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I feel your pain. You’re a talented new blogger and you are doing everything to get the attention of your ideal audience.
Other bloggers more established than yourself seem so confident and appear to have it all together.
They write their income reports and traffic reports and you think to yourself “If I could have a tenth of that I’ll be made!”
How do you build a highly visible online brand from absolute scratch ?
This is exactly where I was in August of 2014.
I had just bought started this blog. I’d discovered the world of online business and I wanted to chronicle my journey.
Over the years, I’ve consistently built the traffic to this blog to over half a million views.
(As I revamp this post, I am in the middle of re-building this blog. That will be another post in the future!)
This blog has allowed me to make some sweet side income!
In fact, in 2018, when I lost my job as a research scientist, the freelance writing business I had started as a result of this blog was how I contributed to the upkeep of my household.
But all that did not just happen.
You don’t have to try EVERYTHING in this post. A handful of them will do.
I can attest to each one of them however.
So here are 20 ways to boost your online presence and make more money.
19 ways to boost your online presence and make more money.
1)Help people get “lost” on your blog
And by “lost” I don’t mean, people don’t know where to click or go.
What I mean here is to help people become so fascinated with your blog and online content that they cannot help BUT dig in.
Here’s why you want that.
Making money happens because you build trust with people.
The way you build trust is to make people fall in love with you.
The longer people are on your blog, the more likely it is that they will like you and trust you.
Here are 3 ways to help people get lost in your content :
a) Create a library of posts.
This is a page is that dedicated to showcasing some of the best content you have ever produced. That is what I did with my START HERE page and I show you in the video below how to do exactly what I did with the Shortcodes Ultimate Plugin.
People will thank you for giving them a convenient place to find the best of your content. Secondly, it will give them a reason to stick around even if they did not mean to hang around that long.
This is another reason to make your headlines catchy.
I am talking about headlines that grasp people’s attention and immediately drives them to click through to your value-filled post.
If you have images you have used with your posts, you can make those your “book covers” for your library.
b) Install the Disqus plugin or some other plugin that showcases other posts at the bottom of your blog.
I love using the Disqus Comment Plugin because not only does it allow people to leave comments on your blog without the associated “sign-in here and turn over your mother’s last name” drama but it actually also displays some of your other posts (in no particular order) to people who are commenting.
As a matter of fact, Disqus is in my list of top 10 social network referrers to my other posts according to Google Analytics.
c) Display your most popular content
There are several plugins that will allow you to showcase your most popular content. Psychologically, people want to do what other people have done. So, when they see that those posts are popular on your blog and that you’ve highlighted them, they are more likely to click through and read.
2)Define a Brand/Style Guide for your blog
I know. I am not good with all that “branding” stuff, but over the years, I have learned that the way you inch your way into people’s hearts and minds is to make them remember you.
Think of Coca Cola or McDonalds.
Coca Cola has that distinctive red color that is used on all of their logos.
McDonalds as the big golden “M” that is unmistakable no matter where in the world you are.
Neither of them might be healthy, but you will be hard-pressed to find people around the world who have not heard of these two brands.
Think of your blog as your brand and choose a style guide for it. This will involve:
- The graphics you use on your blog and on social media and the styling of those graphics
- A set of fonts that you plan to use consistently in your logos, graphics, for your blog content.
- Colors that will consistently represent your brand depending on the kind of feeling you want to engender when people land on your blog.
Secondly, decide how you want to represent yourself to the world? How do you want people on your blog to remember you ? I have a Ghanaian accent , I am intense when I speak and most people remember me for my purplish-pink glasses as shown in my YouTube thumbnail below.
3) It may be time to rethink your blog’s design
Your blog does not need to look like everyone else’s and it certainly does not need to look like a website from 1995.
Trust me, I have come across blogs like that.
If people land on your blog and the design says “I don’t care about my blog”, no matter how great your content is, they will click away and never come back. Okay ?
I am not a web designer and I certainly did not have thousands of dollars to outsource my current design (yet).
All I did was go to Creative Market, peruse some of the great WordPress Themes on there that are oh so reasonably priced, used some of my knowledge of HTML/CSS to customize things a bit and voila, I got a brand new blog in a weekend!
You can do the same thing.
4)Start creating video content
I am a HUGE fan of video!
Video gets people to know you on a personal level.
I dipped my toes deep into video back when Periscope was popular and Facebook Live was picking up.
These days, I post 1-2 videos on YouTube each week.
I am aware that people learn differently. You’re here reading this post but then there are those who prefer to watch a 5-minute video.
I am able to reach both audiences by leveraging video. Plus, sometimes it is hard to write certain things and video is the best alternative. In those instances, I will create a video I can embed in a post like this.
5) Add e-mail sign-up forms to several different places on your blog
Wanna know 7 places you could strategically place e-mail sign up forms ?
- At the end of every blog post
- At the beginning of every blog post
- At the top of your website
- A Slide-in Form when people have scrolled 30-50% down a particular blog post
- On your About Page
- In your blog side bar
- Pop-Up forms. Oh, I know so many of you hate this type of form. But you can super strategic about it so it does not interrupt reading on your site. I currently use a Pop-Up that only shows when people are getting ready to leave the site. For the most part, Pop-Up forms have worked excellently for me and have not adversely affected my traffic.
If you are not collecting e-mails, you are losing out on A LOT of potential loyal readers. Please fix that you have not done that already
6)Write A Stellar About Page
Don’t be afraid to tell your unique story on your About Page.
People want to connect with other people – especially now. So tell the story of you.
7)You are on social media, right?!
Let people know where to find you!
When I first started out on social media, I wanted to be everywhere. It did not take me long to find out how unwise that was.
Choose 2-3 platforms and do a deep dive on those platforms.
I am active on LinkedIn and Instagram. I like to tell people to find me there and I am constantly learning how to improve my reach on those platforms.
Do a deep dive on a few social media platforms and you will attract more people than if you are on several and not really active.
8) Repurpose your most popular posts into an e-mail magnet
If you have been blogging for a while, you certainly have a post or two that has been shared and commented on a lot.
That is a good sign that people are interested in that kind of content. Now it’s time to REPURPOSE IT. If you are still scratching your head on an e-mail freebie to get people to sign up for your e-mail list, you can repurpose that blog post into a video series , turn the post into a PDF or eBook using Papyrus and offer that as your e-mail freebie.
9)Add Tweets throughout your blog posts
I created this video showing how you can easily do this Easy Embed Tweet (video tutorial below) Another plugin you could use to add tweets to your posts is ClickToTweet.
10)Include several shareable images in your blog posts
Once you embed the images within your posts, make them easy to share.
Several social sharing plugins, make it easy for you to share your images once a person hovers over it. Take advantage of them.
12)Learn SEO basics
I certainly am not the world’s expert on SEO. However doing the following pointers will greatly enhance your shot at being found by search engines :
- Install the Yoast SEO plugin. It scores each of your posts and will give you recommendations on how to improve the post after you have written it. Following those recommendations has allowed me to rank on Google’s first page for the key phrase “digital product ideas” in the “Videos” section for instance. I was also on page 1 for a while for the same keyword for a blog post I wrote on the topic. I am currently at the top of Page 2
- Build relationships with influencers in your niche and e-mail them each time you write a new blog post nicely requesting them to share it with their audiences if it is a good fit. Some will respond. Some will not. It is better than not trying at all. What happens here is that if these influencers have bigger audiences and they share it on social media, it will send a stream of traffic to your blog. Secondly, if it is really good, they might even link to it on their blog. And that link-back is gold when it comes to SEO
- Utilize your Google Analytics to seek out keywords that are leading people to your blog. Could you tweak the particular blog posts that they are landing on to include those keywords in a more meaningful way to increase traffic?
- Use tools like Ubersuggest to research keywords that bring even more traffic to your blog.
13)Include a call to action with every single post
A call-to-action can be anything from asking people to share your blog post, comment on the post, sign up for your e-mail list or a request for them to check out your paid products and services.
You might think that people will intuitively do some of this stuff but going for the ask greatly enhances the chances that this will happen.
14)Learn how to write VERY strong and attractive headlines
80% of people will read your headline before they read decide whether or not they want to read your content. So it is important to make it good!
A good resource I will recommend for you is the book Advertising Headlines That Make You Rich. Check it out and let’s get your headline game popping!
15)Repurpose your content like a champ
I already mentioned how you could repurpose some of your popular content into an e-mail freebie.
If you are primarily a writer, you could make video tutorials showing people how to do something you described in a post (remember how I said different people learn differently ?)
Videos. Podcasts. Ebooks. Infographics. Slide shares. Social media.
The idea is to take a blog post regardless of whether it has gone viral or not and use another medium to get it noticed.
16) Write shorter + simpler sentences + become a lover of white space
All of the white space on your blog belongs to you. Please resist the urge to write your content as one big blog of text or paragraphs worthy of a doctoral dissertation.
I wrote a doctoral dissertation and even that was double-spaced ! You will make it easier for your readers to follow along.
Write shorter and more powerful sentences. Cut the fluff and just say what you want to say.
17) Tell us how we can support you
It’s alright to tell us about the products and services you offer. After all, if you are good at what you do, why not ?
Create a page/pages that tell visitors what you offer and why you are qualified to offer them in a realistic way.
What do you mean “in a realistic way” , Gee? Glad you asked !
If you are selling blog design services and your blog looks like it was the bees-knees when floppy discs were still cool, NOBODY will buy your design package. NOBODY.
So give us proof of what you say you can do. If it is writing, your blog posts and content you have written on other sites will be proof of that. If it is blog design, let us see it with your blog. If it is a premium course, do you have Youtube videos that show people how to do what you teach at the basic level?
It is always important to build up that portfolio (even if it means building it up for free) for potential clients to see what you can do.
Once you have built up that portfolio, make it easy for people to find when they land on your blog.
- Create a dedicated page and if possible collect reviews from people who have directly benefited from your work. PLEASE DON’T BUY REVIEWS FROM FIVERR. That is just dishonest and will limit your overall success in life).
- Have a very practical way people can get in touch with you for your services with a phone number or e-mail address you respond to. Make that contact info VERY CLEAR.
- Use tools like Gumroad, Selz or Paypal as easy ways to get paid.
18)Support other creatives online
Comment on other people’s posts. Share their work. Rave about them on social media. This entrepreneurial journey can be lonely and stressful at times and so getting support from another creative is a breath of fresh air when it is done genuinely.
19)Be very clear on who you serve
This point probably should have been number one but better late than never.
When you are very clear on who you serve, it will guide your content creation process and attract the right people to you.
Focusing on the needs of a particular audience will catapult your online brand into the limelight and set you apart.
There you have it!
19 solid ways to spruce up your blog’s online presence.
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