Most social media “experts” will tell you that social media is about connecting and having a conversation with your audience. While that’s all well and good and partially true, the other big benefit of social media is that it’s a powerful way to drive traffic to your website.
Here’s a simple formula that will boost your social media results and bring more visitors to your website: Use your blog. Here’s how.
Basic Social Media Content Sharing Strategy
1. Your blog should be the foundation of your social media strategy. Update it as often as possible—ideally several times each week. Studies have shown that users who blog five times per week receive five times more website traffic than those who don’t.
2. Share each blog post with your social media networks. Take the title and a shortened link (I like http://bit.ly since you can track click-throughs) and post it to Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, and Google+. Note that if you pre-schedule your blog posts, you can use http://hootsuite.com to schedule them to post to your accounts, except Google+ which isn’t yet available.
3. Repeat your tweets. For each new blog post, share it on Twitter multiple times over the next 60 to 90 days. That’s right: I’m suggesting that you repeat it often. We don’t all view Twitter at the same time, which means that you’re missing a large percentage of your following whenever you send out any tweet. I take each new blog post, share it the day it’s published, the next day, a few days later, the following week, the week after that, and then every other week for up to 90 days. Also, stagger the times that the tweet is shared. Send a tweet out at 6 a.m. on Monday, at 1 p.m. on Friday, at 10 a.m. on Saturday, etc.—just mix them up so they reach different followers at different times. Here’s a link to a Twitter schedule template that I use to keep track of posts.
4. Pin it on Pinterest. Yes, even a text-based blog post can be shared on Pinterest, provided you’ve included a photo with your blog post. Pin the photo and write the blog title as the description. Make sure you have a Pinterest category specifically for your blog.
Follow the above steps for each new blog post and your traffic is sure to increase. Here are some additional ways to generate more traffic from social media.
- Tweet the heck out of your old blog content. If you have archives dating back months or years and it’s still relevant to readers, start tweeting out your archives. You can manually schedule this, or for WordPress users, check out the Tweet Old Post plug-in, which will automatically tweet out your archives. One of my favorite tools!
- Share links to your services and products. While nobody should be on the social networks selling constantly, it is expected that you sell some of the time (I like the 90/10 rule: 90% content, 10% sales). So for every ten content posts on Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, Google+ or Pinterest, post a link to something you have for sale. It’s best to add some enticing commentary to make it stand out.
- Share content from other sources. One way to build loyalty with your audience is to serve as a resource. This means that you should provide value for them with the content you produce AND content from other industry sources. Share links to industry blogs, news, and videos. By providing consistent value, you’ll become a fan favorite.
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