How to get more blog traffic: Why it’s not enough to have brilliant content


Kenneth H. Blanchard, author of The One Minute Manager, said:

“If you don’t blow your own horn, someone else will use it as a spittoon.”

Well, that’s a lovely image. But, it’s true.

I can sit here and post all the brilliant content I want and it will just sit here all by itself being brilliant if no one stops by to read (and, by the way, share it).

I’m sorry. What was that? No, the brilliance of this blog is not debatable.

But, you digress.

The thing is creating content is one thing. Getting that content seen is another.

In other words, if you blog it, they won’t come.

I’d love to sit here and write brilliant content and make my way to the New York Times‘ bestseller list.. Okay, I’d actually love to sit at the beach and write the brilliant content and make the list.

But it’s not just going to happen. I have to work at it.

Sadly for me, I got a lot more traffic when I was a political snarxist writing under a pseudonym. But that’s not the writer I want to be.

I spent some time last week updating my about pages, showing my work and giving you plenty of reasons to hire me. The pages still need tweaking, but yeah, I’d hire me.

Are you getting the traffic you want on your blog? Here are some other ideas to help you get noticed.

1. Pick a theme/focus/niche and stick with it. I admit I have a hard time with that here. I’m narrowing in on the whole writing aspect. But there will be times I write about family, acting, faith and more.

2. Don’t be yawn worthy. Regardless of the subject, make it zing. Stir up a conversation.

3. Be relevant. When I’m writing for Richmond Bible Examiner, I have a hard time staying current with topics. I’m on several email lists that send me headlines. More often than not, I’ll get into an article only to realize that the source is two months old. Sometimes it’s still relevant. Most often, not. So, in addition to writing, I have to pay attention to what is going on.

4. Post on a schedule. I’m trying to have at least one original post every weekday. Your may choose to post once a week, or on a different schedule. But, be consistent. If you’re not, your readers will forget about you.

5. Less is more. Don’t get too wordy. My daytime job is with the government. Oh, how I wish I could get this message across. If we could get Congress to eliminate about 50% of the excessive verbiage, we could balance the budget, lower taxes and end hunger. Wait, now I’m digressing.

6. Encourage readers to subscribe to your RSS feed or newsletter. I’ve got the RSS feed. I’m working on the newsletter. I need a staff.

7. Make what you write SEO friendly. I’m still learning on this one. In some ways, I’m resistant because I simply want to write and not to have to systematically consider the words I’m choosing.

8. Pay attention to what people are reading. What are people sharing?

9. Speak up. This is yet another place where I need to up my game. Take time to read and comment on other blogs. And, when someone comments here, thank them for stopping by. This is where Facebook is a little frustrating. I’m glad that people are reading. But I wish they’d comment here instead of on Facebook. Or, at least both. It’s a traffic thing.

10. Social media. I promote the blog on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest and Google+. I need to do a better job with things like Tumblr and Reddit. And while, yes, I wish the Facebook comments would appear here on the blog, that is where I currently get most of my readership.

There you have it. My brilliance for the day.

What’s working on your blog?

While this is a bit off topic, last night I saw the Richmond Triangle Players production of Cabaret. It was pretty amazing. Cabaret was the first musical I saw on stage. I think I was in the 7th grade and I fell in love with Sally Bowles. Trust me, it was a much tamer version than what I saw last night (the run has been extended through July 19, go see it). But it sparked a love for the theater and a desire to perform that I’ve returned to in recent years. My first time on a real stage was at the same theater where I saw Cabaret. I was a sailor in Anything Goes.

So, while this post is about blowing my own horn, this time I’ll let Gabriel do it.

And speaking of horns. if anyone is staging Come Blow Your Horn, I’m available.


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    • Lynn on June 27, 2014 at 11:44 pm

    I don’t know what an rss feed is.

    • Mike on June 28, 2014 at 3:08 pm

    In simplest terms, you can put the RSS feed from a site into a Feed Reader, or News Aggregator so that you can go to one source and see the headlines from all the sites you follow. Google Reader used to do this, but it went away. I currently use Info Reader, but I’m not that happy with it.

    In the right column at the bottom there’s a link for the Entries RSS. You would get that link, put it into your web reader, then when you went to that page, you’d see headlines and summaries from all the sites you follow.

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