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In blogging, content is king…BUT traffic is cash. No matter how great your blog looks or how amazing your content is, if you have no readers, if nobody comes to your blog, then you cannot make money off of it.
Note that before this topic, I discussed content and ways to monetize. Reason for that is because I want you to have content and monetization strategies in place so that when you start driving traffic, you have something to show and can start to earn money right away.
The number one strategy in driving traffic is using multi channels. Do not put all your eggs in one basket. There is wisdom in using different venues and I will briefly tackle each one of them here.
1. Organic Search Engine Results
Organic traffic simply means traffic coming from search engines based on the keywords associated with your blog. Driving organic traffic on your blog means having it search engine optimized. Search engine optimization can be a time consuming and tedious process. This is a very broad topic and often requires some technical knowledge especially for the on-site optimization. Now that I mentioned on-site optimization, I just wanted to say that there are actually two types of optimization: on-site and off-site optimization. Being that this is a broad topic, I will cover this on another post in the future.
If you use WordPress.org platform, the good thing about it is that it has got built-in search engine optimization such as permalinks. WordPress is very search-engine friendly. In addition, you can also install plugins to enhance it’s SEO features such as the All-in-One SEO Pack or Yoast SEO plugin.
Organic traffic is the best traffic you could ever get. It’s free and will drive visitors to your blog for as long as it exists! It requires quite a lot of work at first but it’s rewarding in the end. I get approximately 1,000 unique organic referrals from Google every month= so a tiny bit of SEO work for me is definitely worth it. If you’d rather hire someone to do SEO for you, you can find someone affordable at www.fiverr.com.
2. Email Marketing
Having your own email list is a MUST. You can’t even last as a blogger if you don’t have one or if you don’t build one. Your email list is a gem. This is a constant stream of traffic for your blog. The people on your list are your loyal followers who trust you and will most likely always buy whatever you recommend them.
How do you build your list? Offer something valuable such as a free ebook or video training. Notice that on this blog, on the homepage, you will see a form where my welcome video is. That’s how I build my list. So if you submitted your name and your email address, I just got you in my list! If you haven’t yet, I highly recommend you do! You know I only offer valuable content for your benefit. *Smiles*
Make sure that you will not spam your list or you will see them go one by one.
There are so many email marketing services out there but only few are highly recommended and these two are on top of my list:
Please keep in mind that both of these services have a bit of a learning curve, especially if you consider yourself as not so tech-savvy. If you would rather pay someone to help you in setting this up or with any of your email marketing needs, go to www.fiverr.com. You can find any kind of help that you need there – whether it’s graphic design, HTML, email or any virtual assistance.
Aweber is trusted and used by many multi-million dollar marketers. They offer a 30-Day FREE Trial and starts at $19/month for up to 500 subscribers. Their drag and drop editor makes it fairly easy for beginners to get started on a campaign. But customizing the look of the email to match your website might require a deeper CSS/HTML technical skill. They already have available sign-up forms that you can tweak here and there as such change the color scheme and font I believe.
Here’s a quick list of some of their features:
30 Day FREE Trial
Drag and Drop Editor
Email Newsletter Templates
Sign-Up Forms with Style
HTML Email Templates
Email Marketing Tracking
With their FREE 30-Day FREE trial, it doesn’t hurt to try AWeber. Should you decide that it’s not for you, you can always cancel before your trial period is over. If you do acquire some subscribers during this trial period, you can export/download your subscriber list and import them to whoever you would like to move.
They are also offering a FREE eBook called Growing Your Business With Email Marketing. It’s packed with very helpful information and I highly recommend that you download it.
Convertkit is widely known in the blogging world. I’ve seen more and more blogs use Covertkit. They do not offer a 30-Day FREE trial. However, they do offer a 30-Day refund policy should you decide to cancel on your first month.Their subscription plans start at $29/month for up to 1K subscribers.
Here’s a quick list of some of their features:
Easy-to-Embed Customizable Opt-in Forms
Drag and Drop Sequence Builder
Easy IntegrationThey have a free eBook as well called The Complete Guide to Email Marketing so be sure to take advantage of this free information to get you started in building your list
3. Social Media Marketing
This is my favorite way of driving traffic to my blog. Not only it is free but it’s fun and it’s just a part of my daily activities. There are so many social networking platforms these days and it’s so hard to catch-up on and maintain them. I personally use 4 and they are:
Pinterest has the greatest potential to drive MASSIVE traffic to your blog if done right. This deserves a post on its own so stay tuned for this. For the meantime, if you don’t have a Pinterest yet, I would suggest creating one and make sure that it’s a business account. There’s no cost to sign-up for a Pinterest business account. If you already have a personal Pinterest account, all you have to do is convert it to a business account.
Twitter has been around for about 10 years now I believe. A few years ago, there have been several automation softwares that came out in the market to increase one’s amount of followers. However, a lot of them has been discontinued/banned by Twitter when it changed its policy so a lot of bloggers and marketers find it quite challenging to grow their followers organically. However, I found a few tools that will help you grow your Twitters somewhat automatically.
Facebook used to be a completely FREE wonderful tool to reach an untapped audience and drive traffic to your business/blog. However, that all changed when Facebook became a public entity and they introduced paid ads, boost posts, and changes in algorithms to subtly force businesses and brands to pay to reach more audience or have better exposure.It still is a great tool if done right, using Facebook ads or if you boost your posts. But that will cost you money every single time. Nevertheless, it still doesn’t prevent me from using it at least to promote a blog post and I still get requests from brands to get promoted on Facebook.
Instagram is another monster on its own. It’s a wonderful way to share photos and drive traffic to particular posts on your blog. But eversince they have been acquired by Facebook a few years ago and their algorithm has eventually been patterned on Facebook, it’s become more and more challenging.
4. Blogger Collaboration
- Contest Giveaways
People love contests! Not only do they like receiving freebies but winning the contest is a challenge most people are up to. Offer contest prizes that they can’t resist such as a coaching program, training materials, a book, shirt, etc. Then, create a buzz on Twitter, Facebook, and other social networking sites that you are a part of! The key is to host the giveaway with a few other bloggers. Each one can donate a certain item or amount that will go towards the prize and each one will post the giveaway on their blogs. By doing this, each one of you is cross-promoting your blogs, thereby driving traffic.
- Guest Posting
Connect with other bloggers, business owners, and webmasters in your niche and offer to provide valuable blog post or article to their readers or customers in exchange for a link back to your blog. This strategy is really good. You can earn loyal readers for life by doing this! You have to find some blogs that will be willing to do this though. Most bloggers are very personal with their blogs. Develop relationships first and then reach out about guest posting later.I personally don’t accept guest posting here on my blog but I get guest post requests every now and then from some total random people. Often from people that never made any kind of interaction with me would send me an email about guest posting. Total turn off and I normally ignore the email or politely decline.
5. Social Bookmarking
Social Bookmarking, as defined by Wikipedia, is a centralized online service which allows users to add, annotate, edit, and share bookmarks of web documents. One of the benefits of social bookmarking is building backlinks to your blog. Backlinks are essential for optimizing your blog for search engines. Remember, on #1 above, I mentioned two types of optimization: On-site and off-site. Off-site is optimization involves building backlinks and one of the ways of building backlinks is through social bookmarking. Backlinks simply mean sites or blogs that link back to yours.
There are literally hundreds of social bookmarking sites, however, for effective backlinking, you must only use the do-follow ones . Nofollow sites will serve you no purpose as Google or other search engines will not account them as one of the links to your site. The sites must also have a high Page Rank. Wikipedia defines Page Rank as an algorithm used by Google Search to rank websites in their search engine results.
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As always, I suggest using tools that will make your life easier in driving traffic. Socialmarker.com is a free site that allows you to bookmark your site and your contents in one location. You won’t have to keep opening tabs on your browser. I love the fact that Socialmarker is free!
6. Video Marketing
Videos are big and getting even bigger these days. YouTube is now the second largest search engine. There is no reason why you shouldn’t use it to drive traffic if you can. Google loves YouTube videos (after all, they are the same company!). You will notice that these days, on certain keywords that you type, YouTube videos are included on the search results.
By inputting a keyword-related title, inserting relevant keywords in your description and putting the right tags, you will be on your way to another organic search traffic in Google as well as YouTube! A lot of times it doesn’t have to be a full-blown video like most YouTubers do. Create your own strategy, be creative!
7. Blog Commenting
Commenting on niche-related blogs can drive traffic to your blog but don’t expect that it will drive massive amounts of traffic. The main benefit though will be a reward with quality traffic here and there. What’s good about blog commenting though is that builds backlinks to your blog. Again, only choose niche-related blogs that are “dofollow” and have high Page Rank. (PR)
8. RSS Feeds
RSS simply means Really Simple Syndication. It’s a platform where bloggers or webmasters plublish their contents or updates in a summarized format. Whenever you publish a post on your blog, it will get broadcasted to whoever is subscribed to your RSS.
You can sign-up for one for free through Google’s Feedburner. You need to have a Google/Gmail account in order to sign up for this service.
Once you’ve signed up, log-in to your account, click on the name of your blog on your dashboard and then click on EDIT DETAILS. to copy your feed URL
Once you have that, login to your blog’s WP admin and install RS Feedburner. Enter your feed address on the RS Feedburner setting and you’re good to go.
9. Article Marketing
Article Marketing has some benefits. If done correctly, with the right keyword title and keyword-rich content, you will find yourself a good “link bait” to your blog (s) well as a backlink.
The idea is to write a valuable content and submit it to high PR (page rank) and dofollow article directories. The #1 article directory that high PR and is do-follow is Ezinearticles.com.
Some article directories allow the body part of your article to have hyperlinks and some only allow you to use the “About the Author” area to put your link. Do your homework in checking their editorial guidelines.
One important thing to keep in mind when doing this is to not submit the same exact article that you have on your blog in 10 different article directories. This can cause Google to ban your site. Submit at least 5 different articles that are related to your niche and is evergreen (timeless).
If you find yourself overwhelmed, get some virtual help. Go to www.fiverr.com and find someone who can write articles. This shouldn’t cause more than $20-30. In fact, some may offer cheaper since most of them are from overseas. Be sure to check their reviews and ask for a sample of the articles they have written.
10. Forum Marketing
This is something similar to blog commenting as far as results. It won’t drive massive traffic to your site but has the possibility of generating quite few leads for you.
How do you do Forum Marketing? First sign-up to a niche-related forum and participate on the thread. Use your blog URL as your signature. Sometimes on some forums, you must have a certain number of posts first before you are allowed to put a signature. Check out the forums terms and conditions before participating.
In addition to driving traffic using your signature, this could also build backlinks to your blog. Make sure to only use forums that are do-follow and only those that are related to your niche.