This is a continuation of my blog series titled: So you have a website… now what? In the last blog post, I talked about blogging as a simple way to keep your website updated so that people perceive your site as being up to date and actively maintained. Once you get into a routine of blogging periodically, you can leverage that activity by distributing your posts across various social networking channels to increase the exposure of your business to more people.
2. Distribute your blog posts
Every time you post to your blog, you should re-post, or distribute that post across all of your social media channels. Which social media channels, you ask? All of them that apply to your business. A few social media channels that you should be using by default are Facebook, Google+ and LinkedIn. If it applies to your business, you may also want to be on Pinterest and Instagram.
How to distribute your blog post
For Facebook, Google+ and LinkedIn, it’s simply a matter of copying the URL (web address) of your full blog post and pasting it in that social media’s status update (or whatever they call it).
After you paste the URL in the status update, you’ll notice that the summary, and often the main image of the post, gets pulled into the status update. Then you’ll delete the URL and type in a summary of the blog post into the status update field so that it looks something like the following.
And that’s it for distributing your blog post across your social media channels! It’s pretty simple and only adds another two minutes to your posting routine.
So for this advanced tip, you’ll need a few people that you know will help you out … I call these people “friendlies.” Friendlies might be people you work with, people who help you out in the same industry as you, or maybe referral partners who you help promote and who help promote you.
Every time you post to Facebook and Google+, have a few friendlies SHARE that post to their friends and/or circles. The way Google+ and Facebook gauge the value of a status update is in part by how many people share that update. If you can start every blog post with four or five shares, that’s great. Ultimately, that will help your website and blog’s SEO strength.
Why distribute blog posts?
To answer this question, I need to get slightly technical, but I’ll try to keep it in laymen’s terms.
As I stated in part one of this blog post series, blogging serves two purposes, in my opinion. First, it keeps your content fresh so that people know you are actively updating your website (an active website = an active business). Second, a blog helps your website’s Search Engine Optimization (SEO) efforts.
Speaking to the SEO efforts, maintaining a consistent blog posting schedule is what Google wants to see. Google evaluates your content creating activity and determines where your website should rank for any given search phrase. The more original, relevant, and linked your content is, the higher it will rank (that is a VERY simplistic explanation of the Google ranking algorithm – there’s a lot more to it).
So by publishing original, relevant content in your blog, you will make incremental steps toward getting your entire website more highly ranked. Again, there’s more to it than that (SEO is an increasingly complex activity), but even if you were to hire an SEO company to work on your website, they would want content like this added on a consistent basis, so it’s part of the overall SEO strategy.
Another reason to distribute your blog posts … engagement and establishing expertise.
Blog posts, if written well, can engage your existing customer base. If you can share your posts with your customers (who often live on social media), you can ask for feedback.
Finally, blog posts can establish you as an expert in your industry. Publishing has always been a way to establish expertise, but now publishing doesn’t have to be as hard as getting a book published. You can publish on a blog and get nearly the same credibility.
A story to support this point …
My wife, who is a child therapist, has been consistently publishing to her blog, TheKidCounselor.com since 2006. Long story short, her blog captured the attention of the New York Times in 2009, which led to her being referenced in many other major news media over the course of a month, and ultimately this led to a live interview on CNN. Further, based on the credibility and expertise established in her profession from her blog, she is now a paid guest blogger for various blogs, such as Mom.me and Mommyish.com, and has been published in NBC’s iVillage, Men’s Health magazine, and Family Style, just to name a few. She has also been contacted by two major publishing companies to compile her blog posts into a physical book!
The point is that you never know where blogging and distributing your posts can lead! So get started!!!
In my next post in this series, I’ll discuss how to leverage Google+ for local online marketing and getting your website and business found through local searches.