5 “Secrets” for Boosting Your Blog ReadershipBy
Guest post by Chris Garrett, blogging and internet marketing consultant
Growing readership is one of the most common questions I get asked as a business blog consultant and coach. Anyone who has struggled to grow their audience will tell you that quality of writing is not all that it takes. I wish it was!
First of all, let me stress that quantity is not the only factor you need to be aiming for. A smaller, more engaged audience, often trumps a larger and less involved one. I have done several things on my own blog that have served to *constrain* my audience. Why? Because I want an audience who really wants to interact with me, who want to know what I have to say. Consider a company that sells nuclear power stations, going for a large, mainstream audience is probably not the right tactic!
So that all said, what are the secrets to growing a blog audience?
Well, truthfully, there are no secrets, but while these tips might seem common sense, as I like to say, common sense is seldom common practice. Any one of these tips is guaranteed to help you boost your audience and keep it growing:
1) Make a deep and lasting impact
People look to sites like TechCrunch and think they have to write ten articles a day. Nonsense. Churning out article after article will only serve to wear you down. Instead put your effort into creating what I call Flagship Content, content that provides real value, lasts a long time, and takes your message out into the world and brings back subscribers. Instead sticking to an arbitrary schedule, consider each article and make it the best it can be. This is not a quantity game, unless you want to run a blogging sweat shop.
2) Be a leader
Again, bloggers often look to the top sites in their niche and think if they don’t write on the hot topics their audience will think them irrelevant. No! Instead of following the herd you need to stand out, be your own voice, show creativity, add real value and most of all, lead.
3) Leave your sand-pit
Instead of just trying to create a powerful gravitational pull, work hard to find out where your audience hangs out and meet them half-way. Find the forums, discussion lists, social media sites, chat channels and face to face events where your readers gather and take part.
4) Plug your leaks
Growing your audience is as much about keeping people involved as it is attracting new blood. As people unsubscribe you need to work out why. Which content or activity drives people away? What can you do about it? For example, on my own blog I found people were unsubscribing from my emails because daily was too frequent, so I created a separate weekly list for people to join.
Finally, the most important factor of all …
5) Understand your audience
Too many bloggers only focus on their own needs, what they want to say, the words that they use, without considering who it is they want to attract, what their readers want, and how best to serve their needs. Your audience should be the first and last thing on your mind.
Look around at the top bloggers in your niche, do you think they meet the requirements I set out above? Think I have it all wrong? Do you have any other tips that I have missed? Please share your thoughts in the comments …