5 tools to attract a relevant blog audience

It can be tempting to focus on the number of blog visitors, but how many of them actually read your posts? It’s time to stop guessing.

It is not difficult to drive traffic to your site, but what’s the point if visitors don’t stick around to read your blog post, sign up for your email list, or buy your product or service?

You might be familiar with the saying, “Traffic is vanity, conversion is sanity.”

Well, maybe not, because I just made it up. But it does make sense.

Let’s look at five great social media tools to ensure you attract a relevant audience to your blog posts.

1. Tweet at optimal times with SocialBro.

The people who follow you on Twitter are some of the most likely targets for your blog posts, but you need to have a strategy to reach them. One part of this is timing the delivery of your posts to get the attention of most of your followers.

SocialBro is a social media management tool. One key feature is that it figures out when your followers are online. This will not be 100 percent accurate, but it gives you a good idea of the best times to tweet.

At 8 a.m., only 31 percent of my followers actively tweet, but more than 77 percent are active at 3 p.m.

I’m based in Europe, but I focus on the U.S. It makes sense that more of my followers are online during my afternoon because it is morning in the U.S. It also makes sense to tweet at 8 a.m. and 3 p.m. because I want to attract the attention of my European followers, too.

2. Target people who know you with Google Author.

When you search through Google for content, you often see authors’ pictures in the search results:

The person in this picture is Amy Porterfield. Since I know her and value her as an expert in her field, I am more likely to click on this post.

Getting your picture displayed as part of the search results is called Google Author. It can help to not only get people to read your post, but to connect them with you and get them to become more familiar with you so they will immediately recognize your posts going forward.

Here are step-by-step instructions on how to set this up.

3. Promote your post with WiseStamp.

Most of the people you email on a daily basis are potential subscribers to your blog. Encourage them to read your latest blog post by including a link to it in every email you send.

Add your latest blog post to your signature with WiseStamp or a similar tool.

4. Encourage your readers to share with DiggDigg.

When you attract relevant audience members, it is more likely that their networks will also be relevant. Encourage your readers to share your content with their followers.

I use the WordPress plugin DiggDigg. I like it because when readers scroll through blog posts the social-sharing buttons automatically move with them. They have the option to share at any point.

Make sure you actively promote the option for social sharing. It’s not enough to just have it at the very top of a post. How else can you encourage people to share?

5. Find relevant keywords with Google’s keyword tool.

One of the most important elements of optimizing your blog post for Google is the title tag. This is not visible on the page, but it’s something Google reads when it is figuring out how to index your content.

If a librarian thinks a history book belongs in the geography section, how will the historians find it?

Help Google index your content correctly by doing some keyword research with the Google keyword tool, and ensure you give Google sufficient clues regarding what your content is about.

The following shows a search for “social media strategy.” In the “global monthly searches” column, Google shows the average searches per month over the last 12 months. It also shows a list of similar keywords with the number of monthly searches.

Google also looks for a description that it does not use for indexing, but displays in search results. It’s very important to include the correct description to ensure you only attract people who are relevant.

Perform keyword research for every post, and ensure you have the option to configure the page title as part of your content management system.

We get too caught up with numbers: how many visitors, Facebook fans, and Twitter followers we have. But it’s not all about volume. How many relevant followers do you have? How many relevant readers do you interact with?

What are your tips and tools for attracting a relevant audience?

A version of this article originally appeared on Mark Schaefer’s {grow}.

Ian Cleary is CEO of Razor Social, which provides the latest information on social media tools. (Image via)

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