December 21, 2014

5 Reasons New Bloggers Should Use Niche Social Media Sites

I’ve been talking to some new bloggers recently and I’ve been asked questions about how they should work on growing their blog, increasing subscribers, and getting more visitors. Most bloggers know about the potential impact of social media and some even spend considerable amounts of time on sites like Digg with hopes of getting a rush of traffic to their blog.

In my opinion, many new bloggers miss out on some great opportunities by not being more active at niche social media sites. These will not have nearly as many users as the major social media sites, so they will never send a comparable amount of traffic, but there are many reasons why they are every bit as valuable for the new blogger.

1. Targeted Traffic

Niche social media sites provide links to content that focuses on a specific topic, which means that most of the people that use that niche social media site will be very highly targeted if your content is a good fit with that topc.

While the most popular social media sites may be able to send thousands of visitors very quickly, those visitors are typically not very well targeted. Some of them may be interested in the subject of your content, but most would not fit in your target audience. With niche social media sites, a very high percentage of the visitors you receive will be exactly the type of readers that you want to reach.

2. Better Conversion to Subscribers

Social media traffic is usually pretty poor at converting to subscribers. There are a few reasons for this. First, the average social media visitor is just browsing for interesting content, they’re not looking for a source of information that they will keep coming back to. Second, because the traffic is not targeted they will not be interested in subscribing and receiving the content on a regular basis. B

ecause visitors from niche social media sites is more targeted, part of this issue will be taken care of. Additionally, users of niche social media sites tend to have a strong interest in the community of other users of the site who have similar interests, and this can carry over to the links that they find through the niche site.

3. Higher Chances of Success

One of the most significant reasons that I think new bloggers should be submitting their content to niche social media sites is that it is much easier and realistic to get your content to the front page. You could spend tons of time using Digg and trying to push your content and you may never get a post to the front page. Most bloggers that try to get traffic from Digg never have much success.

On the other hand, a much higher percentage of submissions at niche social media sites will get promoted to the front page. If your content is not making it on its own, you can even find a few friends and request some votes. With most niche social media sites it only takes a small number of votes to get from the front page and this is often possible to achieve just by asking a few friends for a vote.

4. Networking Opportunities

Social media and social networking sites provide plenty of opportunities to get involved with the community and get to know other users. With niche social media sites you will be able to network with like-minded users who have a lot in common with you. Making strong connections is very possible through this contact.

5. Can Lead to Success with Other Social Media Sites

Most social media users are active at several different social media sites. You may be able to easily get 100 visitors from a niche social media site. That may not seem very significant, but maybe from those 100 visits you will get a few Stumbles that will lead to even more traffic, or some Delicious bookmarks that will help you to make it to the frontpage. This domino effect is something that I have been writing about for a long time, and it sometimes can have big impacts.

What’s Your Experience?

Do you use niche social media sites? If so, how have they helped your efforts to grow your blog?

If you’re not familiar with any social media sites in your niche, see our categorized list of social media and social networking sites to see if you can find anything that may be of use to you.

About Steven Snell

Steven is a web designer, blogger, and freelance writer.

12 comments

  1. Hello,

    This article actually turns out to be a great description of exactly what Examiner.com is: However, it is not only targeted, but localized as well. I worked for Examiner.com for two years as a Senior ColdFusion Developer. The content team searches nationwide for bloggers with a track record, interviews those interested in becoming part of a channel in their locale of over 100 US Cities. They gain access to publishing tools which deliver content to their channel and city with targeted advertising and the potential for the blogger to gain local and national exposure and a potential income based on ad revenue generated by page views.

    When an end user finds and area of interest, whether sports, weather, dining, cars, relationships, and much more they can subscribe to an examiners page and get email notifications when the author posts a new story. The whole concept was generated in a Web Team meeting just two years ago at a time when the site would get about a million hits a month and by the time I left the traffic was hitting a million hits a day just a couple of months ago.

    Steve

  2. Great list of social media sites, thanks for that, I’ve added the page to my bookmarks.

    Annie

  3. I try to use niche social media site for my blog but i also spend some little time on sites like digg and SttumbleUpon, but I think what you are saying is really true, is better few target visitor then a lot of visitor doing nothing for you, even if I’m not against sharing my articles with everyone even if I don’t get subscribers or followers.

    Thanks for the post, it’s been a long time since the last one, I’ll start being more present in design social media sites.

  4. Niche is so important. The more niche you can make yourself the better. These niche social sites will provide huge opportunities for people

    Sometimes the niche sites can be tough though because users join but lose interest fast and revert back to the main more active sites.

  5. I have to admit I’ve been a bit lazy when it comes to social media sites. It’s something I should spend more time on.

    That being said, I like your idea of niche social marketing far more than general sites. Sure, they might send you a ton of traffic if (and that’s a big if) you can manage to get on the front page or whatever, but most of that traffic won’t be too targeted.

    I’m putting this on my to do list :)

    Have fun,
    Sean

  6. To answer your closing question, social media have been the way to get higher traffic ranking in just a few months. Imagine, I am now ranked 1,978,042nd (Aug.22, 2009, Philippine time) in Alexa. Considering my site in a few months old. I have beaten the ranking of my uncle’s website which registered the domain for me.

    What’s best in using social media is, it’s totally FREE!

    Visit my site to see proof.

    Ronald

  7. Correctly said. But I feel, general social media sites too have a good reach. Especially friendfeed.

  8. This post focuses on one of the most important aspects of social media – the sense of community.

    Sure, the more popular a social media site is, the more visitors it will have; however, therein lies most of the struggle. You are competing with thousands and spanning countless categories while attempting to make lasting connections and increase traffic to your blog. By networking within niche communities, you have a better chance at building relevant relationships.

    Additionally, by becoming active and respected within a niche community, it may also increase your chances on a larger social media site in the future. Consider it as Dr. Leo Marvin’s baby steps for social media marketing. (And yes, that was a “What About Bob?” reference from 1991.)

    Thanks for the info!
    Ronnie @ iGoMogul

  9. You are so right…time and time again, I come back to your article about creating a domino affect with social media, and the 2nd tier social media sites are key to your formula.

  10. I think it’s important to get in front of the same people on multiple social networks, I like using twitter, youtube and my blog.

    I get a large following on twitter then send them to my content such as youtube or my blog.

    If you provide good content people will be willing to join your email list.

  11. Going niche is worthwhile for the reasons you rightly point out. Sure you don’t get inundated with traffic (Digg) but the traffic is qualified (Tipd and PFbuzz in our case) and you can build up a network of people to reach out to.

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