• How to Promote Your Blog on Social Media thumbnail

    You’ve worked really hard to get where you are. Go ahead, toot your own horn. You deserve it. We know running your own website can be lots of hard work — and that’s not even counting the challenges, learning curves, and (probably) late nights you’ve endured in the process of getting where you are now.

    That being said, nothing is more demoralizing than putting your best efforts out there on the web for everyone to see, then scanning your analytics and seeing low page views on your blog or website. Sure, numbers aren’t everything, and traffic takes time, but likely you’ve started producing content with the hopes that you can get eyes on your site, and ultimately, the website you’ve worked so hard to create. We want that for you, too.

    In an effort to expand your marketing toolbox and drive rush-hour-loads of traffic to your site, we’re chatting social media — the deets of each channel and how to utilize various platforms to promote your blog.

    Social Media, an Overview

    For many of you, interacting with social media is as habitual as breathing. You do it without thinking. Scrolling, snapping, double-tapping; it’s second nature. You know social media well, especially in the how and when of your engagement with it — the average American spends two hours a day social-ing — but let’s look at it from a more analytical perspective. To start, some numbers:

    • As of January 2021, there were 4.6 billion active internet users worldwide — that’s 59.5% of the global population! What’s more, 4.32 billion people access the internet via mobile devices.
    • Users have an average of 8.4 social media accounts each.
    • By the end of 2020, there were over 4.14 billion people on social media platforms monthly. This number represents 88.9% of total internet use. 

    Internet users are into social sharing. That much is obvious. And from these numbers alone, we can see that social media is a big market, likely under-utilized or misused by many sites in generating referral traffic and promoting blog posts. Thus, tapping into these platforms means big business for the promotion and growth of your blog.

    How? Let’s analyze it as a marketing tool.

    Social Media for Your Blog Promotion Strategy

    Time to don a new hat — that of a marketer. Ninety-one percent of retail brands use two or more social media channels, and 81% of small and medium businesses use some kind of social platform. To build and engage audiences, you need to be socially connected to generate more traffic to your site.

    Because social media platforms can experience a high volume of traffic and engagement, you’ll want to leverage those crowds to bring eyes to your website or blog. Plus, it’s a budget-friendly way to market your blog (hey, we know the purse strings are tight!)

    How? First things first. As we mentioned, you can probably garner a lot of useful social media info based on your own social habits, but consciously keeping your finger on the pulse of social conversation (think of it as honing your social listening skills) will help you better understand how to launch your social media plan of attack to build your site traffic.

    Plus, social media is always changing and evolving, so you need to be in tune with social platforms to keep up with the most effective marketing methodology for each one. So don’t sweat algorithms too much; just keep learning and testing what works best for your audiences.

    Social media channels also present a useful two-way system of accepting user feedback and gathering relevant user-generated content.

    Using social media as a marketing tool doesn’t have to be tricky. We’ll walk you through some social media marketing best practices, then investigate how you can utilize each unique social channel to promote your content and start building traffic on your blog.

    Buckle up — and grab a pencil: It’s time for Social Media Marketing 101.

    Social Media Marketing Best Practices

    Social media marketing requires individual, customized efforts (as we’ll discuss later). Still, there are a few good-for-traffic practices of general application that you can implement in your efforts to market your blog.

    Link It

    Users won’t want to dig around to find your content or an obscurely-hidden link to your blog. Make it easy for them to locate you by putting a link to your site on all of your social media channels. Make it visible and easy to navigate. When your social media content engages them, they’ll want more — so make it simple for them to connect with you and access your blog or website.  Also, try to keep your handles consistent across your platforms. That will make it easier for audiences to find you — and easier for you to build a cohesive and recognizable brand. (Yes, even blogs have brands!)

    Make it One-of-a-Kind

    Even though most social media channels have the same basic underpinnings (sharing content, connecting with others, etc.), that is really the only tie that binds them. Each platform structure is unique, and they each operate on different models.

    That being said, the way you promote your blog or website on social media cannot be one-size-fits-all. For example, the marketing of your blog on Instagram will likely not work on Facebook, and what works on Twitter will definitely not work on Pinterest. You get the idea. Plus, social content just CTRL+C-ed onto each platform is not only lazy, but it could be off-putting to audiences — this repeat approach can appear spammy. You definitely don’t want that.

    As you develop plans to promote a blog post on social media (see next point), take each platform into account. Then, tailor your content to each platform individually based on the mechanics of each social media channel. (Learn more about these models in our platform breakdown section to follow.) And know this: You don’t have to have 15 different social media accounts. It’s 100% fine to pick a few and focus on excelling at those. Know (and respect) your limits.

    Stick to a Schedule

    With everything you have to do to keep your website up and running (we know the to-do list is never-ending), you’ll need a way to stay organized — and keep yourself sane — as you promote your blog on social media. After you’ve planned out tailored content for each channel, schedule your posts so you can set them and go. Programs like Hootsuite or CoSchedule work excellently for this multi-channel scheduling.

    Plus, scheduling content ahead of time helps you keep content consistent and tap into the best posting times for each platform without forcing you to be online every second of the day. Of course, it will take time to figure out the best times and posting frequency for each platform, so don’t worry if you have to keep tweaking and refining your social media scheduling.

    Create Buzz with Campaigns

    Rather than just a here or there tweet or Instagram post, you can use social media to attract audiences to your blog in new ways. By creating social media campaigns (and using hashtags in the right places), you can implement focused, concentrated efforts that can yield a greater return on engagement and traffic to your blog. Plan timely campaigns by setting goals for your desired engagement and how that engagement will translate to new blog traffic.

    Stay in Tune with Trends

    From now on, view (creative) bandwagoning as a good thing. As you hone your social listening skills, you can learn to tap into the pulse of virtual buzz and social trends on each platform and customize content to utilize the already-built hype to fuel your efforts to find new audiences. So whether you’re riding the wave of the #InMyFeelingsChallenge, the latest iPhone emoji, or an upcoming holiday (National Pizza Day, anyone?) or season, the natural conversation of buzz-worthy topics can serve as traffic-building vehicles.

    Promote Across Networks

    Let your social media marketing efforts work together. Instead of merely recycling content across platforms, share unique content on each platform that connects users to the content on other platforms — for example, you could share a “behind-the-scenes” moment on your Instagram story while sharing a post excerpt or reader comment on your Twitter. This only-get-it-here method of social marketing will help encourage users to engage with you on multiple platforms — thus getting even more exposure to your marketing efforts.

    Optimize for Mobile

    Ready for a whopper of a fact? Here goes: 91% of social media users are accessing social channels via mobile devices. With the total number of mobile phone users reaching more than 5 billion (up 4% from last year), more people than ever are accessing their social media channels on the go. Simply put, this means that your content — both on social media and on your website — needs to be mobile-friendly, optimized for smartphone-toting audiences, whether they are commuting to work, on their lunch break, or in line at the supermarket.

    Don’t Neglect SEO

    Just because you’re intent on upping your social game to bring increased traffic to your blog doesn’t mean you can ignore the necessary task of optimizing your content (and website) for search engines. We’ve got A-plus guides to SEO — check them out here.

    Keep Your Eyes on Analytics

    Because social media changes so often, and marketing on the various platforms can be a trial-and-error process, you need to keep tabs on what’s working — and what isn’t. A social monitoring tool like Sprout Social or Social Report can give you valuable insights on social media activity and the results of your marketing efforts.

    Also, take notice of the referral section of your blog analytics. Where is your traffic coming from? Are audiences flocking from Instagram? Then you’re doing well on that network — so keep continuing efforts there. Little to no crowds visiting your site from Facebook? Looks like you know where to evaluate and adjust. Staying clued in to analytics helps you not only keep your audience in mind but can also help you continue improving your way to blog success.

    Breaking Down the Platforms

    Let’s break things down. Since there are so many social media platforms these days (it seem like a new one pops up every day), we’re going to cover five main channels, identifying what marketing efforts might look like on each platform, and what’s important to know about each individual social network.

    Each channel offers you many different ways to promote your content, so it’s important to be familiar with each — including character limits, demographics, and optimal posting times. Still, the time to be a social media guru is now — the practices that are most effective on social media often change over time, so it’s essential that you keep up your social know-how. That being said, it’s time to log in!

    Even though it can feel like the millennial version of Myspace (aka the web’s ghost town), in realityFacebook is still ruling the social media game, with total users reaching almost 1.78 billion in 2020. Plus, (with the exception of people over the age of 65) more than half of Americans in each age group are Facebook users. That’s a significant range. Because it largely dominates the social landscape, it’s important — even crucial — to understand the platform in order to promote your blog well.

    A recent Pew Research Center survey revealed that a majority of adult Americans — 73% — use Facebook. That being said, it remains a primary social platform, and while total time spent on Facebook daily has decreased over time to 35 minutes, it is checked the most frequently of any platform — eight times a day. Eight!

    Facebook allows you to promote your blog via your profile, pages, and in groups. Keep posts visual — meaning, include high-quality images — and consider putting your link in the text field instead of using the automatic link preview post. This hack has been shown to help increase engagement on your post. Plus, another plug for visuals: Images on posts are automatically added to your Facebook album so your audiences can access them (including your links) in one convenient place.

    Use engaging and inviting text on your posts, encouraging your community to share their thoughts and opinions. And even though it’s tempting — like, aren’t they awesome for turning posts into searchable content? — avoid using hashtags. They’ve historically not been great for engagement on Facebook.

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    Categories: Social Media

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