Strategies to Grow Organic Blog Traffic: Promote Yourself Across the Web
Whether you're blogging for the love of it or trying to make money online, you should spend at least two hours a week marketing your blog across the Web. Guest blogging and commenting on other people's blog posts are your primary marketing tools, and you can add answering questions and posting to article directories if you have time.
Get Into Guest Blogging
Why is writing for other blogs a great way to promote your own? You get social proof, because other experts value your opinion. You get a link back to your blog, and this scores big points in search engines. You get new readers, attracting dozens if not hundreds of organic clicks. You get status in the blogging community, and this is priceless.
Search for blogs that take guest posts by looking within your niche and clicking on the blogger's Contact Us or About page. If they take guest posts, they'll give you the rules. Submit your best, freshly-written posts and include your byline in the resource box. Most bloggers notify you within a week or two if they'll accept your work, so be patient. Submit one guest post per week to make the most of this excellent opportunity.
Comment and Engage on Other Blogs
Look into signing up for CommentLuv (comluv.com, and it's free). Then, find other people's blogs in your niche and add to the conversation by commenting on their recent posts.
Here's how to NOT look like a spammer: Say something substantive about the content of the post. Use the blogger's name and include his/her keywords in your response. Ask a question. Answer a question. Add a useful detail. Write around 50 words, but don't go overboard. Respond to another commenter's comment. Include a link to your own blog sparingly. Finally, remember that commenting isn't about you—it's about the person who wrote the original post.
Answer Questions and Point Back to Your Blog
A third strategy that can create valuable backlinks to your blog—if you have time after writing guest posts and commenting—is answering questions on Yahoo Answers (answers.yahoo.com), Ask (ask.com/answers), or Answers (wiki.answers.com). Follow each site's rules when submitting links back to your blog.
Depending on your area of expertise, answering questions can be a gold mine of organic clicks and give you a boost in search engine rank. It's worth a couple of hours a month to spread your knowledge and expert status around.
Article Directories? If You Have Time
Article directories took a devastating hit after the Google Panda updates, but bloggers should look at this opportunity in a different light. While article directories no longer get top rank in search engine results, millions of human users still visit them for answers to questions or problems. Establish yourself as an expert in a top-quality article directory and you'll still gain benefit from posting new content.
Your content must be new—never published before. It must be well-written and relevant, much like your prized blog posts. You must post fresh content regularly and build a real reputation. Writing one article per week for a good article directory builds your reputation quickly and brings organic clicks back to your blog through the resource box.
Spread Your Message Across the Web
To market your blog effectively across the world wide web, you'll need to invest a couple hours each week writing new guest posts and submitting intelligent comments on other people's blogs. If you have time and it's appropriate for your niche, answer questions. Posting to article directories still works, but their impact has been significantly reduced.
If you follow these strategies over time, a little bit of ongoing work builds momentum. Blog marketing takes patience and perseverance, but it's well worth the effort to spread your message across the Web.
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