When you start a new blog the most important task is to promote your blog and yet many people fail in doing that. A good blog promotion strategy is to spend 80% time in promotion and 20% time in content creation.
When you start a blog you might have heard that content is the king and if your content is great you will get the visitor for search engines and your blog will take off like anything. Welcome to the SEO world where many thing does not depend solely on content.
Yes if your content is great you will get visitors from search engine but not before they start trusting you, and they will not trust you at the start of your blog. You need to prove that you are trust worthy and you will do that by promoting your blog.
When bloggers create a blog, they usually get stuck with many non-required activities. These activities takes a lot of time with not so much gain and take away an opportunity to promote a blog.
Before starting how to promote I want to point out some activities which every new blogger should avoid doing.
Things which should be avoided
1. Design Changes
Yes design is really important and has to be done but not right away. You need the traffic first on your blog. Many new blogger stuck in design changes, updating siderbar many times a day, changing colors, tweaking header to check which is looking better.
Image Credit: renjith krishnan
You should work on the design at the start and once you have it complete at one level, than leave it at that. Don’t make frequent changes, leave it as it is for few months and work on promoting the blog.
2. Checking Visitor Stats
Every new blogger gets obsessed with visitor stats, you install many stats plugins like Google Analytics, Jetpack etc. You want to have a look how many times you are checking stats in a day.
I bet many new blogger would be checking stats multiple times a day and to tell you truth a new blog will have 20-30 visitor a day. Yes you will be happy to see that a new person has visited your blog but if you spend that time promoting your blog, you can get many more people to visit your blog.
Don’t forget that if you check once in a day or once in a week, numbers will remain same. There is no gain in checking it multiple times a day.
3. Checking if Site is working correctly
This is another time wasting activity. Make a list how many time you visit your blog to make sure everything is running fine there. Once you have created a blog and hosted it, don’t worry things will run fine.
There is no way an hosted blog is going to go down or any bad thing going to happen. Yes, there are hacking, server down and some other issue can happen but it can’t happen as frequent as multiple time a day. Once in day is a good frequency to visit your blog and other time you should be on other blogs to promote your blog.
Once you have stopped doing these activities, you can start promoting your blog. Let me tell you from my experience that a new blog can get a good amount of traffic if you promote it correctly. I usually receive 60% traffic from promotion activities, 20% from SEO and rest from some other traffic source. So you can see promotion is one of the main activities to get traffic for a new blog.
Ways to promote your blog
Here are the promotion techniques which I use for my blogs.
This is very simple yet effective technique to generate traffic for your blog, but this has to be done carefully. Only activity require is to visit other blogs, read the articles and leave thoughtful comments.
Why I said you need to be careful is, you don’t want your comments to be marked spam. These days many blogs use common spam reduction plugins and if your comments got marked as spam at one blog it can be treated as spam on other blogs also.
Also you want to leave a thoughtful and meaningful comment as it will be the prime thing which will bring traffic to your blog. Don’t post thanks, great post kind of comments as they don’t add anything to the other blog and does not give anything to you also. You will find that most traffic will come through by the thoughtful comments left by you.
Now you may want to do this with little strategy, If you publish a post you may want to generate some backlinks for it and a good way to find the related posts on other blog and do add some comments there to get the relevant backlinks. I use Market Samurai which can find the relevant content where you can add comments for promotion.
Other good way is to find Commentluv enable blogs as they provide extra backlink and many blog will give you a keyword based link. Commentluv Premium plugin gives you some extra option and its a handy tool for blog commenting.
2. Guest Post
This is a great way to generate traffic and backlinks for your blog. The only issue you will face is not every blog except guest post, but there are enough blogs where you can go and do the guest post.
This is one of the most used and misused technique. If you decide to guest post you will look for good traffic blogs to post so that you can get some traffic back to your blog but people end up sending stuff which they don’t consider for their site.
If you don’t think the post can be used on your blog than it can’t be used on other blog. It works in other way, If there is a post which you really want to be on your blog, give it away.
Guest post comes with many benefits, if other blog allows you can get backlinks within the contents. But it needs to be highly relevant to the contents otherwise its better to get the links in author byline.
3. Forum Marketing
This is one of the great way to generate backlinks and traffic but does requires some effort. You can join successful forums in your niche and start interacting with members. Most of the forums allow adding a link to your blog in your signatures (do check the rules first) which can generate good amount of backlinks for your blogs.
Also if you start helping people in those forums, you will see a good amount of traffic coming to your blog also. If you are not sure about which forum you should participate, Market Samurai can help finding the forums for you.
The basic thing is that you should work in forums to help people, other things will come automatically.
4. Network with Bloggers
This is another way to gain some authority in your niche. Meet the established bloggers in your niche, give an generous appreciation to the work they have done, share your point of view with them. With the time you will see that you will start getting the returns of your work.
It can be a tough task as you need to make sure that they will take notice of you, one way is commenting on their blogs or there are bloggers networks like Blog Engage to help you in this task. You can participate at Blog Engage and get to know other bloggers, it requires a one time fees of $30 to join a very active community. There are some other free networks like Blokube or BizSugar.
5. Article Directories
There are many article directories where you can submit the articles. This is a good way to generate backlinks and get some traffic. This was one of the best method to promote a blog earlier but now with Google punishing for duplicate contents, it has lost its charm.
Still has certain benefits and can give some exposure to the blog.
6. Promote your blog with Social Networking
Social Networking is one of the main ways a blog can gain traffic. It can be little time consuming in starting to create an network on social platform but you can take social networks one at a time.
You need to start promoting your blog from the beginning, in the start you may not see much gain but you will reap the benefit later on.
There are many social networks these days, you can create a fan page at Facebook, Twitter, Digg and Stumbleupon account for your blog. Just creating account is not enough, you need to involve and gain some friends, create an network there. Take it step by step and you will be able to work it out.
7. YAHOO ANSWERS
This can be a good way to generate some traffic, you can join the yahoo group and start giving answers in your niche. This has a long term gain as Yahoo Answers allow to add a link to your blog and you will see people will come from the answers you have provided there.
You can have an hour or 2-3 hours a week dedicated to this activity. Just browse through yahoo answers in your allocated time and start adding your answers.
8. COMPETITION AND GIVEAWAY
This can be a good way to gain some exposure though it requires some initial investment. You can get away with the investment if you can find some sponsors for your competitions or Giveaway, but it is really tough at the start of the blog.
Competition and Giveaway can be an huge traffic generator if promoted correctly. Yes you heard it right, you need to promote it also, you need to let the world know that you are running a competition and giveaway.
Also you need to make sure that the prize which you are offering is of any use for you later on, the page for the competition or giveaway will be there after that so you might want to offer an affiliate product or something which can be utilized later on.
This is another good method to generate some traffic, at the start of the blog its hard to get traffic for your competition and giveaway events. So an easy way is to sponsor another competition or giveaway.
I know sponsorship sounds like a big word but you can sponsor events with as little as $25, just look for other blogs in your niche and see what events are running there which you can sponsor. Sponsorship can give you some traffic and backlinks for your blog.
These are the way you can promote your blogs, try these blog promotion methods and share how it works out for you.