How Business Bloggers Can Master The Big 3 Social Networks
This is a guest post by Hal Licino.
At the dawn of business blogging, all you needed was to craft timely, incisive, and thought-provoking articles, post them online, and attract a grateful and engaged audience.
But today, there are millions of blogs, and it’s no longer a simple case of “if you write it they will come.”
To attracting and maintaining a committed readership, you need to promote your blog. A successful blogger has to get to grips with the main social networks, leveraging them to drive traffic.
Here’s how to master the three biggest social networks and build a big, content-hungry audience.
Twitter is Still #1 for Blog Promotion
Twitter is the top micro-blogging platform in the Western world, although you’d be well advised to watch out for competition from the swiftly growing Chinese microblogs known as Weibos and the Asian “hybrids” such as WeChat.
When using Twitter to promote your blog, you should:
- Synchronize your blog’s branding with your Twitter aesthetics so that the reader understands the connection at a glance.
- Tweet each blog post several times in order to reach your followers in different time zones.
- Longer blog posts should be condensed into bite-sized chunks that fit into 140 characters.
- Use a maximum of three hashtags, kept separate from the main body of your tweet.
- Apply scheduling tools to set the times in advance that your tweets will appear.
- Join and participate in Twitter chats and other activities.
Facebook is the 900-Pound Gorilla in the Social Networking Universe
No matter how many teens Facebook is hemorrhaging, it’s still growing thanks to a steady stream of grandmas and other older people. you can’t argue with any social media tool that has more than one billion users.
To promote your blog, you’ll need to build as large a Facebook following as possible. You should:
- Post pull quotes and subheads to encourage followers to click through to read your business blog.
- Curate a wide variety of content – don’t just post links to your own blog.
- Include a widget on your blog that will allow your readers to Like your Facebook page there and then.
- Check your analytics for the times of day that your readership hits its highest levels and schedule your Facebook posts about half an hour before each day’s peak.
- Comment like crazy on just about everything that’s even remotely related. Comment on people’s comments, their statuses, the content they’ve posted, just about anything at all.
- Use Facebook ads strategically as it’s easy to blow several hundred dollars and get absolutely nothing in return. Some bloggers have an inordinate amount of success with Sponsored Stories but every case is different.
LinkedIn is All About Business, Business, Business
New bloggers sometimes think that Facebook and LinkedIn are similar when nothing could be further from the truth. While Facebook is primarily a horizontal social network which encompasses just about everyone from every walk of life, LinkedIn is laser-focused on business.
Given your very different audience, you have to adjust your social media approach. You should:
- Separate your social media strategy for B2C and B2B avenues. Your B2C content can be used on Facebook, but reserve your B2B content for LinkedIn.
- Realize that the average LinkedIn reader is looking for very different things from your blog than a Facebook one. The business-minded reader will seek networking opportunities to grow both your companies, so provide them with relevant links and content.
- It’s considerably harder to amass huge numbers of followers on LinkedIn than it is on Facebook, but that’s a matter of quality over quantity. Reach out to vendors, suppliers, contractors, consultants, manufacturers, distributors, and every other sort of business that has some relevance to your company. Just a handful of these contacts can result in much more business than a thousand Facebook followers.
- While there is room for humor on LinkedIn, it’s generally a more serious and less gimmicky venue than Facebook. While a hyped-up promotion can garner lots of positive attention on Facebook, it could actually be seen as a negative on LinkedIn. This is not to say that you shouldn’t run contests to promote your business blog, but keep them more focused and to the point.
- Beware of well-entrenched business scammers on LinkedIn. Never send any money to anyone on LinkedIn, unless you have verified they are legitimate. You can use the BBB (Better Business Bureau) and D&B for this.
There are many other valid business social networks including Google+ and Pinterest, but bloggers direct the bulk of their promotional campaigns to the Big Three for very good reasons.
Not only are Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn’s combined membership close to two billion people, but these social networks completely lend themselves to promoting a blog.
Hal Licino is an accomplished blogger, marketing expert and frequent writer for the Benchmark Email Blog. His work has appeared in Search Engine Journal, Young Entrepreneur, and other top-notch publications.
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8 Responses to “How Business Bloggers Can Master The Big 3 Social Networks”
I notice a lack of Plus love on this, so I will add the interaction is in depth and highly active (if you know what you are looking for). I’ve had a higher level of engagement without a company deciding for me based on algorithms and methods.
It’s super simple to add people too, and the best way is to go through their community area to make those connections. If you want a little more excitement, go to the circle share and add a few of those on your feed.
Trust me, you can find great customers there, but you have to know what you are doing with it to make Plus work
Also: You can use Plus as its own mini-blog too. I’ve seen some pretty engaging mini-posts with high levels of engagement and sharing. There are some examples floating around on the internet.
Don’t discount Plus for engagement and value.
Chat like mad! On any social site. Each tip works well Hal!
Engage on FB, LI and twitter. Become popular. Social people make more friends and get more clicks if they churn out good, relevant content daily.
People drive social sites. Learn how to connect with people. With patience you can reap immense returns by chatting, as you note on FB, commenting on just about any relevant update.
I chat gifting, ghostwriting and other related topics daily, and simply grow my businesses by being social on all networks I hit up.
Thanks for sharing Hal!
Great post !!
Yes, indeed the top three is twitter, FB and LinkedIn.
We must also take advantages of Pinterest which comes hand in hand with these three that might gain more popularity this year.
In the second paragraph second line ‘It’s is’ should be changed to ‘It’s’ only.
Thanks for this valuable post.
I started with Facebook, that too only last year end. But, now seem to abandon it. I’m much more active on twitter, now, and find it easier to use.
About tweeting each post several times a day – I recently used Hootsuite to do this. Started with just two posts and scheduled to post 6 times in 24 hours. I noticed a decrease in my twitter followers, even though I take part in conversations and retweet valuable tweets. Have lost about 15 followers since I started tweeting multiple times. What is the max, a post should be tweeted and how many hours apart? (I tweeted every 3 hours).
I think what Ryan means is to be everywhere. 🙂
Thanks Varun — fixed it now! My fault, not Hal’s.
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