How to promote your blog with social influence

Want to see how social influence can be used to promote any blog to drive more traffic and earn extra money?

Social influence is a vital part of any blog, and influences everything from SEO (Search Engine Optimization) and organic search traffic, to conversion rates.

Building plenty of social reach, authority and trust (collectively called influence) plays a direct role in how much money you can make from blogging. That's why it is so important to take social media opportunities when they arise.

Here's what one reader, Kim Condrin, said about SME Pals:

"We looked at probably hundreds of online mentors for inspiration and training and feel your site has been the most informative and helpful of all."

This article shows how SME Pals can leverage Kim's great testimonial to market and promote both parties for mutual benefit.

Social blog promotion starts with quality content

Promoting a blog using social media is tricky because direct promotion of a blog on any social network is effectively self promotion. Self promotion is basically spam and people quite rightly ignore it.

In order to promote or market a blog socially you need someone else to tell everyone about your blog. Having verifiable, unsolicited highly positive testimony is one of the most powerful ways to build authority and trust online.

Think of a testimonial as social proof that your content is of high quality.

Unfortunately, highly positive, unsolicited testimonials are hard to come by because people don't tend to offer glowing reviews or testimonials unless your blog is:

  • helpful
  • high quality
  • interesting
  • insightful
  • relevant
  • ...

The only way to get to the point where someone might offer an unsolicited testimonial is by creating plenty of high quality content that genuinely meets their needs.

Make the most of social marketing opportunities

When a reader or customer takes the time to write something positive about your blog, it's time to make the most of their goodwill by sharing that message with everyone you can.

The best way to do this is by first engaging with the reader who offered the testimonial. Thank them. Find out a bit about them. Learn why and how your content has helped. Offer to help further if you can. Often this can lead to insight into your blog that you weren't previously aware of.

Mutually beneficial social blog promotion

After making a solid connection it is time to spread the good vibes around. Share a review or testimonial on your site. Write a blog post about it. Tweet about it. Post the review to Google+. Whatever you think is appropriate.

Make sure you attribute the positive review or testimonial to your reader. Provide a link back to their blog, business or website. By providing exposure for the reader, you give them an incentive to share your social marketing message too.

SME Pals' social proof

As mentioned earlier, Kim Condrin, a Certified Professional Organizer, sent me an email that briefly related why she and her son found SME Pals so useful. She started by saying:

"Thank you David for providing truly helpful blog posts – your material is well-researched and your writing is so clear and easy to follow."

Thanks Kim... glad you enjoy it.

She goes on:

"When my 20 year old son decided that college was not something he was interested in, he decided instead to pursue online marketing and found your site to be exceptional. We looked at probably hundreds of online mentors for inspiration and training and feel your site has been the most informative and helpful of all. "

"Thanks for your time and efforts and for going out of your way to provide quality information that is timely; especially for new online marketing students who are like sponges soaking up as much information as possible. Your site makes this task a whole lot more enjoyable!

All the best to you and keep the great posts coming! We read every one."

This a great review that can help build trust and authority with other people who are looking for advice and tips on blogging, marketing, small business, and startups. It's also a great feeling for anyone to know that their blog posts are read and that they are actually helping someone.

Kim's son, Taylor, is just starting a career as an Internet marketer with his new site BreakthroughMillionaire, and no doubt he will face many challenges (as we all do). But, I'll continue to write tips and advice for bloggers, marketers, entrepreneurs and small businesses and keep my fingers crossed that when someone like Taylor makes it, he won't forget about me... ;)

Have you marketed or promoted your blog or website using reviews and testimonials? How did the inclusion of social proof affect social influence? Have you found that an increase in social influence leads to positive changes in SEO, organic search traffic, Web traffic and conversions?

Share your social marketing and blogging tips and experiences in the comments or join me on Twitter, LinkedIn or Google+ to continue the conversation.

Proof that business blogging works. Pic by nicoleec

The vast majority (in the region of 95%) of all sites and blogs ever created fail to make any money at all - let alone a profit. Against this backdrop it's quite easy to lose faith in blogging as a viable tool for online marketing.

But all is not lost. There are plenty of businesses out there quietly creating great articles and content to share and promote around their networks. Many of them have had great success in driving new leads, customers, sign-ups, traffic and direct revenue.