Marketing your blog or website has to be one of the HARDEST things to do, right?
This is an area that I struggle with. Marketing takes time. Lots and lots of time. How in the world do you market without coming off spammy? I don't have the magical answer to this. I don't have huge traffic. I don't have a large following. However, what I do have is excellent googling skills. I am a researcher by nature. I am an eternal student and am always learning and am always seeking new information.
I have been dabbling with growing my blog and find that marketing is a bit of chicken/egg issue. You need to market your blog/product/website/etc. to people but people need to find you, right?
I have joined some blogger related groups on Facebook. I have just started within the last couple of weeks with them and they have been phenomenal with marketing. A lot of the groups have a daily link up with specific requests.
For example one group has several threads posted once a day to link up: link up your facebook page, tweets you need retweeted, blog posts that need comments, blog posts that need shares, Pins that need repinning, Google Plus posts to +1/share/comment on, Improve bounce rate (google search), improve Alexa ranking, etc. Just in the last week, my page views increased by 1000 views. In one week. My Facebook page, G+, Pinterest, and Instagram have grown exponentially. It's a lot of work but it's worth it.
Speaking Google Plus- I have been joining Communities. These are great. I have been joining ones I am interested in like recipes, food photography, 50 mm photography, Canon, Blogging, Home Based Business, Making money from home, Pinterest Tribes, etc. These are similar to Facebook groups and they have been kinda/sorta/okay in my growth. I am a part of some circles which has helped my G+ Following grow.
However, what I do like about Google Plus is the relationships you build on there. People on Google Plus are super nice and extremely helpful. It's really more interactive than Facebook pages. I love the community on there. It's also a GREAT way for your blog posts to show up on Google searches.
The jury is still out on this.
I haven't really looked at my analytics regarding traffic from Twitter BUT you all have read some of my posts like this one and this one about how much I am really loving Twitter. I love the interactions. I have some of the BEST chats on there and it's great for building relationships with potential readers, customers, fellow business owners, bloggers, etc. Most of them on there love sharing your posts and it's great Karma to do the same!
Oh Pinterest, how I love thee. I get so much traffic from Pinterest and I love it. Pin worthy photos bring repins and traffic. It's beautiful. I am a member of a few pin group boards but I am not even sure HOW I even joined them and want to join more.
I am still figuring out StumbleUpon. I haven't had a lot of time to really get too familiar with it but I have stumbled a few of my posts and have seen a few bites coming in. I will update more on StumbleUpon in a month or so.
Edited to add (5/24/14)- I have to add this extra thought thanks to my friend Lauren at Shooting Stars Magazine for bringing up this tip.
Visiting other blogs to network is also a great way to market your blog to other bloggers. If you leave insightful, meaningful comments (not "Neat! Great info! Thanks. Follow back? www.IamaDoucheNozzle.com) that contribute to the conversation of the post, you may (or may not! depends on how busy the blogger is) have the other blogger's attention. Also, some of the readers may really like what you wrote and come check out your blog. I know that I have found a few blogs because of a comment that was left on another blog's post that I really liked.
Of course, I want to attract more than bloggers as readers and bloggers are a good group of people. We love spreading the love and shouting out our fellow bloggers. I like to give out blog karma!
How are you marketing your blog?
What do you find to be the most difficult?
What is the most successful?
Let's chat and share some tips!