I want to introduce you all to Sara Stringer, who has several tips for my blogging friends on how to gain an audience. You may find a few you haven't tried yet.:)
Welcome, Sara. I know I have tried many things to gain an audience including joining several traffic websites. However, you have many new ideas here.
Developing an Audience for Your Blog
My blog started out as a pet project--a way to feel connected to the wider world during those first few months of motherhood. I wrote to collect ideas, process feelings, and maintain a grip on my adult language faculty between 3 AM feedings.
At first, the act of blogging itself proved satisfying. I did not even push my first few blogs out to my friends and family. The act of posting proved catharsis enough. A few posts later, however, I decided to stop using the blog as a diary.
Many of my friends asked for advice on safe and natural alternatives to household cleaners. My blog seemed like the perfect medium to communicate recipes for baking soda scrubs to my group of friends. I posted a tip, shared the link, and went about my day.
When I came back to my blog during nap time, I found multiple comments from my friends--and even one from a friend of a friend. The response was modest, but I swelled with the gratification of finding my little audience. Finding readers propelled me further. I sought to expand my reach beyond friends and family.
The internet is full of eager readers. Finding an audience for your niche blog is often as easy as looking for it. However, to develop and maintain traffic to your blog, it is important to keep a few tips in mind.
The quickest way to generate initial hits is to mine your social network for readers. Friends want to hear what you have to say, and will readily click your links. Use social networks like Facebook and Twitter; you can even push links in the comments of social photo programs like Instagram.
Be sure to post links during a time of day when most of your friends list is online. For awhile my core crew hung out around 10-noon, right smack in the middle of nap time. I made sure new posts went up on my Facebook feed when they would find their biggest audience.
To expand your readership beyond your personal circle of friends, read other likeminded blogs and share comments. Actively engaging in online conversations will help you develop new online relationships. Most commenting systems allow you to link back to a website when posting. Be sure to include your blog.
Participate in online forums and groups relevant to your subject matter, and be sure to provide the link to your blog in any profile and signature information. Feel free to actively post on bookmarking sites like Reddit or Digg. If your blog has a post relevant to the discussion, do be afraid to share the direct link. Don't post links willy nilly like a spambot, but do actively direct traffic to content others will find interest in.
Once you gain a larger following, consider posting on a schedule. Reliability in posting means that audiences know to check back on Wednesdays for new tip or every other day after 10 am for a new blog. Posting on a regular schedule helps your audience stay connected to you. Whether you are just posting funny GIFs of your baby or directing readers to the early released coupons for Black Friday special 2013, posting on a schedule keeps readers clicking back to your blog with regularity.
Add value to your blog by directing readers to relevant links for great promotions, products, or articles your find online. Providing information and access to things beyond just your posts ensures that readers will keep coming back to utilize your blog as a directory. For instance, I found that Nerd Wallet has great coupons for BJ's and other retailers that my readers use. I always share the best ones that I find. This keeps readers clicking back to my site to check for fresh coupon links when they are shopping online.
Also consider hosting contests or offering giveaways. This method will drive a lot of initial traffic to your site, but it is up to you to hook them with your content. Be sure to follow through on any freebies you offer!
Finding an audience for my blog was exciting, and definitely helped propel me through the babytalk years by keeping me connected to the adult world. I wish you the best of luck in your blogging endeavors!
After reading your ideas I can't believe you were able to keep blogging while being a mother to young children. I know that I was not thinking about blogging when I had young children. So I have a lot of respect for you. Let's learn more about you:
Sara Stringer Bio:
Sara is a freelance writer who most enjoys blogging about lifestyle, relationships, and life as a woman. In her spare time, she enjoys soaking up the sunshine with her husband and two kids.
Well, this was a lot of fun. You are one of the few people who is not an author who has come on this blog. I hope my readers have enjoyed meeting you as much as I have.:)
[I want my readers to know the ideas and opinions of this post may or may not be like mine and I am not supporting any of the links in this article. They are all the creation of the writer of this guest post.]
Until the next time, I don't have any authors scheduled, however, I will keep you all posted on my life. Now I am concentrated on getting through my knee surgery at the end of June. It seems lately that my days are filled with doctor visits for either myself or my husband. He had a consultation about his toe and the news is not great. He will probably have to lose it. If you follow this blog you know that two summers ago my husband had a toe removed from his right foot. Now he will probably have the same toe on his left foot removed. It's complicated because of all his health issues. But it will probably be in July.
Anyway, you can follow all of the news on my Facebook page too. I am hoping to send my finished second novel by the end of this month too. We'll see. Enjoy the sun when it shines. Here it only shines every two or three days. Stay dry.