Something that I learned fairly quickly when I started blogging, was that my content alone would not bring visitors to my blog. You need to give your content legs and promote it. Leveraging your network of connections, social bookmarking, Twitter, Facebook, guest blogging, etc… is how you are going to create a readership.
Specific to fellow Internet Marketers, industry-specific social bookmarking sites have been and still are great ways to get your content in front of new readers who would have may not seen your content otherwise.
You may have heard about the recent decision from Sphinn.com to remove voting on their popular bookmarking site. One of the reasons for this decision was because of how certain users were using their friends to help vote content to the 1st page. This was in turn skewing the results, showing lower quality content that shouldn’t have necessarily been voted to the 1st page.
However the defense I have to this, which effects all social bookmarking sites, is IF you have quality content that deserve to be on the 1st or “popular” page, you need to sometimes get help from others to get it going. What I have noticed that the submissions that only have 1 vote, have a harder time getting more votes, than ones that start off with 2-4 votes. More people are likely to view posts that already have a few votes, before ones that have only 1 vote. From there, if the content is great, the rest will take care of itself.
When submitting content to social bookmarking sites you want to make sure that you provide the title of the blog post, a brief description and the most relevant category/tags. This will ensure that your submission gets accepted and is seen by people looking for content in a particular category. If you do not fill out the submission completely, it may not give the reader enough information to decide if they want to read the post or not.
Like I discussed before, sometimes you need to get your friends behind your content to help it gain exposure on these social bookmarking sites. Similar to social media communities like Twitter and Facebook, you need to start engaging with others who are active in the community.
Many of the bookmarking sites allow you to create a profile about yourself, along with contact information. See if you can find a Twitter handle, Facebook profile, or Instant Message screen name so that you can connect with them and begin a conversation.
Make It Easy For Users to Bookmark
On top of the users who are visiting the different bookmarking sites to find content, you also want to make it easy for people to bookmark your content right from the convenience of your own blog. Adding social bookmarking “share” buttons will make it easier and more accessible for people to bookmark your content after they have read your post.
One of the most active and longest running social bookmarking sites, Sphinn is filled with Internet Marketers who share content about SEO, PPC, Social Media, Google, Affiliate Marketing, Link Building. Sphinn recently changed from a voting system to a moderator review who decides on what gets shown on the 1st page.
Serp’d is the newest Internet Marketing social bookmarking community, that was inspired by Sphinn removing the ability to vote for your favorite posts. This community is rapidly growing and is becoming more active every day.
bizSugar makes it easier to learn about new business strategies, tactics, and news. You can discover websites that provide answers to many of your business challenges, meet other business owners and managers that share your interests, and help others by sharing your knowledge.
IM Spike is not the most active community, but can still be another way of gaining some additional exposure and traffic to your site. You will probably see a number of spam results on the 1st page, which can make it hard to find quality content; however if it does provide a DoFollow link back to your website or blog.
This social bookmarking site is geared towards users who are looking to make money online. Personally I have not spent too much time in this community, as I just recently found it…but it seems to have a fairly active community and it is a great place to find quality blogs in the making money online niche.
Now it’s your turn…What other social bookmarking sites have you used to help gain exposure? What tactics have you used to increase the visibility of your content?
I was putting together a weekly roundup for SERPd and stumbled upon this post, Mark. Great post with lots of practical advice and many good voting sites included - it will make a great addition to the post. Ana Hoffman PS Would love to have you visit my last post (ComLuv included); started a new series and need feedback from seasoned SEOs - how would you make the series better? Thank you!
I keep meaning to go back and check out Biz Sugar, I even believe that I have an account there but might have had an issue getting the site to load or something along those lines. In any case this is sweet post for anyone looking to be involved on more then just one level.
Mark, thanks for this excellent post. I'm currently evaluating the most effective methods for social networking/bookmarking, and you've given me some good potential leads. And I need to revisit my social media buttons...