Guess how many blog posts get published every day… 1,000? 10,000? 100,000?
No, there are 2 million blog posts published every day.
There are some common reactions to this information. For someone with a blog, they realize they publish in competition with those 2 million other blog posts. They see their one little blog post as barely a drop of water in the ocean. They might even wonder, “Why bother?”
There are plenty of reasons to bother. The most important reason is that all those 2 million posts are for all industries, all interests, all countries, and all languages. As you know, your blog post does not have to get the attention of the entire global population for it to be successful. Your post just needs to reach:
That would be a good win. So stay calm. You aren’t competing with 2 million blog posts.
You are competing with the other “content” your audience sees online. That would include other blog posts, social media updates, emails, videos, baby and cat photos, the whole kit and caboodle of online noise. You are competing with the content from your competitors, too.
To have a chance against even this smaller segment of competition, your blog post needs some help. You can’t just let it sit there, unvisited, on your site. You need to get the word out about this thing you’ve written.
You need to promote your post.
Promoting a blog post can feel a little strained at first. Or maybe you’re a little embarrassed about your post in the first place. Maybe you think your post is good, but you’d be a little uncomfortable shouting to the rafters that everybody should drop everything and go read this post.
In other words, you lack confidence. So how might you get more confidence? By not publishing your post until it feels like it is worth promoting.
Even if you were born with an abundance of confidence, I don’t recommend promoting your post until it’s really worth promoting. Otherwise, it’s kind of like putting a spoiler on a donkey wagon. You’d just be boosting the power of something that didn’t really have enough power to be worth boosting in the first place.
This also helps with building your audience and gaining trust. It’s critical for your readers to trust that everything you’ll send them is good. Otherwise you’re not building engagement. You’re just training them to tune you out.
You just invested a few hours of very precious time into writing your post. You’ve got other things to do now. A lot of other things. Why move promoting your post up to the top of your to-do list? Is this really going to be worth your time, especially compared to all the other mission-critical stuff that needs to get done?
Yes. If it’s not worth your time, it’s definitely worth the time of someone you could hire. This is because without any promotion, pretty much nobody is going to see or read your post.
Add even a couple of promotion tactics, and the hours you put into creating that post become far more valuable. If you use that post as the lead generation tool it’s supposed to be, combined with some promotion you might see some real business out of all this. There is a reason why so many people say content marketing is better than advertising.
That may be easier said than done.
Try just a few of these for a couple of months. Then go back to buying expensive advertising if you like. First try just a couple of these blog post promotion techniques first. They also work for ebooks, reports, quizzes, contest, infographics, webinars, events and whatever else you can think of.
Do some super-quick keyword research. Hopefully, you did some keyword research before you started writing your blog post. If you didn’t, do a quick Google search of the keywords you might use to find this post. Notice how the Google autofill suggests some terms.
Also notice the “Searches related to” suggestions at the bottom of the page of the Google results. These are basically the most often used related keywords to whatever term you searched for. They’re good for snap-second keyword research.
Fill out the open graph tags for your post with the free WordPress plugin WordPress SEO by Yoast.
Open graph tags are kind of like meta tags for search engines. If you fill them out, your pages will look great when someone shares them on social media. The Yoast plugin has a other SEO and social-friendly features. It’s the best all-in-one optimization tool available for free. Keep using the Yoast plugin until you get a green “good” score for your post.
You’ll do things like:
Do basic social media updates. If you only have a few minutes for social media, write updates for the 2-3 social media platforms you use most. Use the KnowEm free tool to optimize the formats. Then either immediately publish those updates or schedule them with a tool like Buffer or Hootsuite.
Announce your new post on the homepage of your site. For super-simple email marketing, set up an “RSS to email” feature with your email service provider. This will probably take about 90 minutes to set up initially, but after that it’s “set it and forget it”.
MailChimp, AWeber, Constant Contact and other major email service providers have a feature where you can automatically take any blog post you write in WordPress and format it into a basic email template. Then you can schedule that email to go out to your subscribers. If you have trouble getting the weekly email done, this can be a lifesaver.
Never forget your call to action. Don’t close a blog post without giving your readers something to do next. Always include a next step, also known as the “call to action”. Maybe there’s a service you offer that you mention in passing in the post. Maybe you mention a product you sell. Whatever thread you want to pull from the post, find it and link it to something for the reader to do next.
The whole point of this is to get you more business, but it’s amazing how many business bloggers forget to “make the ask” at the end of their posts. Even if all you do is ask people to sign up for your newsletter, that’s something.
This may feel like it is a lot of work! But some marketing experts, like Derek Halpern, recommend five hours of promotion for every hour of content creation (ie, blog post writing). That might not be realistic for everyone, but aim to spend about as much time promoting the post as you did writing it. That’s how professional bloggers build their audiences. It’s also how larger companies get most of their results from lead generation.