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So you’ve got a blog, now what? How to promote your blog

 

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[tweetmeme]So you’ve got a blog. It looks great. You’ve got all the whistles, bells and widgets added to it. Visitors can easily subscribe by rss or email (can’t they?). You’ve added a few great posts that are relevant to your audience and will encourage healthy debate. But there’s one thing missing. Readers.

All too often I have this conversation with new bloggers who have published a fantastic new blog, but that was all they did. There were no launch marketing activities, no promotion to drive people there. Sound familiar? Unfortunately if you build it, they won’t necessarily come. Here are a few tips that might help:

Send an emailer
If you have a decent database, send an emailer telling them all about the blog, what you plan to write about, the benefits to them and how they can subscribe to it.

Comment on other, relevant blogs
Find other blogs within your niche and comment there, adding the link to your blog. The point of blogs is to encourage conversation, so start that conversation off the blog as this may direct it back to you. Social media is very much about reciprocity, so you’ll find that the authors of those blogs you comment on may well head over to your blog and comment there themselves.

Share other blog posts on Twitter
Are you sharing other peoples content on Twitter? If you do you may well find they’ll head over to your blog for a read. Who knows, they may even share your posts as a thank you.

Give something away
Write an ebook on your niche subject and give it away on the blog or offer a discount to your blog readers as a thank you. Then promote this through Twitter and other social media channels, asking people to RT or share it.

Online press releases
Why not try an online press release launching the blog, giving detail on what it’s about and the benefit to subscribers, then add this to free online press release sites.

Promote other blogs
Again the rule of reciprocity applies here. Link to other, great blogs within your niche. If you’re blog is relevant, and good enough, those that you link to may well link to yours too once it’s established.

Guest posts
Get other respected people in the industry to guest blog for you. They’ll promote the post themselves once it’s published.

Optimise the site
Are you using your SEO keywords in your blog content, particularly the titles? If not, you’re missing out on being listed in relevant searches.

Blogging directories
Submit the blog to all blogging directories. This can be a long and painful process, but it’s worth it. Make sure you use your SEO keywords in the profiles and particularly in the tags. There’s a great list of directories here.

Share across social media
If you have a fan page, you can have the posts automatically added to your walls through Networked Blogs. Are you a member of a group on Linked In that would be interested in the post? Then add it there and encourage comments. You could also add the best of the best posts to your Linked In status. Tweet out all posts to the Twittersphere and if they’re really interesting, ask people to RT (I’d be careful about doing this each time though). And of course make sure you add the Facebook Like, Google Buzz and Retweet buttons to all posts.

Email signatures
If you’ve published a really juicy post that would be of interest to people you correspond with, why not add the post to your email signature with a link for a little while.

Those are just a few ways of promoting your blog and encouraging more readers. Can you think of any more? I’d love to hear them.

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12 Comments
  1. Yet another really helpful and useful blog post from you Gemma. This one came to my attention just when I needed it most. Our blog is quite new and I needed guidance on how to really get it out there!

    I will definatly be taking your advice on the email signatures as that will really bring it to the attention of our customers and will show them what our blog is about and hopefully they will subscribe for future ones.

    Thanks for the great advice!

  2. Gemma Went says:

    You’re more than welcome. The best thing to do is think about all possible touchpoints you have with your customers and then see if you can share your blog there. It won’t work with all, but you may uncover a channel you’d not thought about.

  3. Might want add to the list tweeting out when you add a comment to someones blog or someone adds to yours.

    It amplifies the fact that this has been done and extends the life of debate as people who might not have been interested at first can see a healthy debate is forming and who’s taking part probably increasing their desire to engage.

  4. Gemma Went says:

    Great point Andrew. This is a great way of driving people to the blog and growing the discussion.

  5. Christina says:

    Hi Gemma,

    Very helpful post…was aware of many of these methods but brilliant to have them all listed and explained so well in one place. I’ve recently taken over our company blog and I’ve gotten to the stage you described at the beginning so will definitely be taking your advice on how to get it to the next stage!

    http://taylorobrien.wordpress.com/

  6. Gemma Went says:

    Great stuff Christina, glad it was useful.

  7. JBBC says:

    Terrific tips here Gemma. I find that guest posts are the most successful way of doing cross promotion. You mention having guests blog on your own blog, but equally offering to write a relevant blog post for someone else has also worked really well for me too. Marie

  8. Gemma Went says:

    Thanks for that Marie, and I agree. Writing guest posts for others is also a great way of promoting your own blog.

  9. We must Safe The World. Its a very important, intresting and helpfull post. Thank you

  10. Scott Hudson says:

    This is great article. You are rock.

    The Marketing Blog

  11. Thanks Gemma….lots of really good points. One thing a lot of people struggle with is to produce quality content. I have written an ebook on how to do this. If you would be interested in a review copy for your blog please let me know.

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