A blog is a great tool. Anyone who feels like they have something to say can start one, and some of the best blogs generate millions of views and visitors per month, offering significant opportunities for monetization. The thing most people don’t tell new bloggers is that no matter how good your content is, it’s only valuable if it is read by people who can take action based on what they are reading. And for the blogger, the action could be liking and sharing the post, clicking on an ad, or purchasing value-added content they discovered as part of the blog reading experience.
You can have amazing blog posts, but if nobody sees them, what’s the point. There are various ways to generate blog traffic. Start with a proper SEO structure, make sure your website is mobile friendly, and write content that is geared to your audience. But if you really want to see your blog traffic grow, you’ll need to learn to generate blog traffic with Social Media.
How to Generate Blog Traffic with Social Media
The structure of your overall content strategy can inform whether or not your blog content is utilized as fully as possible. Sounds fancy, right? It’s actually quite simple. By pushing out your content to multiple social media platforms, you’re amplifying the impact and reach simply by putting the same content in different places. Just like all your friends don’t like exactly the same type of cars, your audience will all engage with content in different ways.
Some heavy Facebook users flat refuse to get on Twitter, Instagram users may not use either. However, people that are on either platform are likely to click through and read an interesting piece of content no matter where it appears–and that’s where your content strategy comes into play to drive your website traffic. You need to put your content where it will be more likely to be read, but you need to entice them, let’s dive deep into how you can achieve this.
Focus on Great Images
Use vibrant and impactful images to quickly grab the user’s attention. The visual doesn’t have to be complicated; depending on your message this could be anything from a snap of your latte with a cool swirl to stock photography of a gorgeous sunrise. Most of the time, the simplest images work best. Look at the example above. While all the images are fine, Riderflex’s image is the most effective. It immediately tells you what you get if you click through. It is also on brand, easy to read, and quite eye-catching.
Different types of imagery work better on different platforms. Instagram is more aspirational. Twitter is better for direct news-y type of images, and Pinterest is great for informational how-to type of content.
Depending on your market, your content and your business goals, you’ll want to delve more closely into which content platforms best support your message and give you an opportunity to raise overall awareness of your blog with an eye towards driving ongoing website traffic.
Bloggers report up to 200% increased engagement from tweets with visual content versus simple text-based tweets, with Facebook boasting about a 40% improvement and LinkedIn images garnering nearly 100% more comments than posts with no image.
Lather, rinse & repeat. . . but keep it interesting
Use a social media scheduling tool. This will allow you to control how often and when your content publishes on different platforms. It will also help you to control the messaging that you use to drive people to click through to your blog. Finding a group of like-minded blogging friends will allow you to intensify your SEO efforts by generating a measure of buzz around your content. Don’t be afraid to ask people to share your content, and always be generous with your own time in the blogging community. Sharing content from others and judicious use of @mentions and comments can go a long way towards building interest in your future content and support from fellow bloggers.
The simplicity of sharing and scheduling tools might tempt you to just repost the exact same content leading to your posts on different social media platforms, or even to post the same content more than once. This is perfectly ok…as long as you consider a few things.
First, change up the dates and times that your content comes out. The person who is on Twitter at 9 a.m. on a Monday probably won’t be on there at 7 pm the next night. We usually recommend that you space out content at least a week and a day on Twitter, and much longer on Facebook (maybe about a month). For Instagram, it’s all about one-time original content.
Second, change things up a bit. Alter your images, change up the write-up and keep things exciting.
Third, come up with a plan…a schedule you can follow whenever a new blog post comes out. For example:
- Publishing day – Post update to all social networks
- Publishing day – Reach out to friendlys who can share your content
- Publishing day – Submit to bookmarking sites (like reddit and digg)
- Next day – Share again to social networks (Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest and LinkedIn)
- Next week – Share again to social networks – repackage the delivery with fresh images & write-ups
- Next Months – Re-share content once a month
Measure Blog Traffic Driven By Social Media
The last thing you need to do is to check your analytics to see what is working and what is not. This way, you can take your learnings from this post and apply it to the next. Things to look out for (you’ll need either Google Analytics or a URL shortener that gives you analytics like bit.ly).
- Post Activity: Are you getting more actions and engagements on your posts as you share to social?
- Effective Networks: Which networks are driving more traffic (don’t just measure re-tweets, plenty of people blindly retweet – what you are looking to measure is website clicks)
- Negative Feedback: check your web and social media mentions. Is the chatter positive or negative? This will let you know if you need to change the tone of voice in your blog posts as well as change the way you are distributing them in social media.