Social media is a foreign concept to some, and intimidating to others who typically are against the use of Facebook and Twitter, but one must realize the value of sites such as these! What can they do for you, you might ask. Well, you can use these tools to optimize your business through advertising and marketing. I am going to discuss the value of social media marketing and how to use analytics to increase your traffic and in turn, increase your customer base!
You have your domain name, or blog, so, how do you develop followers and appropriately market your website? First, you need to register with Google analytics, for those of you with that ability (sorry wordpress.com users). Go to http://www.google.com/analytics/ to create an account (It’s FREE). This site allows you to see where your traffic comes from geographically, and what sites are bringing you viewers. Your visitor data is important to track and analyze because you can use this to strategize through marketing and increase the volume of visitors. You can visit their help site here to answer any questions you may have about the site: http://www.google.com/support/analytics/?hl=en.
In my experience with blogging, I found that analyzing what type of articles draw the most attention, and posting more of those is highly effective in bring people to your site, but if your site has a specific vision, don’t stray from that vision, as it will confuse your readers about the meaning of your blog.
Also, looking at your statistics, you will see how many times you need to post to keep people visiting your site. If you plan on posting once a week, you will have a mass of traffic around the days you post. If you’d rather have a constant flow of visitors, then think about posting three to five times a week, if not daily. I live by a rule here, “the more you post, the more you’re read,” and it’s worked well for me when trying to figure out what to do with a bad day of stats: POST!
Now, I’ve already written about the Tweet Deck and how you can draw traffic from people by jumping into their conversations. Don’t forget how important this strategy can be for your blog; you can bring traffic from all over the world in this way. View the “Tweet Deck” article here.
Another way I’ve found myself drawing more traffic, was going on Facebook and “liking” different groups, then posting on the wall. For example, I wrote an article about the “Jersey Shore,” so I joined Snookie groups and “I love the Jersey Shore,” groups and posted my article with a brief summary. This brought my traffic from Facebook to DOUBLE!
Facebook is also handy in ways where you can buy ad space, and post a flyer or something else you’ve designed toadvertize your blog, and this brings random traffic from Facebook in a massive way (they don’t have to be friends with you to see your advertisement. Also, consider making a fan page after you’ve become a little more established, and send it to your friends, asking them to send it to their friends. People put little emphasis on how much friends on Facebook can help you. Think about asking your friends to post your article as their status, or on other friends’ walls! This brings your traffic to new heights through showing more and more people the article, and perhaps those people will post your article on their site to show their friends and it becomes this brilliant web of postings, and massive amounts of traffic for your site.
Encourage people to subscribe to your blog, and set up email lists to send out notifications of your next post! Email lists tend to grow, so sending this post out to about ten or more people a day, or week, will draw interesting traffic, if you ask those people you emailed to send the email to their friends, ten or more. Again, you’ll have a web of viewers, but it starts with your email, so don’t forget this important step of advertising.
If you and your friends have Gmail, you may want to think about asking them to add you to their rss feed. This makes visiting your site daily a breeze. Also, encouraging this through your advertisements, you can draw a constant flow of daily readers, and it will make your work a little easier, having a daily or weekly following without you having to post or email them.
As a final note, think about creating an interesting way of displaying your blog through Photoshop or Adobe Illustrator. If you make your advertisement exciting and interesting, people will be more inclined to click on it rather than dismiss it. Advertise creatively and you will see results. There are thousands of possibilities for what you can create, and it doesn’t have to take forever. Download a background off of google images, and put your blog’s theme in it. Personalized flyers are an intriguing way of marketing to draw attention to your site outside of the internet!
So, I will leave you with this thought: The more you post, the more people will look at your site. The more you advertise, the more traffic you’ll bring. Work hard, and you will see results. Good luck.