You’re fed up. You can’t believe you talked yourself into this. What a waste of time!
Your blog is on the same internet as all the other successful blogs you read. It has an elegant but simple design, and you think you’re a pretty good writer.
Then why are you getting squat in terms of social shares and interaction? And I mean diddly squat!
You have some Twitter followers and hundreds of friends on Facebook, but aside from your wife/mom you have got tumbleweeds for blog traffic.
You have reached your end and you can’t help but thinking…
Have I wasted my time and money on blogging and social media promotion?
Will I ever get people to read my blog?
Something has got to give.
Let’s look at a few social media management strategies that have worked for me and hundreds of other online influencers. These will help you:
- Define social media success in a different way
- Save tons of time and stress early on
- Meet those online influencers you have always wanted to meet
- Have your content shared by those same influencers
If that sounds scary or difficult, let me assure you that it is not. These strategies will start you and your blog down the road to success. So let’s get into them!
Avoid the Agony of Wasted Time on Social Media
Social media can be a gigantic waste of time. From cat memes to profile creeping, hours of our lives are wasted every day on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and the like.
Not that there’s anything wrong with that. Sometimes, especially after a tiring day, mindless browsing on social media can be fun and relaxing. But wouldn’t it be nice if we could find ways to be more efficient while using social media for blog or business promotion?
Luckily, the following techniques are all ways to minimize the time spent on social media while maximizing your outcomes! And the first one is dead simple…
The temptation to sign up every social media network is a strong one. Everything is so exciting and you just know your content will speak for itself and you’ll begin building an audience on each network in no time.
Unfortunately, it doesn’t work like this. Each network has its own strength and therefore needs its own strategy and unique content. The pressure to create consistent, quality content across a variety of different platforms is more than many companies can do well, let alone little old you.
You are much better off picking one or two networks to build on, and then growing from there once it makes sense for you and your blog.
The answer to this question will depend greatly on the topic of your blog. For example, if you are running a photo-blog, Instagram and Pinterest would be a much higher priority. However, in general terms, the two networks you should start with are the two biggest, Twitter and Facebook.
Facebook is a no brainer for a few reasons:
- If you are on it personally you already have a built in audience for your content. Utilize your friends and your family to help share your content early on
- Facebook has recently overtaken Google as the top referral source for digital publishers
- Building a brand page for your blog gives you a level of perceived legitimacy online
- It is very easy to automate promotion from WordPress to Facebook – as you can see here
Twitter has its own set of benefits for the start-up blogger:
- Research can be done very efficiently with Twitter, so it’s a great place to get inspired with new ideas
- NETWORKING! We will delve into this one further down, but you can meet and interact with people on Twitter that you never could in real life
- Twitter is your own personal focus group – use it to test article ideas, new initiatives, or even the name for your blog
If you start with just these two networks, you can quickly grow your online brand and become an influencer in your niche, without the stress and hassle of marketing through dozens of different channels right from the beginning.
In the case of a beginning blogger, QUALITY beats QUANTITY.
Build Your Sensational Social Network
Haven’t you always wanted to be able to ask an expert in your field, maybe even a famous person, a question? Maybe in your wildest dreams you have even imagined building a relationship with said expert?
Even if you can’t identify with the above, this is probably the most important thing you can do on social media as a beginning blogger. I am talking about building relationships with other bloggers and influencers in your niche, and Twitter’s real-time communication capability is THE best tool for doing this efficiently and effectively. Let’s take a look at how you can accomplish this and begin building your awesome network.
First, and I can’t stress this enough, you need to make sure that your Twitter profile is complete and professional. You should have a profile picture, Twitter bio, and hopefully at least a few tweets on your timeline.
Just like you wouldn’t go to a business meeting in a T-Shirt and sweatpants, if you want to rub shoulders with online influencers you need to present yourself as a professional too.
Then, you need to identify the top bloggers and most influential people in your field. You might already have a good idea of who they are, but if not it is worth the time to discover them. A simple Google search and Twitter search within your niche should do the trick.
Now, you need to check out their presence on social media – specifically, Twitter. It is important for this exercise that your identified influencers engage regularly on Twitter. If they don’t reply to mentions or RT others on a regular basis, they probably are not the right contact for you (at least not initially). And, if you can’t find them on Twitter, they are probably not the right people to ask anyway.
Next, it is time to connect. This can be scary for many of us, as we may be star struck by the people we are wanting to contact. Luckily, the first step is painless. Simply “follow” your identified influencers:
The next step is interacting with your influencers. This can be done in a variety of ways:
Tweet or Retweet (“RT”) relevant content published by the influencers you’re following
Don’t spam your own followers, of course, but do share valuable information. This won’t start a dialogue, but it can open the door to further interactions.
— Social Media Wizard (@CalebCousens) March 24, 2016
— Yusuff Busayo (@writebucket) January 29, 2016
Give them a shout out
Saying “thanks” or congratulating your influencer on something is an innocent and easy way to make that first direct reach out. Often you will get a direct response thanking you, which can lead to further dialogue.
@javier4freedom Thanks for all the Twitter love, my friend!
— Kevin J. Duncan (@kevinjduncan) December 28, 2015
— Sally Hogshead (@SallyHogshead) July 31, 2014
@GlenLong Welcome, Glen! Thanks for the opportunity to write for Boost Blog Traffic!
— S Business Idea Blog (@sbizideasblog) April 6, 2016
Another idea would be to use the hashtag #FF (or #FollowFriday) as a way to get them to notice you.
— Edward Beaman (@writerbeaman) December 18, 2015
— Tom Southern (@CopyByTom) October 2, 2015
— Ryan Biddulph (@RyanBiddulph) October 13, 2015
Engage in conversations
If you notice your influencer has asked his/her followers a question, jump in with your thoughts. Be respectful and don’t spam, but share your view on the topic. You’d be surprised how effective this can be and you might even get followers out of it!
@JonMilligan High School teacher! Took last college final on a Tue evening; had first day of teacher pre-planning Wed morning.
— Kevin J. Duncan (@kevinjduncan) January 5, 2016
— Paul Jarvis (@pjrvs) March 23, 2016
Share interesting content
We will talk about sharing your own interesting content coming up, but here I mean share news, opinion pieces, and other links in your niche with your influencer. It can start a conversation and will definitely get you noticed.
— Sam Hurley ➤➤➤➤➤ (@Sam___Hurley) April 6, 2016
— Adam Connell (@adamjayc) April 6, 2016
— Kim Garst (@kimgarst) April 6, 2016
Once you begin building an audience there will be chances to play matchmaker. You will be able to introduce others to the influencers you have cultivated a relationship with and then, guess what, you will begin to be perceived as an expert and influencer yourself.
You can use the below Twitter templates to make it even easier to connect with your influencer:
@influencer Hey. Enjoyed your post on (related topic). Read this and thought you might be interested: [Link]
@influencer [Link] was one of the most interesting posts I have read. Where did you get your data?
You guys have to check out this post on (related topic) by @influencer. Must read: [Link]
Ask for Help
In case it isn’t clear, this step will come only after you have begun to cultivate the relationship (with the influencer). You may even be your influencer’s new best bud.
It is amazing how effective it can be to ask for help.
Asking your new BFF for an RT or to check out your newest blog post can have game-changing effects on your blog. Let me give you an example from my own blogging experience.
I used to blog on football (that’s soccer to my American and Canadian readers). I had cultivated a relationship with a top journalist in Spain who had hundreds of thousands of followers. It had gotten to the point where he followed me as well and we were in regular contact.
There was one article I wrote that I thought would be especially relevant to my influencer and his followers. I asked him for an RT with the link to my article, and he was kind enough to oblige.
Twenty-four hours later I had a traffic spike of 10,000 unique hits, over 100 Retweets, and – maybe even most thrilling – my article was featured on the official site of FC Barcelona, giving me even more traffic over the coming weeks.
This was one of multiple examples of success I enjoyed because I cultivated relationships with online influencers and then was willing to put my pride on the line to ask for help. Worst thing that could happen was that I might get a “no” (which I did sometimes).
Some Tweet templates to make your life easier:
@influencer Loved that last post you shared about (related topic). Thought you might be interested in this one too: [Your Link]
@influencer Reading your blog has inspired me to write on (related topic) too. What do you think? [Link]
@influencer Would appreciate your thoughts on my latest article on (related topic)! [Link]
Get Out and Connect!
Social media management can be tricky. It’s easy to feel unproductive, particularly when you’re putting so much time into dozens of different platforms.
Luckily, a few simple changes and a new understanding of what success on social means can have a profound impact.
Just imagine people interacting with you on social media about YOUR content.
Imagine waking up and seeing a spike in traffic after an influencer you asked to share your content RT’d the link you sent him/her.
Imagine starting to think up ways to grow your blog and even starting to monetize it.
You can start your journey on the road to success today by choosing just one of the techniques above. Heck, connect with me and just see what happens. 😉
Keep at it. Rome wasn’t built in a day. If you give these techniques time, you will be successful.
You could be the next blogging sensation.