Moran is a marketing advisor with the Techstars accelerator in Tel Aviv and the founder of Marketing Ramen, marketing strategies for startups on a budget. She’s building marketing strategies and helping startups grow. For full bio – moranbarnea.com, connect with her @moran_barnea.
It’s no secret that maintaining a blog on your website takes a lot of hard work and dedication. Doing research, writing high quality content and sticking to the publishing schedule does not come easy.
But if you stay creative and think like your readers, your efforts can become highly beneficial.
People often forget that the objectives of having a blog is to engage your community of readers, advance your website’s SEO efforts and generate more leads. Therefore, if you have a blog that no one reads, you may just as well not have one at all.
Improving your blog’s ranking in Google’s SERP will dramatically increase your chances of being discovered by your target audience, which is only half the job. It is also very important to establish a community of returning readers whom you will later be able to convert into clients.
Therefore, if you decide to commit to launching a blog, make sure that as many potential clients as possible know about it.
If you feel that your “muse” left you, your analytics keep showing low traffic and your content is rarely shared, here are six things you can do right now to increase your email sign-ups (for free):
Twitter Lead Generation
If you have a Twitter account, you can pin a tweet encouraging people to sign-up to your blog. If you are using Twitter Ads, instead of pinning a regular tweet with a link to your blog, use Twitter’s Lead Generation Card to pin a tweet that includes a signup form from your Twitter account page. Having people sign up directly from Twitter will increase the signup rate (more clicks = more drop offs).
See below how Justin Wu (AKA Hackapreneur) did it on his Twitter page:
Facebook Sign-up Button
If you have a Facebook page for your business, you can add a sign-up button to your page as I did below on Marketing Ramen’s Facebook page; Additionally, you can pin a post that encourages people to sign up to your mailing list, to the top of your page’s Timeline. The post will remain on top until it is removed or unpinned. Since I use MailChimp for my email marketing, I created a dedicated list on my Mailchimp account and linked it to the button in order to track the leads that came from my Facebook page.
Visible Blog Tab in Website Navigation
If you launched a website for your startup, keep the blog tab visible in your navigation menu. How will this increase sign ups to your email list, you ask? Well, the more visitors see that there is a blog on your website, the higher the chance that they will visit the blog and eventually sign up for it. Using “pop-ups” that encourage people to sign up for your blog on different pages of your website such as “Technology” or “Products” will not do the job as the pop-up will be out of context.
Here are 2 examples of a good placement of the blog tab in navigation bars, and 2 not so great ones:
#Good: blog tab is in the top menu:
Another good example:
#Bad: blog tab is hiding in submenu:
Another not so great example:
Add a popup that will invite your visitors to sign up for the blog when they visit your website.
If your website is based on WordPress, there are several free plugins you can use to add a popup to your website. My all-time favorite and highly popular is SumoMe but you can also check out HelloBar or the MailChimp plugin if you use Mailchimp for your email marketing.
If your website is not WordPress based, you can also add a popup, just need a programmer to help you with it ;-).
One additional thing you can do to increase the signup rate on your website, is to use any piece of gated marketing content you may have in your possession. It can be a white paper, a case study or whatever you think would be beneficial to your visitors.
Add a check box field to the gated content form, allowing visitors to automatically subscribe to your blog after filling out the form in order to download the gated content
Here’s a great example from Hubspot. The field at the bottom of the form allows the users to check the box in order to subscribe to Hubspot’s blog.
Recruit External Websites
Lastly, you can recruit other websites to promote your blog. Search for websites that publish lists of best blogs in your niche or industry and reach out to them to include you in their future posts.
Let’s say you are running a cyber security blog for your company and you are interested in promoting your blog among your target audience.
The top organic results of a quick Google search for “best cyber security blogs” will bring you links to articles that list the most popular cyber security blogs.
In addition to exploring the opportunity of being featured on those blogs, you may also improve your SEO rankings for “best X blogs” or similar keywords by posting an article on your website listing the best blogs in your industry.
Promoting your website on third party websites may require payment, but from my experience, these organic lists are a great source of traffic because usually their readers have a strong intent to search for your product or have interest in the industry in place.
Do you have other tips to increase blog signups? Comment below 🙂