How to Turn Your Website into a Social Media Hub

Who is not on social media these days? It’s become a rhetorical question. From 80 year old Grandmas to 8 year old pre-teens, everyone’s a part of the social media circus that makes marketers jump through hoops to control the reputation and engagement of our brands. Pew Research reports that about 73% of all online American adults are active on some social media or another. 41% of these use multiple social media platforms.

Social Media is Stealing Your Visitors

Even after being around for over a decade, social media shows no signs of a real slowdown. The time that people used to spend on other things like browsing through the web, visiting websites of brands they like, they now spend on social media.

Americans already devote the largest proportion of the time they expend online by networking with each other and brands they like on social media.

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As Jeff Bullas points out, this social media frenzy seems to be coming at the expense of visits to corporate websites. Coca-Cola which has over 22 million Facebook fans, saw traffic to its site drop by 40% in under 12 months.

Your website is your own little piece of real estate on the web!

On your site, you have 100% control over what is said about your brand. It is your digital spokesperson who does exactly what you say and does not charge a dime. So why would you want to drive precious traffic to ‘rented’ properties like social media whose rules you have no control over? Why not drive these eyeballs to your own site where you can convert these visitors into actual customers?

Bring Social Media to your Website – Turn it into a Social Hub

No one can deny the pull of social media. However, you need to combine the attractiveness of social media with the flexibility of your own website by turning social media’s strengths into traffic for your own site. Here’s how you do it:

1. Host your blog on your website

A blog is step one in content marketing. Companies that have blogs also have 97% more inbound links than those that do not. If you are serious about reclaiming your content and making your website a social media hub in its own right, create a blog and post on it regularly.

A blog builds its own readership which is beneficial to your website and its conversions. It can also be the destination that hosts other content used on your social networks, so that you maintain an archive of all your content on your own web property, as against leaving it solely on social networks where you just rent space without owning the property.

2. Publish regular content on your website or blog

Create content that is shareable and publish it first on your blog. You can either put a teaser of this content or in some cases the entire content itself as a link on your social networks. The idea is to give away only enough to arouse curiosity, so your fans and followers head to your site or blog to access the real meat of your content.

3. Social sharing buttons on the site and your blog

Allow readers to share their favorite posts from your blog to their network on social media with social sharing buttons. Selling handcrafted jewelry on your website? Add a Pinterest button on the image and other social sharing buttons on the product listing to allow your trinket aficionado to share their find with the rest of their friends. Who would complain about some free publicity on social media after all!

4. Show popularity index of each post on your post previews

Once you start posting regularly on your blog, readers will have a plethora of posts to pick from. In your post previews, show the popularity index of each post in the form of ‘number of likes’ or ‘number of shares’ or ‘number of retweets’.

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When readers see that a certain piece has been recommended highly by other readers they are more likely to read it, out of a fear of missing out on important information. They are similarly also more motivated to share it with their friends on social media. This simple action can give you a viral post with no extra hard work on your part.

5. “Come here for more!”

Great content can make people go to great lengths to access it. Once you have a repository of exciting, interesting content, use this as a hook to drive traffic from your social networks to your blog or website.

With every piece of content you publish, ask them to head over to your blog to get their hands on more such delightful content. The content you share on your site can be created by you; it could also be relevant content created by others that you share after receiving their permission to use it and attributing it properly.

6. Bring social to your login process

When you ask customers to leave a social network and head to your site or blog for more, it could be seen as an irritant. This is especially true if the user has to login to your site to access your premium content or share and comment on it. Avoid the hassle of filling up long winded registration forms that most customers balk at, by instead using social login solutions like LoginRadius that create a seamless transition between social media and third party websites.

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Social sign-on allows your users to log into your website using any of their social media IDs and with the correct implementation, it gives you access to targeted data that the customer shares on their social networks. This has the potential to become a win-win situation!

7. Create a vibrant community on your blog

Encourage interaction between your readers on your blog. Invite comments and respond to opinions of readers on your posts. Give back constructive feedback to your readers that will make them come back over and over again to your blog in times to come. Share valuable insights relevant to your readers exclusively on your blog, making it a sought-after destination for users in your industry.

Allow comments on your blog via social networks – this makes it easier for the reader to comment without creating an account with your site first. The comment will be flashed on the timelines of the readers’ friends on their social networks, giving your original post more visibility in the process.

8. Send email alerts whenever you create new content

Remember to touch base with your newsletter subscribers whenever you have something informative or interesting. The idea is to draw traffic to your website by all means possible. If you have been capturing and nurturing an email database, put it to good use by informing customers via email whenever you have new content for them on your blog.

Make sure you include a teaser or preview of your content in the email to pique their interest and make them click through to your website. My friend Tracy Vides has put up some excellent examples of email marketing on Steamfeed that will help you get started.

Over to You

Your corporate website allows you to showcase the best side of your brand, without any outside filters or negative inputs that may color the opinion of a visitor. It is your brand’s face on the web and is something that you probably have invested a lot of money building and driving traffic to via SEO, Content Marketing, PPC, email marketing and more.

Add social media to this list of tools that you use to grow your website’s online reputation. Engaging with fans on social media is great. But getting them to land on your site and actually buy from you is even better. A social media hub is an idea whose time has come.

Don’t wait for your competition to beat you to it. Go ahead and do build your website into a social magnet!

 

6 Dumb and Silly Reasons Why Newbie Bloggers Fail

mistakesFailing is something we don’t want (at ALL!).

Rather, we want other way round—Fame and Money. We want to become the next Darren Rowse, or the next Harsh Agarwal. With so many dreams and expectations, why only a bunch of bloggers get to the top? Why most of the bloggers withdraw from blogging with months (and even weeks)?

The reason is—failure. Does it mean successful ones do not make mistakes?
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6 Productivity Tips for Getting Things Done Fast

Do you find it hard sometimes to focus on your important tasks? Do you start too many tasks and projects but never finish any? And you’re not achieving the results you’re looking for as a result?

If you answer yes to any of the questions, it’s probably because you’re not managing your time very effectively. The following tips will help you manage your time and get things done fast and efficiently.

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1. Become clear of what you want to achieve

Firstly, you work at a project or task to achieve something. But if you’re not clear or don’t know exactly what you want to achieve, it will be difficult for you to know the steps you need to take to achieve your goals and you can’t stay motivated.

So determine what your short term and long term goals are and set deadlines for them. For example, what do you want to get or achieve in a year, or five years from now? What about in a week, a month, or 6 months? And what do you need to do to achieve both your long term and short term goals and when?

First get the general, big picture of the steps you need to take in the long term. Then list down specifically what tasks you need to undertake now.

2. Find an accountability partner

One of the greatest things about being self-employed is the freedom of not having to report to a boss or do what you choose to do.  However, that can also be a bad thing if you don’t know how to keep yourself accountable.

The truth is, it’s not always easy to keep yourself accountable or set your goals, create action plans, and check your progress, all on your own.

What you can do instead is agree with someone else to become accountability partners of each other. You’ll share with them about your goals, and plan of actions and they’ll continually check your progress, remind you of your action plans, and from time to time give you a friendly kick in the butt. You’ll also reciprocate and do the same to them so you both can stay on track and focused on achieving your goals.

3. Tackle your important tasks first

Sometimes, your to-do list can have a lot of items and if you start your day with tasks that are not important or urgent, you might reach the end of the day without accomplishing anything of significance.

To avoid this happening, determine what your important tasks are and do them first. Even if you haven’t done everything on your to do list by the end of the day, you’ll still accomplish a lot. Remember, the 80/20 rule always applies.

4. Arrange your files and folders in an organized manner

We sometimes can waste several minutes in the middle of a task browsing through folders just to find a single file.

Not being able to find what you want when you want it, will not only waste your time but also destruct you from focusing on what you’re working at.

Take some time and organize your folders in a way that you can to find files fast and easily. For example, if you were working on a number of websites, you could create different folders for each website with names such as “Site1″, “Site2″ etc…

If, then you wanted to start an article marketing campaign to promote your site number 1, for example, you would create a new folder named “Articles” under the “Site1″ folder and store your newly written articles in that folder.

Come up with a file management system that works best for you as soon as you can. By doing so you can save time and stay focused.

5. Get a private working place

Another good part about running an online business is that you can work from anywhere or any place. You can work in a coffee shop or in your bedroom in your pajamas as long as you have a computer an internet access.

But if you really want to take your business to the next level, you need to consider getting some private space that is free from destruction so that you can work uninterruptedly. This way, your productivity level will rise and you can achieve more.

6. Block social media websites

How many times have you ever found yourself chatting, watching videos, checking emails or instant messaging on social media websites in the middle of a task? You can get sidetracked easily and find yourself spending more time than necessary on those sites.

If you can’t stop or limit yourself, you can use tools like “Anti-Social” to block out social media websites on your computer.

There you have it, six tips for becoming more productive. All in all, if you set clear goals, become accountable, and avoid destructions, you can achieve what you want in your online marketing endeavors.

Do you have any other tips for getting things done even faster?

7 Strategies I Use To Increase My Blog Traffic (I Bet You Can Too!)

Today, I decided to share with you some of the effective methods and strategies I am using in my blog. The strategies that I’m sharing with you require patience and hard work for implementation. Of course, they are easy. It’s not what the common bloggers commonly suggests to do. Let me put some effective sure-fire strategies to get real-time success in blogging.

Methods for Rankings and Traffic

1 – Long blog posts works for everyone, believe me.

Length of the blog post matters a lot in blog posts, Google is ranking long, insightful posts higher than those blog posts with a shorter length. As with the introduction of Google knowledge graph, the importance of the length of the content has become important.

Other advantages of lengthy content are:

1. It is easy to target, multiple keywords throughout the post and thus rank for multiple keywords.
2. We can include more internal links throughout the content.
3. Possibility of being indexed in Google in-depth articles, and thus getting loyal readers, who love more content.
4. Rank higher, and double your chances of ranking in the first page of SERPs.

There is no doubt that blog posts with great insightful content increases your blog’s search visibility in SERPs. The results may not be observed if yours is a new blog, it may take some time. However, once the blog post ranks for the keyword, there is no chance of a drop in rankings.

We can say that long form content is beneficial for long time. Content length is the sure-fire formula for getting high exposure and rankings.

 

2 – Quality blog posts

I think I need not stress the importance of quality content. I know all of you ABT readers are already tired of blog posts that stress the importance of quality. However, no blog post is complete without stressing the importance of quality content.

A site with optimized quality content is given more credit than other sites, it is better if you made your site content interesting for human traffic. Google algorithm will find out if a site is beneficial to the human user. Google algorithm will determine how much time a user spends while visiting a site based on different search queries. If a site is visited often and user likes to visit it again, its ranking stays better due to decrease in bounce rate and increase in click through rate.

 

3 – Include LSI keywords instead of keyword stuffing

Victim of keyword stuffing? No worries, it happens to the best of us. So use LSI keywords. So, what are LSI keywords? Keywords related to the main keyword is called LSI keywords. Let me make myself clear to you now.

Take an example, you are writing a post on “Google Plus and its benefits”.  For this topic, LSI keywords may be hashtags, G+, communities, just all terms related to it.

Instead of including the main keyword throughout the post and be a victim of keyword stuffing, include LSI keywords throughout the post, which may look natural.

Chaitanya wrote a nice guide on using LSI keywords you can read here.

4 – Diversify anchor texts

Anchor texts are the texts that come in links. For example, in subscription button “Subscribe now” may be an anchor text, which leads you to the subscription page.

Like this while obtaining backlinks, do not include the large number of exact anchor texts, it may look unnatural. Some of the examples of diversified anchor texts are “Post title (exact match)”, “this post”, “click here”.

Keeping the same anchor texts for a single post gives an impression to Google that you are indulging in the bulk backlinks scheme or black hat practices. Writing blog posts focusing on SEO, link, rankings, rather than focusing on quality content leads to these problems. Be natural.

5 – Target a keyword

I know that with the ineffectiveness of the Google keyword planner and extinction of Google Adwords keywords tool, it has been never easy to find and implement effective keyword.

So it’s now the time to make use Google suggest. I don’t tell you to head over to Google search, type in and look for suggestions.

There is an awesome tool called UberSuggest that gives you never ending list of Google suggestions for a keyword. You can make use of this tool, make a list of surefire long tail keywords and put them in the Keyword planner for search volumes and competitions. This is one of the effective free ways. I am also using this to find worthy long-tail keywords.

If you want premium, WordTracker is the best of all.

6 – Regularly update your site

Loyal readers of your blog expect quality content from you very often. So in order to keep them from visiting and alerting Google about your blog, it is necessary to publish QUALITY posts more often. If you got a blog, keep it updated and post regularly, write quality content and do not forget to get customers or users’ feedback.

Keep the posting frequency between 3-4 times a week. Frequency is less important than quality. If you have extraordinary quality, unique content, then posting 2 times a week is enough. But you know…

7 – Make use of bold and italics

Typography matters a lot. Readers tend to love great content with great typography. The majority of readers are speed-readers, to stop them from doing so, use speed breakers, like bold and italic texts. Italize sentences like conversations and bold important points.

This also helps attract the readers and improve your blog’s typography.

Conclusion

So, above are the strategies I am using in my blog, and my blog is responding very well to these strategies. Implementing these strategies in your blog will surely lead to your blogging success, but it may take some time to get results. If you are a newbie and followed all these strategies, I can assure that you will stand out of the crowd within a year or 6 months. As with anything hard work and patience is important.

I’m sure you have liked this article. Please make those static share buttons, dynamic.

Which methods are you using to increase your blog traffic? I’d love to hear from you in comments!

Taking Your Blog to a New Level: A Fight between Passion and Money

Blogging gives you a chance to have your voice heard online. I’ve found blogs to be the right platform for conveying what you want to say. They also serve to establish your business, product or brand effectively. There are endless possibilities with a blog that you can make use of. There are millions of blogs at present, but not all of them are successful.

This has made me think of the key purpose of blogging and what makes it a success. While some think that being passionate is a vital necessity, there are others who suggest the money that you get out of blogging is what keeps more and more people drawn towards it. I’ve come up with some important points that touch upon the reason people take to blogging. And I hope this will help those of you who are starting out blogging afresh.

Why Passion is Necessary?

While most of the bloggers I meet accept that making money out of their blog is their goal, this is not however what they ultimately want out of the blog. The satisfaction and content feeling that you get when you have truly accomplished what you feel is right, is the ultimate result that many want.

But most of us are sidetracked easily by the process of making money. Though getting quick money is indeed gratifying, it can’t satisfy you in the long term and the gain will also not be substantial if you just think of the money alone.

Getting Involved

In blogging whatever concepts you write about have been dealt with already in some form or other. The main difference according to me is how different your approach is. Unique and exclusive ideas are welcomed by all.

This fresh perspective can be brought about only when you are truly passionate or interested in what you write about. I’ve seen many a content and quality suffer because of not being connected to the topics your blog features.

Making Money

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Source:- FreeDigitalPhotos

Though I may sound hypocritical, blogging about topics that you are not connected with can take their toll on your blog, however profitable they are. Going along with the trend on taking shortcut methods may give you temporary satisfaction, but in the long term this will be counterproductive and cause your downfall. If you start your blog thinking that you can become successful overnight, I’m sorry to disappoint you, but this is not going to happen.

When you look at how the famous bloggers like Darren Rowse, Michael Dunlop, John Chow, Steve Pavlina, and others have become popular, you’ll find that they took many years to accomplish the feat.

So what is the solution?

If you want to make your blog a success, you need passion for the topic you’re blogging about, and also do it the right way. This will create the exposure you need and down the line you will start making money out of it too. Here are some tips I’ve put together that will kick start your blog and get it functional in a short period.

Quality always Triumphs

The Google algorithms and other stiff competition you face online can hamper your ranking in the search engine and also affect your exposure. By focusing on the content quality instead of relying on the quantity to attract traffic you can succeed better.

Powerful Content

What you write should not be a modified version of what can be found in other blogs. This can make viewers lose interest soon. The content should be unique, magnetic, and dynamic in nature, if you want it to be shared and make it a success.

powerful content

Source:- FreeDigitalPhotos

Treat Your Visitors Royally

Instead of looking at how established your blog is, you need to value and cherish each and every visitor, even if they are only a few. I’ve found that long term and lasting relationships are a better way to reach your goal. A happy visitor or customer will definitely bring in success and profits. And what do you prefer- hundreds of random visitors who are not interested in your content, or a handful of paying clients? Make wise choices when it comes to engaging connections.

Conclusion

When you look at the successful bloggers, a majority will confirm that the passion for the work is the key factor that had made them persevere and they make a success and profit out of it. If you are taking first steps towards setting up your blog, the aspects I’ve touched upon will help you make a clear and better choice and propel you towards a total success.