By Pierre de Braux
Even if you have the writing skills of Ernest Hemingway combined with the professional knowledge of Steve Jobs, you’re going to need a solid distribution strategy for your blog.
A big reason why the most popular blogs do so well is because they provide valuable content for their readers, be it through entertainment, education or insight. And they’ve figured out how to effectively reach their target audiences.
There’s a ridiculous amount of information available about content distribution best practices. I’ve sorted through it so you get the best advice available:
Social Media Promotion
Using social media takes advantage of existing communities to help you get the word out. Not only should you be posting links to every article you write on a few social platforms, you should also participate in relevant communities so that when the time comes to spread the good word, people will be happy to oblige.
Choose the right platform to promote your blog by researching your target audience. Find out where they spend most of their time and select 2-4 platforms to focus your efforts. Remember that you have to match your posting according to the platform you’re using. So, use short posts on Twitter, professional tones on LinkedIn, and rich media on Facebook.
Search Engine Optimization
If you’re publishing your blog on your own website (and you should be), use SEO best practices so people are able to find your content organically.
Do keyword research to maximize the potential for visibility. Use a keyword tool like Google Adwords (it’s free and you do not have to buy ads to use it) to discover the main keywords that are relevant and use them effectively throughout your posts.
Make sure that your website is search engine optimized as well. Moz published an awesome article that shows you exactly how to optimize your website (includes keywords).
Be sure to reference other sites with links whenever it’s relevant. This allows for further reading, and you might get lucky and receive a link back, which is great for SEO.
Reach out to influential people within your industry and ask them to share your content. If you can build a relationship with an influencer, you can tap into their existing audience to reach a new set of readers that you wouldn’t have reached otherwise.
Kissmetrics published a great article that can help you learn the best ways to encourage influencers to share your content.
You have to be a little careful about this method, though, because Google doesn’t like duplicate content. If you’re going to republish an article, make some revisions so that it isn’t an exact copy of the original.
Neil Patel knows just how to do this and you can learn the tricks of the trade from him.
Smart Blogger walks you through how to republish on Medium.
And Social Media Examiner shows you an easy way to connect your WordPress blog to Medium, which makes re-posting specific articles a breeze.
Alternative Distribution Methods
These methods are a little less popular but can still have a significant effect on your outreach:
- Join a blogging community. They provide all sorts of opportunities for connecting with others writing about similar topics to help get your blog discovered.
- Allow users to subscribe to a newsletter. It can help with personal branding and encourage visitors to keep coming back.
- Use Vine to publish short videos about your posts . Visual media is receiving a lot of attention these days, you might as well take advantage of it.
- Social bookmarking sites used to be popular because they were a great way to get backlinks. These days however, you should be careful with how you use them.
- Blog commenting and forums can also do a great deal for your blog outreach. Like bookmarking sites, you need to use them properly to avoid getting penalized.
There are many other creative ways to get your blog noticed. The success of each method will be dependent on your target audience as well as the nature and theme of your blog. My advice is to look around and do a bit more research to discover what works best for your circumstances.
Wrapping Things Up
Whether you’re a commercial business trying to give your customer acquisition campaign a boost or if you blog purely for personal reasons, an effective distribution strategy can supercharge your outreach and readership.
Creating awesome content is just the first step in the scheme of things.
Try to be as consistent as possible; if readers run out of new content to consume, chances are they will quench their thirst for content elsewhere. When you do start to grow an audience, take good care of them, and in turn, they’ll take good care of you!
Are you ready to supercharge your blog?
Which of these five strategies will you put on this week’s to-do list?
Before you hit “Publish”
Download our handy checklist that includes all the essential to-dos before you publish and distribute your blog post. Text PREPUB to 44222 or click the graphic or this link.
Pierre de Braux is a content strategist at Spiralytics who enjoys reading writing and learning about pretty much anything sales and marketing related.
Join Pierre on his quest for glory on Twitter @PierredeBraux.
Also published on Medium.