How to Really Drive Traffic to Your Blog
The truth is, for a blog to be successful it has to have traffic. Not just any traffic. Targeted and engaged traffic.
To truly be successful, you need to be able to drive traffic consistently and at will.
At first, it seems like a simple enough concept, but rarely do bloggers get it right.
Here’s the problem:
When starting out, 90% of bloggers do 2 things:
1. Write a piece of content
2. Share their piece of content
That’s the process, and then…
Then you wait. You slowly attract a following but at this rate it will take a decade before you have a considerable list that can be engaged and monetized on demand.
Driving traffic is just luck at this stage really, as you have no control over how much you can drive and when.
Every time you publish a post it feels like a total shot in the dark. The concept of driving traffic suddenly becomes very elusive. Some post do well others don’t. You can’t progress this way because it is not scalable and it is not predictable.
There is a remedy for this problem.
Just by adding one more step to the process above (the one beginners leave out), you’ll be able to drive traffic at will. You will have the ability to create content for the purpose of generating traffic. Every post you publish means more readers, more subscribers, more followers and more buyers.
When you’re able to drive traffic at will you are able to easily and confidently approach brands with campaign ideas and not only that, they will gladly do business with you.
That’s when blogging becomes exciting!
Change the way you think about content and sharing.
There is a bit of a mind shift needed when you write your next post.
You need to stop thinking 2 dimensionally.
1.Write Content. 2.Share Content.
Here is a secret that gets lost in all the noise and no one really explains well enough.
The amount of time that gets spent on writing your post should get spent on promoting your post.
From now on this is your new process when you write your next post:
1. Write Content. 2. Share Content. 3. Promote Content
While writing this, it feels so painfully obvious but the problem probably lies in most bloggers being misinformed or not having access to this type of information.
You may be thinking that sharing your content is promoting it, you are partly right…
…but there’s more to it. So much more.
Every time you write your post follow this 3 step process.
Get into the routine of following this process every time you write a post that’s worth driving traffic to, and I guarantee that you will be driving traffic whenever you need it.
We aren’t going to get into how to write a quality piece of content (for now) but that goes without saying and should be your goal in any case. If you are not spending time putting great content together, that your audience will love, then nothing I or anyone else can say will be of any use to you.
Quality Trumps Quantity.
We are however going to show you how to turn your posts into their own traffic engines.
Advanced Tip: Once you have a few pieces setup like this, diving traffic, we’ll show you a way to harness that traffic. You’ll create a few pages to support your main pieces of content, capturing emails, while you set up your traffic engine to fuel your posts.
That’s when you’re kicking ass.
So without further ado let’s get started creating your traffic plan.
The 3 Step Traffic Plan
Step 1. Write a piece of content
If you understand this step you will already be boosting your traffic big time and best of all this is free promotion on steroids.
Every piece of content you write should have a purpose, an objective. Whether that’s to entertain, to share and be consumed via social media or to attract 1000’s of viewers via Google for free.
You heard right. I said free. In fact this step is all about leveraging digital marketing techniques to amplify your content’s ability to spread organically and in some cases virally.
By driving traffic you ultimately want:
a) to increase your following (an engaged audience) to boost your influence
b) to build a list of customers or buyers
Simple as that – If you are not aiming to achieve one of the above you are purely running a blog for fun.
When you write, the Key is to write your post freely and naturally at first so that you are not overwhelmed and influenced by the following steps. Once your piece of content is ready make sure you include the following:
a. Include On Page SEO Elements – Don’t forget your related keywords in your:
iii. H1 and H2 Tags
iv. Body – Natural placement in your content. Use variations and related terms
v. Image File Descriptions and Alt Tags
vi. In-content links
i. Interlinking – Link from your post to related categories or posts on your blog. Hyperlink the keyword that makes the most sense for the destination. The keyword needs to give the visitor an idea of where they are going once they click that link. Sounds obvious but make sure the destination of the link is relevant to the text of your link. The last thing you want is your reader to be confused about where they are on your site (Google also dislikes this very much). Your destination or resource should be a logical step from your post and add value to that particular conversation.
Pro Tip: Categorizing correctly provides you with super valuable resources on a topic. Link to that for maximum value. Also, link out to valuable websites like Wikipedia (well known sites on a topic). It gives you a small amount of authority by association. Think of it as the “friends you keep” type situation.
ii. Link Building – Link building at scale should probably be left for more advanced bloggers and will be addressed in our more advanced sections. However there are free and smart ways to build a bunch of natural and powerful links to your blog that also drive traffic. The next step is one of those methods for free and powerful link building.
c. Repurpose for Sharing
Find ways to repurpose or reconstruct your content into different formats. People consume content in different ways. Repurposing your content into video, audio, slides, infographics, email, FB post, media embedded Tweets, etc. provides the opportunity to share on various authoritative platforms, including Youtube, Vimeo, Slideshare, Facebook, Pinterest, Twitter, Reddit, Stumbleupon, the list goes on. This instantly opens up new doorways of traffic directly to your blog.
Bonus: By doing this you generate valuable links to your site giving you more authority and access to literally millions of internet users.
Step 2. Share your piece of content
Remember when I said before, that you have 2 objectives when driving traffic? Build influence and/ or build a list of customers? Those are the people and lists you will share your content with to keep them engaged and interested in your brand and what you have to say.
Pro Tip: This is not when you are driving traffic or attempting to build your following. THIS IS PURELY to keep your audience engaged and coming back for more. It’s a retention vehicle at this stage BUT it will still be used to drive traffic in STEP 3. Don’t get me wrong this can grow your traffic and audience, no doubt, but it’s not where the real growth lies. Sharing is not how pros build enormous lists and followings.
Consistency is key when sharing content. People are creatures of habit and feel secure in following a routine. Train your audience to know when you post what e.g. Wednesdays are “video reviews”, Fridays are “what’s hot this weekend”.
Predictability in terms of what content you share and when you share, makes it easier for your audience to know when to expect content from you, in fact they will be more engaged and excited about your content.
Think about your favorite TV series, it’s always on the same day at the same time. You know why? Its predictable. You know it’s coming so you plan for it. NOTHING will interrupt you at that time. It’s exactly the same with sharing your content. Allow people to expect and plan to consume your content.
If you followed my advice on finding ways to repurpose your awesome post then this step (sharing) and the next (promoting) becomes a whole lot easier and you have many more opportunities to engage all the internet folk.
Pro Tip: Different social platforms behave differently and have different “rules”. Get to now how the platforms you are targeting behave. Your main objective in any community is to provide value first. DO NOT just self promote. Once you’ve established trust people will willingly share your content
See how this is coming together? Small tweaks that provide massive opportunities.
Step 3. Promote Your Content
This is the step that most bloggers never reach or avoid. At some point you need to make a decision on whether you are going to invest a little in ads, also known as Paid Traffic.
This term scares some people but it shouldn’t. It should excite you!
This is really where you build your list, your audience and your worth. Bigger lists means bigger deals.
The beauty of paid traffic is you can specify WHO you want to target. That’s where the real power lies. Before you were just sharing and hoping that people who appreciate your work will spread your content and one day you would have a big happy family of followers. Sorry to break it to you, that’s not how it works.
If you are SERIOUS about making money and building your audience you absolutely should consider spending some money on buying targeted traffic.
Of course, the goal is to make a profit, so although you are spending money, you are spending money to make money. That my friends is how businesses work and make money.
Don’t be afraid, try it out…
Action Item: Next time you have a cool piece of content you want to really push. Run a $5 FB ad and see what the difference is in comparison to just sharing it on your page or with friends. You will be amazed.
I am going to stop at this point because I’m sure you have more than enough (for now) to think about and to test on your next post.
We will get into driving targeted traffic and what to do with that traffic at a later stage.
So I leave you with this:
Follow the 3 step process -> 1. Write 2. Share 3. Promote.
If you include the tips I showed you in each section then you WILL be driving more traffic. Don’t get frustrated if you are not blowing the roof off just yet. Digital Marketing is about persistence and working smart, it tends to have a snowball effect, so keep pushing, keep building and keep learning.