Hey everyone, if you’ve been following along in recent weeks, you’ve heard the mention of a new up and coming blogger. Well, not a blogger yet, but she’s getting it going. On Monday, Katie A will officially become a blogger with her debut post right here on CNA. I’m very excited to say the least.
Throughout the last couple of weeks, Katie and I have been sending emails here and there to discuss a topic, talk about an article, figure out how to get a menu to work properly, you name it! Well, here we are, a few days away from launch date and I figured I’d write something up that would help her get started with regard to driving traffic to her site. Then I thought…
HOW SELFISH OF ME!
I’m sure there are other up and coming bloggers that would appreciate tips on how to build high quality traffic just as much as Katie would. So, instead of typing up an email, here’s an article!
Why Most Bloggers Fail
When most people get into blogging, they are under the false misconception that if you build it they will come. The days of writing about something on a blog and automatically showing up on the first page of Google for a keyword related to that keyword are gone.
With that being said, most bloggers get into blogging under the false misconception that all they will need to do is write a post or two a week, and a side hustle income will start rolling in. The harsh reality is that making anything blogging takes some time!
Another major issue is that once you realize that earning any kind of income blogging takes work, most people won’t have the slightest idea as to where to start. So, off to research it is! Once you research ways to get traffic to your blog, you’re going to read about tons of strategies. Then you’ll read posts telling you why all the strategies you just read about are wrong and why you have to revamp your strategy to be successful. Over time, trying to market your blog kind of feels like running in a circle like a dog trying to catch it’s tail. At some point, most bloggers simply get frustrated and give up!
Why You Won’t Fail
The main reason YOU WILL NOT FAIL is this… Deep down inside, you don’t want to be a blogger, you want to be an authority in a niche that you love! Bloggers fail because bloggers blog. Bloggers don’t build communities around their ideas, bloggers don’t reach out to other industry leaders for collaboration opportunities, bloggers are rarely part of communities.
If you’re a blogger, don’t take offense to this, but here’s the truth…There are thousands upon thousands upon thousands of personal finance blogs out there. However, there are less than a hundred personal finance bloggers that I would call community leaders, industry leaders, authorities!
These are people like John at Frugal Rules, DC at Young Adult Money, Kim at Eyes on the Dollar, Grayson at Debt Roundup, Jeremy at Modest Money, Laurie at The Frugal Farmer and more. The community authorities are the people that you recognize when you hear their names or the names of their blogs. Why? Because they have done everything in their power to not only give the communities around them something great to read, but to give them advice on day to day life, to lend a helping hand to up and coming bloggers, to make the members of the communities they’ve created truly know they care about them!
So Where Do You Start?
So, you’ve come to the conclusion that you want to be an authority in your niche, but you’re still not sure how to do that. Don’t worry, I’ve got a plan for you! There’s only one problem, the plan is way to big to fit into one or even ten posts. So, from now on, every other Friday I’ll be posting tips about how to become an authority in your online community. So, let’s get to today’s lesson…
Leaving Comments To Introduce Yourself To And Maintain Relationships With Your Online Community
If you want to become an authority in any industry, the community surrounding that industry is going to need to know not only that you exist, but that you’re making a constant effort to be part of that community. Comments are a great way to do that. As a matter of fact, comments do a few things for you…
- Create and Nurture Online Relationships – As I mentioned above, commenting on other blogs is a great way to get to know the community around you, and for the community around you to get to know you!
- There Are SEO Benefits – Every time you leave a comment, you create a link that points to this website. Although those links aren’t in the content and are often times nofollow, over time the build up of links will do great things for you. We’ll talk more about nofollow, dofollow, contextual, non-contextual and other types of links and what they do for you later in the series. For now, it’s just good to know that most links are good. Just don’t hire anyone to build them for you and don’t use robots! Only create links in ways that feel natural and you should do just fine….there I go, off on a tangent about links… back to the main topic!
- Traffic – Tons of bloggers look into comments on authority sites to find other bloggers to follow. I get several referral hits every day from comments I leave around the blogosphere. Because most of these hits are bloggers, most of them have the Alexa toolbar installed. So, in the end, your Alexa rank may get a little boost as well.
- Most Bloggers Reciprocate – As you get more and more into running your blog, when you get comments, you’re going to start to feel like these people commenting are doing you a favor. You’ll learn that Google likes when content is added to pages, so the more comments you have, the more content your page has and the better it performs in search engines! So, by commenting, you’re doing other bloggers a huge favor. Most of the time, they’ll return the favor by commenting on your blog!
Steps To Creating A Successful Blog Commenting Campaign
Step #1: Find Authorities In Your Niche – Authorities in any niche get a ton of comments. You should be leaving one on every article as well! There are also benefits to knowing who the authorities in your niche are when it comes to running a successful blog commenting campaign. One of the biggest is the fact that chances are, there are tons of other influential bloggers commenting in the same place. So, you’ll never fall short of articles to read and comment on.
Step #2: Plan To Comment Daily – Once you get into comments, you’re making a commitment to the bloggers that you will be talking to on a regular basis. You’re saying, “Hey, I like your work and I’m going to occasionally swing by and show you that.” If you leave a comment, and drop off of the face of the earth for a month and a half, your comment isn’t going to be as valuable in the eyes of the blogger if you are constantly an active part of their community. The good news is that if you’re like me, you like to read daily. If you like to read daily, commenting doesn’t add much to your daily activities!
Step #3: Try To Find At Least One New Blog A Day – From a link perspective, it’s a good idea to find at least one or two new blogs a day to comment on. Think of your link building process like a spider building a spider web. The more strands the spider spins from different points, the more flies that spider will catch. It’s time to build up your little corner of the web. A great way to do that is make it a mission to find a new blog to leave a comment on every day!
Step #4: Start Commenting – Now you know how to get started, it’s time to start actually commenting. While you’re commenting, here are a few things to keep in mind…
- Be Sincere – If you’re not going to read the article, DON’T BOTHER COMMENTING! It’s frustrating for a writer to put his or her heart and soul into providing honest advice and read a comment from someone that is completely unrelated to what you’re talking about. So, always remember to read the articles and leave honest, valuable comments!
- Switch Your Name Up – I hate this because I really like the idea of branding one name. However, Google has gotten more and more strict over the years with regard to anchor text in your links. If all of your anchor text is the same, it may raise a red flag causing your blog to be penalized. Because your name becomes the anchor text in your link, using the same name on all of your comments can get you in trouble. Now, I’m not saying not to use your legal name, I’m just saying it’s best to use variations of it. For instance, I use Josh, Joshua, Josh R, Joshua R, Josh Rodriguez, Joshua Rodriguez, Josh @ CNAFinance, Josh R @ CNAFinance.com, Joshua @ CNA Finance, and several other variations. I’m not lying about my name, I’m just making sure to brand each variation instead of getting penalized by search engines.
- Take Time To Share – Social Networking is going to be another major topic we talk about down the road in these posts. However, it’s always a good idea to spread the word if you loved an article. Most bloggers have buttons on their websites that make sharing easy, simply share the posts you like while you’re there and you’ll be surprised at how many people start sharing your posts as well!
Step #5: Keep Commenting – Commenting is a never ending job. So, when you think your list is getting old and it’s time to revamp, go ahead and revamp, but never stop!
Well, that’s all for the beginner to blogging lesson for the day. If you’d like more tips, swing back by in two weeks for the next edition! Comments have done tons for my blog and I hope they do the same for you!
Are you an authority in your niche? If so, did commenting on other blogs help you reach that status? If you’re not an authority, did you know little things like commenting could make such a huge difference?
Great Reads From Around The Blogosphere
What if your family is the Joneses? – In this post Shannon, an awesome blogger by the way, discusses how it feels when you feel like your family is the Joneses, but you live a frugal, financially responsible lifestyle.
Obsessed: 4 Reasons I Love Credit Card Rewards – This is an awesome post by Holly that explains why she loves credit card rewards so much. If you read this, I’d be willing to bet you’ll fall in love with credit card rewards too!