So you have a blog. Awesome! You’ve written some great posts. Even better! But the only people reading your blog are your friends and family. How do you change that? In this post, I’m going to share the dos and don’ts of how to get your blog noticed, from the things I’ve tried that worked (or haven’t) to the things that other people have tried that annoyed other people. This is not how to promote your blog – because that post went up last month – but it does include some things you might do that get your blog noticed in a negative way.
The Dos and Don’ts of How To Get Your Blog Noticed
Do learn and utilize SEO – SEO stands for search engine optimization, and it’s a process of, well, optimizing your website for search engines to find you easily. To me, there are two ways for bloggers to utilize this: for their blog overall and for individual posts. For example, this blog’s official title is Kate the (Almost) Great | Boston Lifestyle Blog. This way, whenever anyone searches for a Boston lifestyle blog (or even just a lifestyle blog), I will hopefully come up. If you are a beginner blogger, there are a lot of resources out there where you can learn more about SEO. While I know more about it than the average person does, I’m not at I-could-have-a-job-about-this levels, so I’m not going to go into a ton of detail about the best ways to do it now. But you absolutely need to learn SEO and actually use it. If you’re at a more moderate SEO level, then I suggest doing a 30-day SEO challenge. I did one this past October as a way to kick my butt into gear and improve my SEO skills, and it was a great help.
Don’t comment on other bloggers’ posts with “check out my blog!” – It is so unbelievably annoying when another blogger comments on a post and just says “I’d love if you could check out my blog!”. It’s one thing to write a heartfelt or genuine comment and end it with your blog’s URL and your name, or even to end it with that same comment. But only asking people to check out your blog is rude and irritating. It’s like you only view that person’s blog as a way to get views to yours. Personally, I also hate when someone leaves a short and vague comment like “Great post!” and then says “Check out my blog!” immediately after. That’s basically one step improved from “Check out my blog” on its own. I’d rather you not comment at all than say that.
Do write about unique content – When I started blogging in 2013, everyone and their mother was doing it. (It’s sort of like Instagram now!) There are fewer people doing it now, but there are still a LOT of blogs out there. So if you’re writing the same thing lots of others are writing about, you have a ton of competition. So a simple way to promote your blog is to write unique content; it will practically promote itself. Ask yourself, “What is something that I’m not seeing on the Internet?” Now, of course, it’s 2020; it’s going to be damn hard to find a topic that isn’t online. But what is something that you’re not seeing from other bloggers? Alternatively, do you have a unique perspective on a common topic?
Don’t spam people on social media – There are some third-party apps that will automatically send a private message to people whenever they follow you. For goodness sake, do NOT use these in general, but especially don’t use these to promote your blog! Whenever I get one of those messages, I immediately unfollow whoever sent it. They’re so annoying! And if you want to build an authentic following, you don’t want to annoy your followers, and you especially don’t want to make people unfollow you. And that’s just considering getting a message in general; if I get one of these messages and they want me to check out their blog, it’s going to make me go from neutral towards their blog to negative towards it.
Do join and participate in blogging Facebook groups – Facebook groups are incredible resources for bloggers! They are great for networking, as well as for asking questions. What does “networking” mean in this context? A lot of these groups have follow or engagement threads, which are when a moderator makes a post giving instructions for a certain type of social media network. For example, comment with a link to an Instagram account or post you want follows/engagement on and reciprocate. The smallest number or reciprocation I’ve seen required is 3 and the largest is 10. I also make an effort to respond to questions people asked about blogging, which isn’t just to grow social media and my blog but to also build relationships with other bloggers.
Don’t post your links without ever reciprocating – You can’t just expect people to give your blog attention without giving others’ attention, too. One of the best things about blogging is community: the community you create of your followers and the community of other bloggers. No one else gets exactly the highs and lows of blogging like other bloggers; when I explain blogging problems to others, I have to explain a lot of blogging backstory. Besides, the best way to really build an audience is for someone to like your blog and share it with their friends and/or followers, and one way to do that is through these Facebook groups. But even if the Facebook group administrators don’t kick you out of the group, if you never reciprocate in these groups, the other members aren’t going to like you or want to engage with your posts.Advice for promoting your blog: what you should and shouldn't do Click To Tweet
Do optimize your social media – “Optimizing your social media” essentially means getting your networks set up in a way that will get you more clicks or follows. It’s really important to share your posts on social media, but it’s just as important to set up your profiles so people a) follow you b) go to your blog even if you don’t share a specific post and c) sign up for your mailing list. Some ways to optimize your social media include having consistent brand imaging; making your contact information easily accessible, like your blog link and/or your email address; writing an eye-catching and informational bio; and making and using images that are ideal for that network.
Don’t expect to get tens of thousands of page views in a few months – I can’t tell you how many times I have seen comments in blogging Facebook groups or gotten emails or DMs from people saying something like, “I’ve been blogging for a month and I barely get 100 page views!” That’s because it takes time to build a blog audience. I think the reason that people think they should be getting 10,000 monthly blog views right out the gate is because of these catchy blog posts from people saying “How I went from 0 to 10,000 page views my first month blogging!” I see these types of posts on Pinterest every day. Yes, it’s awesome that there are people who can do that. But don’t expect it. If you write one or two viral blog posts at the beginning, or you already have a huge Instagram (or even Twitter) following, you can jump start your blog traffic. But don’t expect for your blog to be noticed right out the gate. Work hard, use SEO, promote your blog properly, build connections, and it will happen.
How do you get your blog noticed?
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