There are many ways to reach a free audience with your website or blog. What stops most bloggers from getting this traffic are two things. One, they haven’t even known these existed or two, they underestimated their possible effectiveness. There are also those that just don’t want to waste time with these and write their blog. If you belong to the third category, I suppose you can skip this post. For the rest of us, let’s see what options there are.
SEO and content
The best and most important way to get free traffic is to have your website perfectly optimized for search engines. SEO or Search Engine Optimization is a set of rules that the website should follow to reach top of the search engine when anyone looks for the particular topic. The more high-quality content you have about the topic, the better you’ll rank. SEO rules change pretty fast, but one thing always stays the same. As long as you have enough content to be the authority on the subject, then you will reach the top, no matter what changes will be introduced. So keep posting!
If you have a blog, you should reach out to people out of your blog. A great place for that is social media. According to this research, about 3.8 billion people are active social media users. What this means is, that no matter what your niche is, you will find people on social media that are interested in it.
Twitter and Instagram
Make a Twitter account and post there every time you make a post on your blog. Create an Instagram account and share your posts as well, maybe add a nice picture with a quote. It is not a site just for selfies anymore. With both sites, always use a hashtag. For example, if your blog is about marketing, tag it as #marketing. Each site has different rules for their hashtags. With Instagram you want to use all 30 if possible, with Twitter, two to three should be most effective.
Great social media platform, that can help you reach thousands of people, is Facebook. Ten years ago, Facebook launched its Facebook Groups system. And now, there are groups for anything. With Facebook, I recommend you to create your Facebook Page, where you inform people about your new articles and generally connect with your audience. I also urge you to join as many Facebook Groups, that correlate to your niche, as possible. A lot of these groups are just full of people spamming their own stuff, so go clever about it. Try to become an authority about the subject and every now and then, post a link to your Facebook Page or to your new blog post.
Another giant to mention is Pinterest, which can be incredible for bloggers that do visually appealing stuff that want to reach a new audience. This doesn’t include just artists, but also food bloggers or travellers. Actually, scratch that. It’s the best tool for bloggers. USE IT! I recommend to create a Pinterest account and create your own boards where you put all stuff that is connected to your blog and then put your blog stuff in it. People will see it and pin to their board, which makes more people see it and so on. Pinterest is pretty much a search engine of its own, don’t underestimate its power.
Speaking of search engines, YouTube is absolutely incredible in its audience reach algorithms. Their artificial intelligence analyzes every video you make and makes sure it gets to the people that might be interested in it, no matter how big the video is.
If you’ve been on YouTube lately, you could notice that you are getting recommended videos that you wouldn’t even think of looking up, but yet, you still click because they sound interesting.
No matter what you do, if you can write a blog post about it, you can make a video as well. You can even use your blog post as your script. Just make sure your videos are 8 minutes or longer as YouTube likes its “time watched” channel statistic.
Remember you don’t have to be on camera, you can just have visuals playing that can keep people interested in what you’re talking about and then just talk into your microphone. Speaking of microphones, I recommend investing in a good microphone. You don’t have to spend hundreds of dollars, your sound should just be clear without any background noise. I am using a BLUE Snowball microphone (sponsored link) and I have never felt the need to upgrade. You can even see it in my profile picture down below. Again, you don’t have to do this step, but good microphone quality became a gold standard in today’s videos.
Other social media
There are many, many more social media sites that you can utilize, I only mentioned the biggest ones that I know of, but there are also niche-specific social media. For example, LinkedIn is a great social media website that can help you reach a business-oriented audience. DeviantArt or Art Station, even Tumblr are social media where you can reach artist communities and so on. Try to search for the ones in your niche.
It might be surprising, but forums are still as popular as they were in the past. There are thousands of active forums about every topic. Try to join several forums that are built around your niche and reach your new audience there. Just like with Facebook Groups, even here you don’t want to just join and spam, but rather become a part of the community and then, every now and then, post about your blog post/article.
One of the biggest forum sites in the world is Reddit. I was arguing if I should put it among Social Media, but then, everything around Reddit is built around topics (called subreddits), rather than people. Join subreddits and familiarize yourself with their rules. A lot of subreddits don’t allow self-promotion, so either go about it in a clever way or find subreddits that you could utilize. Reddit has pretty good activity. Chances are, if you manage to post your article there, you will reach some audience. Sometimes even thousands of people if done right.
4chan is a website that originally was an image-based forum around Japanese culture. These days it evolved into a forum full of communities that share pretty much everything. Check it out to see if it can be for you. Chances are, it might be. 4chan‘s communities can be very active as well, although I am not sure how good the self-promoting is taken. You will have to check with a community that corresponds to your niche, to know for sure.
Guest Blog Posts
An amazing way to reach new audiences is to ask people in the same niche as yours if they’d allow you to post a guest post on their blog. You write about a topic that could fit on their website and ask if they would be interested. Then you put in the post some way for the audience to reach you. If the blog’s owner says no, you can still post it on your site as a regular post. But most owners will probably say yes. After all, it’s free content for them that will make their SEO better and drive more free traffic their way. You, on the other hand, will gain some of their established audience. It’s a win-win situation for both, so don’t be afraid to e-mail the other owners about this.
And that’s pretty much all I can think of. Try to utilize as many of these as you can and every time, link everything to everything. Create a web of links around your brand so people always have an easy time to find you on any site. The only thing that should keep you back from using all of these things is time. Otherwise, the more the better. If you can’t do any of those, then, no matter what, at least stick to posting to your own blog. SEO is very powerful by itself, but the other ways help your blog a ton. Especially if you are just starting out.
Now, if you liked the article and would like to see more in the future, consider signing up for my mailing list below, where I will inform you about new posts. Don’t worry I won’t spam you. Now, good luck with your blog you beautiful person!