Why is promoting your blog important? To be frank, why are you writing if not to be read by others? Most people write blogs to be noticed, or to market to others. Spending enough time to promote your blog is paramount to the process of marketing to your target demographic. We’ve talked about target demographics quite a bit, and there is a reason for that. Demographics matter when you’re writing and speaking to an audience.
Directly contact your customers
There are so many ways to contact your customers these days. You’ve got email, social media, direct mail, pretty much anything that people can open for a pretty graphic. Since you’re online reading this, it is incredibly likely that you’re not going to use direct mail marketing, since you’re probably online marketing, but if you are, there are so many tools out there to help you establish direct mail campaigns. Since, however, we are focused on promoting a blog, direct mail would likely be a waste of time.
Regarding email campaigns, there are a ton of tools to help you run a successful campaign by directly emailing your customers. Our favorite tool here is customer.io. This is a tool that works to automate email campaigns, but also helps you decide which email campaign is most effective. Customer.io allows you to A-B test marketing campaigns so that you can decide which campaigns are most effective and have the highest clickthrough rates. This data is invaluable in finding your customers’ likes and dislikes.
CoSchedule also provides some recommendations as to how to grow your email list to find more leads to send your emails to. They recommend tools like List Builder and Scrollbox to gain opt ins from new customers. These opt ins generate new email leads and will provide you with so much more marketing power than simply blindly emailing.
How can an email promote your blog?
Simple, really. Giving your customers a headline that will grab their attention is the first part of the process. Once you have grabbed their attention with the subject line, it is up to you to draw them in. Some blogs choose to send plain emails, but I have found that a colorful presentation with graphics is more enticing to your audience.
Imagine getting an email full of boring text, waiting for you to click on a link that might be prominent, but might also be buried in a lot of other text. You want something to differentiate your link from the rest of your content. Your link should stand out from the rest of your email, making sure that your customers click on the most important part. Of course, if you’re not convinced, you can use customer.io to A-B test the different versions of your email and figure out which one your customers like more.
Should I follow up?
Another feature that we enjoy about customer.io is that it tracks your clickthroughs and allows you to send follow up emails. When you find that your customers didn’t click your initial email, it is likely that it got buried in a bunch of other emails. Remember the last time you checked your Gmail inbox and saw all that spam? Be honest. You completely deleted most of it, didn’t you? I know I did. The point of a follow up email is to make sure that your emails end up in the pile that is sitting in the inbox during the day. You don’t want to be caught during the morning rush of overnight promotion emails, but would rather be the only email sitting in the inbox.
How do I maximize my social media growth?
There is an easy answer to that question. Any time you publish a piece of content, share it to your social media account immediately (dlvr.it is a great application to do this). After you’ve shared it, though, your content doesn’t have to die on your social media pages. You can help your customers get your content distributed much more easily and much faster. The best way to do this is to add social media buttons in your emails and on your blog page. WordPress provides a great tutorial as to how to add these buttons on their platform.
Also remember to include your social media pages in your email signature and provide them throughout your email. Your email signature can be one of the most important pieces of any direct email to your client list. Your email signature is the last opportunity you have to make an impression and convince your readers to promote your blog. It is important to craft a signature that appeals to your demographic and makes it easy for your customers to understand with whom they are communicating.
What other methods can I use to promote my blog?
It is a counterintuitive thought, but go to some forums that crowdsource answers to common questions. I spend a lot of time on Quora answering questions from others, and this can be a great way to promote your blog content without immediately plugging your blog. Just make sure to be up front about your position when you’re answering these questions. Online viewers can be brutal, and if they sense you hiding something that is pertinent to the conversation, they will pounce.
Also, make sure to maximize your social media following. Don’t just share your blog post on your Facebook and Twitter pages, but branch out and share to Tumblr, Pinterest, Google+ and any others you can think of. StumbleUpon is a great way to get your content noticed fairly quickly, as long as it’s categorized properly. Make sure that you set this up. There is a great tutorial that goes over how to do this.
Wrapping it up
As you can see, there are many ways to promote your blog. It is up to you as to how best to promote your blog. As for me, I prefer to use as many of them as possible. Using multiple methods of blog promotion will get your traffic brewing in the best way possible.