Thursday, August 30, 2007

Be All the Pimp You Can Be

Maven Lacey KayeYou guys are not going to believe how much information I have to share today. Or rather, you already knew there was a ton to know about promoting your blog, and you will cry because you already barely have time to post. I know I was sure surprised! See, when I drew the Promoting Your Blog straw a few weeks ago, I think I must've thought between then and now, I'd become some sort of guru with fabulous advice. But now it's midnight on Wednesday and I'm realizing... Probably not going to happen.

The truth is, I muddle along in this blog business just like everyone else. When I realized I really only had two pieces of advice to share, and that they must be exactly the same stuff you'd tell your friend who was starting up a new blog (make love to the link-love and spread your blog seed early and often), I realized I'd better do some research. And, well... Guess what? There's a ton of blogs out there written on the very subject of promoting your blog. Lucky me! I do so love it when other people do my work for me.

So what I'm going to do is link back to a few of the top hitters I found and highlight some of the tips from each that I think are particularly helpful for our industry. If you decide to read all the articles, which I highly suggest you do, you will see that these blogs seem to be aimed more at driving traffic and therefore ad revenue, opposed to driving traffic aimed at physical book sales (etc). But they still have way more professional advice then what I was going to share, so listen up!

Links are Fabulous, but They Aren't Blogs

In this article on ProBlogger.Net, the author writes:

In my early days of blogging I stumbled across the idea of incoming links...and so I began a campaign of gathering links to my blogs. [...] I managed to increase the number of links to my blogs over time. In the process here’s what else happened:

  • My posting frequency dropped
  • Readers became frustrated with my content (which was obviously linkbait)
  • I lost some of my passion for blogging and my topic
  • I sold out content wise (started picking topics to write about that didn’t really add value to my blog)
  • I started watching my metrics more than the news in my industry
  • Frustration crept into my blogging when the links didn’t come
  • My Page Rank increased - but my actual SERPs (the position of my blog in search engines) dropped

It wasn’t until I took a step back from blogging for a week at one point that I realized how distracted I’d become and how the very thing that I thought would ‘make’ my blog was in danger of killing it.

I decided to focus again on my readers and on producing content that would be useful to them and in doing so saw a reversal in all of the above points.

Love Thy Enemy

In this article on Dmiracle.com, the author writes:

Blogging is about co-opetition. Competition certainly exists in the blogosphere. Yet there is more cooperation happening than competition. Bloggers want to help each other. They want to inform their readers about other bloggers, blog posts, products and services. They know doing so adds value to their blogs and often builds loyalty in their readers.

I know, I know. You're thinking, who doesn't know this? But seriously. Next time you're feeling envious of a particularly good blog, why not link to it? Chances are, linking to her post will drag your name up in the search engines...

You Can Pay Someone to Do Your Work For You (okay, well you still have to write the blog)

In this article on Daily Blog Tips (who knew there was a site called daily blog tips?), the author discusses 7 ways to promote your blog by spending a few cents per hit. Now, as authors in a tight blogosphere we usually rely on our readers and writer friends to find us. But if you have a low promotion budget and a website with great content, perhaps getting yourself some Adsense makes sense.

Don't Be Shy

In this article on Webloghits.com, the author lists 55 social networking sites you can use to get your blog content launched into the big, bad world. I've never done this before, but according to the author, "Many of these sites will show your site on their home page as soon as you submit it. It’s up to everyone else that uses each of these sites whether your site stays there or gets buried."

Sounds win-win to me. You already wrote the post, right? And it's brilliant and inspiring and people can't wait to read it--so long as they know it exists. Why not get noticed? The worst thing that can happen, apparently, is that you get buried alive. You're an author! You're used to rejection!

bwa ha ha ha ha...

Get Down and Dirty with Your Numbers

In this article on TopRankBlog.com, the author shares thirty tips for marketing your blog. Don't tell me there isn't SOMETHING on this list you could be doing better. Me? I could improve my skillz with #15, Submit blog url to paid directories with categories for blogs - Yahoo, BOTW, bCentral, WOW, JoeAnt. (Surprisingly, we Mavens do pretty well with most of the others. What about you?)

Likewise, in this article on ProBlogger.Net (hey, they made the list twice! Way to go, content!), the author provides "41 ways to kickstart your marketing efforts." Personally, this was my favorite article of all of them, so if you're going to read just one I recommend this one.

So what did you learn today? Anything to add to this subject? And don't forget to come back tomorrow. Elizabeth Hoyt will be talking publicity, and you won't want to miss it! (I'm pretty sure having industry professionals guest blog on your site is always good for promoting your blog. Thanks, Elizabeth!)

14 comments:

Darcy Burke said...

Great post Lacey! You sure did your research, wow! And since I'll be offline through Sunday (going to see Dave Matthews at the Gorge!), please tell Elizabeth thank you for posting on Friday! She rocks!!

Tessa Dare said...

OMG, I had no idea any of that stuff even existed! I just learned how to count my blog hits like, a month ago.

I've just been trying to have fun with my blog. I feel bad that I have been a lax commenter of late, 'round here and other parts! But -yeah- EH tomorrow is a solid way to draw me back! You guys rock!

Bill Clark said...

Bill, WHAT DO YOU MEAN there are other blogs to visit???

Above was posted by Lacey on Erica's blog of 8/29/07.

From this we may gather, gentle readers, that another way of increasing traffic to your blog is to leave snarky comments throughout the blogosphere that bascially require some kind of response in kind...

*Bill fell into the trap that Lacey so cleverly baited, having just left a comment on her blog* :-)

lacey kaye said...

You have outed my master plan...

Silence the minion! He has become a liability!

Jacqueline Barbour said...

Now that I've finished spewing my coffee over the minion comment...

Thanks for doing all that research, Lacey. Great stuff!

And Elizabeth's blogging here tomorrow rocks the house :)!

B.E. Sanderson said...

LOL you guys kill me.

Bill brings up a good point, though. Leaving comments is a great way to attract people to your blog. I think about half the people who stop by my blog regularly came from some comment I left somewhere. The comment brings 'em in, and the content brings 'em back (I hope).

Just don't go around leaving a 'go look at my blog' comment. From what I understand, people frown on that.

lacey kaye said...

B.E., that's what I call "spreading your blog seed." I think reading blogs is well and good, but if you go through the trouble to read the blog, then you may as well at least say "Nice blog!" -- It's in YOUR best interest.

Plus, I love to hear it ;-)

Erica Ridley said...

Great blog, Lace! Now I will go visit the links and weep copious tears over my pitiful blog promo efforts.

*waves at Janice, who fish-slaps me when necessary*

Isabel said...

Fantabulous blog, Lacey! Amazing. :) Thanks for doing all this research.

Wendy Roberts said...

Wait a second, you mean I'm supposed to do something so people will come to my blog?! =8-O

Great post. Guess I got work to do :)

Jennifer Linforth said...

Before I even came here this morning and read this I linked your blog to mine!

Jennifer

lacey kaye said...

Thanks, Jennifer!

Dawud Miracle said...

Thanks for bringing that post back up. I've been thinking about writing on this topic again. Now I know I need too. So thanks for the inspiration.

lacey kaye said...

Ah, the magic of Google.

Thanks for dropping by!

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