Essential Keystrokes is…

where I share my favorite tips, tools, reviews and commentary on web design, marketing, blogging, new media and related topics. For more about this site and the voice behind it, check out my About page.


SubscribeFollow me on TwitterLinked In Stumble Upon What I Digg Email me

Did You Know You Can Get Traffic From CNN?

By Char

Aqua Dots recall

So, I was going about my business last week when the latest story about another toy recall hit. The recall of Aqua Dots struck a nerve with me because that was an item my two artsy girls had recently added to their Christmas Wish Lists. Moments after reading the CNN story, I opened up my dashboard at Raising a Healthy Family (I know, I know, too many to keep up with!) and started writing. I linked to the CNN story and the CPSC site complete with a listing of all the recalls, and hit publish.

I went about my daily tasks and while having lunch I decided to check my stats (yes, I can’t help myself). When I opened the stats for Raising a Healthy Family, I noticed a large number of referrals from none other than Now I was really curious. How on earth was I generating traffic FROM CNN and not the other way around?

It seems that mainstream media is really starting to embrace bloggers. At the bottom of most CNN stories there are now one or two drop down boxes – one is Sound Off and the other one is From the Blogs. From the Blogs highlights three sites that linked to the article and three blogs that are talking about that topic.

It seems that for some period of time, my post at Raising a Healthy Family showed up in that section of the page and generated traffic for me. How cool is that? Now, it wasn’t quite as much traffic as I got from the Stumble effect on the article – 200+ visits from CNN and 3,000 visits from Stumble Upon, but it was traffic and from what I can tell, good quality traffic.

I wasn’t satisfied in just knowing that the traffic came from CNN – I wanted to know why. Upon further research, the company is providing a service that matches up mainstream news items with the conversations in the blogosphere – or as their tag line states – “Connecting Blogs and News”. The fact that this application is being used at a media outlet such as CNN is pretty exciting.

As blogging and other new media outlets continue to grow, I think the line between traditional media and new media is going to blur even more.

Categories : Blogging



I think I’ve heard about this before, congrats.


Seen and noted…and of course…Stumbled.


This happened to me back in the spring with The Guardian (UK newspaper). They listed me in a sidebar to a story and I got tonnes of traffic. I think I’m still seeing hits from their site.


Matthew – I’m sure this isn’t something new – but the Sphere service is making it easier to link the two from what I can tell.

DigitalNomad – thanks!!

Scott – That is the ultimate way to get the link. Congrats.


That is really interesting – thanks for letting us know (and congratulations, of course!). Did you just happen to read the CNN story, or is there some way of setting up an alert/RSS feed from CNN (I can’t spot one at the moment)?

That would be a great way to close the circle …


I do get some good traffic from Wall Street Journal website and the reason is Sphere – it rocks.


Nice find, will be interesting to see what they class as relevant content.


Are you serious? There is a toy recall on aqua dots. My girls just told me they wanted this for Christmas too.

That is awesome you got some great traffic from CNN and it is about time these big media sites start giving us bloggers a bit of credit!

I found you through Stumble Upon, another great way to boost traffic as I’m sure you know.

Good for you!


Great Article! This is what brought me to your page, but I found a great site that gives excellent info on blogging. I am currently starting my own blog site on marketing, specifically promotional product marketing. Your site will definately help! Thanks for the great info!


great to know though. I had never heard of this with cnn. I had heard of it with the WSJ and the New York Times.


surprised and amazed but sure take note now


I read about this on another blog I read, and thought it was really cool, but I never looked into it. Thanks for doing the research, it’s very interesting!


Very cool. My husband has a pretty small blog, but he managed to get a link back from them and ended up with the 2nd highest Google search for the news topic. It was very exciting for him! :)


I wrote about this same thing except it worked for a client of our with the Wall Street Journal and they did gain traffic, plus a mention on the Wall Street Journal site. This is a very strategic if not, overwhelming, traffic boosting tip.


Thanks for the article. I added the sphere widget to my SEO Practices Blog so sphere will grab my posts and send me tons of traffic… he he he, you never know…


Very interesting find, even more so with the extra info in the comments…Stumbled and thanks for the tips.


Interesting tool. Thank you for posting it.


Very interesting post. I initially heard about it from Jack Humphry. I think I am going to try this next time I get a chance. And yes I also stumbled your article.


Great info. This shows how important it is to blog and how simple posts can generate traffic to a site. I am going to check out Sphere and start using it today. Thanks for the great info.


You’re right! There will be a time it seems when much of the news will be delivered by the blog world. Even if it isn’t much of the news is dissected by bloggers and discussed more so than anywhere else.

Once again – valuable information.



It’s about time bloggers got some recognition as unbiased news sources. Congrats!


It is great news. I had never heard of this with cnn. I hope it is a very recognition from the old media.


This is just amazing. I found this article through seomoz and just loved reading it ! Thanks for the info.


Will definitely try this. Thanks for the information.


What a cool thing to find, in essence you became a news channel on one of the biggest news sources on the planet.

Thanks for sharing with us.


Great information. Thank you for passing it on.



Wow. I need to comment more on CNN. That way I can benefit from the reading that I do on there. Maybe one day I’ll blog and benefit even more.


Thank you so much for sharing this. Every little bit of traffic counts, and when it comes from a high quality site such as CNN, it’s even better.

Instead of just shouting off at these sites, from now on, I’ll be looking for ways to link related news to my site.

Again, thanks for the heads up.



Well, the first thing I would like to write is of course congratulation. It sounds very nice to know that your get so many visitors from CNN. And, I believe the number is really big.
As for me, since my blog is newly born, this news is very interesting. At least I know where to find the place which can give me many visitors. Many Thanks:D


How exciting it must be to get traffic from such a world known news source. Congratulations.



Nice job! Traffic from CNN or any major news outlet is probably a goal of every blogger. Maybe I should start writing more about what is in the news and linking to them.


Hey Char,

This is awesome, thanks. Now, a super unrelated question — that “Best of” thing at the end of each article, the one with the “Most Popular,” “My Favorites” and “Tutorials” tabs, is that a WordPress plugin or did you hand-code it? If it’s a plugin, which I suspect it is, would you mind sharing the name? I’d love to use it on my blog.

Much appreciated.


Maria – it is a combination – read the specifics on the post I wrote right after I added it:


Thanks Char, you’re the best.


A really exciting tip – thanks. I have a CNN gadget on my site that displays their current news and this info fits right in. Jack Humphrey (Authority Site Center) gave me the heads up about you getting linked with CNN and suggested I check your post out. I’m glad I did!


This is great information to have and very interesting to see that news outlets are beginning to embrace bloggers more. It makes sense – after all, many blogs embody a kind of a grass-roots level of news. I will remember this for the future so I can try this tactic when applicable.


Cool! That’s good to know, since that is a quality backlink. I will definitely take a look at to see what it’s about.


Thank you so much for sharing this. Every little bit of traffic counts, and when it comes from a high quality site such as CNN, it’s even better.

This is great information to have and very interesting to see that news outlets are beginning to embrace bloggers more. It makes sense – after all, many blogs embody a kind of a grass-roots level of news. I will remember this for the future so I can try this tactic when applicable.

Leave a Comment


Team Training NE Celiac Family