Last Updated: 4/17/2017
When you first start blogging, it can be very difficult to gain readers and break into the inner circles of whatever your niche is. Sometimes bloggers can be very cliquey and struggle to accept new bloggers into their ..coven. Blogging coven. ;)
As a newer blogger myself (only have been seriously blogging since March 2015, although I've been blogging for about a decade before that), I still deal with daily concerns about whether or not people will visit my site. I have at least one monthly breakdown where my fiance has to talk me down off the ledge of quitting the blog.
This is tough stuff! So here are a few tips to help you out. Take it from someone who's been there and is still learning every day.
Comment, comment, comment
When you find a blog you like, make note of it. Maybe you bookmark it in a special folder, or, if you're like me, you create a Daily Reads section in your side bar with all the links. That allows me to maintain what blogs I'm following without a bunch of trying to remember. When you find these blogs, make sure you COMMENT.
Leave a note with something in YOUR life that is relative to the content in the post, and make it interesting and genuine. Not only will the author of the blog be seeing it, but likely, if her following is loyal, the readers will also be checking out the comments.
Make sure that there is always a link back to your blog. If someone likes your comment, they're likely to visit you. (There is a bit of controversy over this, but I know that if there is a link in the comment back to their blog, I'm 10x more likely to click over and leave them a comment.)
Need some amazing blogs to comment on? Try these!
Write relatable content
There aren't many people in the world who identify with a kitchen sink obsession, but if that's what you're passionate about, DO IT. People relate to passion, and even if your niche is "weird", your tribe will find you.
My very favorite thing to read about is blogging. Yep - blogs about blogging. I love learning about expanding, or social media marketing, or newsletter composition. Because I love reading about it, I also love writing about it. You know what they say: write what you would read.
If you'd read about unique farmhouse kitchen sinks... then try writing about awesome ways to keep your sink clean, DIYs, and hot new sinks coming out. I'm kind of getting myself interested in farmhouse sinks as I'm writing this...
Share like it's going out of style
Make sure you're sharing your blog posts on your personal Facebook. That's definitely one way to gain a loyal following. Yep, my mom reads my blog and she loves it! Lots of my friends do. That's because I share content on my PERSONAL Facebook page. However, there's a lot to be said for a public Facebook page for your blog. One thing to be wary of is having TOO MANY social networks, so choose a few that really resonate with you and that you find yourself on anyway. My favorite is Pinterest (I LOVE getting to know new people, so follow me!), so I make sure that I am constantly on it.
I also utilize the help of Tailwind to make sure that I'm constantly and consistently pinning 90+ times per day. I know, it's extreme!! But that's my favorite platform and I see no reason to NOT be ridiculously active on it.
Boardbooster actually ALSO plays a roll in my activity. I have it set to loop on certain boards once or twice a day so that if I forget to pin from my Tailwind account, at least Boardbooster is reminding people that I'm there. Plus, it pulls the oldest posts from the bottom of the board and repins them to the top, so when there are contributors to a board, they actually get a chance for their pin to be seen.
This is just one of the tricks I learned from an e-book by House of Brazen, called "Make Your First Affiliate Sale in 24 Hours." She has a complete Boardbooster tutorial in the e-book, showing you exactly how she made affiliate sales by using Pinterest.
Another big tip I have is to share your blog posts routinely - not just once or twice after you've posted them initially. For example, I used to write a blog post, share it, then forget it. Whitney Ryan has a great blog post glossary template (you can find it in this post) that you can download and use for your blog posts so that you don't forget them. I recommend organizing your blogs in such a way and keeping track of when you shared them last.
Interact on social media
Visit people's Facebook pages and let them know you did, and leave a link back to your Facebook page. This is a very effective technique I've just started doing. Also participate in Twitter parties, re-tweet people's relevant posts, and comment on people's Instagram photos. Make sure there is always a very clear link-back to your blog. It should never be difficult to figure out how to read your content.