“Everything is fine in love, war and blogging” might be the wrong quotation you have read somewhere. That phrase don’t have the term ‘blogging’.
As our experienced bloggers, also the best networkers say that writing only takes 20% of the effort you put in blogging, the rest 80% is taken by promotional strategies. Yes, they are right. Writing blogposts and promoting them don’t weigh same in the opposite pans of the balance. Promotion takes the much mass.
But, to what extent? Should you use whatever the way you can have to promote your blogposts?
You need not to pull all the strings to hit the 80% but hit the main ones harder.
The point I am stressing here is, promoting blogposts should build you stronger network of comebackers and subscribers who would quick visit your blogposts upon publishing. Promoting them vigorously and aggressively will, instead of driving your traffic, will drive them take U-turn from being your blog followers/subscribers.
I have practiced some of these techniques in the past and learnt from the domination of adverse effects on my traffic and engagement rates. I don’t want you to repeat the same and waste your time in learning all by yourself.
If you don’t believe me, read an autobiography, you would understand the proportionate value of time with knowledge.
In this article, I would like to discuss some of such dangerous blogpost promotion techniques that are being practiced by many of the newbies and intermediator bloggers which are failing them in return with unexpected god speed. You would also read the thoughts of renowned and professional bloggers on internet along with my tone. I hope that will help you understand what the world is thinking about these dangerous promotional strategies.
1. Stop tagging unrelated people on Facebook
Who would not do the tagging when it is giving much indirect targeted traffic to our sites in the beginning fantasy days. A blog just born a kid (say days or weeks) would have to wait until it grows up or just have to born up a wiz kid to hit that huge mark.
In English, a blog that is created days or weeks or a month ago should build up proper impression to the search engine bots with consistence, quality, readability and SEO friendliness. Unless you take care of these issues your blog would grow up a ‘special kid’ which needs special attentional practices like tagging which is again the negative shot.
Because blogs are not humans to be shown humanity over their disabilities.
In even simple English, If you wanted traffic, optimize the blog for better readability and take care of content quality. Do the proper SEO and make sure your blog is not facing any issues being crawled up.
Facebook tagging is to notify and mention the presence of people sharing the moment. If someone has asked for a solution that you had come up with on your blog or if you think that particular person should notice this blogpost update, you can tag them.
But it should not be like,
Tag everyone or those who are frequently encouraging you through their likes and comments whenever you post an update.
Tagging everyone would pose a threat of being flagged as spam that you cannot get up again after so long.
Tagging those who constantly encourage you (be them either influencers or normal people) is not necessary. Logically, those who encourage you would encourage you, no matter what, as soon as they see the update running down their newsfeed. A tag about the post might actually disappoint them if no special engagement is asked.
Don’t you think? Step in their shoes and have a thought about it.
I asked Rohan Chaubey about the same and he says,
“For me networking is all about not being hungry for favors and concentrating on how I can be of service to others. This is called “palm-up” networking.
Networking with a generous heart has opened so many opportunities for me. Doing this I've realized that more I support others, the more support I receive.
It's already 2016, the only way to thrive is - establish genuine connections + Turn back to reciprocity.
In my upcoming book "Make People Want You", I've a chapter which talks about networking and reciprocity. And the above ideas were pulled out from there.
Talking about aggressive post promotions, it's a massive turn off for me.
Build things together and you might save yourself from being a self promoter 24 x 7.
Self promotion is appreciated till an extent. Aggressive promotion makes the audience run away.
The game is all about relationships, not transactions. The real players know the value of reciprocity and generosity.”
I asked Nirmala Santhakumar of My Magic Fundas about her experience.Here is what she says,
“Some bloggers wish to maximize the social shares for their blog posts and thus spreading their content in social media at irrelevant places in a frustrating manner. Few other bloggers want to make affiliate sales and hence blindly promote their updates in the inappropriate places. Sometimes they unnecessarily tag the expert bloggers and force them to read their blog posts. I have also been annoyed with the distracting banners, pop-ups and unessential newsletters.
All these risky promotional strategies should be avoided by the bloggers. It would be good to follow some genuine content promotion ways without being annoying the readers and the social followers. Over-promotion is not the way forward and never lets the bloggers earn money from their blog.”
2. Stop aggressive group promotion
Facebook groups give the best exposure of our blogposts to the known and unknown. Fortunately and unfortunately, we have infinity blogpost promotion groups available on Facebook with thousands of members (who are zombies at most).
These zombie members won’t care about yours or my promotions, they just do theirs. On the honesty side, we are also the same most of the times.
Only some zombies like ‘R’ in Isaac Marion’s ‘Warm Bodies’ (Novel/Hollywood movie) get their hearts beating for a second in a week or month and visit your site to read the post (only if that pot interests them).
I don’t mean that Facebook group promotion won’t help you but, not the way you are doing. Find a way to attract the road passers grab your attention and watch your promo, get amazed and visit your site.
Do not let the promotion flow into all the grooves at a time. Build a strategy and shoot them at right time (again strictly no tagging here. Because tagging in groups will bring the adverse effects 10x faster than normal).
Here is what Atish Ranjan of Tech Tricks World says about group promotion,
“Nowadays, most of the bloggers promote their blog posts in various groups to get some referral traffic and get share count increased. I am not against it as I do this sometimes as well. But, if you start posting so many links every hour it may annoy people who are in the group, and due to this reason they may mute the notifications or simply leave the group. That means they stop getting notifications about the new posts in the group that affects your posting because if most of the group members do so, who will see your posts then?
It makes sense.
Therefore, limit the number of postings in various groups. It is even better if you post in the groups that are relevant to your nice.
Now, coming to Facebook tags, I really hate when someone tags me to their post without any significance. If I am mentioned in a particular article, then if you tag me while posting, then it makes some sense. But, if you are tagging me just for the sake of notifying me, it does annoy me a lot. Come on, you are in my friend list already, and I can see your posts in newsfeed so why should you tag? It is spam!! I hate to be added in Group chats whether it is Facebook or WhatsApp. They don’t do anything for good but annoy a lot. I was added in many such Group chats, and as expected, they end up within a few days. In short, I would recommend everyone to promote your blog posts in a professional manner which must not annoy your audience and friends because once they are fed up; you can lose a lot of audiences.”
I hate to be added in Group chats whether it is Facebook or WhatsApp. They don’t do anything for good but annoy a lot. I was added in many such Group chats, and as expected, they end up within a few days.
In short, I would recommend everyone to promote your blog posts in a professional manner which must not annoy your audience and friends because once they are fed up; you can lose a lot of audiences.”
3. Stop creating group chats
Promoting links in group chats is one of the most annoying techniques that anyone would hate to see. I have seen people these days creating groups in the name of their blogs and promoting the links like ‘You-must-see’.
No member of that group chat would have a clue to figure it out the purpose of the group and the links appearing. Sadly, the group contains 90% of fellow bloggers and only 10% of feeders.
Many professional bloggers simply leave the group without saying a word. Because they know that arguing with the group creators would be a waste of time.
The funniest explanation the group creator gives would be rather annoying than his links in the chat. He says that the group is intended to help one another about blogging but he himself continuously posts his blog links.
Here are some basic points that we need to mind before creating group chats and adding people. It is a minimum kind gesture to think of them first.
- Group chats help a lot if truly maintained to help each other and push each other. An ideal group created to serve so should only have the members who have shown their consent to stay and be active.
- It is much important to ask or at least inform each and everyone that you wanted to add in the group.
- Let’s everyone raise a point or express their opinion on the rules set. Always remember that it is your idea of creating the group and adding members. So, respect their consent for staying.
- Do not remove members at your choice without talking to them personally if any action needed to be taken against inactive members. You have no right to disrespect their privacy and freedom by adding and removing at your decision.
Saurabh Tiwari of All Digital Trends shared his bitter experience with the attention-hungry promotions.
“I know everyone blogger want more and more traffic to blog/website, but these days bloggers are following unprofessional ways to get traffic.
I recently saw some fellow bloggers create WhatsApp groups with their blog names and if add people to the group and they used to share posts even the group is not entirely particular about their blog and even they used to share blog posts in irrelevant conversation. One thing more you are not allowed to share own post in that group, this is the guideline from group owner whether they can.
Also, Some Fellow bloggers Join many Facebook and Google plus groups and whenever they wrote a post they used to share the post in all the Groups that they have joined even the group is not related to the actual what the post is? And some used to Tag, their friends who have huge number of friends on their friends list and moreover, they ask their friends to share the blog post link in their timeline and if anyone asks the question in any groups or else in any conversation chat then they used to share the blog link even the post is not about the exact question is and all these promotional strategies is to get traffic which converts money, and this is Dangerous Promotional strategies for me because this may lead to users dissatisfaction regarding your blog even you write a great content for them.”
4. Stop promoting in personal chats
If promoting in group chats is trending method, promoting in personal chats is a classic of all the dangerous techniques.
Promoting here I mean posting links in the chats purposelessly.
If the person is not concerned with the topic of the blog post, if he hasn't asked you for a solutionary blog post, if he has nothing to do but just read it for god sake, do not recommend it to him to read. It might bring you a visitor and a page view, but you could lose a wonderful friend in your digital network.
Personal chats are to be personalized. Just because he praised you in his status update once or in a personal message, doesn’t mean that he will have to read each and every future post of yours.
Just think, if he really wanted to read your future posts, he would subscribe to your blog updates or at least ask you for a subscription channel. If you think there is a logic in this point, applaud in your comment below.
Swadhin Agarwal of DigitalGYD think the automated personal spamming is killing the life in promotions. Here it is in his own words,
“Automated group spamming, Facebook chats, twitter automated DMs have now come up as the evil outcome of social media these days. Whenever you follow someone on twitter there comes a rather unwanted and annoying DM to download their free eBook or check out a affiliate product.
If this was not enough, people nowadays have explored even more funny and intrusive ways to spam users through personal messaging platforms.
There are ways in which you can access people’s mobile numbers and add all those unrelated folks to a whatsapp group where only the owner rants his songs. This is annoying when you receive multiple notifications throughout the day and when you wake up you see you have 1288 unread messages from group “ultimatespam”.
Tagging on Facebook is another nuisance. People tag 100s of other people literally begging for likes to their profile picture. Some newbies are so adamant that they tag 50-60 others on their blog post shares and you literally carry the burden of the notifications.
Recently, someone tagged me and 83 other unrelated people in one status inviting us to visit some other blog post of his. When I reacted saying it was not cool and please don’t tag me. The smart guy instead of apologizing me, turned to say if you have problem why you don’t turn off tagging in your settings.
I was stunned by the shamelessness. I mean it’s like we gonna carry weapons, we gonna carry knives, if you have problem why don’t you wear clothes of steel and roam.
Being a social media enthusiast, I would take this opportunity and say that, please refrain from doing this. This is not a technology that will take you far. Instead of trying shortcuts, intruding their privacy and pissing them off why don’t you engage with those people? Talk to them, chat with them and discuss work with them.
This will help you build better relationships and lasting impressions.”
Susheel Karam of Digicular also had a bitter experience with personal message promotions. Read his story in his own words,
“I had experienced people using the worst ways to promote their content. Some of them being sharing posts to irrelevant Facebook groups, Twitter mentions, Google+ mentions and so on.
The two of most worst of them are
1. Twitter - People follow me, if I am interested and follow them back, then they unfollow me. This is cheap trick of gaining Twitter followers.
And there are some unknown people mentioning me in their tweets just to make me click the link in their tweet.
2. Facebook PM - Blogging is all about community, so when a fellow blogger sends you a friend request we will probably accept them most of times even if don't know them well.
But these people make wrong use of it. They tag in each of Facebook posts. And they just send personal messages with a link to their blog post and ask us to read, comment, share.
Unless they have some blog post to share they never message you.
If you look at their chat, all you can see is a bunch of links. Even Rohan faced similar situation.
The only advice I would like to give to fellow bloggers never show such Robotic behavior.
Always keep in mind that you are a human and the person on the other side is human too. So behave in the human way and try to build true relationships, not to get page views.”
5. Stop using auto promoters
Auto promoters are of two kinds, one kind is to automate the social media promotions with time. These actually help us to post on multiple social media channel at once and also help us schedule the promotions as per our time requirement.
The second type is to promote in multiple groups and chats automatically equaling the spamming activity. These tools spam in every joined and un-joined group even though you have no permission to post in it.
Now, tell me a thing. How many times have you seen the same update in every other group you have joined in and how many time have you thought of reporting it as spam? The other feel the same too.
The aggressive promotion that we have discussed above will also be mis-considered as group spamming sometimes.
Who would like to see the same post titled, “cheap mangoes for everyone” in every other group named, “Programmers lobby”, “Bloggers SharePoint”, “Bike mechanics adda” and so on?
Yes! You are thinking it right. It is a pure spam.
I asked Mi Muba of Be A Money Blogger about the auto promoters and here what he thinks about them,
“Your every promotional strategy will fail if you do it inorganically that means completely relying on any automated sharing tool or doing manually but just for sharing and nothing more. Now online world has become just like offline world where you need to stay on place where from you want any support. If are not organic on any place in online world it is just like you are in a meeting in offline world where you sit silently, share your views and go away from the room soon after the meeting is finish and hope people would remember you and recognize you in next meet. So be organic, be friendly, first listen to others and then make them listen to do meaningful promotion on any online place be it social media, social bookmarking site, forum or any other community get together.”
6. Stop sending newsletters to non-subscribers and unsubscribers
Email marketing is not dead. There are some top email marketing service providers online that not only help you send beautiful emails to your subscribers but also help you manage the marketing reports for your campaigns.
It is always okay to send good informative emails to your subscribers as they are willingly subscribed to your channel for so. But, how good and ethical is it to send the emails to the non-subscribers?
If “C’mon Sasidhar! That is called advertising” is what buzzing in your head, answer me this question. How many times have you felt like spamming those Dr. Batara’s hair growth treatment emails in your inbox(es)?
Advertising is targeting audience who show some interest towards such products or services. It is not promoting an iPhone SE to the caveman. neither he knows the value nor he cares about your promotion and at worst, you will get spammed.
Email service provider like Gmail intelligently move the emails received from a particular spam reported email ID for other users also. This in turn blocks your reach to your target audience.
7. Stop mentioning people in your statuses for personal messages
Personal messages and general news feed like updates are differentiated and protected with privacy rules for a reason. Don’t you think?
What’s the point of mentioning people to suggest something or to say something that has to be said in personal? Let me demonstrate how awkward the statuses appear.
“Hey @John! I accidentally dropped your toothbrush in bathroom. Here is guide to buy a new one http://www.toothbrushsuperhero.com/how-choose-tooth-brushed-when-dropped-bathroom.html”
“Hey @Jessica, I saw your spoiled eye makeup when you were leaving home to party. I didn’t say it to you because I thought I could give you a guide to correct it. Here it is: http://theworldgotsaved.com/eye-makeup-guide.html”
Now tell me how fair these look?
(Please don’t laugh alone. Hit the share button and let your friends know about it.)
Sometimes the personal messages mess-up meanings completely. Naveen Kumar of F5 The Refresh shares an example that he had experienced. He even demonstrates how the spamming is propagated. Read this,
“Yes, I agree with you that these days’ people doing so much spam.
Let’s begin with Facebook, people trying to get traffic to their posts by tagging a lot of people in their post without any sense.
Sometime, it changed the whole meaning of status. Before few days, I saw a post. Someone updated her status “It’s time to sleep” and tagged around 75 peoples. Now think, will it make any good sense? Its sense goes something like that she is sleeping with 75 peoples. LOL! Really!!
So we should stop tagging our friends unnecessarily in our post to avoid such nonsense meanings.
Bloggers using automotive tools for sharing their posts in groups on one click. Even you can’t able to get traffic from these groups then why you are sharing in those groups. Just for social signals. These don’t have any value.
If you want to get high quality social signals and wants to make your brand value, share your post in relevant groups and engage with your audience. I think, this is the only way to spreading your post on the social media groups.
Another technique people often use is sending URLs in direct messages. This is so irritating. Let me tell those people who are using this cheap technique, your ID can be disabled very soon as soon Facebook will detect the spam.
Let talk another social media platform like Google+ or WhatsApp or another mobile apps. In Google plus spamming is so easy. Anyone can easily join any community and share their urls in those communities. They never check the relevant communities, they just check the number of people in the community and share the URL.
There is another technique used by blogger. Bloggers are using any erotic pic of girl or something like this in their feature image and share on social media in the hope of getting any click.
Most popular trick of spamming is giving offers. Like A 4G Network company giving you 1 month free 4G internet and 350 INR. Just register yourself here: http://goo.gl/0sigFp (Don’t forget to click here, you will really win something amazing)”
Do not force people eat what you make
Not everyone eat the same food. You can’t make an Indian eat Chinese snake soup. Just promote them the way that no one finds it a spam or irrelevant in that channel. Build a proper strategy to build a network of your own. That is of course what the experts and fellow bloggers say.
May be I should end this at some point or else it would become a book as it has crossed already 4000 words by now.
A healthy promotion should not be a obsession to drive traffic. It should drive you loyal readers, subscribers and fans who desperately wait for our next blog post.
I’d like to thank Rohan Chaubey, Nirmala Santhakumar, Mi Muba, Swadhin Agarawal, Saurabh Tiwari, Naveen Kumar, Susheel Karam and Atish Ranjan for voicing their opinions and suggestions regarding the topic of this article. They add true value to the post and help the readers understand the importance.
I hope this long post with the opinions and advices of professional & fellow bloggers helped you understand why it is dangerous to promote blog posts in such ways. If you think I missed any point to mention, please share it in comments. Your opinion or experience adds a value to it too.