Some bloggers use social media to boost traffic and draw links, but they write off the opportunity to gain subscribers through social media as being unrealistic. While it’s true that social media users are typically less likely to subscribe than the average blog visitor, it’s certainly not impossible and in fact can make a big difference to your overall subscriber count.
At my primary blog, social media provided the first significant exposure and I learned a few things about attracting subscribers through this experience. Here at Traffikd after launching the blog I’ve had very little time to do some of the promotion that I would like to do (like writing more guest posts like this one), so social media has accounted for a large percentage of the traffic so far, and subscriber growth for the most part has been ok.
If you’re interested in gaining subscribers from social media, here are a few tips:
1. Be consistent
Social media visitors are unlikely to subscribe the first time they come across your blog. If you consistently draw attention from social media websites these visitors will hopefully see your blog over and over again, and with each visit they will be more likely to subscribe. This is especially true if you target the same social media sites repeatedly. I can think of a few blogs that I subscribed to after seeing them several times through social media. Smashing Magazine is one example. When visitors keep seeing your blog they’ll wonder what they’re missing by not subscribing. After all, others must really like your blog or it wouldn’t be so popular with social media.
2. Target niche sites
Niche social media sites will provide you with a much higher quality of traffic, assuming your content is relevant to the audience. Since the audience is a better fit for your blog, it’s natural that they would be more likely to subscribe.
3. Keep your content relevant
Social media often tempts bloggers to stray off topic in order to become popular and draw attention and traffic. While this may boost your stats, content that isn’t consistent with the purpose of your blog will not do much to help your subscriber count, and if it does, those subscribers won’t stick around for very long.
4. Work on branding yourself
This partly corresponds with point #1, being consistent. With an effective social media plan, you can successfully brand your blog over a period of time. What do you want to be known for? Work on developing content that will attract social media users and help to brand yourself in the way that you want to be seen.
5. Be unique
It’s possible to get tons of traffic from social media by re-using the ideas of other bloggers, but it’s difficult to gain subscribers this way. Create something truly unique and you’ll see better results in terms of subscribers.
6. Point out some of your past work
If your blog contains older content that may appeal to these new visitors, which it probably does, try leading them towards that content. Anything additional that you can show them will help to build your credibility and it will prove that you’re worth the subscription. I’ve found that links within the body of the post are typically better for this purpose than links on the sidebar or anywhere else.
7. Mention an upcoming post
This is a strategy that I need to use myself. If you are anticipating significant results from social media for a specific post, why not mention an upcoming post that visitors may be interested in? Include a link to your feed and they may subscribe in order to see that upcoming post that they don’t want to miss.
8. Display your subscriber count if it’s high
When I come across a new blog this is often one of the first things I look for. In my opinion it shows what stage the blog is at (which reminds me, I need to add the feed count here). You can gain a great deal of credibility from new visitors with an impressive feed count.
What’s Your Opinion?
Have you been able to gain subscribers from social media sites? What have you found to work well?