How to Promote your Blog on Social Media
How do you promote your blog on social media without spamming?
Very Carefully. The purpose of your blog is to help people solve a problem and if you have identified an audience who can benefit from your blog then you need to build a relationship with those people.
Simply ‘telling’ people that your blog has the information that they need often leads people to be skeptical or sends them running for the hills.
Likewise, self-promoting to people who don’t need or want the information will always be considered spam even if you have the best advice in the world.
When I began my blogging journey I was guilty of spamming. “Hey, check out my new post” is not helpful. Identifying those that have a pain point that your content can help and gently pointing them to your information is what is required.
Most people will only listen to people that they have some respect for which is why you need to build relationships. Easy to say, but often difficult to do.
Are all affiliate links spam?
Affiliate links themselves are not spam. However, the sending of information with or without affiliate links to people who have not given their consent to receive the information is considered spam.
In the world of social media, following a profile is not considered consent. Any information that contains an affiliate link must come with a disclosure.
Most social media platforms today do not allow affiliate links even with the appropriate disclosure, however, they do allow the profile owner to link their own website and share information from that website to the feed.
How to get traffic to your blog.
We need to find a path to intrigue people enough that they are curious about our blog and take a look.
If you listen to Gary Vaynerchuk, he will tell you to freely give information without the expectation of something in return.
In other words, help people and stop thinking about how to make money from your blog. It is OK to make money, but don’t let it be the reason to help people.
In relation to social media, then this means answering the questions of others within social media and just being that helpful person within the community.
Unfortunately, many people think that if you give freely 4 or 5 times then it is OK to promote something for people to buy.
I believe that the mindset should be to give information freely and if there is a product, service, or individual that can help – then it is OK to promote whether you benefit or not.
The same point of give, give, give, ask but with a slightly different viewpoint.
Build an audience that relates to you and your niche.
The best course of action when undertaking to build your social media audience is to build your profile as an honest reflection of yourself, your business and your niche.
Some people argue that your social media profiles should be about your niche only, but I disagree.
In the past, I followed many niche websites without any intention of building a relationship, becoming a fan or buying from them.
I followed for information but was not a fan because I could not relate to the personality. Have you felt like this?
People will often listen to, and take the advice from, their friends ahead of those that can offer more detailed or better advice.
With this in mind, you need to build respectful relationships with your following, whilst letting them know about your knowledge within the niche of your business.
Once you have built that relationship, and you have a product or service that they may find helpful, it is OK to tell them about it and even ask for money.
How many social media followers do I need?
It has been suggested that you need 1,000 loyal fans to have a successful business from social media.
Having followers who are bots and not real humans may look spectacular but computer programs don’t tend to buy from you. Many social media profiles are either bots or act like them.
When I started my social media profiles, I made many rookie mistakes including acting like a bot to try to build numbers. I am now working on building relationships.
Acting like a bot, I believe, includes people who
- follow then unfollow just to build their own ‘celebrity’ status.
- Like posts without reading the content.
- Comment just to build numbers without reading the post.
- Post controversial content to build interaction.
- Share content when they have not followed the links within.
These profiles do not want to build a relationship with you and even if they are human, they are not likely read your posts or visit your blog. With this in mind, remember the MLM saying
Some will, some won’t, so what
Follow those that interest you and can provide information that will help you and your potential audience. Following people in your niche will often allow you to review their products and share information that is helpful for your audience. Following people and topics that interest you will show your humanity.
Use your social media to help your audience and attract people who wish to build a relationship with you.
Where practical, follow back as a courtesy but take time to view each profile and avoid or unfollow the people that act like bots.
This may take time but, if you are trying to build relationships, not numbers, time and patience is the key to building a stronger relationship into the future.
Do not expect to build relationships in a matter of weeks or months. A following of loyal fans may take years.
Building your brand, as a blogger, usually means being yourself.
Your social media can be about how you think and feel and the problems you face.
Being a personality and not just the ‘face’ of a business can show that you are real, have problems that you and your product have or are solving, and can help people to relate, like, and trust you.
Your website URL can be added to the social media bio and when people who are in need of your service find you, they can see your website.
You need to show you are helping, not selling. If people need your help they are more likely to follow.
By promoting yourself, you will be in turn promoting your blog indirectly.
Don’t chase, lead instead.
There are many things that we can do to help people find us on social media and promote ourselves through our actions alone.
- We can join groups or communities and offer helpful advice within. Do not self-promote.
- Use hashtags. Hashtags help the platform identify the type of content we are posting and people will often search by hashtags when they are looking for information.
- Search. Use the search bar to identify problems that people have in your niche, and offer help. Reach out by simply answering their questions. Give helpful information, do not self-promote.
- Show. YouTube can often be used to ‘show’ how to help people and discuss thoughts, share content, and answer problems. Videos can be embedded on your blog and you can create helpful links to information within your YouTube description. YouTube videos can also be shared with social media, so it is possible to share ‘how to’ advice without spamming.
- Connect. Read the post (and related website content if relevant) and comment directly about the content and how you relate to the message, or how you feel the advice will help you in the future. Show that you have read and understood the content – don’t just say ‘great’. This connection could be a comment on the blog post, a comment on the social media post, or even a DM.
- @mention. When commenting on a social media post (@theirname) @mention them so that they are more likely to see your comment among the masses. This personalizes your comment.
- Follow leaders. Find the leaders in your niche and follow them on social media. Connect as mentioned above. Be careful not to stalk people, it is important to follow and communicate in a reasonable manner.
I am at a crossroads and as I move forward with my blog and social media I will be building relationships.
Although I may post some content on each platform, I will be concentrating on building one platform at a time.
I would love to hear your thoughts. Are you a social media bot or are you in the process of building relationships?