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7 Blog Promotion Tests You Should Try Now

Just so you know, I promised a traffic building post every week for everyone working on the 1,000 New Blog Reader Challenge.  I missed one last week, so I’m making it up to you today.

When I started, I remember doing all the standard stuff ( guest posted, commented, participated in forums, writing good headlines) and asking “what’s next?”  Like most, I was frustrated that all the “new” advice was just old-advice with better packaging.  So, I started conducting experiments and tests to find strategies and tactics to take my traffic to the next level.

Although this is an ongoing process I have 7 tests that are doing exceptionally well.

Take a look:

1. Write A Weekly “Curated” Post

According to Hubspot, businesses that post daily will generate 5 times more traffic than those that post weekly or less.   Now this statistics probably terrifies you.  You might be struggling with posting once a week!

I get it.  I know you are busy.  Let’s compromise with adding one more post a week.  Run a month test where you publish a weekly wrapup post on Friday.  This post should include links that would interest your readers.  Look for tools and resources that haven’t been covered in the mainstream press.

That’s only 4 extra posts a week.  You probably can re-use the links that you’ve posted on Twitter throughout the week!

2. Add Blog Teasers to Your Facebook Page

Do you have a strong Facebook audience that doesn’t visit your blog?  Try posting teaser excerpts on Facebook.  These excerpts would tell the reader why they should read the post.  Add a link to your blog post.

Do this for every post for a month.  Watch your “Referral Traffic Sources” in Google Analytics.  You are looking for an increase in traffic from Facebook for the test period.  Even better if you see significant spikes on the days you post your excerpt.

3. Answering Questions

Marcus Sheridan, The Sales Lion, recommends listing all your customer  questions and creating online content that answers them.  Of course, blog posts are a great way to answer these questions and encourage engagement.

Gather your team, go to the coffee shop and list every single question that you can.  Review your list and group your questions into categories.  The categories could become the title for a blog series.  Start with the most frequent questions and write informative “how-to” content.  Tackle the rest of the questions in order of priority.

I suspect that you have enough questions to fill your editorial calendar for the next year.  Tell me if I’m right in the comments.

4. Adding an Email Blog Update Opt-In

Let’s be frank.  You probably threw up a standard “Get Blog Updates” form on your sidebar and called it a day – right?  Ok, scoot close because I want to tell you something.

I get close to 400 visitors a day from email subscribers about 40% of my daily traffic.

The social movers and shakers quietly cultivate and protect their email lists because they know it’s their #1 marketing asset.  Take a play from their book and give your Blog Update sign-up form the attention it deserves.

Tell your readers “why” they should sign up for blog updates.  Offer free bonuses for signing up to jumpstart the process.  Regularly “surprise and delight” your email list with exclusive content and offers.  Focus on this for a month and see how you do.

By the way: I know that it can be difficult to set-up a decent sign-in form.  Let me know if you need help.

Click to see the original

5. Create a Post Manifesto and Add to Pinterest

The folks at Shareaholic published a study that reported that Pinterest drove more Traffic to online publishers than Twitter in February 2012.  This caught my attention and I’m actively working on a strategy for testing Pinterest’s traffic building credentials.

Lately, Copyblogger has been publishing clever one-line shots across the bow. The latest one “1,000 Words Can Make You Immortal – 140 Characters IS Just Distribution” was published on Copyblogger and “pinned” on Pinterest.  The graphic has been pinned 136 times in the last 6 weeks.


Here’s what I recommend…

Review your posts and look for a pinnable quote, manifesto, or point-of-view.  Spend some quality time with your graphic software or call your graphic designer and post to your blog.  Add the Pin It button to your social icons (easy with BufferApp) and see how you do.

Have you already tested this?  How did you do?

6.  Gentle Keyword Optimization

Bloggers cast a skeptical eye at SEO.  For good reason, content publishing focuses on reader needs not search engine algorithms.  But…

Google loves blogs and routinely gives them traffic love.  So to borrow a phrase from the Scribe folks, you should look for ways to “gently spoon feed” keywords to the search engines.

For this test, use the Google Keyword Tool to create a list of 2-3 work keyphrases that describes your blog’s content and subject matter.  Now look for opportunities to use the keyphrases and words in your blog title, leads, and subheadlines.  That’s it.
Keep this up for the next 60 days.  No need to obsess over this – just include the keywords when you can and only if it makes sense.

7.  Add Blog Post Teasers to Google+

Google is working its butt off to transform Google+ into a viable social platform.  I’ve gained a new appreciation for Google+ as I’ve seen my traffic rise as I spend more time sharing on the platform.

Like Facebook, I recommend publishing blog post teasers to entice readers to your blog.  Of course, you can publish your entire post on Google+ but you’ll miss out on readers browsing your blog for more content.

Thirty days are all you need.  Like the Facebook test, keep a close eye on your “Traffic Sources” in your Google Analytics reports.  You should see Google+ show up or often.

Are you a heavy Google+ user?  Have you seen traffic increase with your involvement?

ABT – Always Be Testing.

Get obsessed about testing.  Keep an eye out for platforms that appeal to your audience and look for ways to attract them to your blog.  Determine how you will measure success (ie. uniques visits, time on page, bounce rate, etc) and keep a close on your numbers for the test period.  When something works, repeat the process to validate your findings.

If there is a secret to explosive blog growth – here it is – Always Be Testing.

See that comment area down there?  You know what to do.

P.S. If you want a few more proven blog traffic magnets from my goodie bag then take a look at this no-fluff special report

{image credit: Calsidyrose}

About Stan

Stan Smith is the CEO of Pushing Social a content marketing consultancy for aggressive, results-focused organizations.

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