How to Promote Content Online After You Publish
Content is king. But distribution is Queen and she kicks everything into high gear.
Field of Dreams is a classic movie, the one responsible for the phrase “if you build it they will come.” That may have been true for Kevin Costner’s back yard baseball diamond, but if you sit back and believe that hitting ‘publish’ will draw the masses to your site…well, you’re going to be sorely disappointed.
Let’s assume that you’ve just published a sterling blog post crafted with your blood, sweat, and tears. It’s a work of art.
Now it’s time to push your content into the public eye so that your potential clients can easily discover it during their next Google search session.
Thankfully, you don’t have to be technically savvy to get the job done and it’s easier than ever to get your word out – whether it stands out will come down to the quality of the content itself…but that’s a different conversation entirely.
Places to Promote Content Online
Newsletter subscribers are people who have literally given you permission to join them for their morning coffee, interrupt them during their dinner hour, and distract them during their mind-numbing inner city commute. This group of people has expressed interest in what you have to say, but likely aren’t going to stalk your web page scouring it for new content. So, make it easy for people by handing out the headlines personally.
Here’s how to say it:
Website aggregators are like digital content hoarders. They collect the best posts from across the World Wide Web and give users the power to curate the collection by up-voting and down-voting based on an article’s usefulness.
Here are a few aggregator websites in the blogging niche
While submitting to online communities is a great way to join the conversation, it’s frowned upon to only post your own articles so try to participate in the discussion.
Reach out to Reddit
Reddit is a powerhouse. It draws in over 230 million monthly visitors from over 217 different countries. Today thousands of sub-reddit sites have cropped up, focusing on niche topics and subdividing this massive reading audience.
Urban legends tell of articles that reach Reddit’s home page and funnel so much traffic to the author’s home site that the entire website crashed as a result. (Unlikely to happen to anyone of us, but here’s hoping).
Keep in mind that Reddit’s audience doesn’t tolerate self-promotion, so keep your content first and your company in the background.
Here are some steps to get you started
- Find some large sub-reddit sites that fit your niche topic (ideally, choose one with 10’s of thousands of users)
- Choose a handful of small, relevant sub-reddit sites related to your business (such sites can be very niche and draw only a few thousand visitors)
- Follow the rules and regulations of the sub-reddit and regularly post your articles. Read the individual topic role on each web page to make sure that you’re accurately targeting your topics.
- Let your personal network know about your Reddit articles and encourage them to up-vote if possible, this helps to get you noticed from the get-go.
- Be sure to post only your highest quality content so that with a few up-votes in the beginning, the traffic behind each post will snowball.
Writing for other people’s blogs is a fabulous way to gain awareness for your brand and promote other articles in your arsenal. It’s an excellent form of promotion because it’s natural link building, which funnels traffic wherever you want it to go and pleases the SEO gods at the same time.
Avoid sleaze, spam, and shameless salesmanship by prioritizing value and relevancy above all else.
How to Pitch a Guest Post (Email Template)
Subject: Guest Post: [Killer Headline]
Dear [Blogger Editor’s Name],
[Explain Connection or compliment. For example: I’ve been following your blog for 5+ years and I think you’re a standout in the industry.]
I’m writing to submit a guest post to [name of blog]. The post’s headline is [killer headline here] and the article will include: [Your article outline, interviews, photos, graphics, etc.] I’ve noticed articles on this topic are particularly popular with your readers.
To let you know a little bit about me, I’m a professional [insert your job description]. I’ve previously written for [names of other publications you’ve written for] and you can find samples of my work here: [link to portfolio].
Let me know if you think this article would be a good fit for you and we can go from there. I’m excited to hear back from you!
All the best,
Share the Link Love
Everyone loves to be linked to, it’s like being ‘’poked” on Facebook – it produces a warm, fuzzy feeling inside.
When you link out to someone in an article, reach out to that person and let them know. Best case scenario: your benefactor will read your article, leave a comment, and maybe even share it with their own social network. Worst case: you earned karma points.
Automated Social Media
Keeping up with social media sites is like trying to catch a dozen bouncy balls at the same time – frustrating and futile. Thankfully, there are techy tools and plugins that help you automate the process and streamline your efforts.
Link one of these social media automation programs to your blog and let the script do the work for you. All you have to do is write the content, set the schedule, and publish.
Show Appreciation for Social Shares Watch your posts as they are shared across social media platforms, then “like” or +1 each post that someone has shared. You can also do this on Twitter by favoriting tweets that share your post. You may not be able to keep up with all of them, so just do your best.
Flock Together & Everyone Feels Better
Authors and circulators of related topics will likely be interested in taking a look at your recent article/ post. Nothing is new under the sun and there’s always similar or related articles to be found online. Chances are, bloggers who have mentioned similar topics to their audiences will be interested in checking out what you have to say.
Do a simple Google search for your topic and find a handful of bloggers to reach out to. Email them your article and ask if they’d be interested in weighing in. You might just be surprised by the response you get.
Find people who share similar posts by conducting a simple search on social media sites such as Facebook and Twitter.
Become a Commenter
Just like everyone enjoys a good will link-back, we all also appreciate comments on our blogs and posts. If you believe your article adds value to another one, try commenting and linking back to it in a comment section. Just make sure that your comment is appropriate and adds undeniable value to the conversation, otherwise, you’re likely to be seen as self-serving and poaching traffic where you shouldn’t be.
“Fantastic article and what a comprehensive list!
We’ve just developed an eBook on how to incorporate Instagram into your social media marketing strategy at [URL]. It’d be great if you’d consider including that resource in your list as well.”
Link up with Link Round-Up Websites
Link Round-up sites are those that collect the best articles they come across in a certain period of time regarding a certain topic. Try building relationships with these individuals to try to get your blog on their radar and they may just feature you in an upcoming round-up article.
Give the answers on Q&A Websites
If your content answers a question and/or addresses a need (which it absolutely should), try finding a related question in an online forum and responding with some of your finest insights. At the bottom of your answer, include a link to your original article.
Guidelines for Promoting Content Online
Self-promotion and article distribution is a necessary step if you’re ever going to succeed at being of service to people in your market place. After all, if you build a top-notch tool and hide it in your basement, what good are you to the world?
Still, it’s a slippery slope and missteps are public and painful. To help prevent putting your foot in your mouth, try keeping a few things in mind before you go on any promotional tour:
- Play Around and Pay Attention
Borrow one, or all of these techniques to help you promote your content online. But the important thing is to try out different platforms, communities, posting times, and content types. What websites get the most interaction? What posts are most popular? Are any patterns emerging?
- One-Sided Conversations are Useless
In the real world and the digital world, one-sided conversations are a waste of time. Focus on quality, value, and service. If your social media accounts feel more like a running infomercial than a community, people are going to run from you. And remember: no one will bother sharing anything you write if you don’t share anyone else’s.
- Follow the Golden Rule of Spam
When people shove links in your face or shamelessly spam your website, how effective was their approach? I’m guessing not very effective at all. Don’t make that mistake.
- Shy or Sloppy?
If you’re hesitant to promote & distribute your posts because you fear they aren’t good enough, then you shouldn’t be publishing them in the first place. The only way you can sustainably build your business is to be proud of your work and send it out into the world knowing it’s up to par and packed with value.
- Give Before You Get
Can you think back to the last time someone (maybe even a stranger) demanded a favor from you, before ever giving you a hand with something? People are eager to help those who are helpful, not those who are looking for a handout. So ask yourself:
- Is there anyone whose content you can promote before asking them to do the same for you
- Are you frequently sharing other people’s content or only promoting your own?
- How can you get involved in a community (digital or otherwise) before leveraging it for your own personal gain?
Now tell me something, how do you promote content online? What works for you? What doesn’t work? Share your tips and tricks in the comments section below!