What if I told you, that creating new content is only part of the blogging equation? That writing regular blog posts, is not the task that’s going to bring in the money. Not by itself that is.
Few things are runaway successes on the first go around, on their own. That is rare. Usually, it’s a combination of actions, and choices over time.
The ones that are, become one-hit wonders. I don’t know about you, but being a one-hit wonder doesn’t quite appeal to me.
If not writing new blog posts, what else is there for you to do? Plenty. Let’s start with these below.
1. Give Old Posts Some Love
Most of us have the tendency to want new things all the time. It doesn’t help when we’ve been told countless times Google likes fresh content.
That is true. But, Google is doing so in their own best interest. Not so much yours or mine. What is in our best interest? To ensure our business survives.
How is that relevant to old posts? Well, for that I must point to Lynn Terry of ClickNewz. Here’s a year old post she re-shared on social media.
And here’s another one just a few days later.
Author and Speaker Michael Hyatt does this a lot too. I’ve often seen his older posts pop up on social media. Sometimes I recognize them, sometimes I don’t. Here’s an example. This post was re-shared October 16, 2015.
And if you look closely, the post was published 2 years before.
No, They Won’t Notice
Worried about people seeing the same thing over and over? Don’t.
This is something that took me a long time to get. It feels like everyone is watching us. The truth is, they aren’t. People are far, far too busy making their own life work.
Let me tell you a story that perfectly illustrates that. I was talking to a marketer about emailing and autoresponders. He said, at year end, when his autoresponder series ended, he re-sent the entire series again.
I am on that list. I see every email he sends. I may not open every one but I see every one. Never, not even once did it occur to me that those were the exact same messages. I was too busy doing my thing. And, I didn’t open every email.
Same for sharing old posts. The key is time and relevance. If you re-shared a post yesterday, last week, even last month, find some other post to re-share. Give it time before you re-share again.
Be relevant. Let’s say you’re promoting a fancy new vacuum. You’ve written a post about vacuuming tips and tricks before. Go dig that old post up. When you re-share that post, mention the new vacuum.
Another thing to do with old posts is to take it up a notch. Take the vacuum tips post. Don’t just re-share it. Take a few minutes to re-read your post. Does it need updating? Does it still make sense? And… put a blurb about the new vacuum promo in this old post. Make your re-share count.
Resource for re-working old posts: We Stopped Publishing New Blog Posts for One Month. Here’s What Happened.
2. Create Helpful Links
For this, I must again point to Lynn’s blog. Why? Because I’m observing and learning a lot from this smart lady and so should you. While reading her blog – which I do with regularity, I noticed this.
Lynn told me once, everything she does is intentional. See how every one of those links are designed to point people to a product, or to get people to further engage with her? Which will, with time, lead back to product sales, affiliate sales and so on.
Are those links helpful? Yes. Will they help boost income? Well, maybe not the first day they are put up, but over time, absolutely.
You know why? Because people are too busy and distracted. You’d be surprised how many people don’t know what you have to offer even if they are on your list.
So tell them. In every way, and at every opportunity possible.
All this leads us into the next one…
3. Promote Your Own Stuff In The Sidebar
When people look at your sidebar, often it is for navigation. They are looking for more. Give people what they want and expect. Make nice graphics that complement your blog. Promote your own content, promote your own products, promote your own free stuff.
Here’s an example from Social Media Examiner.
What if you’re an affiliate marketer? Isn’t that what you should be doing? Yes, and you can promote affiliate products. Just promote your stuff first. Always.
Talking about free stuff…
4. Create More Opt-Ins
My coach Armand Morin shared this years ago. It’s not verbatim. I’ve paraphrased and use my own anecdotes. It goes something like this.
If you were collecting rain water, how would you go about doing it? Do you just put out one bucket out there? You would, if that’s all the rain water you want to collect.
Let’s get real. When you start our own business, you aren’t in it to collect just enough to scrape by. No! We want a better life. It’s not shameful, or unethical to admit it, nor is it to pursue. We want to earn more money.
So why would you put out only one bucket? The more buckets you have out, the more rain water you collect.
What kind of opt-ins? They can be a coupon, or a simple call-to-action to receive more updates. Also create more opt-ins based on the reasons people may want to buy your product. Armand covers this very well in his Webcamp: 30X Strategy session. Well worth it to check it out even if that’s the only session you learn for.
To compound the effect of more opt-ins, you…
5. Create More Free Gifts
The more free items you have to give, the more opportunity to ask for an email address.
That’s not all. You can treat free items as a lead-in. On the download page, or in the gift itself, mention your products or affiliate products.
Also, the more free gifts you have, you become a learning resource. Hubspot is so good at this. Every post ends with an invitation to download a resource. They have so many of them, they have built a resource hub that’ll keep people hooked on them for a while.
6. Create A List of Hot Posts
This is another one I learned from Lynn. Most of us, have an automated list of hot posts. While that may be good and is a form of social proof, but you have little to no control over what links show up.
The better way, hand pick them. Choose them based on what your target wants to know. What questions keep getting asked over and over? What topics are new people interested in? What topics do people who want to take things to the next level want? They may not be your most visited posts (yet), but they are hot topics based on the interest of your audience.
Here’s what Lynn does. Also note some links are bolded. I need to ask Lynn why, but suspect those are the ones she wants to feature.
7. Offer Your Freebies In Several Places
In the case study How 5 Top Websites Capture Leads On Their Blogs, I found some interesting things. These popular, high trafficked blogs, ask for the opt-in many times.
Not just that. They ask for it in many places. They also ask for it in a variety of ways.
Isn’t this is the same as creating many opt-ins and free gifts? Yes and no. Creating several opt-ins and gifts is an extension of this. This is the same opt-in topic or gift, offered many times, in different ways.
Here’s an example from Nelio. There’s a banner on the top of the sidebar asking people to try. Another one right under it with a testimonial and at the end of the post is the big banner and call to action again. Different presentation. Same offer, and goes to the same page.
8. Promote Related Content
This has its roots in promoting your own stuff. However, it’s more targeted, with more context than a general sidebar promo. Some examples are inline mentions like this one below.
These can also be highlighted in a box within the post, like this.
Another option is to have related posts with their feature graphic at the bottom of the post. The popular site JumbleJoy does something similar except they have it in the sidebar.
Most bloggers use a plugin to automate this which is OK. But, if a post enjoys a lot of traffic, I would hand pick them.
9. Add More Examples
This one has Neil Patel’s influence written all over. His posts are always well illustrated.
He isn’t just telling you, he’s showing you. The content is saying,
“See, this is what really happens. This is evidence I know what I’m talking about.”
He also uses a lot of statistics. Numbers carry weight when you are trying to drive a point across. Here’s one example.
And here’s another one pulled from the same post. There are lots of these type of examples.
Altogether, this makes his communications clear, extremely credible, and of remarkable quality. As you can also tell, I’ve taken a page from his playbook in this post 😉
Wrapping It Up
I know what you’re thinking. As I re-read this post, even I feel like there’s a lot of work to do on my own blog. Right here.
Yet, these are simple things. We often equate simple with easy. Simple does not equal easy.
Simple means anyone can do it. That you don’t have to be a brain surgeon to do these. It doesn’t mean you can push a button and it’s done.
If you’re overwhelmed, I know the feeling. Don’t throw your hands in the air and give up before you’ve started. I’ve created a checklist for you to work through these things. One small action at a time. Let’s get this done together.