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Sep 27 / Viji Iyer

Lessons I learnt on how to promote my blog without being noxious

Photo by Mr Ush

Congratulations! You’ve taken the leap to start your own blog and make your mark on the blogosphere. So what next? Now comes the tricky part. Creating awareness and promoting it! You are eager and excited to share it with others but nervous about doing it the ‘right way’. Now, I’m sure there are several floating theories and formulas on how to promote your blog the right way and do it tactfully. Here are few of the lessons I learnt along this process:

Key is to push your blog, but not all the way to annoyance.
It’s like walking a tight rope; you want to introduce your new blog gracefully with others but not yell and scream from the rooftop to get attention. Nobody likes a pushy salesman forcefully selling you his product without your consent.

Piecemeal it based on your comfort level.
Share your blog initially (via email) with your inner circle of peeps you feel most comfortable with, and can trust. Your family and close friends! Then, as you get more comfortable extend it to others – your community, colleagues, boss, sports buddies etc. and your circle expands.

Tweet about it on Twitter. But don’t get into the copy-paste mode!
Share your new post initially by tweeting about it. Keyword being ‘once’. Don’t sneak in your post by re-tweeting it in regular intervals thinking people won’t notice! Newsflash, people do! Imagine this noxious guy at the party yakking about himself non-stop the entire time. Yeahh! You don’t want to be that guy. If your blog is worth its mettle, people will carry it out for you by RT’ing it. Remember to thank them promptly when they do!

Think bigger and leverage your LinkedIn.
You can promote and advertise your blog by updating the ‘post an update’ feature under the ‘edit your profile’ section. You can take it a step further by downloading the ‘Wordpress’ application and synching it your profile page. That way, it will show regular updates of your blog on your LinkedIn page. This is especially useful if you are using WordPress for your blog. This enhances your visibility with your larger professional network of colleagues, senior management and even potential recruiters.

Are you in for the long haul? Then, its time to create a Facebook fan page.
Create a separate Facebook page for your blog under the brand, product or organization category. Customize the tabs and ensure that your profile and description is similar to what you have on your blog, including your blog title, logo and profile picture. This helps in creating a continued brand experience when people move from your blog to your Facebook page. Use this page wisely to optimize your blog goals. Bear in mind, this is one more thing to create and manage regularly. So get into it only after you think you are ready for it.

Let your work speak louder than you!
Remember, content is still king! If your writing isn’t authentic or appealing, people will roll their eyes and interest will fizzle out no matter how hard you try to promote it. So focus on the quality of your work and readers will come back.

Recognize that your blog at some level is an extension of you.
So be socially responsible and conscious of what you put out there. Portray your blog in the same light as you’d like to be portrayed and perceived in person.

Don’t be afraid to give link-backs if you are contributing to a particular topic.
Always try to give shout-outs and track-back to the pundits out there. Don’t be a narcissist! It’s a reflection that you are not living in your own kingdom, but making an attempt to read your fellow bloggers’ works. This will help in giving your work latitude making your content richer and multi-dimensional.

Most important, and crucial…Patience! Patience! Patience! (Have patience!)
Yeah! Doesn’t it have the same ring as location, location location?! Basically, building your profile through your blog takes time. It’s certainly not a viral or overnight process. In this day and age where we are inundated with never-before-seen information, people click and choose their time online. Respect that it is people’s personal time, so don’t try to encroach it forcefully. Politely welcome them to your blog, and let your work speak for itself!

Check out Chris Brogan of New Marketing Labs and Andrea Bartz and Brenna Ehrlich from Netiquette, CNN who offer further tips on promoting yourself online.

What lessons did you learn about promoting your blog?

Photo by Mr Ush

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