4 Proven Ways to Gain an Edge Over Your Competitiors and Become a Blogging Authority

By Guest Author

There’s something like a glitch in human psychology and you can use it to grow your blog.

What am I talking about? Check out this video to find out:

With that said, here are the four methods and how you can use them to become an authority in your market:

1) Build an Awesome Mailing List

Why it’s perceived as “difficult”:

  • Takes time to build (no instant result).
  • Autoresponder services cost monthly fees.
  • Good email marketing requires your personal involvement.
  • Adds the task of email writing to the existing tasks of blogging (more work)

Results you can get:

With a small mailing list of just under 500 subscribers, I launched a product that ended up making 6 figures in it’s lifetime. This shows some of the potential of email marketing. But more importantly, having a mailing list means that you have on-demand traffic, whenever you need it.

1000 subscribers on a mailing list can easily mean 100+ clicks on any link you send in an email. How useful is that?

How to Use Email Marketing to Get an Edge:

Start building your mailing list.

Right now.

Make Twitter followers, Facebook fans, Google+ connections and RSS subscribers a distant second priority to getting more subscribers.

To turn your blog into a list-building machine, add opt-in forms to:

  • Your homepage
  • The top of the sidebar
  • The bottom of each post
  • Optionally add a lightbox or slide-in box as well.

Building a mailing list really isn’t all that tricky, since you’re already blogging. You don’t really have to change anything and you do whatever you’ve been doing before, to get traffic. The only difference: now you’ll be capturing some of your traffic onto your mailing list and you’ll get ever increasing amounts of recurring visitors, whenever you promote a post to your list.

As for the email marketing itself, just follow the number one rule: be cool to your subscribers. Don’t send emails that you wouldn’t be happy to receive yourself.

2) Create Attention-Grabbing Videos

Why it’s perceived as “difficult”:

  • Requires a different and new set of tools (compared to writing articles).
  • Comes with a bit of a learning curve.
  • Is a lot less anonymous than text and can make you feel exposed.

Results you can get with video marketing:

Video gets a lot more attention than text. This helps engage your visitors and keep them on your site and it helps increase your conversion rate on sales-pages. It can also be useful for decreasing your bounce rate and getting more clicks from Google, when you get video thumbnails listed in the search results.

As an example of how powerful video can be, I did an experiment with my business partner. We spent a total of only two days to create:

  • A video for YouTube, to attract traffic.
  • A video to convert people who clicked on the link below the YouTube video into subscribers.
  • A video to make an offer for a simple, low-priced product.

Result? We made $934 in product sales. Not life-changing, but a nice result of a total of three videos and just two days of work invested.

How to Use Video Marketing to Get an Edge:

If you’ve never made a video, start off by doing a few quick screencast videos using screenr (a free and very easy to use tool).

Alternatively, use your webcam and simply record yourself talking about a topic. If you can write a blog post, you can make a video. You’re delivering the same content, just in a different format.

Yes, it will take a few attempts before your videos start looking awesome. In fact, if you’re anything like me, your first few videos will be pretty terrible. But with a bit of practice, you’ll get the hang of it (and come to think of it, writing also required some practice to get to where you are now, right?).

Learn how to make videos (by starting right now) and very soon, you’ll have an incredibly valuable skill you can use to grow your blog.

3) Host Fantastic Webinars

Why it’s perceived as “difficult”:

  • Requires that you do a presentation, similar to video.
  • It’s a live event. Many people are terrified of making mistakes, especially in front of a live audience.
  • Stage fright applies to a virtual audience as well.

Results you can get:

One of my first webinars, held to just under 100 people, netted $3,642 in commissions. And all the attendees loved the webinar!

A decent result for about three hours of work, I’d say.

Also, you can achieve unheard of levels of engagement on webinars and I know nothing more effective for “creating fans”. I’ve now hosted several webinars where the audience was so engaged that more than 100 people were still online, listening, participating and asking questions, 3.5 hours into the webinar.

And just to be clear: I didn’t plan on doing such long webinars. They just kept going, because we kept getting questions and comments and everyone was having a blast!

Another great advantage is that you can host webinars and then turn that content into products, or you can offer coaching webinars as products in themselves.

How to Use Webinars to Get an Edge:

Just do it.

The biggest obstacle for most people is their fear of screwing up, in front of a live audience.

In reality, this fear is unjustified. First, things rarely go badly wrong and second, the attendees are usually very understanding.

Open your webinar with something along the lines of “I’m new to this and I’m pretty nervous, but I have some really important things I want to tell you about”. You’ll see that if you really have the intention of delivering great content, the audience members will totally have your back, even if things don’t go smoothly.

Also keep in mind that you don’t have to do webinars on your own. Invite guest experts and leave the major part of the presentation to them, or team up with other bloggers in your niche, to share the stage with you (and make some great connections at the same time).

4) Create Insanely Valuable Products

Why it’s perceived as “difficult”:

  • Creating a product is more work that writing a few blog posts.
  • You invest effort upfront and hope it will pay off, when you release the product (certain risk involved).
  • Fear of selling.

Results you can get:

My first self-created product sold 2,102 copies and made more than $100K in it’s lifetime. This may not be a typical result, but it shows what can be done, even for someone without experience in product creation.

Having a product also opens up one of the best traffic sources on the Internet, for you: affiliates. With a product, you can have an affiliate program and get affiliates to send you massively valuable traffic.

In my opinion, your own product is the most valuable asset you can have, as an affiliate.

How to Use Product Creation to Get an Edge:

Start by creating a simple free product, such as a report. You can use this as an opt-in incentive, to build your mailing list and in addition, it can serve as “product creation practice”.

Once you have a few subscribers, ask them some questions. Find out about their biggest problems. Find out what they want and need. Then, create a product based on that and sell it.

This approach eliminates some of the risk from product creation. If you base your product on the answers you get from your potential customers, it’s much more likely that your product will be well received than if you just think of something all by yourself.

Obviously, product creation is quite a broad topic and I can’t cover everything here. But as with all things, the most important part is to get started and then trial-and-error your way forward.

The Challenge

Here’s my challenge to you: pick one of these four methods (or maybe one I haven’t though of myself) and dedicate 30 days to it.

Yes, it’s a bit more difficult than just keeping on doing what you’re already used to, but that’s exactly why it’s easier to get good results with it.

Think about email marketing, video marketing, webinars and product creation. You know that most bloggers don’t do these things. You know that most people reading this post won’t follow through and actually do the 30-day challenge. And that’s exactly where the power of this approach lies. Do it, and you’re instantly in a different league.

Shane Melaugh is an Irish guy from Switzerland. He owns imimpact.com and if you want to learn more from him, you can sign up for a free case study, showing how a beginner managed to build a 6-figure business in just 6 weeks.




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8 Responses to “4 Proven Ways to Gain an Edge Over Your Competitiors and Become a Blogging Authority”

  • David Jones

    Last few days I was looking for exact this information from here to there & finally its on your blog site. I’m really happy with your blog & will share it with my friend.

  • Value Blogging

    Virtually all of the things you describe contains a challenge to the advancement of blogging tips, but it seems easy to say but difficult to do for some bloggers, like me.

  • Ehsan Ullah

    That is really a great advice Shane, I think list building is must in order to become an authority. I’m yet to start video tutorials, but I’ll do it soon.

  • Christopher @ This that and the MBA

    This is great information. I think building a list is essential. I have not done that yet on my blog as running it myself does take quite a bit of time along with work and kids. I am really trying to build my brand and I think an email list is the next endeavor that I am going to embark on. I also think giving away something for subscribing to the email list just adds that much more enticement to the reader. Great post.

  • tripsta.pl

    Indeed, this is a great way to become an authority in the blogosphere! All successful blogging authorities in any industry actually follow these tips! It certainly takes time but it is definitely worth it!

  • Zouras@Secrets To Start Up An Online business

    Dear Guest Author,

    Your post is extraordinary and I really love it! Yes internet marketing and generally speaking building a list is challenging and I believe that the most difficult part of this business is to get traffic! Many people stuck there and they give up but if you think a bit more you will understand that if you have 100 buyers in your list then you simply can make passive income in the near future. Anyway thank you very much for such a value!

    Regards,
    Zouras

  • Saskia

    Interesting post. I have tried all of these methods but I have not yet seen the amazing results that are talked about here.
    My mailing list only has a few subscribers, my YouTube videos are not yet very popular, the one webinar I held didn’t get many attendees but at least it gave me the opportunity to be interviewed for someones podcast and the product I created has gotten quite some views but no sales yet, even though it is very low-priced. This post has motivated me to keep trying these things and it has shown me that I am going the right way. Great tip that I may share with my visitors too (while referencing to this post, of course)

  • Shane

    Saskia: try picking one of these things and focusing on them until they gain some momentum. For example, with a webinar: see if you can hold a webinar for someone else’s audience. Find a fellow blogger and collaborate. Or find someone with a membership site and ask if you can contribute content. This way, you can reach more people, get some of them on your mailing list and get more attendees for your next webinar.

    Ehsan: now is always better than soon. 😉

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