Let’s face it, we are in a new world of online marketing and social media is one of the best ways to find a willing audience, interact with them, and build long lasting relationships for your blog. Sometimes I forget what I didn’t know when I sent off my first tweet, dug my first article, or tried to figure out why anyone would care what my status was on facebook. A year later and a healthy dose of social media and I can say that Twitter and Facebook have been one of the largest contributors to my blog’s success (besides content worth its weight in gold). Hopefully, you won’t realize that online content has no weight…
The Right Way to Gain Influence
Nine months after signing up for twitter I am now approaching 2,500 followers. I like to think the majority of them are really interested in what I have to say. I have not built up this list in sleazy ways by following hundreds of people, unfollowing them after they follow me back and then spamming another 100 people. DO NOT do this. Unless you are OK with being a Di#@. But if you do do it, I will protest, unfollow you and ban you from TBC. Yeah, it’s all the justice that I can deliver in my small part of the internet.
One excellent way of gaining relevant followers is by having your content Retweeted. It is also an excellent way of driving new traffic to your blog if you have linked to your article, or someone tweets your article after reading it. Recently, while tweeting TBC Challenger posts I found a consistent glaring mistake: Not adding twitter names to the retweets that are going out from tweet buttons on their blogs. Not only are you losing the chance to have credit added to your post (by adding via @toddwassel or RT @toddwassel) but you also might be limiting the number of people tweeting your content.
I hate it when a person’s twitter name does not come up when I tweet from their blog post. Partly because it seems like the post is mine to begin with and I don’t want anyone to assume I am stealing another person’s idea. So, if the name does not appear then I don’t tweet it.
Another problem that I have noticed is that the Share This plug-in that people are using adds the plug-in’s twitter name (like @addthis). Why on earth would you want to promote another person’s twitter account with your wonderful content? The joy of travel blogging is that we are trying to create a life where we have time to travel. The more time spent writing, promoting, engaging with social media, finding an audience, and encouraging traffic is less time spent traveling and experiencing life. You should ONLY install social media buttons that help you do all of these things at once, while you are off diving a house reef in the Maldives or trekking to Machu Pichu.
Social Media influence is an asset that will add value to your marketing strategy and advertising bottom lines. Plus you get to meet tons of cool new people
Today your homework is simple but will reap significant benefits even while you are unplugged from the internet. Your homework is to optimize your social media buttons on your site. If you don’t have any social media buttons your first step is to get some! I have recently decided to try limiting the options to the sites I care most about (Twitter, Facebook, Stumble Upon, good old E-mail). Others like to give all the options in the world. Try both and see what works best for you (we will talk more about split testing in the future).
Now that you have the buttons installed, check every single one to make sure your brand, name, whatever is attached. This is most obvious for twitter but you want to make sure things show up easy to read and pretty in facebook as well.
If you want an example go ahead and TWEET THIS ARTICLE. No, seriously, tweet it, I dare you. You know what you will find? You’ll find my twitter name. To accomplish this I had to remove the twitter function from my ShareThis plug-in and use a different plug-in (tweetmeme). For me this little extra effort pays off big time.
Share Your Latest Post
Join the discussion over at the forum and see what others have done and what social media buttons they like best. Share a link to your own post in the forum at Blog Homework 4 and let the community here help spread your wonderful stories, pictures and videos. If you are not registered in the forum yet, click the link to the top right to get started.
And of course we love it when you post your ideas in the comments so have at it. What plug-ins do you like best for social media sharing? Feel free to insert links to the plugins.