This is a guest post by Kieran Fowler
When we here “organic” blog growth, we’re usually hearing a reference to Google search traffic, in which case we are always told to focus on SEO. That’s solid advice, yet while SEO is important, growing your blog doesn’t always boil down to a cheap keyword war.
Obviously you need to do your keyword research, though I’m of the opinion that if you’re truly producing quality content and creating something that helps people, keywords (in large part) will take care of themselves.
Rather when I refer to “organic” traffic, I’m talking about honest straight up methods that you can employ to get real, interested and curious people to visit your site, read your posts and ultimately talk about the product and information you’re providing.
Thus I’m not talking about Twitter, StumbleUpon or any social networking or pinging strategy to try and garner numbers by happenstance. Instead, these five tips are about getting “organic” traffic by appealing to the needs of real honest to goodness human beings.
- 1. Write content that is useful because it either solves a problem or fulfills a need.
- 2. Offline marketing via business cards.
- 3. Use your blog to create a community.
- 4. Reach out to other websites and bloggers in your niche for reasons other than guest posts.
- 5. Develop a memorable style and trademark way of showcasing your information.
1. Write content that is useful because it either solves a problem or fulfills a need.
When you’re truly gifted or an expert in something, you essentially have the potential to be a “consultant” in whatever field that is. If you have a blog, that blog is the medium you use to reach potential “clients”.
Most people on the internet are looking for this kind of relationship between their own minds and what they see on their screen. They almost always are there for one of the following two reasons:
a. They have a problem they need to be solved.
b. They have a need that needs to be fulfilled.
If your blog does one of these two things clearly and with a reasonable level of quality, it will grow with time. When you read that you need “great content” to grow your blog, this is what that means.
Have a blog that helps somebody do something and provides unique and valuable information. It’s the cornerstone of word-of-mouth marketing and organic growth. This is when people begin to seek your blog out rather than just accidentally run into it on a social networking site.
2. Offline marketing via business cards.
I’m not sure how many bloggers utilize business cards for their site, but I’m under the impression that it’s not many. With great companies like Vista Print willing to shell out hundreds of them if you just pay the shipping, there’s really no reason why every blogger shouldn’t be taking advantage of this.
It’s true that you could leave them anywhere, but I’d recommend places where people interested in your niche are more likely to congregate. For example, if your blog is geared towards music, leave them at local music stores, high schools or coffee shops. They’ll probably yield a better return than a rest stop bathroom on the interstate.
3. Use your blog to create a community.
This might require that you know a few people who are interested in what your blog is offering, but if that’s the case, conscript them to provide content and help form a community around the concept of your blog.
If your goal is to help people do a certain thing, put some work and effort into finding the people who want to do that thing, then follow up by finding some people (other than yourself) who can help them accomplish that given task.
It might sound vague without a topic, but it’s what every good business does. They collect a group of professionals who can help people get a certain product or type of information they want, then their marketers target the people who are looking for that product or information. It’s a simple formula that somehow works, and there’s no reason it can’t work for your blog.
4. Reach out to other websites and bloggers in your niche for reasons other than guest posts.
Guest posting is important, but it’s not the only reason you should reach out to someone from another site in your niche. Doing this as much as possible means you’re networking with other people who share a common interest and goal with you; to build a successful website of the given topic.
If you can find any reason to touch base with them, take advantage of that opportunity. While there’s no guarantees of an immediate return, there’s no way to tell what kind of successes and opportunities it will lead to for both parties.
5. Develop a memorable style and trademark way of showcasing your information.
When people are searching for information or trying to accomplish something online, they like to have a certain level of familiarity from where they get that information. Coming up with a consistent style and format with which you present your information makes your blog posts more likely to retain and encourage viewership.
Now I’m not arguing that you shouldn’t update and improve the look of your site, but make sure that you establish a successful and memorable format in terms of how often you post, what kind of font you use and how you style your writing. It doesn’t have to be identical every time, but it should bear the mark of an established trend. Here are a few things to keep streamlined.
1) Font style and presentation.
2) Paragraph and title text format.
3) Method of presenting questions.
4) Method of providing answers.
5) Placement of social sharing buttons.
6) Informational trends and narratives.
Keeping all these things consistent will improve your chances to both keep current readers and attract new ones. It’s in step with the idea that once you find something that works, just keep doing it over and over again.
Don’t be afraid of consistency and even a bit of repetitiveness. It’s not boring and besides that, the same people are necessarily reading your blog every day, or digging into your archives for old posts.
Keep your information in a recognizable format and people will be able to easily identify your writing and post style, thus upping your potential for organic traffic and growth.
Kieran Fowler is a self-proclaimed internet marketing genius. He loves sharing his latest tips with small business owners on various online blogs. Click to find out more about what Webeden does for small businesses.
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