How to promote your blog on social media – without getting these two basic things wrong

IMG_7275-1So you’ve published a blog post or two. And now you're wondering how much you need to promote your blog on social media. You don't want to get it wrong!

When I started blogging 9 years ago, I had the firm belief that publishing a post meant I was putting myself out there. That it was enough to attract readers.

Well, to be fair, it was to an extent. I started on wordpress.com which was a lot less crowded back then. As was the rest of the blogging world!

But today there are thousands of women just like you on the web. Women with a similar blogging niche who may also run their own small business.

And all compete for readers!

To attract readers (and potential customers) it helps to understand that writing your post is only the beginning. Blogging is as much – if not more – about promoting your post! And most of that happens on social media.

The trouble is, many slightly older women may not feel as comfortable on social media as their younger colleagues. (I know, it's how I felt at the beginning too!)

You may not realise the impact that holding back on social media has on your blog. Or, at which point you might be too forthright with your blog promotion.

And so I’d like to have a look at both scenarios.

1. What happens when you don't promote your blog enough

It is a sad reality that many bloggers spend a lot of their time creating content and not promoting it. Even I have done that at times. As soon as I’ve finished one post I’m onto the next one especially when I'm feeling ‘in flow’.

But there are other obstacles that can make it hard to promote your blog on social media:

  • An introvert or perfectionist may find pressing the ‘publish’ button challenging enough. So they avoid doing anything else.
  • A new blogger who is also new to social media may not yet understand best practice.
  • An inexperienced writer may lack confidence about how they’ve addressed their topic. It can make you feel rather apprehensive and worried that your readers and followers may not approve.
  • Even confident women may not want to seem too promotional or even worse, a spammer.

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Whatever the reasons behind 'hiding' and holding back, not promoting a post doesn’t just prevent it from getting seen. You won’t be able to get the feedback you need to make sure that your blog appeals to your reader.

And the bottom line is that holding back prevents you from standing out in the crowd and building your brand!

Whilst you may have specific expertise or a real passion for your topic, neither is enough to attract readers (or potential customers)!

A few tips to help you overcome hesitation on social media

Try to find out what your potential readers’ problems, issues or questions are. Your ‘research’ will help you write the right content knowing that it will make an impact.

And you’ll be amazed how much more confident this knowledge will make you when carrying out all your promotional tasks!

Always remember that the people you attract via social media will be curious about your topic. As readers we like to take a break from what we are doing. We like to be distracted, entertained or to learn something new.

You don’t want to miss this fantastic opportunity to connect with your reader!

Another tip is to look for a blogging buddy who is in the same boat as you. You’ll get support, feedback, tips and accountability that way. Important ingredients in building your confidence online!

You can even promote each other’s posts to relieve some of the pressure you feel online. Could it get any easier?

2. How not to promote your blog too much

Promoting too much and too often is clearly at the opposite end of the spectrum! But it’s surprising how easy it is to push your content too much. Even when you don't intend to do so.

After all it can be hard to understand the happy medium between promoting too little and too much. And what is the happy medium anyway?

On the fast-moving Twitter, for example, you hear how challenging it is to get tweets seen. So a lot of people resort to repeating their promotional posts several times a day.

But this won't always work. Readers can get bored very quickly.

Also, some of your followers may have set up special interest contact lists on Twitter or Facebook. Anyone with small lists may see all your latest updates in one go. Not having them neatly spaced out between other peoples’ can easily make you look like a spammer. Especially if they are all about you - this can make your readers turn their back on you, i.e unfollow you.

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Another mistake is to promote a new blog post on all your main media channels at the same time or on the same day. If your reader uses the same channels and you don’t stagger your new post promotion you will quickly lose their attention.

A few tips to help you promote your blog in the right way

For a start, every channel has its own feel and etiquette. Each is different especially Twitter with its slightly frenetic atmosphere.

So to get it right, you must consider your industry, reader and the platforms they use most. Why not spend some time there just reading and researching the nature of people’s updates? You’ll quickly notice the content and the posting frequency that seems to have the greatest impact.

I know that for my slightly older ‘Success Network’ followers less is more on all the platforms I use. As is for our 'Attract Readers' followers! I try to bear that in mind when I promote my own and our ‘Attract Readers’ content.

Always make sure when you promote your blog that you mix up the information you share and curate articles from other sources too. And it's definitely a good idea to get involved in conversations so people can get to know, like and trust you.

But what if you don’t know your readers and followers well yet?

Why not test your impact?! Vary your social media content and posting frequency for a few weeks and then compare the results.

That way you have a greater chance of finding the happy medium for you and your readers. When you get it right, your readers will thank you for it. And in next to no time you may find your blog stats on the increase too – it's clearly a win-win for all!

Want more tips like this? Check out our social media ecourse ‘Get your blog seen on social media’ where Jean, Alice and I share how bloggers get the most from Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, Google+, Instagram and Pinterest. Let us show how to get your blog seen in the right places in the right way!

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Ute Wieczorek-King
 

Ute Wieczorek-King (Success Network) is an experienced business coach, mentor and trainer. She started blogging in 2007 and some of her posts have been published on Huffington Post and Prowess 2.0. Ute facilitated the first hands-on social media courses for Business Link in 2009 and has run 'social' courses for local councils, BME communities, charities and SMEs. She created blogging workshops for a Start-up Academy as well as her own clients and believes in blogging as the best way for women (particularly those who are a little shy) to promote themselves and get known.

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