. Include a headline that users might search for in Google, such as a “how to.” Repeat keywords from your headline in your post (but not too frequently, or you’ll look like a spammer). And make sure to link to credible outside sources and think about how you can truly add value to the reader. What Google and other search engines seek to prioritize is quality information.As you can see, it takes actual work to promote your article. But the good news is that there are more resources today than ever before.