Maximize Your Blog Traffic in 9 Easy Steps
“Content marketing is the only marketing left.”
That's according to Seth Godin, circa 2008.
But is the marketing legend and 17-time bestselling author correct?
Well, yes and no.
“No” because content marketing isn’t the only kind left.
There’s traditional marketing everywhere you turn.
But it’s equally obvious that content marketing—blogs, videos, podcasts, etc.—is not only wickedly effective at engaging an audience, but is also leveraged, inexpensive, and produces a staggering ROI.
The numbers don’t lie
According to HubSpot’s annual report…
- Advertisers who actively blog are 1,200% more likely to make money
- In the U.S., 81% of consumers trust information from blogs
- Companies that actively blog generate 67% more leads each month than companies that do not blog (in the B2B market)
So while content isn’t the only kind of marketing left, it is extremely valuable, especially for the small business owner.
And that’s where Godin is right on the money!
Now, you may have noticed the stats above are specifically about blogging, which shouldn’t be a surprise.
Blogging is the fastest and simplest form of content marketing to implement.
All it costs you is a little time.
When done properly, blog posts can…
- Engage users
- Generate trust, interest, and buying activity
- Establish you as an authority and thought leader
However, just because you sit down and write a post doesn’t mean you’ll see the stellar results described above.
Far from it, in fact.
The tragic mistake far too many hard-working bloggers make
We’ve discussed before how to create EPIC content.
But once you’ve worked so hard to write an awesome post…
How do you maximize the number of people that read it?
How do you drive traffic effectively?
Those are great questions!
And a lot of bloggers get this part wrong.
It’s important to realize that maximizing traffic starts in the preparation stage. You need to know how to promote your network marketing business properly.
In fact, if your prep work isn’t on-point, even the most valuable posts won’t get read or shared.
And that’s not what you want!
Which is why the first 3 steps of maximizing blog traffic all happen before you click the “Publish” button…
Step 1: Prep Your Post for “Showtime”
Search Engine Optimization (SEO) can get you high visibility in, and free traffic from, Google and Yahoo's organic results.
The problem is this…
SEO is complex—and it's volatile.
Google changes their algorithm often, and what worked last year may not work now.
That’s not an exaggeration, either.
Google changes its algorithm 500-600 times a year.
And 2012’s “Penguin” update (to name just one of many) changed the game completely for many business owners.
Basically, what this means is that you'd do best to forget SEO and focus your time, energy, and investment elsewhere.
So worry about SEO when you have the money to pay someone else to do it.
Focus on optimizing your posts for real, live people.
How do you do that?
Well, here are a few tips…
1. Write a killer headline
- Promise a strong benefit or threaten with a risk
- Use a weird adjective
- Consider using the listicle format, e.g.: x ways to do y
2. Use lots of “subheads”
- Break up the text with thought fragments to “suck” your reader in
- “Spice” things up with emotional language
- Use a stunning statistic or other “authority” element
3. Optimize the body of your posts
- Use tight sentences
- Make paragraphs short for readability
- Avoid information overload: keep your posts “single serving”
Follow these simple guidelines, and you’ll always have highly digestible blog posts.
What do you put at the end of your blog post—comments, sharing buttons, an opt-in form, all or none of the above?
First thing's first—having zero comments is negative social proof.
If readers see that, they'll think…
“Nobody’s reading this blog, so why should I?”
So if you're just getting started, consider implementing a no-comment policy.
Another problem with comments is that they distract people from your call to action—the opt-in where you ask people to sign up for your mailing list.
When people see an opt-in form and comments, they often neglect the opt-in, start reading the comments, and forget to sign up for your list.
That’s why you should make the CTA your primary objective.
Instead of encouraging engagement on your site, save the interaction for social media instead. Choose where and how to promote your network marketing business.
At the end of the day, comments are nice, but they’re not what makes you money.
So always focus on building your list first.
The last thing to do before publishing is adding internal links in your post.
This is important, because cross-linking your content means your visitors read more content, stay on your site longer, and as a result, are more likely to take action.
You want people to see as much of your content as possible.
Ideally, link to old content in new posts and add links to new content in your older material.
One important thing to note is to use “anchor text” when interlinking.
This usually-blue, usually-underlined text that indicates a link:
The best practice, however, is to…
Use your anchor text to help Google understand what the content is about.
Thus, you want your links to look like this instead…
So if your anchor text says clowder of kittens, then don't link to a litter of puppies.
That's confusing for Google and your readers!
Interlinking also helps with two important factors Google uses to assess the relevance of your site:
- Bounce rate: the % of users who don't click any links before leaving. If your bounce rate is high, you want to focus on keeping your visitors clicking deeper into your site.
- Time on site: the amount of time a user spends on your website. The higher, the better. A healthy “time on site” means your content is engaging and you’re cross-linking well.
And that’s that!
At this point, you’ve prepared your post for lit-off, and now it’s time to…
Step 2: Leverage Organic Social Traffic
We recommend using a Facebook Page, so you're specifically targeting folks who “Like” your Page.
That way your audience is super-engaged and you're not bugging your friends and family.
Here are some best-practice guidelines for sharing:
- Include compelling teaser copy. It needs to be short and punchy. No walls of text or flabby language.
- Use images like your life depends on it! Particularly images of people or photographs you've taken at events. Bad choices include stock photos and pictures that immediately look like ads, which get ignored.
- Reply to every comment. This increases your organic reach.
Live video on Facebook is incredibly powerful too.
Now, you might think that Twitter is exactly like Facebook…and that’s partially true.
Both are gigantic social networks where you can get bucketloads of free traffic.
But the truth is…
Twitter is a different animal from Facebook when it comes to promoting your content.
First, because Twitter is more popular with the press, writers, actors, musicians, and other “taste makers.”
That’s why it’s MUCH easier to get noticed by a key influencer in your industry on Twitter.
Second is the 140-character limit.
It means your writing has to be tight.
A straight-up, benefit-driven message or using curiosity is your best bet.
Finally, there’s hashtags, which look like words preceded by the pound sign…
Hashtags are commonly used to comment on trending topics.
You'll get more shares and free clicks by adding popular (yet relevant) hashtags to your Twitter messages.
Outside of Facebook and Twitter, there are numerous targeted communities where you can syndicate your content.
With these sites, it pays to be focused—literally.
Diverse audiences use Facebook and Twitter.
But other social networks are more niche specific:
- LinkedIn is great if you're cultivating a more professional brand
- Snapchat works best if your brand is targeted towards the young and “hip” crowd
- Instagram and Pinterest are perfect for a lifestyle brand, or displaying creative work and photography
On top of leveraging social media sites, you can also seek out guest blogging opportunities and write press releases.
All these methods help you put your content in front of the people who want to see it.
That means more clicks, more likes/shares, and more ROI.
Just remember not to spend too much time on social media and targeted websites, which can quickly turn into a huge time vacuum, especially when learning how to promote your network marketing business!
One way to stay on track is by setting a timer for 30 minutes, getting your social media done in that time, and moving on to…
Step 3: Proactively Promote with Paid Media
The goal of blogging is to build your list (so you can sell to your subscribers and make money, of course).
So at first glance, you might think you shouldn't send blog posts to your list.
After all, you’re trying to get them to buy—not engage with your content. Right?
Well, not quite.
You can't just promote all the time.
Like I mentioned before: choose when and how to promote your network marketing business!
No one will stick around for pitch after pitch.
So you need to keep your list engaged with valuable content.
That way, when you do start selling, your readers will be more likely to take action based on the relationship you've established.
And that’s why you should always notify your subscribers when you publish new content.
Here's the thing:
As long as your content is actually valuable, you can’t mail your list often enough—period.
Once a day is standard practice.
Twice a day is acceptable too—again, as long as you're providing value.
So don’t worry about sending too many messages.
And if you write an especially engaging post (based on metrics such as time on page, likes, shares, etc.), add it to your autoresponder so your new subscribers can benefit from it, too.
Let's talk about what NOT to do for a moment.
While it might seem temping when you're brand new to an industry…
Spamming is a great way to damage your brand and get banned from Google, Facebook, and all the other social sites.
Not only is spamming unethical—it’s aggressively ineffective too.
I mean, you’ve never heard of a marketing authority spamming, have you?
No, you haven’t.
Because spamming is a shortcut to nowhere.
Here are some examples of spam to avoid:
- Facebook group spam
- Comment spam on blogs and forum threads
- Reddit (or any other social news aggregation site) link submission spam
- LinkedIn inbox spamming new connections
I'm sure you've seen examples of these before.
Spamming is literally the opposite of attraction marketing, where you position yourself as an expert and attract prospects to you on the strength of your brand.
Finally, let’s talk about the last step of maximizing your traffic…
Free traffic is great, especially if you follow these instructions to create content that gets shares, leads and sales…
But you know what really facilitates the traffic and monetization potential of great content?
Driving paid clicks to it!
And the fastest way to explode your audience and ROI is using Facebook ads.
First of all…
Your audience is definitely on Facebook.
You know, because Facebook has 2.2 billion monthly active users, after all.
On top of that, the Facebook ad manager is easy to figure out—unlike Google’s!
And the cost of driving clicks, leads, and sales on Facebook is surprisingly low.
So Facebook is the natural choice for budding entrepreneurs and it's where we recommend our customers get their feet wet with paid traffic.
“But,” you might say..
“I don’t know how to write Facebook ads…and besides, I'm on a shoestring budget.”
Hey, we've all been there!
But what if I told you that you could learn the basics of how to promote your network marketing business for free?
Sounds good, right?
And how do you accomplish this?
Often bloggers will give away a free bribe, or “trial lesson,” to get folks to buy their product.
You've probably seen plenty of such freebies before.
We do things a little differently, though.
Our freebies are just a little more special.
Rather than tease you with one bit of advice and put the rest behind a paywall…
We're giving you full access to our FREE 10-Day Online Recruiting Bootcamp.
There, you’ll learn about the specific tools and techniques you can use to connect with prospects online, so you’ll never have to chase anyone to make a sale, or deal with cold calling and rejection, ever again.
These methods allow you to build your business automatically—where prospects reach out to you (instead of you having to reach out to them).
You can take advantage of these methods starting today—no matter how much (or little) online prospecting and recruiting experience you currently have.
The bottom line is that, in today’s age, you don’t need to be pushy, obnoxious, or overly-aggressive to build a successful business!
So don't wait a second longer to communicate your story and value to the world…
Here’s to your success!