Would you like to promote your blog and get leads through it? This is possible. But how?
The number of sites as of January 2019 is over 1.4 billion. At the same time, at least 2 million posts are published daily. Such a powerful information noise has made network users more demanding and selective.
If you choose the right strategy and follow it, you can almost certainly get a great result even for a new project in a competitive niche. At the same time, blogging can be in several languages at once.
In this article, I will tell you how to promote a blog, stand out among the information noise, and monetize your site (get leads). And I’m not only talking about promoting a personal blog but also a corporate blog for business.
How to increase the number of sales and brand recognition using a blog
Given the fact that the attendance of the site depends directly on the age, domain credibility, competent internal and external optimization is especially hard to green web-projects.
For your “green” blog to cross the line of 30,000 visitors per month, you need to try really hard. And in today’s reality, one SEO is definitely not enough for this.
Today’s article is your chance to get ahead of thousands of competitors without making common mistakes. The strategies and tactics listed below bring thousands of new readers to various sites every month.
At the same time, most of the techniques do not require any financial costs, working in any sphere. Are you ready to start promoting your blog and get immediate results? Then let’s go!
The article will be more useful for those entrepreneurs who want to monetize a blog with the help of lead generation rather than advertising, i.e. this article is about promoting corporate blogs to attract clients.
Next, read about the main vectors such as:
Business (niching down, strategy, team, and KPI);
Internal processes (optimization, competitor analysis, content strategy);
External processes (increasing the reference weight).
These actions will provide a new level of traffic, recognition, and lead generation for a blog.
Let’s get started.
Choose your niche
Imagine you offer private tours in Europe.
There is no point in creating a site about global tourism and waiting for new leads. 30 deep and properly interlinked articles about Italy will be more profitable than 200 texts about different countries.
Niching down is very important. It’s the future of blogging.
When choosing topics in your blog for lead generation, consider the following:
A trendy, gaining popularity niche;
Big players (potential clients) on the market with good profit;
High demand for paid products.
The analysis of topics and competitors will help you understand if there a good sense to spend your time and money on the niche.
If you are a team of designers, then, in 2017, you had to write several articles in a blog about website design for ICO and in the market of cryptocurrencies in general. This would give you an opportunity to get a lead channel in a narrow direction with little competition among contractors. In 2019, however, it’s too late for that.
If a business topic is broad enough, you can devote all your time to it alone. As many companies do it with marketing for software developers. By optimizing their processes to the specifics of IT companies and gaining expertise, it is easy to get new leads and win comparisons with contractors without such specialization.
By the way, blog development can be a part of the strategy for the complex promotion of an online store.
It all starts with a good one. Quite logical, but only 10% of business is carefully developed, along with a detailed plan to stick to in the future.
It is the lack of a set direction that explains tons of poor-quality texts and video content.
Drawing up a strategy of getting leads, using content marketing, will help to activate your conversion scenario, while your rivals will only continue to shout out scattered replicas.
Your ideas and user approach need to be reviewed regularly, considering objections and dynamics of changes. Introduce new tools and methods to attract clients by testing hypotheses but stick to your chosen vector.
Your expertness is the reason for people to buy through the blog. And that is what you have to demonstrate and prove through your content.
Apply in practice:
Successful lead generation requires identifying a target audience (TA) and understanding their pains and needs. For example, Internet business owners or front-end beginners;
Understand your own competencies, i.e. the value you can give to your readers, e.g. competence in getting traffic for an Internet business or educating materials for beginners in site creating;
Tell not about yourself but about a sphere you work in. For example, an online juicer shop can be engaged in healthy lifestyle topics and fresh juice benefits in particular. Demonstrating competence in a certain niche, you also show expertness in your product (service);
Your topic choice must correspond to the subthemes of TA. Demonstrating competence in the niche, you also show expertise in your product (service);
The choice of the subject matter of an article must correspond to the needs of your TA, e.g.”How to promote a construction company” is suitable for sales from content in a digital agency. Whereas, “How to write a description for website” is, obviously, not a good idea, as it will interest SEO specialist instead of TA (business owner).
For content marketing, it is essential to create the right KPIs to consider. And this is not the attendance and frequency of publications per month.
The correct primary KPIs should be:
An overall conversion rate of articles and blogs to leads;
An overall number of leads from specific articles;
Number of page views about the company, portfolio;
It’s important to take the time to think about content. Readers will be able to determine the in-depth expertness by small details and specific examples in your articles. If you don’t pay attention to details, your content will be mediocre and convert poorly.
The key to the successful promotion of a site is the cooperation of both contractor and client teams. Without marketers and editors, Yalantis and Apriorit wouldn’t have such results in terms of content quality. If you don’t have an opportunity to invest in your team, don’t expect outstanding results.
When promoting through content marketing, you should understand that the quality of content is a critical parameter for getting into the top. Outsourcing the creation of a sales articles plan is not the right step in the long run.
Search engines are the cheapest channel to attract traffic to your content. That’s what you should start with when promoting your blog.
SEO-promotion of a blog begins with the right choice of topics and analysis of a target audience. It is necessary to know your visitors (age, gender, residence, work) and focus on their tastes and needs when creating your content.
The maximum result, in terms of traffic, provides a comprehensive approach to promotion – it is internal and external work (optimization), as well as TA retention.
Internal blog optimization
Start with the basics. Improve the site itself.
The resource must be comfortable, fast, and easy
High download speed has a positive effect on the promotion of a blog in search engines and increases user loyalty.
You can use PageSpeed Insights to check the performance of a site and get recommendations for its improvement. https://developers.google.com/speed/pagespeed/insights/
Think carefully about the structure of your blog:
Categories, sections, and subsections. Segment your articles by reader interest;
Remove article archives. Your articles should be periodically updated and kept up to date;
Display posts by categories and popularity on the main page. That’s how new articles will be indexed faster and attract new readers.
If your blog has many articles, add the “Search by blog” box and pages that guarantee your company’s reliability:
Having a detailed list of competitors will help you better understand how to promote your blog. Also, competitive analysis is a great way to get ideas for new content.
The algorithm for finding niche leaders is as follows:
Use Google Search for your business request. For example, for a photographer from New York, “New York photographer” will do. Skip ads and maps, pay attention to the organic results. Top search results are your direct competitors.
Look for competitors using SerpStat, SemRush, or Ahrefs. They can identify competing sites by the semantic core.
Choose domains that provide services similar to yours or sell the same products and have 2-5 times higher than your organic traffic on SimilarWeb.
Business types must coincide. For example, for a “New York photographer”, content aggregator websites are not suitable.
Working with content
In reality, the quality of an article is 40% of success. The article should cause a desire to work only with you and no one else. It should not just be unique but useful for readers and specifically for customers. Copywriters usually write trash for search engines, with rare exceptions.
Those few leads that come from search engines, through such articles, are usually quite “distant” people that are hard to sell to. And smart people, on the contrary, immediately recognize trash and leave. Traffic may be good, but few leads, and low sales.
In fact, an article itself needs to be written in a certain way and “stuffed” with the right thoughts, but no one has ever heard of it. Although these are the things that may several times increase the reader to leads conversion.
Below are the main areas of work with content, none of which should be left unattended.
Competitor traffic pages analysis
This is necessary to obtain data on the traffic-generating keys in order to further compile your own list of content ideas.
Go to SerpStat.com and type in selected competitor domains;
Go to Top Pages report.
Here you can see competitor pages that get the most organic traffic.
Go to these pages and analyze the interest of a topic for yourself.
You can use multifunctional tools of Ahrefs and SemRush which also detect key competitor phrases and generate page traffic.
Be sure to check your competitors’ top materials with an internal checklist. Only then you will be 100% sure that they will fit your vector of work and potentially provide leads.
As mentioned earlier, not every topic is suitable for increasing sales. If you want to get a lead with content marketing, then bet on content that fits your criteria.
Content strategy development
A well-thought-out strategy with a detailed content plan is a must-have to understand the future work scope and a clear vision for the long-term.
You can invent content topics and concepts on your own or check your competitors.
Your content plan can also include:
Brief theses to mention in an article (to remember them in 2-3 months).
Links to competitors’ pages, to make a plan for an article later.
Links to text requirements lists.
Links to finished publications.
Responsible writer information.
Publication status (pending, in process, submitted or published)
Want more ideas?
Get to know a similar business and adapt materials to your own realities. The analysis of websites is similar: we select top competitors and check the top pages.
Building a requirements document and plan for each article
The success of the text largely depends on how carefully the RD is built.
Writing the RD with the requirements for the structure, keywords, and style of writing should be done by a person who knows the topic thoroughly.
Only a detailed information study, considering your own experience, gives you the opportunity to get a quality text.
The RD must include:
Headline / main inquiry;
Site/page for which the article is required;
Target audience specifics;
Desired text’s length;
Article plan with headings;
Good content examples;
Uniqueness (required percentage and service for checking).
Improving existing content
Update already published articles by adding relevant information. To increase your blog attendance, you should improve your content optimization. Google Search Console can help you do this:
Analyze your search requests in terms of certain pages. If a site has a bad keyword position, check for direct login. In case of high competition, add a keyword again or type in its synonym. Avoid spamming.
To improve your positions, pay attention to the number of logins and completeness of the topic. In addition, re-link and get additional links to the keys you need.
Content conversion improvement
Based on the structure of a selling text, you can improve any weakness: headline, benefit block or Call to Action.
The target audience surveys and Crazyegg, HotJar, Ptegnine, Heatmap.me, Feng-GUI websites, in particular, will help you understand where the weakness lies. These have toolkits that will show the “blind” areas of the page and provide statistics for each part.
In addition, you can always work on more complete disclosure of your topic. Also, equally important is to provide your customer with interesting and simple information.
No one will blindly buy everything you offer. Common types of objections include prices (“Too expensive!”) and emotional objections (“I don’t trust SEOs”). A good salesman is supposed to handle these doubts and objections.
Building core of returning audience
Unlike single page websites or news portals, blogs are author’s projects focused on the maximum interaction with visitors. Nowadays, it is not enough to be just a compilation of many (even expert) articles.
Since the very first stage you need to follow these strategies:
Interact with visitors. Invite readers to leave comments by offering interesting articles, adding a call to share experiences/opinions.
Answer questions. You can even create separate posts with free advice that users love so much.
Tell stories. Storytelling is the main trends in blog promotion. Interestingly written, live stories are fundamentally different from faceless texts. They entertain and increase user loyalty to a brand/writer. This method is suitable for both private professionals and companies. Be creative and follow the storytelling logic.
Take care of the brand component. To increase your blog attendance in the long run, show who stands behind it. In the case of a corporate project, the resource already has a brand component – a certain nature of messages, following the company’s established policy. It is extremely important to show the faces of specialists creating content, provide information about them to confirm their expertise. If we are talking about a new author’s blog, you are still on the way to creating a personal brand. Start with self-identification: who are you, what are your interests, beliefs, values? Having decided on the positioning, it is easier to assert yourself.
Self-identification and understanding of the needs of your target audience will help make your style recognizable. And this is a serious bid for success.
Many bloggers focus exclusively on content and internal optimization, leaving the external promotion of the resource behind. Well, the better for you: there is a chance to get ahead of the competition faster and achieve rapid growth.
Roughly speaking, external optimization is building relationships to increase brand recognition in the network.
Building niche expertness
Build relationships with opinion leaders, communicate, try to help, enrich the information they provide. Leave interesting, useful, and backlinked comments on popular sites.
An important nuance is the open demonstration of expertness through unique articles and cases on your own resource.
Get referral traffic to the blog by winning the sympathies of another popular web project audiences. To do this, you need to write a great guest post.
The process structure is as follows:
Create popular content;
Establish communication with authoritative bloggers;
Offer a guest post;
Publish it, indicating authorship and a backlink;
Your efforts and time spent more than outweighed by recognition and an impressive influx of target readers.
The key points of guest blogging are not only the content quality and popularity of the site but also the regularity of publishing articles.
Collaborations and group interviews
Interviews with a large number of experts or a group of companies to work together on a project is a great way to attract new audiences. This will help make your brand recognizable, as well as get a lot of references and links.
Publications in topical communities and forums
If you are serious about blog promotion, be sure to post links to articles in Facebook groups and you will assuredly get your likes, shares, and transitions.
I also recommend you to register on the appropriate forums to post announcements and links to the latest materials.
Use the Mention tool to automatically collect the places where the requests you need are mentioned. All you have to do is enter a key phrase.
This is an ultimate skill when the main core of readers comes not from search engines but through bookmarks, newsletters, and reposts in social networks. How to achieve this? Focus on unique content that is really worth coming back for.
Start forming the subscriber base from the first days of your new blog. Sending mails with interesting contests, bonuses, active discussion reviews, and fresh posts is a great opportunity to remind the audience about yourself.
Newsletter frequency is a controversial issue. Ideally, visitors should choose the regularity of their own news. If there is no such possibility, it is better to stick to 7-14 days, pleasing subscribers only with the best carefully sorted information.
Interact with your readers in blog comments and guest posts. Communicate in subject communities and your own group, try to give the audience useful information and solve a problem. And this should not be done on an ad hoc basis, but regularly.
Content marketing does not work. Possible reasons
There may be several. Most likely, you chose the wrong topics or did not analyze the needs and pains of your TA well. A common problem is a lack of consistency. That’s where a good content plan may help.
In the case of low-quality leads and sales absence, consider the following recommendations.
Identify better competitors, study their advantages;
Identify the strengths of your successful articles and repeat them in others;
Upgrade conversion pages (portfolios and cases);
Minimize external links to retain attention;
Do not anonymize content;
Focus exclusively on your TA.