Website Traffic Series Part 14: Promoting Your Content on Social Bookmarking Sites

By Daniel Scocco

Promoting content on social bookmarking sites is one of the most popular marketing strategies around the Internet. And not by chance. Getting featured on the front page of those websites can send tens of thousands of visitors to your blog in a matter of days.

The concept: Also called social news aggregators or community bookmarking, social bookmarking sites represent a family of websites that allow users to discover, submit, share and vote on stories and articles from around the Internet. The most popular social bookmarking sites are Digg.com, Reddit.com, StumbleUpon.com and Del.icio.us.

If your blog is relatively new, you will need to submit your top quality content to those sites and hope that other users will like it and rate it. Should enough people vote your story up, it might end up on the front page, sending a huge amount of traffic to your blog or site.

Once your audience starts building up, there is a chance that the readers themselves will submit and promote your content on those bookmarking sites.

Does it work?: Absolutely. As far as traffic generation is concerned, there are very few techniques and channels that will beat social bookmarking promotion.

That being said, that are a couple of things that you should know. First of all, social bookmarking traffic is very peculiar. It does not click on ads. It does not stick around on your site. And it rarely subscribe to your RSS feed.

Secondly, not all types of content will work on all social bookmarking sites. SEO and blogging related topics tend to perform really poorly on Digg, for example, while political coverage receive good attention on Reddit. Over the time you will need to find what is the right social bookmarking site for your content, therefore.

How to get started: Generating a couple of hundred page views with social bookmarking sites is an easy task, you just need to submit your story and ask some friends to vote on it. Making your story go “hot,” attracting tens of thousands of visitors, however, is a whole different story.

To tap into the real potential of social bookmarking sites you will need first to understand how they work. What kind of content users are looking for? How the voting works? What are the hidden rules of those communities?

The best way to answer to those questions is to become a user on those sites yourself. Once you get a grasp of what is going on, start testing and see how things are going to work for your site.

Take a look at How to Create Digg-Friendly Content and A Comprehensive Guide to StumbleUpon for a more in-depth look into those sites.

Over to the readers: What is your experience with social bookmarking sites? Do you think they are a necessary part of any online marketing strategy?

Website Traffic Series




Share

39 Responses to “Website Traffic Series Part 14: Promoting Your Content on Social Bookmarking Sites”

  • Melvin

    great tip… There was one time I have written an offbeat article that really got popular in reddit… since then, i cannot get a high placement on the front page of reddit

  • Daniel Scocco

    @Melvin, yeah sometimes you work a lot on a article hoping it will fly high, and it flops. Other times you write something in 20 mins, and it goes crazy 🙂 .

  • lax

    Yes daniel really this works fine.

    My blog is dam new and i submitted it to technorati and observed in Analytics that around 30 views in 2days from technorati..

    But submitting and monitoring is a bit hard and time consuming.

    Thanks,
    lax
    http://www.techzoomin.com

  • Tumblemoose

    In my short tenure, I have had pretty good success with stumble. My stats show it to be my highest referrer. Given that my blog has only been up for less than a month, I’m very happy with the stumble results.

    The other thing I like is that I’ve set my preference to include keywords such as blogs and writing, and through these stumbles, I’ve come across a bunch of really great sites – including this one. And as I find these sites, I’m subscribing and commenting and a lot of it comes right back to my site.

    I haven’t gone Digg yet, but that will be my next stop. Deliciou.us is ok, but not the greatest for traffic so far. I’ve set up a twitter but the jury is still out on that one.

    George

  • Daniel Scocco

    @Lax, I would call Technorati a social networking or social media site, though, and not social bookmarking.

    Small different, but I will cover those types of website on a future part of this series.

  • SEO Genius

    I think SMM is a necessity in this day an age of blogging where the competition is so large.

    You need to use social media marketing, you need to learn about it and understand it. Its definitely true that SMM can send you thousands of hits with every article submitted but you need to learn how to do this first.

    Will.

  • Suzanne @ vAssistant Services

    I was just telling one of my clients about StumbleUpon before I read this post!

    At first, I was told “don’t submit your own stuff, have others do it instead” but I was the only person I knew with a Stumble account. LOL So I had to submit my own pages and posts. Then I started actually USING Stumble myself and found great websites I would have found no other way – and quickly, too! I’ve also connected with other Stumble users and now, most of the time, one of them submits my stuff and beats me to it. And of course, I reciprocate.

    I agree with your assessment that social media traffic does not tend to be very ‘sticky’, but those that DO stick have stuck hard. I have some loyal readers and even a new client or two thanks to social media traffic.

  • suresh

    As you rightly pointed out lot of political news will be generally on the top of the dig and in the case of technology again general topics will be on top but not specific topics.

    For example google crome when launched would be on top but a stuff like how to write a program code or how to execute a software test code coming on to the top of dig may be a tough task.

    Over all happening things will give traffic on digg like social book marking.

    I welcome people differing with me.

  • Angel Cuala

    I agree with you Daniel when you said that blogging related posts are most likely not being followed at social sites such as Digg and SU, as I am a victim of it.

    My other topic which is about family tips does not also do well in such sites and I do not hope for it anymore. But I think if you have tons of followers who are addicted in submitting posts to these sitesa, then you can be lucky enough.

    As I checked the most favorite ones, I understand that you really need hot topics from politics, showbiz and other amazing stories around the globe.

    But then, let us not forget that we can also get visitors from them by joining the list of voters for top posts. Some voters tend to check out other voter’s blog, as well as if if a voter also leaves interesting comments. In addition, increasing your network by adding friends in your community also helps.

    But thanks for sharing as it enlightened me more.

  • lax

    Yes pls do cover it in future series.

  • Franklin Bishop

    Social media web sites are actually one of the easiest ways to get traffic to your blog. The problem most people have is that they just want to submit their own blog post and then just see the traffic coming in. That is just not going to happen though. You have to become a master at playing the social media game. You can easily figure out how each of the social media web sites works and be able to use it in to your advantage. Trust me, there are many blog posts and articles across the Internet showing you how to do it.

  • Ben Moreno

    Daniel,

    What do you think about twitter?

    I am an avid user of many social media sites. I find that some of them work and some don’t. You are right though, it really is a matter of what type of content you put on which.

  • Harmony

    Being new to the SMN I have found it: super time consuming – probably because I still don’t know how do post it all quickly, and secondly, there are so many, and thirdly – sheesh…how do you keep up with all the activity they generate? (I have a feeling you don’t and you just let that be. 🙂

  • Erica-Copywriters Needed/ No Experience Required- Make $200/hr

    Yeah, social bookmarking is popular, though I have not used it recently. I usually use social networking such as blogging and such to get my website out there. The problem with social bookmarking is that you have to get on the front page to get noticed! It sounds sort of like Digg which I gave up using because it is sooooo saturated. All of the big companies are on the front page!

  • Video Guitar

    I heard digg can crash your site if you don’t have the server for it…

    Unfortunately, most of my sites are not written in English. Does it work for other languages as well ?

  • M. Pence

    “What is your experience with social bookmarking sites? Do you think they are a necessary part of any online marketing strategy?”

    I’ve had great experiences with social bookmarking sites from the angle of a user. The amazing information and discoveries I’ve made using Digg & Stumble Upon are mind blowing.

    The downside, of course, is that keeping up with the plethora of Social bookmarking clones and sites cropping up everywhere has become almost a full time job.

    Do I think they are necessary for any online marketing strategy? Absolutely. You need a way for people to share information and share it fast–faster than e-mails and IM’s even, yeah. I think I would have missed out on a lot of good articles and info (like this one :D) if it weren’t for such sites.

  • Nick Stamoulis

    I think many people bookmark with know true knowledge of what they are doing. It takes quite a bit to get to the front page and although you may get the traffic, most of the time it’s short lived. Gettng the longer term visitors organically may be a better choice.

  • Daniel Scocco

    @Video Guitar, there are social bookmarking sites all around the world these days, you just need to find your local ones.

  • Bilingual Blogger

    I’ve been at it for 10 months and in that time I’ve found that the educational focus of my two blogs isn’t a good fit for any of the social bookmarking sites. StumbleUpon is the only one that would be a natural fit but the traffic I’ve gotten from there is inconsistent and doesn’t stick around very long, as others have mentioned. But I’ve also had people criticize me for submitting my own posts and other bloggers in my niche aren’t active in StumbleUpon, so networking among them to create a community of foreign language educator bloggers, is a non-starter, although I’ve thought about trying to build such a community on StumbleUpon. It’s that there aren’t enough hours in a day!

  • Nick

    Good Idea, I might try this. I don’t get much traffic at my blog and I been trying so hard. But Yeah. Good article!

  • Online Celebrities

    I too like these ideas of generating traffic but most of the time, sites like digg ban you if you submit more of your own contents. so be careful.

  • Hanstaruna Invest Tools

    Digg didn’t give many traffic. Any tips on how to get many digg ?

  • Destination Infinity

    I have never tried this before. But your article has inspired me to try Stumble Upon from now on. I will try and let you know when you write a related post in the future.

    Destination Infinity

  • Simon

    Great, great article! I’ve just started doing this myself for my blog on the site and, well it’s early days yet. The blog’s in my facebook profile and I’ve been using twitter and stumbleupon a fair bit. So far I’ve had most success with Facebook but as I say it’s very early days yet. You can also import your feed into your facebook notes which I’ve also started doing today, so we’ll see how that goes. I’m so book marking this site though! Keep up the great work.

  • Adventurous Wench women tours

    I guess you’d have to start on choosing which social network sites you want to promote. You’d have to target the correct audience otherwise your time and effort will just go to waste.

  • Yogindernath

    Thats an excellent article and very useful to beginners.

    Yogindernath
    http://www.softwaretestinggenius.com

  • Shafi kamal

    Good article, when I start promoting my site, I started to post on all social bookmarking site which really works for me.

  • RechargeYourMind

    Digg has been pretty decent to me!

  • medyum

    I was just telling one of my clients about StumbleUpon before I read this post!At first, I was told “don’t submit your own stuff, have others do it instead” but I was the only person I knew with a Stumble account. LOL So I had to submit my own pages and posts. Then I started actually USING Stumble myself and found great websites I would have found no other way – and quickly, too! I’ve also connected with other Stumble users and now, most of the time, one of them submits my stuff and beats me to it. And of course, I reciprocate.

  • Belajar Facebook

    I was tried this trick, i think this is amazing. Before i do this trick my post not display at google search, and now blog post was appear in google search.

    Thanks you for your trick.

    Btw, can you help me to show some good social bookmark site?

Comments are closed.