Do you spend hours each week promoting your blog and posts? Do you pay for programs to automate some of your tasks? Do you actively build relationships with other bloggers or are you just offering lip service and moving on? Are you at the mercy of social media algorithms even as you build your audience?
We all use these methods and they are great when you play by the rules. But just like everything in life you only see big returns when you take the effort to follow the rules and work hard. You need to learn how to use those tools. Readers engage in different forms. And as Bloggers we need to identify exactly how our audience is doing that. We need to keep up with what is working at the moment and be on top of trends as they change. And they DO change more often than you think. How much you know bout your audience is important to keeping them while you cultivate new readers. Being able to measure those preferences is a key element.
Email subscriptions, different Social Media, eBooks and PDFs, Giveaways, Article Series, and paid promotions are all great ways to grow your blog. And I am sure all these are working for you in one way or another. The tools you use to keep up with how well your efforts are working are more important than you know. And the easier they are to use and track the subtle changes the more you will benefit by using them.
I am sure most of you have heard of Blog Hops. These can also be referred to as Linky Parties, Linkups, Carnivals, and Parties. A group of bloggers will team together and host a party where guests will leave their post links. The party updates the links on the teams blogs in real time. Some have rules regarding the type and number of links they allow or a specific type of blogger that can participate. The guest automatically increases the reach of those posts by the number of readers on each of the teams blogs. It is suggested that the guests leave comments for the host, follow on a social media, and visit other links that appeal to them and engage on those blogs. The guest gets the benefit of more eyes on their post and blog. You have the opportunity of getting visitors to give you a page view, trip your ads, see what all you have to offer, and gain a loyal reader and friend. The hosts of the party also get these benefits as well as letting other bloggers know they exist and are eager to engage with you. The tool I use is Link Party Animal.
There are two important things to remember when you use this tool. Follow the rules, and ENGAGE! But don’t just rely on how many comments your posts receive to determine how well parties are doing for you. You need good stats. I host three parties and visit 200 blogs a week. It sounds daunting, but many of these blogs are hosting the same party. As I am visiting each host I leave a comment. I enter my allowed links on the first host, and visit one link at each of the other hosts party. This means there are times I visit up to 6 links or more per party and increase my engagement in a matter of minutes. The beauty of this is I am certain readers are exposed to my posts as I am controlling how many see them. I am not relying on a social medias decision on where and when to display my posts.
How many of you use Tailwind, Buffer, Hootsuite, CoSchedule or some other service to help you schedule your posts for retweeting or publishing? Do you rely on their summary of your shared and visited links? Do you know who is sharing what and what system is giving you the greatest bang for your buck? You need to be. Don’t assume something is working or failing with just those reports. You deserve more and you need to expect more.
Link Parties can offer you all the information you need and in real-time, too. But you need a partner. There is a program called Link Party Animal that does just that. Once you have found the parties that interest you from their directory, you can schedule your posts and they will be added to the parties as they open. You get stats on how many times a party brought visitors to your post. How many of those visitors opened EACH post. You get a daily summary of the engagement you generated as well as a weekly summary. All the while you are aware of what post and what party brought you the most traffic. And believe me, your best guesses aren’t any where near the actual numbers. I spend an average of 20 minutes a week setting up my schedule. Then I spend approximately an hour a day engaging with other bloggers and their blogs. Your time will change by how many parties and hosts you decide to attend. You take the info you receive and go after that traffic. You can’t cheat and run or your efforts aren’t helping your blog. You need to give this method a try. I spend much less time promoting my blog with more results than I do on social media alone. Every little bit helps to grow your readers and generate more income.
I have written a tutorial with loads of screenshots on how to use Link Party Animal. You can view the PDF tutorial at this link. The best part???? This program is FREE.Do you spend hours each week promoting your blog and posts? Do you pay for programs to automate some of your tasks? Are you at the mercy of social media algorithms even as you build your audience? Then this article is for you!Click To Tweet
I would love for you to visit all my weekly parties. Over The Moon opens on Sundays at 6:00 pm EST. Wonderful Wednesday opens Tuesdays at 9:00 pm EST. Thursday Favorite Things opens Thursdays at 9:00 am EST. Come and get inspired!
Disclosure: I am not an affiliate of Link Party Animal. The only benefit I am receiving is the opportunity to visit all your wonderful blogs and posts. I hope you will visit mine in return.