Generating a healthy readership is all about publicity. It can seem daunting at first, but creating a blog presence outside of your actual blog can be fun!
1. Start a Social Media Frenzy
First and foremost, GET YOURSELF ON SOCIAL MEDIA. I’m serious. I wasn’t anxious to join Twitter at first, but after seeing how effective a resource it was for other bloggers/celebs/my friends who happen to be funny, I signed up. Life As a Strawberry also has a Facebook page, a Pinterest profile, and an account on Instagram. These are your most effective tools for communicating with readers outside of your actual blog. Plus, statuses/updates/photos are SUPER EASY to share for readers who follow you on these sites. If someone who follows you on one of these social media sites shares/retweets/repins something you’ve posted, they’re helping you bring a whole new group of people to your blog. That’s like FREE PUBLICITY! You know, if Sally told nine friends, and then HER friends told nine friends… that kind of a thing. So make a point to sign up for these networks:
Did you sign up? Good. Now that you have an account – USE IT! Make a point to be active on all of these networks. If you never post/twitterize/pin/insta-whatever, you won’t drive any traffic to your blog. I also love (and highly recommend) the mobile apps for these social networks – I have them all on my phone and can interact with my “fans” (Hi, Mom!) from wherever I am, any time I want. Plus, they’re all free! #WINNING.
2. Calling All Food Blogs
There are some incredible resources specifically for food bloggers that can generate a huge amount of traffic. When my Spicy Mac and Cheese was on Foodgawker, it was the most favorited picture of the week (wahoo!) and drove almost 3,000 hits to my blog in ONE. DAY. That’s a lot of people, people! Here are some sites where I recommend you submit your photos and recipes:
If you want to draw fellow bloggers to your site, you should also do your best to make yourself a part of the food blogging community. Follow fellow bloggers’ sites and leave thoughful comments – not just “looks yummy!” or “nice pictures!” but comments that can start a dialogue and bring attention to you and your site. Following bloggers you like on their own social media pages is another great way to interact, as is asking bloggers you admire to consider guest posting a recipe of their own on your site.
3. Stay Focused
While you’re sweeping yourself up in a publicity whirlwind, don’t forget that it’s just as important to keep old readers coming back as it is to draw new ones in. Post good content, and post it often, so that readers can be confident there will be a new and interesting post to read each time they return to your site. Be an active participant in your comment sections, as well – if someone leaves you a note, write back! (That goes for email, Facebook, Twitter, etc., too!) If you’re helpful and timely in answering questions or thanking readers for their support, it gives them a reason to keep coming back.