Whether you treat your blog as a hobby, something that you want to be more professional or as your career, social media is a vital part of growing and promoting any blog. There are so many social media accounts from blogs across the world that I despair at, from those accounts who have ‘blogger’ in their bios but nowhere do they put a link to their actual blog, to bloggers who I get the same message from three times thanking me for following them from different automated services! But, this is not a “grinding my gears” post, this is a helpful post filled with tips and advice, straight from all that I have learned so far from being a social media marketer (not that I claim to be an expert in the slightest in this every developing piece of online ‘technology’). Ok – maybe with a little bit of a rant thrown in!
TOP SOCIAL MEDIA TIPS FOR BLOGGERS
1. BE ACTIVE, BE THERE, AND BE AWARE!
The world of social media never sleeps – and whilst I’m definitely not saying that you should never sleep too, it’s important, particularly if you’re looking to progress your blog to reach different countries, to make sure that you stay active on social media. Even if it’s just liking a few posts, adding a few people, commenting on one or two images, it’s a good way to keep up with trends to help with blog post ideas, as well as reminding people that you’re there. Whenever I look into a bloggers bio and see that their last post on social media was a month ago, I don’t feel intrigued, or want to go onto their blog, because I’m put off that I won’t find anything recent. But don’t be fooled – just by replying to some random things and retweeting things which are completely irrelevant to your blog or personal likes are just as bad.
Accounts that are purely retweets or random things or especially accounts which use my tweets to promote their own platforms really gets on my nerves – and it’s not very professional. Be aware of what you are retweeting, sharing or pinning – it all reflects on the kind of people you will attract to your own account. Social media isn’t all about the numbers – I make a point on my blog’s Twitter account to only follow bloggers (from anywhere) and businesses (from the UK) who I can see myself enjoying seeing what they have on offer or would want to work with in the future.
While having thousands of followers and following thousands of people may look cool on the surface, any bloggers serious about working with you, or any brands serious about promoting you or wanting to connect will look at all the random accounts you are following and be put off. I’ve even had a brand say to me before that they were drawn to my Twitter account because of the professional way it looked and the fact that they could tell I was interested in working with bloggers and brands from my following, and that they had actually been put off some other bloggers because of the thousands of random accounts they were following.
I personally get especially annoyed at accounts who have #F4F or “I’ll follow back” in their bios – that’s not what social media is about, certainly not for a blogger – by all means do it on your personal account, but don’t expect me to follow you unless I know you, just because it means I will have one extra pointless follower.
2. GIVE IT THAT PERSONAL TOUCH
There is nothing I loathe more than receiving a tweet or message on social media with a blurb (big or small) that is so painstakingly generic, even more so when i see @uapp.ly or @crowdfire at the end. I’m not saying that you shouldn’t use tools like this to keep a track of your social media accounts for seeing who’s followed you or getting some insights of who to follow and trends, but please don’t use them to auto-message your new followers!
By all means, if you have an event to promote etc. that’s suitable for all your followers, send out an auto-message with the information, but this is the only instance that I can cope with receiving an auto-message or tweet. The one problem with sending out a generic message is that it’s NEVER going to be applicable to all your followers – and can come across as rude to those users who don’t realise that your message is automated who will think you have messaged them and not bothered to follow them back.
Also, you have to follow everyone back – follow real accounts and people you are connecting with for a reason, not just to up your numbers – it’s off putting to me when your followers and following numbers are the same as I feel like you’ve not made any effort to network and have just followed random accounts. I’m not saying that everyone who’s numbers are the same do this, it’s just the initial thought I have and it’s then forever associated with your account for me!
A personal touch doesn’t have to be a vastly different message every time, by all means, use some parts that are the same – it’s a welcome message after all. But, getting to know what the person or brand you’re following a little first can have a massively positive effect on your connection with them. It could be something as simple as saying you love their blog template or a specific product they sell. And, don’t just blurt all your social media links etc. at people – it puts me off clicking on them! By asking people if they are on any other platforms and asking how they are is a fantastic conversation starter and you are much more likely to get to know the person or brand better and work with them in the future.
3. MAKE YOUR POSTS STAND OUT
A tweet is generally only seen for a grand total of seven seconds…yes SEVEN SECONDS! So make it count when tweeting or sharing to promote your blog or brand. Use appropriate hashtags, bold images and short links to make the most out of your post. I hate seeing really long links in a tweet – it looks really messy! And, please make sure your image has something to do with what you’re tweeting about or posting!
Facebook has recently updated their notes section, so now, when posting to your page, it looks really professional – choose an appropriate, bold image and a snappy headline that says exactly what your post is about. Hashtags still work in the new Facebook notes, so make the most of them. I ALWAYS make sure I hashtag the key elements of my post as well as my blog name and any other people or brands I have tagged. I should have probably mentioned tagging – always tag other pages that you are mentioning – it’s a fantastic way to get them to see your post and reach a larger audience.
4. IT’S NOT ALL ABOUT YOU
It’s a common misconception that social media is a place to “big up” yourself and rant about how amazing you are…it’s not! Social media platforms each have their own way of connecting to and networking with some amazing bloggers in your area, or further. Don’t be all “me, me, me!” and get involved! Twitter has some amazing chats throughout the week, with bloggers coming together from all over the world. There is so many… #lbloggers, #fbloggers, #bbloggers #TheGirlGang, #BDIB….the list is endless and they is always something for everyone with amazing hosts and questions to get to know everyone, share and drum up some great conversation! I’ll pop a Twitter chat schedule below for anyone who’s interested – please note that these are UK only chats… I don’t know if I’ve included EVERYTHING, but if there is a chat you love and want to share, leave it in the comments below!
There’s nothing that irritates me more when connecting to new bloggers, or finding new blogs on Blogger or Bloglovin’ etc. then finding a blog I really love, but not being able to find any information on them as a person or any of their social media links in their blog footers or side bars. I want to know a little about you as well – you would be surprised how much more personal your blog feels with a little information on you as a person. Think of all the big bloggers you know – in the UK, think of people like Zoe Sugg, Louise Pentland, Poppy Deyes (the most generically known I could think of). What do they all have in common? They get their face and name out there and share who they are as people!
Make the most of the sidebar and footer of your blog to put social media icons in – it’s much easier to connect with people and spread your blog about. Also, as I said before, it’s not all about you – share other things on your blog like favourite brands or bloggers – have an icon to their website. This is a great way to connect with more bloggers and brands.
I hope you have found some of these tips useful – I’ve not even covered the basics of social media for bloggers, but I hope these few basic tips have helped in some way! Let me know in the comments below what your top social media tip is (as a blogger, brand or otherwise)!