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13 Ways to Promote Your Next Blog Post

Posted By Darren Rowse 16th of September 2008 Blog Promotion, Featured Posts 0 Comments

Blog-Promotion-1You’re slaved over your post – crafting titles, opening lines, adding depth, designing the post to be eye catching and more – you select the perfect time for your post to go live and hit ‘publish’!

It’s over – another post ‘released’ into the wild – there’s nothing more you can do except sit back, see how people like it and start on your next post…. or is there?

Instead of seeing the moment of publishing a post as the end point in the posting cycle of a post – I see it as the birthing moment of a post. The work has only just begun and what you do in the minutes and hours after it goes live can exponentially increase the effectiveness of the post!

Original Image by Elephi Pelephi

Today I want to talk about promoting your blog posts.

A lot is written about promoting and marketing blogs (as a whole) but I’ve found looking at ‘promotion’ on a more micro level (at a post by post level) can be a highly effective strategy.

Having hit publish on your post – don’t just leave it to chance that your post will be read by people. Giving it a few strategic ‘nudges’ can increase the exposure it gets exponentially.

Let me describe a few post promotion activities that I engage in.

note: I don’t use all of these techniques on every post but instead see them as a variety of tools that sit in my blog promotion toolbox and pull out different ones on different posts depending how suitable they are.

13 Ways to Promote Your Next Blog Post

1. Pitching Other Bloggers

One of the most effective ways of getting the word out about a new post is to let other bloggers know about it. There isn’t much more powerful a way to find new readers than another blogger recommending something you’ve written to people who trust them.

Getting other bloggers to link to your posts is not always easy though – particularly in the early days of a blog or if you don’t have some sort of profile or pre-existing relationship with the bloggers that you’re pitching. However it isn’t impossible. Here are a few tips on how to pitch your posts to other blogs:

  • Relevancy is key – don’t pitch stories to other bloggers that have little or no relevance to their blog. You’ll just be wasting their time and yours.
  • Only pitch your best posts – you will have a much higher success rate at getting a link if you only do it with your best stuff. I would only ever do this with around 1-2% of my posts.
  • Give them an angle – don’t just shoot the link over – tell the blogger what the story is about and why it might be relevant to their blog. Save them a little work by showing how the post might be interesting to their readers.
  • Keep it brief – if the blogger wants lots of details about your post they’ll click the link. Be to the point, communicate what you need to say and then let the blogger get on with their day.
  • Be polite – don’t assume you’ll get the link or insist that they link to you – make the suggestion and let the blogger decide if it’s relevant for them.
  • Be personal – use their name, their blog’s name and show you are not just spamming thousands of blogs with your email.

Read more tips like these on pitching other bloggers at 13 Tips on Asking other Bloggers for Links.

2. Social Messaging

An increasingly large source of traffic for my own blogs over the last year has been Twitter and other social messaging sites (like Friendfeed and Plurk). I use a mixture of automated tools and personalized tools to drive this traffic. On twitter I use TwitterFeed to tweet items from my blog’s RSS feed.

I find that this works best if your blogs feed is not the only thing that you’re putting up on Twitter. Add your own personal tweets, link to other people’s content, ask readers questions etc – the more you mix it up the more effective your own automated tweets will be accepted and clicked upon by your followers.

Don’t be afraid to use social messaging to promote posts that have good discussion on them also. I find that 12-24 hours after my post goes live can be a good time to shoot out another tweet if there’s a particularly hot conversation going on (in fact this can drive even more traffic than the first TwitterFeed automated tweet as it alerts your followers to a conversation rather than just content).

3. Social Bookmarking

This is something that I only do on selected posts – those that I think could do well on bookmarking sites like Digg or StumbleUpon.

I won’t go into great depth on this topic in this post as I recently wrote on how to get to the front page of Digg and have posted other tips at Using Social Media Sites to Grow Your Blog’s Traffic.

4. Internal Links

A great deal of blog promotion tips focus upon how to promote your blog on other people’s blogs and sites – but a great way to promote your blog post is to do it on your own blog.

One thing that I try to do with my best posts after I publish them is to think about where I could promote it on my own blog.

While it is at the top of my blog’s front page (the primary place to promote it) if you think hard you’re bound to find a few other posts in your archives that you could link to this new post. Find places where you’ve covered similar topics before and add your link as a ‘related reading’ link or even add a link to your new post within the content of an old post.

You might also want to add your new post to previously written ‘sneeze pages‘ or your sidebar if it’s a key post. Every link you add on your own blog to your new post potentially sends your current readers to your new post but also helps your blog with Search Engine Optimization (internal links count too).

5. Newsletters

If you have a newsletter list on your blog and you’ve written what you consider to be a key blog post – include a link to it in your next newsletter. Doing this will drive traffic but also signal to your readers that it’s a pillar post that you feel deserves their attention.

As with each of the points above – only do this with your best and most relevant posts. If you do it with every post reader will become desensitized to your recommended reading.

6. Other Blogs Comments Sections and Forums

NOTE: tread carefully with this one and only do it occasionally and in a way that adds value.

If you’ve got a post that you think relates strongly to something that another blogger has written about or that is the topic of discussion on a forum – leave a link to your own post.

The key to pulling this off without being labled a spammer is to leave a genuinely useful comment on the blog or forum. The comment itself should add value, be right on topic and contribute to the conversation. Then if you include a link introduce it with a ‘I’ve written more about this at….’ type comment rather than just a spammy call to action.

The other option is to email the other blogger first and ask if they’d mind if you leave the link. You might even find that the blogger will add the link to the post itself (don’t assume this).

7. Email Signatures

If you use a service like Feedburner they have a little widget that you can add to your email signature that highlights your latest blog posts. I’m not sure how effective that this is at driving traffic but the principle is a good one.

I know of a couple of bloggers who do the same thing by hand – they pick one or two of their latest key posts and add links to them as ‘featured posts’ in their email signatures. Many of us have links to our blog’s main URL in our email signatures but it strikes me that a link to a recent individual post could actually be more effective as it sends people to your very best content – food for thought.

8. Followup Posts

If you’ve just written a post that you feel is important a great technique to give it a second round of attention is to write a second post extending the first in some way.

This technique is very powerful at adding a sense of momentum to your blog.

‘Treat every post as an introduction to your next’. Here’s an image that describes this process taken from How to Keep Momentum Going by Building on Previous Posts.


Also check out how I use Mind Mapping to extend posts and do followups like this.

9. Advertise Your Post

This one won’t be for everyone and is definitely only for those special posts that you write that you particularly want to drive traffic to – but why not put a little budget aside to promote a post with some advertising.

Key posts that have a high ‘usefulness factor’ to potential readers are a great way to find new loyal readers to a blog. Rather than advertising the front page of your blog a high quality post can actually be the perfect landing page for an advertisement.

There are a variety of ways to advertise a blog but one of my favorites is on StumbleUpon where you can actually start an organic rush of traffic to a good blog post with a relatively small budget. Learn more on how to do it at Run a StumbleUpon Advertising Campaign for your Blog.

4 More Ways to Promote Key Blog Posts

The list could go on – here are a few more quick tips on how to promote individual blog posts:

  • 10. Write a Press Release – some press release services don’t cost anything (or much) and they can be surprisingly effective with a little luck.
  • 11. Pitch Mainstream Media – some posts will have mainstream media appeal. Shoot a paper, magazine, TV or Radio station an email – you might get lucky.
  • 12. Article Marketing – while I’ve never done article marketing I know a few bloggers who swear by writing articles for ‘free article sites’ as a way to promote themselves. While they often include links back to their main blog in these articles I think there’s some strong arguments for doing it to individual posts.
  • 13. Add a Comments Competition – if you want to increase reader interaction on a particular post run a comments competition where you give one commenter a prize. To increase the ‘quality’ and not just ‘quantity’ of comments offer a prize for the ‘best’ comment rather than a random comment.

How do You Promote Blog Posts?

I’ve covered 12 ways to promote an individual blog post above. What would you add?

How have you done it? What success have you had?

Keep in mind I’m not asking about how you promote your blog in a general sense – but how do you drive traffic to individual blog posts?

Read the Full Series

This post is part of a series on how to craft blog posts. It will be all the more powerful if taken in context of the full series which looks at 10 points in the posting process to pause and put extra effort. Start reading this series here.

About Darren Rowse
Darren Rowse is the founder and editor of ProBlogger Blog Tips and Digital Photography School. Learn more about him here and connect with him on Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn.
  1. Having a fairly new blog makes it hard to get a post on the front of something like Digg, but I’ve found that getting others to Stumble a post works great!

  2. Some really useful tips here Darren, thanks.

    I particularly like tips 1 & 2 – especially as they focus on getting your message out there, generating awareness and building relationships. So many people get pre-occupied with links and diggs etc.

  3. I have always felt a little guilty when it comes to promoting my blog. I guess because it started out as a personal newsletter. However, I love reading others and recommending them. Over time, I have been able to get a comfortable number of regular readers. I gain about three new readers per day- Nards.

  4. Outstanding post. Thanks again for putting everything in one place in such a succinct, helpful, and clear way.

  5. I usually just twitter them and occasionally link people on Skype who I think would be interested. I always feel spammy when promoting the blog too hard.

  6. For those who have an email list, you can always send out newsletter updates to your list so that they know that you have a new blog post up.

    It is always good to send out free contents to your list. You build traffic for your blog and at the same time, you are building trust with your subscribers. Win win! :-)

    Wayne Liew

  7. my last post is last month in my last blog, i tried to make a blog that telling the true about myself. before it, i used to make some blogs just for experiment about SEO o, the content was picked from other blog that i had changed to be ‘original content’ . a blog that translated manually get better traffic and not so bad in SEO.but now with a project to make a ‘true original contents blog’,i find myself can do nothing. Please advise me Darren..

  8. I’ve had good traffic from FriendFeed and Stumbleupon. Whilst SU visitors tend to read and leave, FriendFeeders are much more interactive. It’s really easy to add your blog to your FriendFeed page – just import the RSS feed and it updates automatically.

  9. My tip is to write posts and know your best posts inside out (maybe even have a page on your blog about it). That way, when you enter into something like a group writing project, you can link to them.

    The amount of posts I’ve seen in GWP have not internal linking, why not link to relevant posts you have written (or at the very least have a “check out some of my other posts” section at the bottom).

    Furthermore, try shoehorning in other blogger links, so that they may pick up on the story and run with it.

  10. If you write a REALLY REALLY good article the stumble it yes, digg it…yes but there are a few things you can do to make this article even better.
    1. Create similar articles to submit to free article websites which link to your original article. This way you will get loads of links to your article pushing up it’s exposure.
    2. Create a whole website around this article – Number 8 was follow up posts which is a great idea. But if you know one topic is successful then create a website for it (even if it is a static website and not a blog) and do everything to promote that. Get a keyword rich domain to get higher SE rankings. I am currently doing this at the moment with one of my most popular posts.

    This is too extreme to do for all of your posts but they are some ideas when you post has been marketed all other ways and is really popular

  11. Nice post
    I have some good luck with Press releases. I find one of the best is the twitter, seems to go right to the google search engine

  12. Another good tip that I found is to comment on blogs that have a “U Comment I Follow” policy. If you’re lucky, the blogger will go to your blog to give a comment back to your latest post.

    That way, your latest post (the one you want to “market”), will be read and possibly linked/social bookmarked.

  13. Question about, I guess the necessity or the reason for newsletters. If you are blogging regularly and have subscribers to the blog, what is the point of a newsletter? What content goes into the newsletter versus the posts that you are blogging each day? I would not want to subject my readers to redundant information.

    Tink *~*~*

  14. Now I just really wish I were going to Blog World Expo…cause I’d totally wear that bunny suit to promote my blog. Admit it, Darren, that tactic worked for you up until about 10,000 subscribers.

  15. Very good post Darren, well pitched for both beginners and more accomplished bloggers. I do think that those starting off should jettison the first point until youve got your blog in a fit shape and its worth hammering the point home that you should never, ever spam or you will be blacklisted as annoying quicker than you can type “Paris Hilton”. I would also leave press releases out of the equation for similar reasons.

    With regards to Tinks comment above I myself also dont really see the points of a newsletter as if you have RSS/Twitter then you have a direct mode to get your info across to your audience.

  16. how did you find that photo of me in the bunny suit?


  17. These are some nice ideas. I think it really depends what category your blog is in. Some blogs can do really good with social media sites and some do not do so well. I think everyone just has to play with it for a while to see what works for them. When you play with a social media site though, make sure to play with a whole bunch of them because each site’s users like different content. Just because stumbleupon doesn’t work for you doesn’t mean you cannot use digg.

  18. I’ve found recent success promoting my blog on facebook. Personally, I’m not all that good at keeping my interest in social networking sites like facebook, but I am working on it in order to keep up with friends accross the USA.

    In the last few weeks, I’ve written a few posts that I thought my contacts on facebook might find interesing so I not only “shared” the link, but I also began using “blogcast” which I learned about in one of your past posts. Well, this past week, my visitor numbers jumped 75% and have remained there. I know my readership is still small, but I get excited about sustained growth! Perhaps part of it is my continual interaction in that community.

    Keep the good content coming!

  19. Nice tips.

    Would YouTube be counted as Mainstream Media? You could point out your post in a video you upload to YouTube or pitch to someone that has his own series of videos which already has a following.

  20. Thanks – you reminded me to tweet about my newest post!

  21. Darren, I can ALWAYS depend on you for the 101 keys to making onlinebiz work. Thank you for the reminders to keep it simple and do it, step-by-step.

    Dr. DeClutter!
    Twitter: drdeclutter

  22. Great post Darren , however the very thing that got my attention in this one was the picture. How do you always find the right picture for a post? It’s quite amazing. I guess you didn’t search for “huge pink rabbit with board” :D
    I’m really curious…

  23. Yep, I have recently re-discovered the power of Twitter. I looked at it early on and honestly didnt understand it. Unbelievable how that community has grown up into something so useful and engaging.

    I have also had good luck with press releases and social bookmarking. The big thing I’m onto now is offering free ebooks to subscribers. Simple, and incredibly powerful.

    I’m finally getting around to starting my own personal blog and I plan to follow your examples and tips from this blog religiously. Simple and straight forward for those be patient and are willing to do the work.

    I enjoy your posts on twitter as well. (That’s where I first heard of you!)

    Thanks for sharing!


  24. Those are some great tips Darren. I like to use forums to notify other members of my latest posts and to get some valuable feedback from them. As we all know, forums are a great place to get some relevant traffic from.

  25. Yes, the great suggestions about how to drive visitors so would like again to read the newer posts. Thank you for the tips above.

  26. I submit most of my posts to about 70 social sites, works to get traffic every time!

  27. All that sounds like waaaaay too much work Darren, I’m going with the Bunny suit and sandwich board promo!!

  28. Oh, what could I possibly add to that?

    Since I write for multiple blogs with interrelated themes I might reference myself from one blog to another.

    It’s a tricky thing to do without sounding like a narcissist, but every now and again it works.

  29. Before, I am submitting almost all my posts to social sites like Digg and SU but I got nothing. This is maybe because I had some problems in creating attractive titles, or there were greater posts ahead of me.

    Now, I am 90% a forum poster and I noticed not only an increase in traffic but I also met interesting bloggers. A good thing about some forums is that it will display your latest post tittle with a link to it and when someone finds it interesting, they will visit it.

    However, forum posting is addictive and we may forget to find time to update our blog.

  30. I agree with Mathew Packer :P

  31. One thing I’ve done on occasion for posts that are either thought provoking or exceptionally funny is I copy the text and post it on Craigslist along with a link back to the site either in the Rants/Raves section or in the different discussion forums.

    With all the different markets it allows me to recycle the post to different people over and over (often eliciting contrasting responses depending on the demographic). Furthermore, even if they don’t visit the link, they’ll respond on CL therefore drawing more attention to the post.

  32. I have written on other blogs and written on forums…I’m not sure why but I have found fourms to bring me a lot more traffic than any other technique.

  33. Very useful tips and it means to me because I always try to get more traffic to my site. I will use your tips and hope it works.


  34. I like it – promote your blog a post at a time.

  35. @Jess – how do you find the fruitful forums?

  36. Darren you forgot to mention negative marketing – writing something against what people “like”.


  37. Funny illustration. Thanks a lot for your advise Darren, I will do step by step as your advise.


  38. A very good read and chocked full of ideas that most bloggers know but with a more in depth look at why some of these things work.

    This is a lucky resource for anyone to discover if they are new to the blogging world.

    I tell people all the time that you can have a $50,000 site and it will be a total waste of money if no one ever finds it.

    Many people think you can just get into this blogging world and zoom to the top but the likelihood of you remaining stagnated at the bottom proves that gravity not only applies to the universe but to unpromoted websites as well.

    *One key way of promoting* one of my sites is by word of mouth to friends. They are a source of many more people adding to the views and promoting it further.

    There used to be a commercial with this line of thinking that stated, “You tell one friend and they tell another and so on and so on and so on”.

    sometimes we overlook the power of small things and tend to think we have to hire a plane to carry a banner on the back of it to promote what we have.

    I have talked too, long now I must go tell a few friends about my latest must read posts.

  39. Darren, this sounds like a very good idea, one that I hadn’t really thought about. Thanks for the heads up and ideas!

  40. Great post. I tend to just let the chips fall where they may, but it certainly makes sense to promote a post you really slaved over. It’s such a bummer when you post something brilliant (at least *you* think so), and nobody even leaves a comment. :P

    I comfort myself with the fact that sometimes a post you didn’t think would be a winner gets dozens of comments. :)

  41. The tips you gave work great for the online world. But if your blog’s target is people who are non-tech savvy and unfamiliar with things like social bookmarking sites and even the Internet, then the guy in the bunny suit IS actually a good way to spread the word offline.

  42. wow fantastic text.
    should use more of the ideas mentioned above

    Great ideas really

    thank you

  43. Natalie Dylan says: 09/18/2008 at 11:39 am

    To me the email signature seems like the least important one among the ones you listed for it doesn’t apply to most of us small bloggers.

  44. Nice list.

    I’ve found slapping a link every now and then in my instant messenger away message is a good way to get some nice traffic. Would that fall under social media?

  45. I will never again bring a book to lunch but just my blackberry where I can read problogger.com, click to follow a link to another page of problogger.com, and read some more without ever turning a page.

  46. Very Useful tips Darren. I will use your tips to promote my next blog post.

  47. I tried on my current blog post ” New Tulips” to link it to an earlier post about Tulips, but was unable to pull it off. Found it hard to accomplish. Followed instructions in a book. Can you describe how it’s done?

    I’m at http://www.wateronceaweek.blogspot.com

  48. These are some great tips! Thanks for sharing. I use stumbleupon primarily, because I find that the more social networks I’m on, the more I goof off. Is there a way to notify all of them at once?

    I also leave comments on other’s blogs, to generate interest in mine. This way I can make new blogger friends, while promoting my own work.


  49. Yes, Relevant is the key! It is like one chain to another chain. More similarity, more chance web user will click on it.

  50. Very good suggestions. So far I’ve been leaving it to chance and StumbleUpon, so needless to say I haven’t exactly gotten the traffic I’ve wanted.

    I will see where your tips get me. :)

    Best wishes,

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