Did I tell you that…
This blog generated approx. 60,000 Quality Traffic and helped me earn a little above $35,000 income in 2013?
That amount may be nothing to six figure earners, but I think it’s a good income for the average Joe.
Whether you need to breathe new life into your blog or achieve more in your online business, you need to embrace these content marketing strategies that worked for me.
To become a successful content marketer, do you need to drive more traffic or simply optimize for conversions?
The answer: You need to do BOTH.
As I share these time tested strategies below, you’ll observe how to sync marketing and sales in order to drive revenue. At this point in your marketing calendar, taking baby steps in the right direction is required.
The results of qualified traffic and increased earnings may not be instant, but give it time because it’d surely manifest. Who would have thought that this blog CAN earn that much in just 12 months.
This post is not an income report, but you’ll like to know that I’m already on my way to earning 2x what I earned in 2013.
The common traffic myth
What if I show you the top ways to drive FREE traffic to your website, would you gladly do it? Of course you’ll jump on it.
But here’s what you might not know – There is no FREE traffic anywhere. Whether you paid some money to send traffic to your website or you used SEO, social media and blogging you are still paying for it. Money is not the only medium of payment…
What about time?
Time spent writing blogs, engaging on Twitter and Facebook is not free. In fact, time is the most precious resources in the world.
So when next you read blogs claiming to send you free traffic, you’ve to be careful, otherwise you’d waste the whole of your day struggling to nail it.
In late 2013, I discovered that buying traffic is the best way to quickly scale up your business, and make more money – although you’ve to learn the best tips so you don’t go broke.
In all, I didn’t buy traffic. I used guest blogging, SEO and a little social media traffic every now and then. The point I’m trying to pass onto you is that all traffic strategies COSTS money or time.
If you don’t have money, then get ready to spend time. But if you have some marketing budget, you can literally sleep while your traffic increases.
What is content marketing?
Content marketing simply means creating useful and interesting content and distributing them using the right channels in order to ATTRACT potential customers/clients to your website, and SATISFY them.
The keyword in that definition is “Attract.”
Traditional advertising doesn’t encourage “ATTRACTION” in any way. Offline Advertisers don’t necessarily care whether their message brings you Satisfaction. When you watch a TV ad, can you easily ask questions or get to know what’s happening behind the Ads?
With content marketing, your target audience has easy access to you. They can fill out your online forms, ask questions, and send feedback on how you can improve your products/services.
They can even follow you on Twitter and visit your Facebook page for updates – thus keeping pace with your brand.
Content marketing as a form of advertising allows the prospects to make their own buying decisions. This is what makes it UNIQUE and in-demand in today’s world.
A lot of people have their own taste as to consuming your information. Most people prefer videos to articles, while others are in love with podcasts and e-books?
Now we can dive into the top time-tested strategies that generated 60k quality traffic and approximately $35k to my online business in 2013. And in no particular order, here they are:
Define who you are
What title are you known for: A blogger or affiliate marketer?
Well, those titles will never get you the traffic and income you want. Here’s a shocker: Your customers/readers/clients don’t understand who a blogger is.
They don’t even care whether or not you’re an affiliate marketer or a website designer. No matter what you’re called by, that’s your own concern not your audience’s.
In other words, you’ve to define who you are. Who are you? The best way to explain this is to look at the work you do. What exactly do you help clients/achieve in their own business?
For me, I write posts and articles that engage audience and persuade them to take action. As a result of my work, my clients call me a freelance copywriter. And I’m okay with that because it’s a title they gave me.
One of the reasons why your blog isn’t growing in readership and income is because you’re just like everyone out there – Bloggers who update their blogs.
You don’t have a VALUE. Your image is too common out there. You’ve ignored the most vital thing in your business. Your readers don’t even know who you are. Yes, they’ve seen your photo but does it matter in their bottom line?
So when a prospect/reader enquires to know who you are, start by telling them your name and then describe what you can help them actualize in their own business. That’s who you are.
“Be specific and arouse curiosity!” Yep, that’s what you need to make your headlines the best of its kind.
When you create a piece of content, make sure the headline/title is specific just like the post you’re reading now.
I’m revealing the simple ways to use content marketing to grow your business, and probably earn extra income for yourself.
Unfortunately, not everyone knows how to captivate their audience with powerful and emotion-driven headlines.
You see, if your headline isn’t sticky, no matter how useful your content may be, no one is going to click and read it. This is one of the reasons why bloggers complain and quit before getting results.
To your target audience, when you use “Free” on your headline, it can inspire people to click it, but to you, that word is quite different. Remember our explanation earlier on the common traffic myth.
Some words can trigger response while other words would drown your efforts.
Your marketing goal
Every content marketer must have a goal for reaching out to the target audience? Mine is to lead prospects through my sales funnel and convert them into customers.
In that case, when I write headline for articles, posts, short reports, whitepapers, videos and even podcasts, I do it in such a way as to speak emotionally to the person.
Emotion is the greatest driver of sales, as copywriters have already researched in years past.
Did you see the headline of this post? It’s emotionally crafted, and justified by logic. That’s why you clicked to read it.
Let’s review the title again and it’d be clearer to you:
How I Generated 60,000 Quality Traffic in 2013 [8 Simple Strategies]
The logic is to drive 60,000 traffic to your website, the emotional driver is for you to build a popular blog that clients can admire, and advertisers can pay to advertise – thus making you richer.
Maybe you have not considered the emotional aspect of doing content marketing, but that’s the key to achieving success.
Generic headline will make your content too busy to notice. Remember that millions of content are published at different blogs and only the best can thrive.
Headlines that speaks of itself and not addressing the problem of your target audience can destroy everything you’ve worked so hard to achieve.
How to write an emotional headline
- Know your reader. Find out where your prospects/readers hang out a lot and get involved with whatever they’re doing. Gradually, you’ll uncover the right words they’re asking questions with. Those are their deep-sited thoughts. Use those words to write your headline.
- Keep a swipe file. Be ready at all times to jot down whatever you hear from your target audience. It could simply be a question or feedback on your product/service. Write it down and refer to it when next you write content.
- Model catchy headlines. Has any headline hooked you? Don’t let it go. Study it closely; identify the words used and how they’re used. For it to me catchy, it means they emotional gem is there.
- Read fitness magazines. Have you been reading fitness magazines lately? It can help you discover emotional words to use in your headlines. No, you don’t have to be a personal trainer or dietitian before you can read their magazine, content marketers should read it – it’ll open your mind to what’s available out there.
Get off your website
Your need to update your website regularly (of course!).
But don’t sleep there all day, you need to get out and seek traffic from other places. The beauty of this is that once you position yourself as the go-to expert in your niche, you’ll consistently drive quality traffic to your website.
In 2012, when my blog was lagging behind in terms of traffic, I had an idea. What if I go on guest blogging spree? Like writing guest posts for those authority websites in my niche? Sounds good, huh?
I wrote and successfully got 303 quality guest posts published across A-list blogs. Within 3 months, the daily traffic to my blog was too impressive to ignore. Funny enough, most keywords I wasn’t optimizing with started to rank in Google top 10 and have been like that for a long time.
Isn’t it time you get off your blog and use other high-traffic networks to gain targeted traffic to your website?
Are you ready to use other channels to drive traffic?
Create slide presentations
Slideshare.net is an authority website. Google loves this site and if you can create a useful presentation, the awesome community will assist you in promoting it across hundreds of media channels. Content marketers will embed it on their contents and cite it everywhere they go.
On top of that, millions of B2B owners and internet entrepreneurs visit slideshare.net monthly, and if your content happens to be on their homepage and well-optimized for their respective long-tail keyword you’ll get a lot of views and visits back to your website.
I experimented with slideshare.net a while ago, without putting so much effort into the promotion or asking my twitter followers to tweet it, I got over 1000+ views and 302 email opt-ins.
How to create a useful slide presentation:
- Get Microsoft Powerpoint. MS Powerpoint enables you to create presentations, which you can upload and share at slideshare.net.
- Strong idea. A strong idea is what you need to make your presentation useful and powerful. When your idea is good enough, you’re good to go. And the best way to “identify” a strong idea is to study popular slides at their homepage. Once you do that, just create your own slide presentation by modelling them. Don’t copy!
- Source for clean images. For your presentations to go viral, you need more clean photos than texts. In fact, the most viewed slides have images all through the pages and texts where just there to further explain the points.
- Make the front page colourful. The front cover of your presentation is like the title of your post. You’ve got to make it colourful. Make it creative. I personally like using the image of what I’m presenting about on the front page.For instance, if I’m creating a slide for email marketing, I’ll most likely use an envelope and @ symbol to capture my audience.
Tap Quality Traffic from Getresponse, Aweber, etc
This is what I call, “corporate audience.”
So many content marketers have been missing out on this. How do you persuade corporate loyal prospects to visit your website and buy your product?
I have been using this tactics and that resulted in my 3rd client that contracted a $6,000 writing project to me in 2013.
Here’s how it works:
Aweber, Getresponse, Hostgator, Bluehost, Twitter, Universities, Colleges, Government portals etc all have their own blogs. Now, these blogs receive thousands of professional readers on daily basis.
The community is usually not active, because you may not see a lot of comments on their blogs. But that notwithstanding, the people who read these corporate blogs are serious-minded people.
88% of them are long-term customers, which mean they’ve money to spend. It also means they’re looking for ways to grow their bottom line, and therefore visits their service providers’ blog to learn more.
Truth be told, if you want to drive traffic from any of those service providers that have their own blogs, then you need to find a way to get published there. There are basically two ways:
- Submit a guest post. Do you’ve a useful and interesting guest post idea for any of these corporate blogs? Remember they already have content writers in-house. But I got published on Yahoo! Smallbusiness by looking at their popular posts. Just look at their popular posts by tracking how many tweets, likes and comments (optional) they received. When a post is shared, it means it is valuable – so why not write something in that nature as well?
- Write a valuable comment. First, read their latest post, and understand what the author is saying. Then put your feet down. Write a valuable comment that’s not less than 200-word. At the end of your comment, include your website URL. Since you provided value in your comment, that URL will not be removed. As more people visit that particular corporate blog and read through, they’ll find your comment, find value in it and visit your website.
By the way, Getresponse is Free for 30 Days. Sign up Here.
Let’s assume that Getresponse blog receives 10,000 daily traffic. If 300 readers decide to click your URL to learn more about you, how many hits would you get in 1 week? Approximately 2,100 hits.
Is this traffic free?
Of course not!
Even though you didn’t spend money to acquire the hits, you will definitely spend your precious time researching your guest posts, or writing that valuable comment – another proof that traffic is never free, but costly.
Short reports, huge traffic
While getting off your blog, you can get more quality traffic from document sharing sites.
In 2013, I decided to package one of my best posts into a short .pdf report and spend 7 days distributing it. You can download the report here.
These are the top sites that can send you quality traffic if you’re just starting out.
Ideally, when starting out in your traffic quest with a new blog, you need to spend eons of time on these sites. Write several short reports, embed your URL and distribute them at the sites listed above.
How to share documents for traffic:
- Register at free account. These sites allow you to register for free and submit your document. Don’t upgrade yet, until you’ve proven a particular site worthy.
- Research long-tail keyword. These sites have search engines of their own, which allows users to search for new and old documents. They usually search with keywords that are long. If you can research such, your document will show up at the top – thus leading to hits on your website.
- Choose a format. Apart from .pdf reports, you can as well share .doc(x) documents and even videos on docstoc.com. Issuu.com mainly accepts content that are news-based. You can use columns in MS word to structure your content, so that it reads like a newspaper. Make sure your link is embedded on the body. You’ll get traffic consistently.
- Syndicate your document. Once you’ve uploaded your document on any of the sites, go to your settings and grab the RSS Feed. Then go to sites such as Feedage.com, Feedagg.com and add the RSS URL. This way, your document can be indexed pretty quickly, and start to rank in Google top 10 within 60 days.
Paid traffic on budget: LinkedIn
I tried my hands on LinkedIn traffic, and was overwhelmed because when I read several reviews, I got to know that you can spend so much and get so little in traffic.
But that wasn’t the case for me. What I observed was that LinkedIn traffic is very “targeted” because of the caliber of who are members there, but you won’t get a lot of traffic unless you’re RICH. Lol!
I spent $120 and got 88 clicks. Now, out of those 88 clicks, 23 purchased a product that generated $67 through my affiliate link. So let’s do some maths here:
23 X $67 = $1541.
I invested $120 on their pay per click advertising and made by $1541, or rather $1421 in profit. If you were in my shoes, would you continue to advertise with LinkedIn?
Of course you will.
While sharing your document and tapping on those corporate blogs targeted traffic, you need to spend experimenting with paid traffic and I recommend LinkedIn.com/Ads.
Even if you didn’t profit as much as I did, it’s still okay because you’ll be learning so much in the process.
Since I embraced content marketing, I’ve never implemented Facebook PPC Ads. But I heard the traffic isn’t as targeted as that of Google or LinkedIn. If you’ve any experience with that, please leave a comment to that effect.
Content Marketing Recap
A huge amount of my $35,000 income in 2013 wasn’t from affiliate marketing or directly through this blog per se, it was from freelance writing and marketing.
I worked with a lot of high paying clients; managing their blogs, optimizing their content for the right keywords and using press releases to grow their bottom line.
But remember that if it were not for this blog, none of those clients who find me.
A blog has become more powerful than ever before – as a result of stiff competition around the Web.
As a content marketer, you’re in a good boat because we’re the only ones who have the ability to create, capture and convert prospects into paying clients/customers with useful content.
You’ve been exposed to several content marketing strategies. But if you quit next week, you’ll not get result so stay consistent.
What do you think of this post? Leave a valuable comment – I’ll definitely reply you. Thank you.