If you’re a blogger, you worry about how many people read your posts. You wan’t to drive more traffic, more attention, more shares and more comments. It makes sense. Bloggers work hard on their blogs and they wan’t to see a return on their investment. Whether you’ve hired someone to write content on your blog or you’re investing your time in writing the content; there needs to be a return on that investment.
The biggest return I’ve ever gotten on blogging was when I wrote a post that got so many shares it broke my site. Getting traffic is a tricky business, and it often requires a lot of experimentation in not only finding the right topic but also finding the right forms of promotion. I’ll tell you what’s worked for me, so far, and I’ll tell you a few tricks I’ve seen others implement that drive a handful of traffic to their site.
Create Awesome Headlines
While we can all pretend we don’t judge a book by its cover, we often do. When it comes to a blog post, the cover is comparable to what you would write as the blog headline. Capturing someones attention within 3.57 seconds is the hardest yet most important part of the puzzle. If you have a lame blog post title, no one’s going to want to read the post. You need to ensure that you’re creating blog posts that are relevant and provide the reader with a reason to click the link. I’ve found that people are much more likely to react to blog posts titled “how to X,” or “10 reasons,” or even “5 easy ways.” These are simple yet easy ways to spark a reaction from your readers. Want another tip? Go to the grocery store and take a look at the cover of Cosmo, the Tabloids, Mens Health and see how they craft their titles. If you wan’t to learn from the best, the magazine aisle just might be the right place to start.
Use Captivating Photography
One thing I love about Steamfeed is the amount of rich photos found on every blog post. Photography and images are an easy way to capture the attention of a potential reader and really bring them deeper into the post. Furthermore, it’s an easy way to tell a story on a new level. You can use images to enhance the story you’re trying to tell through your blog with a visual that helps describe a concept or simply references something about the topic that most people never think of. Beyond images that you create to show diagrams, it’s also important to use screenshots when describing things as they work online or within a piece of software. An example of a visual that truly tells a story about a blog post is this pyramid describing various content marketing ideas.
Write Great Guest Posts
Over the last few years, I’ve seen Guest Blogging go from being a simple way to generate new awareness to being the best way to drive traffic to your blog. Not only does guest blogging provide short-term benefit, it provides long-term benefit as well. As it relates to the short-term, guest blogging presents you with an opportunity to reach a new audience who may have never heard of you or your business. If you’re developing content that is useful to this audience or that they find relevant; you have an opportunity to drive not only new traffic but potentially new business. In the long-term, guest blogging is great for SEO purposes. Specifically, if you’re writing a handful of guest blog posts and are placing links back to your site every time you do it, you have a chance to show up higher in Google for specific keywords.
Make Guest Posts Easy to Digest
A lot of people say you need to keep your guest blog posts short but I’m not sold on that concept. Instead of holding yourself to a character limit, hold yourself to a boring limit. If you find yourself rambling about something just to get up your word count, stop. If you need 2000 words just to tell your story and get across a powerful message, do it. My only suggestion is to ensure that the post is easy to digest. Don’t write paragraph after paragraph without actually breaking the content up with headers and proper formatting.
Share Guest Blog Posts Frequently
It’s important to keep this in mind as it’s something a lot of guest bloggers forget about. Not only will the owner of the site you’re blogging on be happy that you’re sharing their link, you’ll be able to promote this content and further spread your story. While it seems like a no brainer, it’s important to share as much content you create as possible. If you’re able to share a blog post on your Facebook, Twitter or Linkedin and someone else decides to share it on theirs, you have a chance to achieve great virality with your posts.
Install Share Buttons on Your Posts
There’s nothing more annoying than trying to share someones blog post and having to copy and paste their URL instead of quickly press a button on the side. Ok, maybe I’m being a bit of a drama queen. Nothing is more annoying than someone leaving an empty carton of milk in the fridge after you pour a bowl of Rice Krispies, but let’s move on. Simply put, install share buttons on your blog post to make it easier for people to share your content. Whether you’re using the classic Sharebar or Share This, both a great options. You can choose which channels you wan’t available on the plugin so think about where your audience spends the most time and make your selection accordingly.
Create Content Consistently
I’ve heard of people doing weekly blog post challenges, daily blog post challenges and a few people even a two-a-day challenge. The key idea behind all of these challenges is consistency. The people who take part in them recognize the importance of creating content on a regular basis. They recognize the importance of delivering their story through new content whether it’s through guest blogging or directly on their site. They recognize the importance of creating content to drive traffic. The reality is, the more content you create, the more opportunities you will create for yourself. If you can create great content on a regular basis people will start to look out for that and will start making it a part of their routine to visit your site for updates and new ideas or stories. A wise man once said, “I hate to write but I love to have written.” If you’re a blogger or have ever written an article or book, I’m sure you can relate with that statement.
In a world that is dying for great content, blogging is a way to supply that demand. If you can focus on delivering your readers with captivating and remarkable blog posts, you are already ahead of the game. The combination of great blog posts and the implementation of tactics like those above, you’re destined to find results from your content marketing strategy. If you can implement the strategies above, not only will you see a spike in the short-term but also growth through SEO over time.
Additionally, don’t focus solely on the number of visits to your blog. Focus on the types of content that people are sharing and are reading. If you look at this information you can get a better idea of what kind of blog posts you need to create to satisfy your existing readers needs and wants.
Do you have any tricks up your sleeve for driving additional traffic to your blog?