Visual marketing is something no blogger can any longer ignore. The web has become highly visual: No one will engage with the wall of text these days.
But how to use visuals without spending too much time or money on picking and formatting them? Let’s see:
Visual Content Should Engage
The first step is to set your goals straight.
Engagement should always be the goal. So know what will push them to engage.
>>> Actionable items:
- Use Pinterest and Twitter analytics at least weekly to understand what works best for your audience. Try to understand why a specific visual got more attention than the others and incorporate your findings into your blog editorial calendar!
- Create timely visuals. Schedule fun memes to congratulate your audience on big holidays. But not only that. Use these calendars of weird holidays, notable anniversaries and birthdays to post related visuals and visual quotes. Both work extremely well for engagement!
[Look at this example of Coca-Cola celebrating National Polar Bear Day. How can one not share it?]
Look At What Is Working For Others
The most obvious place to look for audience interests is in what is working from others. Given how likely it is that your content viewers are looking at others within your niche, the information is right there for the taking.
You don’t know need to know the view numbers, you need to see the rate of engagement and begin developing a pattern to follow.
Social platforms are going to be the biggest source for this data, as people are more likely to comment and share there than on blogs. But that doesn’t discount the numbers shown on the websites themselves. Really, any share numbers or comments there will be a big indication of what is working.
>>> Actionable items:
- If you don’t know your competitors yet or you want to expand your list, use this simple tool
- Use to (1) Find your competitors’ most popular blog posts and (2) Analyze your competitors’ Facebook marketing tactics: Loads of info to learn from!
[Top content of my competitor identified by BuzzSumo]
Try Asking For Feedback IN The Content With Apester
This is a personal favorite of mine, and one of the best marketing apps available. Apester is a digital storytelling application that creates feedback surveys directly in visual content. You have probably seen them on websites and even embedded in videos.
Each survey presents a single, simple question and a few multiple choice answers. Not only is it a great way to get viewer information, it is an automatic engagement tool that is effortless on the side of the one being asked.
You can also send people from one to another in a unique journey that will expose them to more content while they respond along the way. Very cool, and very effective.
>>> Actionable item:
To see who is using Apester, and how you might emulate the more engaging of those customers, check out this list. Not everyone has quite figured out how to utilize the tool to their advantage yet, but those who do are seeing real number increases in their overall data. It is hard not to be impressed.
Of course, improving visual content engagement might start with just having better visual content, period. If you have found your own lagging it might be time to start considering that the quality is the problem which is where both Pablo and Canva can step in.
Both are really easy to use content production tools that work across multiple formats (infographics, edited images, banners, charts, etc). They take a lot of the necessary knowledge and skill out of the process, and instead let you follow step by step tools and drag and drop features to make something professional grade. Great news for all of us who never went to school for graphic design.
Best of all, both are affordable.
>>> Actionable items:
- Both Pablo and Canva are essentially free tools. What you pay for are the photos that you use to create your visuals. You can use your favorite source of photos and upload your own pictures, though, saving money. There are lots of sites that offer free stock photography you can use to pick great pictures. Bigstockphoto is another great option as well.
- Create templates! Canva lets you create and re-use templates: You can change text, the concept, and the background image (see above) but use the pre-made template to save time. This ensures your blog visual content is branded in the same way which makes your site more memorable.
You can also use mobile photo editors if you want to create your pictures on the go.
Visualize Your Data and Old Content
Your old content provides loads of visual marketing inspiration. Look at your blog archive and identify content that you can turn into a cheat sheet, an infographic or into a visual white paper.
The idea is, if one particular article is doing well, chances are, its visual version will result in another boost. Plus it will give you the opportunity to re-enforce the success of the original by linking to it from the new content.
>>> Actionable items:
To turn your old content into a visual asset, use these visualization tools and resources:
- Flaticon is one of the best sources of icons to use in your visualizations
- Here are some awesome free tools and templates to create viral infographics including Create.ly and Venngage.com
- Use MarketingCharts and Emarketer for all sorts of marketing and web-related visualizations that are being updated monthly
You can even go further and create video slideshows using your visuals. With proper monetization, Youtube can be a pretty awesome branding tool.
Know Each Platform Specifics
People tend to pick a platform based on overall popularity, but how well do you know it? Each platform has its specifics when it comes to visual content.
- Maybe you are using Twitter, but the content could benefit from further context and elaboration.
- Tip: Don’t flood your feed with visuals on Twitter because images, while improving engagement, may also irritate and result in some unfollows. Use images only a couple of times a day when you want to diversify your Twitter feed.
- Or perhaps you want direct CTAs and so Instagram with its ban on description linking isn’t really the place for you.
- Tip: Consider Instagram ads that allow clickable CTAs.
- You could be lagging in viewers because of Facebook’s bizarre criteria on what qualifies as promotional, and so half your content isn’t being reached by your audience (boost pandering from an increasingly finicky platform).
- Tip: Use this tool to see if your image qualifies for Facebook promoted ads.
Consider adapting your visual strategy to each platform keeping in mind its specific guidelines (especially if you are planning to re-enforce your strategy by investing in advertising campaigns).
>>> Actionable item:
Use a social media dashboard to keep an eye on your blog stats and your social media channels to spot a good trend the moment it comes. This will make it easier for you to analyze your multiple marketing channels and compare them.
I use Cyfe which is very cheap and lets me see the stats from my own blog, Pinterest, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, etc., all on one page. If one of my visuals does particularly well, Cyfe lets me see it the day it happens:
There is also that it is ignoring many other networks that might be beneficial. How is your strategy on Pinterest? Have you ever considered Reddit? What about Quora?
Social platforms vary a great deal, and it is important that you take that into account.
4 Effective Tips for Boosting Reader Engagement on Your Blog
If you want your blog to be successful and bring good profits, you need to ensure that your posts not only attract traffic but engage the readers. To do this you’ll need to experiment with content formats, open dialog with the audience, involve influencers, and above all, understand your audience’s exact wishes.
From online videos to content creation and social media, there seems to be an endless supply of new traffic out there and different ways to pull users back to your site. With all of this in focus and on the minds of bloggers everywhere, we wanted to highlight some of the best ways to boost content engagement, using many of the preferred mentions we’ve already highlighted.
4 Ways to Boost Your Blog Content Engagement Rate Fast
Even if you don’t run a vlog, you need to post an occasional video because that’s the ‘hottest’ type of content today. Check out an aggregation of video marketing statistics offered by Forbes to see why exactly your blog needs more video content. Note that social videos generate more shares.
Live video streaming is also greatly popular today, so be sure to launch an occasional Facebook Live session to share something interesting with your followers. Then post a recording of the stream on your blog so those who missed the airing will be able to enjoy it anyway.
Research your audience in great detail
To boost reader engagement on your blog you need to understand what motivates your targeted audience to actually get into your content. You’ll need to not only consider the analytics data that will show you which of your posts are most popular. You also need to search for information on your targeted audience, such as what kind of posts are generally more popular with them.
The more precise you are in developing targeted content, the higher the reader engagement rate will be. This means that if you seek to create a diverse readership base, you might need to consider launching several websites. In that case, you’ll need to use specialized software and a hosting service that allows you to run multiple blogs. This will make managing them easier, so you’ll be able to focus on creating several posts. Bear in mind that you might be able to apply the same basic content strategy to all your blogs, even if they differ in subjects.
The differences in those strategies and individual posts will be dictated by the data you get from a detailed study of targeted audiences.
Get more influential persons involved
Influencers of any kind can help you boost reader engagement on your blog because if they promote your content, their loyal readers will want to read it themselves. You can also generate more traffic and engagement by mentioning various celebrities and popular bloggers.
A perfect example of this can be seen in one of our expert roundup posts, where 73 different online marketers and bloggers took the time to share their expertise on social media. The benefit here wasn’t also just for our site. Each of the experts got a lot of exposure out of this, and the audience loved the content as well.
However, you’ll need to be careful if you choose to use mentions. For celebrities, you should research laws and regulations surrounding the issue. You need to be 100% sure that you won’t be sued for mentioning someone’s name or other information in your post. When you mention bloggers, you’ll need to consider those rules too as well as give them a heads up about doing this.
Having various opinion influencers popular with your target audience is a great boost to your blog and personal brand. This will also increase your reach as you’ll get an indirect contact with the influencer’s audience.
However, attracting influencers is a big challenge, especially for a blogger. You can use the tips from Neil Patel, a true marketing guru. Think carefully about how to adapt them to your situation.
Post engaging graphics
Much like with videos, you should post relevant graphics to boost reader engagement because this type of content is popular and shareable. Infographics are particularly effective for this, so be sure to create some. It will be best if your infographics have some original data on relevant topics. But, even simple step-by-step instructions can generate decent shares and likes.
Your every post should contain several images by default as they promote reader engagement and memorization. Be sure to add .GIFs as well, because these graphics are in trend now.
Best Search Engine Marketing and SEO Practices to Follow in 2018
Marketing often requires four basic factors: first, there should be people with unsatisfied needs; second, these people should have the desire to be satisfied; third, there should be opportunities for communication; and fourth, there should be an exchange of goods or services. A businessman with keen acumen for business opportunities would readily recognize these unsatisfied needs, build opportunities for communication with these people, and relay the service or product that could satisfy their needs. The important thing is that the prospective businessman is able to reach his target audience via good marketing strategies and tactics.
Understanding Search Engine Marketing
Marketing strategies have greatly changed since the introduction of the World Wide Web. As the Internet expands, it also provides good avenues for new marketing strategies and tactics. It also engenders new buying behavior among consumers, as contemporary consumers first search online for a product or service that they need before purchasing it. On the other hand, business owners are now required to create their own websites to be relevant online.
As highlighted in this article, writing for humans is always going to be the example to follow. It also means keeping the following SEO guidelines in mind when creating content:
- Keep it unique. Avoid duplicating content that’s already out there. Ask yourself: what can I add to this ongoing conversation?
- Do more research than competitor sites have done.
- Consider all options: infographics, videos, podcasts, an interview, a step-by-step guide or even a new tool or template.
- Remember that longer content gets more links. If your page is supported by high-quality links, it will move up in the ranks. Although Google has stated that even a few sentences can rank, in general, you’re better off creating content that is at least 300 words or more.
One form of effective online marketing is search engine marketing. It involves website promotion aimed at increasing the visibility of your business site online. It is also designed to make your site rank higher on the search engine page results (SERP). However, this marketing form is wrought primarily through paid advertisement.
In 2007, for example, advertisers in the U.S. had spent 24.6 billion dollars on this type of marketing. Google, on the other hand, leads the pack of search engines that profited from search engine marketing. Furthermore, in the second quarter of 2015, Google got a sizeable 73.7% share of profits from search engine marketing as compared to 26.3% of Yahoo/Bing. Based on these data, search engine marketing appears to be a very profitable business that rakes billions of dollars of profit for search engines.
Social Media Marketing
Your online marketing strategies and tactics would never be complete without tapping into social media. Services like Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, Baidu Tieba, and LinkedIn have also been used for marketing. LinkedIn, for example, as an employment-oriented service can be used to promote your services and get more mileage for your online marketing efforts, but keep in mind that it is primarily used to establish professional networks.
Just take a look at the screenshot below and how LinkedIn can provide such great information for anyone looking for earnings and jobs reports within any specific niche market. Not only will these same results rank and appear within the search results, they are also heavily shared through social media as well.
Search Engine Optimization
Aside from search engine marketing which makes use of paid advertising, you can also make use of search engine optimization (SEO). Search engine optimization is another way of expanding the online visibility of your site without necessarily paying for online advertisements. Search engines have organic or natural page results, known as SERP, and you can influence these organic results through SEO.
Not many, however, are experts in SEO. Hence, if you are a businessman who doesn’t have the know-how on SEO, you should visit BestSEOCompanies.com and search for the expert that fits your needs. If you want a reliable and trustworthy SEO specialist, this website can really help you with its list of the top 50 SEO services that you can immediately hire.
Business websites that are ranking high in the SERP usually gets two-pronged benefits. First, if your site ranks high in the SERP, chances are casual searchers will click on your website, and you can turn them immediately into actual clients. Additionally, if you get more clicks and visits from casual searchers, the search engine will further rank your website higher.
What Is the Chief Benefit of Going the Extra Blogging Mile?
10:15 PM on a Sunday night.
After waking at 7 AM I did an hour of yoga.
I followed up with 4 hours of blogging work.
Toss in another 4 hours of blogging work plus a 1 hour walk and some R and R, and where I am late on a Sunday night. Going the extra blogging mile.
I love blogging. Working late on a Sunday does not feel like going the extra mile because blogging feels fun to me. But putting in a bit more effort when I feel tired helps me to help more people. Going the extra blogging mile also makes me memorable in the eyes of readers.
I know other bloggers who go the extra mile.
My friend Ronald at Web SEO Marketers runs a first rate blog.
Beyond his super content though, he goes the extra blogging mile in the relationship-building department.
A few moments ago I saw this update in my stream when I logged in to Facebook:
Buying the paperback version of my blogging eBook would have been awesome in and of itself. But Ronald snapped a selfie holding the paperback, noted how he just received my book in the email and tagged me to let me know he bought my book and he’d see me in paradise.
He perfectly embodies how you go the extra mile relationship building wise. Compassionate, heart-centered bloggers think of how they can help folks out. Generous folks always stick out in your mind because we resonate with people who are kind, helpful and genuine in all they do.
Being Memorable Helps Expand Your Presence
I noted Ronald’s rocking blog in this post because he is a skilled blogger, because he shouted out buying my book on Facebook and because both factors make him memorable. I could not fall asleep until I wrote this post and shouted him out because it feels fun to spread the love and to help you guys understand the chief benefit of going the extra blogging mile; people will remember you.
If people remember you they will feature you, interview you, invite you to guest post on their blog, or they will hire you or buy your stuff. As your features, interviews and guest posts increase you will appear to be all over the place in your niche, growing your business slowly and steadily until your generosity and willingness to go above and beyond results in exponential growth of your online presence.
Alonzo Pichardo embodies this type of massive growth over the long haul by going the extra mile.
Check out his Instagram account.
His follower growth and overall engagement levels are staggering, with 55,000 followers receiving Alonzo’s update on the platform.
Alonzo continues to get so many followers because he gave so much of his time, skills and expertise over the past decade. He did not attract 55,000 followers after a week of going the extra blogging mile. He generously served folks for a decade and continues to help folks even if doing so takes him late into the night, becoming more memorable to more folks around the world.
Be patient and persistent in creating value and building bonds. Good things take time.
You may not make a penny through your blog for 6 months after doing the right things with the right energy but you will succeed over the long haul. Every kind act is rewarded over time.
Keep helping people. Focus on the process, not on outcomes. Stay up late to write the guest post, linking in to your blogging buddies to increase their exposure. After you purchase a book, take a selfie and tag the author on social media. Think of how you can impact humanity in a generous, significant way, one friendship and one generous act at a time.
Go the extra blogging mile.
Accelerate your blogging success over the long haul.
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