If you are a blogger then you know that social media and blogging not only complement each other, one pretty much can’t survive without the other. Social media isn’t a trend or a fad, it’s pretty much here to stay; and for bloggers like myself, it’s an excellent tool to take advantage of! But in order for social media sites to work for you, you have to use them. And that means being active, committed and consistent.
For me, the five social media sites I focus on the most are Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest, Instagram, and Google Plus. Of course these are not the only social media sites out there, but they are the five that work best for me – especially as they are where my readers seem to be the most active. These are the networks on which I spend the most time, and that I use to regularly promote my content. Now, that being said, I also spend some time on YouTube, LinkedIn and Tumblr, just not as much. A lot depends on my audience and what resonates with them, as well as certain trends in blogging. For example, the use of videos in blog posts is becoming more and more popular. Because of this, I am working on upping my YouTube presence and use. Just because I focus on these specific networks doesn’t necessarily mean you should too. You need to find where your audience seems to be the most active and concentrate on those. Find out which ones work best for you, and then make those sites work for you. Below are a few of the ways I make social media work for me.
Daily Sharing and Promoting of Content Daily
Sharing of my content is paramount. If I don’t share what I have posted on my blog, then I am not making the most of these social media sites. Therefore, I make a point to share all posts across all of the social media sites I use daily. I also make a point to repeat my social shares more than once, spacing the repeats several hours apart. I do this because in my experience all of my readers are not on Twitter or Facebook at the exact same time. Doing this also increases my reach. Another thing that I find works really well is leaving open-ended questions (when possible) in my social shares. This not only piques interest, but it encourages interaction from my readers.
Social Share Buttons
Another way I make social media work for me is by including share buttons on my site inside each post. This way, if readers like what they are reading they can easily share it with the click of a button.
Inclusion of Media
Not only do I include a snippet of what the content I am promoting is about, but I also try to include some type of media whenever possible. Most often this media is a picture either one from the post I am promoting, or an extra picture I took specifically for use in social media promotion.
Helping Other Bloggers with Reciprocation
Just as I found commenting on others’ blogs a useful way to increase my readership, I have also found that participating in a few Facebook blogging groups can be a useful tool as well. By helping other bloggers promote their content, yours will get promoted as well. This can greatly increase your reach and expose your blog to an entirely new audience. However, the one thing you need to watch for is not joining too many share threads. If you do, you will quickly find yourself spending precious hours sharing other people’s content instead of working on your own. I personally limit myself to 2 to 3 groups. Inside those groups, I usually only do 1 to 2 threads. So in one group I will post in the Twitter and Google Plus share threads, while in another I will post in the Pinterest and Facebook share threads. It all comes down to scheduling your sharing time wisely.
Speaking of scheduling and time management, social media management tools like Hootsuite allow me to manage the amount of time I spend using social media. Tools like these basically allow you to schedule and manage multiple cross-platform campaigns all from one, easy-to-use dashboard. I find them to be a lifesaver!
As is true with pretty much anything in blogging, a lot depends on what works best for you and your audience. Don’t get discouraged if you find that something I mentioned here does not work well for you. Over time you will find how to make the most out of social media so that social media works for you.
~This has been a sponsored contributor post by TapInfluence member and blogger Alaina Bullock. For more from Alaina, visit her at www.BullocksBuzz.com.