Go Viral

I try to post at least once a week to each of my seven current blogs. It takes a good chunk of time and usually happens between other tasks.

Many bloggers write as a job or at least do it to make some income, so getting more traffic to your blog posts and catch the attention of more readers is important. I certainly like having more people read my writing, but I have never made money with my personal blogs and don’t write them for that purpose. But this site is used to promote some of my services, including social media strategies, so I do pay attention to social media marketing articles.

But I am very skeptical of titles like “How To Promote Your Blog And Make It Viral.”  If anyone knew how to make a blog post or video go viral, then all of them would go viral and there would be no viral left.

So, do you just create content and hope Google will bring people to it?  I looked at this list of strategies and, of course, “going viral” is not an “accountable strategic outcome,” but there are some basic tips that can help increase your audience. I was surprised how many suggestions I actually do even though I don’t have a real marketing strategy for my personal blogs the way I would create one for a client.

Send your content by email. Most blog platforms, like WordPress, allow readers to subscribe and receive an email when a new post is available. Email marketing is still used and though it is less effective than it was in 2000, it works best when people elect to receive you mail – pull rather than push notifications.

Share content via social media. Again, it is fairly simple to set up your blog to automatically send a post to Twitter, LinkedIn, Facebook, Tumblr and other social sites. I use that option. It’s easy. Perhaps, too easy. These automated widgets often just grab a post title or as much of the first line that fits into the 140 characters or word count. Customized posts are always better. If someone follows you on several networks, it’s not good for them to see the name information repeated.

Mention an influencer. Hmmm. Name dropping and guest blogger posts. Not my personal thing, but with clients it’s a good strategies.

Submit posts to a content community. A kind of re-post and cross-post strategy. I have experimented with reposting in other networks like LinkedIn, Tumblr or Medium which does open up other audiences. I also occasionally cross-post on another one of my own blogs. This post will appear here and on my LLC blog.

Similarly, you can connect with peer groups (like Triberr).

sharethisYou certainly should make it easy to share your content. These one-click buttons allow readers to share your content in their own networks. They may not have a big network of followers (though they might have more than you!) but their tweet is an endorsement and that probably carries more trust than your tweet.

If you were a client, I would advise you about using use paid ads and remarketing but for personal content I don’t see any point.

However, I would strongly advise following one of the tips: focus on places that get the best response. That requires some work using Google analytics, monitoring the keywords people use to find your content and tracking the source of your traffic. Currently, Twitter sends more people to this blog than other networks – and, of course, Google.

But, the real final tip is my own: write good posts about topics people are interested in. Easier said than done. Good writing is always tough, but figuring out what people are interested in reading is harder. Today’s top search term is “social media books” but should I write more content about that topic?  It’s not just duplicating content but building on popular content.

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