A few years ago, blogging and social media were separate. Blogging was long-form, serious, and crafted. Social media was short-form, personal, and spontaneous. Some people predicted that social media would replace blogging because of declining attention spans.
Now blogging and social media not only amicably coexist; they complement each other. The trick is to use a blog to enrich your social media with long-form posts and to use social media to promote your blog.
If someone looking for great content came across your blog, would he or she share your blog posts? We hope so. And haven’t the people who’ve followed you expressed a desire to see your work? Logically, of all content, you should share your own blog posts. If a blog post is not worth sharing, it’s not worth writing.
Repeat your tweets
I repeat my tweets linking to the posts at Holy Kaw four times, eight hours apart. Many people have asked me about this practice—I repeat my tweets because I don’t assume that all my followers are reading their Twitter feed 24/7 x 365. This is the same reason that ESPN and CNN repeat the same news stories (without updates, simply identical reports) throughout the day. I’ve examined the click-through patterns on repeat tweets, and each one gets about the same amount of traffic. If I tweeted stories only once, I’d lose 75% of the traffic that he could get.
I chose eight hours because even if the first tweet goes out at the worst times for traffic, one of the repeats will hit the best times (7:00 am to 10:00 am Pacific or 7:00 pm to 10:00 pm Pacific). For example, a first tweet at 3:00 am Pacific then hits 11:00 am Pacific and 7:00 pm Pacific.
While this exact process might not be the best for your personal brand or organization, by looking at your click-through data and doing some testing, you can find the cadence that works best for your audience.
Every curated post should contain a picture or video, and this applies to your own posts too. Just to be clear: I’m saying that your social-media posts that link to your blog posts should have a picture—you owe it to yourself to help people to find it.
Add share buttons
Make sharing your blog posts friction-free by adding share buttons to your blog. Rather than adding each platform’s button, you can use a product such as Share This to install multiple buttons. Also, a WordPress plug-in called Flare can provide a cumulative total for the number of shares across platforms. This number is a form of social proof that might encourage more people to share your posts.
Entice people to follow you
Include links to your social-media accounts on your blog so that people can easily follow you. If your blog is interesting, people will follow you on social media, and if your social media is interesting, people will read your blog.
Add a click to tweet link
A service called ClickToTweet enables you to embed a link in your blog posts and e-mails. When people click on this link, they are presented with a draft tweet. They can edit this draft or tweet it immediately.
I’ve found that a large amount of people will click on a Click-to-Tweet link, I think for two reasons: first, it can be an easy way to generate a good tweet if your content is good, and second, it’s a way to thank you for your efforts.
Add your blog to Alltop
Alltop is an RSS-feed aggregation site that helps people scan the news and find content. You can submit your blog’s RSS feed to get it on an Alltop page. The process is free, so there’s little downside. For example, if you want to position yourself as an expert on adoption, you should submit your blog for consideration in Adoption.alltop.
Start an email list
Old-school email is a powerful marketing tool. If I had a choice between someone following us on a social-media platform or subscribing to our emails, I would pick the an email subscription any day. This is because I am more confident that a person will read an email, than see a post.
Now, I’d like to answer a few great questions we received after the presentation:
Q: What are the best practices for differentiating between a ‘professional’ social media presence and a ‘personal’ social media presence?
A: The reality is that your personal and professional social media presence is one and the same. You can say “this is my personal account, ideas are my own,” or something like that, but your activity is rolled into one big online Google search. So, your ‘personal’ tweets still show up when someone does a search for your ‘professional’ opinion.
Q: For sales and marketing professionals who don’t have social media responsibilities in their job descriptions—how would you advise them to prioritize their time on social?
A: I would read blogs that are important to your industry and use a website like Alltop of Feedly to efficiently pull everything together for you, in one spot. Then, keep your LinkedIn account up-to-date and join relevant LinkedIn groups. If you can write and publish content on LinkedIn, I think it benefits your industry thought-leadership. Stumped for topics? Take some frequently asked questions and answer them from your perspective. Finally, make sure to follow your companies’ social media accounts so you are current on what they are doing. Like, share or retweet their contnt to help your company and benefit the customers that follow you.
Q: For more of a corporate brand perspective, versus personal brand—what 3 tips would you give an organization looking to increase their reach on LinkedIn?
A: 1) Create a solid company page with great branding, 2) Share content from your company page on a regular basis (run tests, find the right cadence), 3) Add your LinkedIn company page to your other channels—your website, emails, blog. And then a bonus tip: Start a LinkedIn customer group to help customers connect with your community and ask questions of you and each other.
I hope this gives you some ideas for integrating your blog with social media, and creating a social media presence that shines.