If you write they shall come. This, unfortunately, is a load of crap on a stick!
Yes content is king, and yes the only true thing that matters is your writing and improving your craft. However, if you put it on a public Blog then you want eyes to see it. If you didn’t, well, you’d simply write it in your diary.
Welcome back to the How To Build An Author House Series. Today we shall look at networking and directory sites, and how they may hold the key to boost your author marketing activities.
You need to spread the word! To shout it out from the rooftops and have people hear you!
Unfortunately there isn’t a roof to stand on inside the Internet. It’s just a bunch of wires, and circuits, and a whole host of technical crap I don’t understand.
No, you need to find other ways to shout to the world, and it just so happens there’s a few sites that can help:
Jeff Bullas wrote an article about how Stumbleupon drives more traffic than any other Social Media site. This data is now out of date, but the point isn’t to show it’s better than Facebook or Twitter, but to show just how relevant it is.
Let’s take this Blog and the sites that drive traffic. In the entire time this site has been up, Stumbleupon is 3rd on the list. It’s ahead of Twitter (which I use a lot), and Facebook (which I don’t), and everything else other than the AW Forums and search engines.
To hammer this point home, I didn’t even start using Stumbleupon until about a month into my Blog, and even then I didn’t start using it correctly for a few more weeks.
At first I simply posted my own content, occasionally spent half an hour ‘stumbling’, and that was about it. The result was poor and I seriously thought about dropping it from my author marketing. Yet I gave it one more shot because quite a few people I respect were raving about it.
So I began following people, shared original content other than my own, and interacted with the community. The result was fantastic and I began seeing instant traffic come my way.
It’s now part of my daily author platform, and every time I find an article I like I take the following process:
– Tweet it!
– Comment on it!
– Stumble it!
Is Stumbleupon right for you?
That’s for you to decide, and if you only plan on ‘stumbling’ your own posts and spend no time whatsoever engaging then I suggest leaving it alone. Everything need a purpose, remember?
Diggit & Reddit
These can be great platforms to use, and I hear some great success stories about sites like this. The same rules apply here as Stumbleupon, as engagement holds the key to stardom.
I tested these sites, among a few others, and the results I got were zero. That’s right, zero visitors in weeks of testing, but don’t get me wrong, it was my fault, not the sites.
All I did was upload my posts with zero engagement. Zero engagement equals zero traffic, and that’s a lesson we can all learn.
The end result, as I’m sure you can guess, lead to me deleting these services from my author marketing rituals. There’s only so much time to spare, and to be honest I simply prefer the entire Stumbleupon experience 🙂
Because of this I can’t sit here and advocate these sites, but what I can do is urge you to try for yourself. Search for sites you like, test them for a week or two, and spend some time interacting with them. At the end of the process pick your favourite few and introduce them as a regular member of your author platform.
These are sites that link back to your content, and supposedly share with a huge network of other sites. My personal stance is they’re dodgy and false, and overall something to stay clear of. It maybe my paranoia, but I simply don’t like these tactics.
I tried a few sites such as Social Monkee, Feedage, and FeedAgg, and the value just wasn’t there. Some offer free services and others require a subscription. I certainly wouldn’t recommend paying for such services, but I again urge you to try some free one’s for yourself.
It didn’t provide me with enough value (although I didn’t try too hard), and it simply doesn’t align with my author platform. I want my progress to be genuine, and these services don’t offer this.
Have you used these kinds of services? If you’ve had success stories I’d love to hear them.
Sites like Alltop.com, Kurat, Bloggers.com, and Triberr are very valuable sources if you have the time to consistently use them. I’ve tried all of these (although for some reason my RSS feed wouldn’t work with Alltop) and I think highly of them.
The key to success with sites like this is time though, and I’m afraid I spend too much of it with Stumbleupon (I know I know, I’m a Stumbleupon fan boi).
Saying that I do use some of these services from time to time to search for content, and it always offers some great finds. Yet I subscribe to a lot of Blogs, and follow even more sites, so it really does come down to the amount of time available.
Do you have the time?
If you do then try them out and find your favourite, because trust me, you’ll see some value.
That’s it for another Author Marketing post, but huge thanks for stopping by. There are plenty of great Blogs to choose from so I consider it an honour to have your time for a few minutes.
Please join me next time in the How To Build An Author House Series as I look at Newspapers and how the old school way still has some relevance in this modern, social world. See you soon folks.
Turndog Millionaire – @turndog_million
Do you use one of the services mentioned for your author platform?
Is there something I’ve missed?
Leave a comment below and share your author platform experiences.