Tips to Increase Your Blog Post Popularity
You wrote a killer blog post. You’re proud of it. It’s interesting, it answers the needs of your audience, it looks visually appealing and the list goes on. Maybe it’s even your favorite post you’ve written.
But you’ve noticed in the past that your posts don’t get shared as much as you’d like. They’re getting decent reach, but how great would it be if they spread like wildfire? Getting something to go viral is pretty rare, and I’m not going to claim that I have the magic method for this. But there are a few tactics for encouraging people to share your posts.
1. Quote someone, and then tell them.
You don’t have to actually reach out to anyone and interview him or her to pull a quote. You can read articles written by the expert in the topic, and pull a line from there. Include that text in your own post, attribute it to the original author, and then link that line to his or her own post.
The next step is what many people forget—let that person know you’ve quoted him or her. Reach out on Twitter and drop a note to the author saying you’ve used an insight in your post. Ask the expert to check it out and include the link. Now your post is introduced to their audience, which is probably a large group of people, thus the reason you chose that person to quote in the first place. If they respond to that tweet it’s even better!
2. Explore social channels outside the mainstream.
Blog posts are often shared on Twitter, Facebook, and/or LinkedIn. These venues make sense, but don’t stop there. I’ve found a surprising amount of success sharing our Accelity posts on StumbleUpon. It makes sense; if you tag and explain your post well in the submission then StumbleUpon will add it to their rotation of topics. So whenever someone has “marketing” selected as an interest, there is a great chance they’ll come across one of our marketing-related posts.
I submit every one of our weekly posts on Digg. Pinterest is great if your post has good images. If your post could be used to answer a question, add it to Quora. Just be careful here that it’s not too promotional for your own company. A lot of industries also have social media channels specific to their niche. For example, CafeMom has over one million users for “Mommy Blogs”, which are very popular.
3. Share from your personal accounts.
If you’re a company creating content, there’s no reason you can’t also share those posts on your personal social accounts. I don’t mean to be that person that has turned his or her Facebook into an awkward promotion of their company. Personally, I share all of the posts I actually write on my Facebook account. I share all the posts everyone in my office writes from my personal Twitter, because it’s more acceptable and normal to tweet often throughout the day than to bombard Facebook.
Ask your employees to share your company posts every once in a while. They shouldn’t be expected to, but if you’re a small business in particular your employees are probably pretty passionate about what the company is doing, and it’s normal that they would want to share that with their worlds.
4. Send out quotable snippets.
And when you’re sharing these posts through the company account and through your personal accounts, don’t just post the link and move on. Share the post in an interesting way. Call attention to the fact that this is your newest post, so that it stands out from anything else that you’re tweeting about during the day.
Better yet, tweet out interesting quotes from your article a few times. After each blog post we put up I share it once in its entirety, where the tweet says its title, the link, and a few relevant hashtags. But then I also tweet out 5-6 excerpts and quotes from the post throughout the next few days. I’ll pick out good lines that will catch attention, instead of just saying the title over and over again.
5. Make the layout share-friendly.
Once readers have found your post, they’re going to leave pretty fast if the screen looks overwhelming. Use bullets, change the length of paragraphs, and make it visually appealing. This will make the reader notice certain takeaways as they’re skimming.
Use plugins and other features so that the post is begging to be pinned, tweeted, shared, etc. Like the handy plugin that makes this line ready-to-tweet. (It’s called Better Click to Tweet, by the way. Regular readers have probably learned by now that I’m mildly obsessed with this plugin from Ben & Jacq). Add social icons to each post so nobody has to go through the burden of copying and pasting the URL into their own post. Barely an actual burden, but you’d be surprised how much this matters.
As a bonus tip, be sure to make your posts interesting and quality! That’s the first thing to do, really. People won’t share something they don’t enjoy.
Do you have any other methods or tips? Let me know in the comments below!