Now that you’ve started your blog, you might be wondering how to market it. If you’re like most new bloggers, you’re also looking for cost-effective ways to spread the word about your awesome new site. You actually have lots of options that can be game-changers for new bloggers.
Starting a blog is a huge step toward creating an income stream that can eventually supplement or replace your income from a job. But, here’s a hard truth. That income stream is never going to materialize if you don’t drive traffic to your blog. It’s all about the traffic.
So, before you get caught up in the latest and greatest promise of “if you just do this or that, you’ll be a mega blogger”, let’s explore some free or very inexpensive ways that you can market your blog and start driving traffic.
Disclosure: This page contains affiliate links. This means, at no additional cost to you, I may earn a commission if you click through and make a purchase.
As a new blogger, you’re probably familiar with a lot of the tools and resources that are available for your blog. You can spend a lot of money on this, that and the other, without really knowing if you’re spending money on the right things. It can add up quickly.
While you need to invest in your blog, like any business, you can also market your new blog without breaking the bank. I like free stuff. Most people do. So, let’s take a look at the ways that you can promote your new blog for free or almost free.
Of course, as a blogger, you want to have a solid social media presence. The most popular social media platforms for marketing your new blog are:
The best part is that all of these are free to use. Be sure to secure all of your social media log ins for your site, even if you’re not ready to use them yet. (You’ll have them for when you are.) Then, start with one platform, and build a following before adding another platform.
For most bloggers, Pinterest is the best platform to start with. I’ve seen results with driving traffic with Pinterest. You can manually pin for free.
But, because I don’t have time to stay online pinning all day, I use a scheduler to help. Tailwind is an affordable tool that let’s you schedule multiple pins daily, at optimal pinning time, several days in advance. You can try Tailwind for free here. If you want to create a consistent pinning schedule and make the process more efficient, I’d recommend giving Tailwind a try.
Question and Answer Forums
Question and answer forums are often-overlooked ways to market your new blog. The two most popular question and answer forums are:
Quora and Reddit work similarly in that users visit the sites and either ask or answer questions on a variety of topics. The benefit for bloggers who use the platforms is that they can find groups of users that align with their niches, and provide value by responding to questions.
When you register on either site, you can set up your profile and provide links to to your blog, so that visitors can find your site and, hopefully visit. It’s a great way to market your content and expertise to a target audience. And, like the social media sites mentioned previously, both are free to use.
Medium is a unique platform that offers users the opportunity to write and publish content. I recently joined Medium, and enjoy reading a variety of articles on the site.
As a blogger it’s important to keep your finger on the pulse of whatever your niche is. The best way to do this is to read, read, read. Medium offers a huge variety of content on a wide variety of subjects.
You can join for free. They also offer a $5 per month membership which gives you access to additional features and content, but a paid membership is totally optional.
Medium is an excellent platform for bloggers in two ways:
- You can create your profile, include a link to your blog and follow others while getting followers to your Medium profile.
- You can post content to Medium for other to read, which helps to share your writing with a larger audience.
An additional benefit of Medium is that you can put your content “behind the paywall” by joining the Partner Program. This program allows you to make your articles eligible to earn money based on the amount of time readers spend reading your content.
There are also other features on the platform like publications, personal blogs and more. With a maximum cost of $5 per month, and the potential to earn money on the platform for your content, Medium is a great addition to your blog marketing plan.
Backlinks to Your Site
Also called link building, backlinks are not only important for marketing your site, they’re critical for SEO (Search Engine Optimization). According to Backlinko, backlinks act as “votes” for your site. These votes signal that your content is worthwhile and valuable to Google, offering the opportunity for higher ranking in search engines.
While the topic of backlinks is more complex than this brief explanation, it’s important to keep this strategy in mind as you market and grow your site. Two ways to help you get started with link building as a new blogger are:
- Guest Posting
Simply put, guest posting is when you write a post for another blog. That blog then shares your post and author information on their site, linking back to your site. Ideally, your guest posts would be for sites that are topically related to your site that are established and high quality.
Carefully research site for guest posting opportunities. Then, reach out to those sites to pitch your ideas. Be sure to share why you think that you would be a good fit as a guest blogger for their site, and how your content could benefit their site and audience.
HARO is an excellent way to get high quality backlinks to your site. All you need to do to get started is:
- Sign up with HARO as a source here.
- Check your inbox three times a day for source requests.
- Respond to those that would be a good fit for your area of knowledge and respond.
Write an eBook
What?! I barely have time to do all the things I need to do for my blog, let alone write an eBook. But, think of it this way. If you have a solid content plan for your niche (meaning that you are only writing content that aligns with your niche), you already have a good start on your eBook.
You can gather content from posts and compile that content into an eBook. And, to be clear, your ebook doesn’t need to be a prolific novel. Instead, strive to bring value with concentrated content that solves a problem for readers. If you can do this in 50 or 100 pages, awesome!
If the thought of writing and self-publishing an eBook seems scary, let me introduce you to Amazon Kindle Direct. With this tool you can create, format, edit and publish your eBook on Amazon absolutely free. And, you can then sell your eBook and earn royalties from the sales.
Two of the benefits of writing and publishing an eBook are that it can set you apart as an expert in your field and share your content with a huge audience.
As a blogger, you are probably familiar with selling courses. You may have thought about adding this feature to your site, or have bought some courses to learn from. (I’ve done both!)
Courses are a great way to share your knowledge with your audience. However, when you’re a new blogger without an established audience, you might not want to spend the time to develop a course or the money to host it on a platform. Fortunately, your options aren’t limited to this.
If you have a course that you want to develop and sell, consider a course marketplace. Two of the most popular are:
These two platforms are different in how teachers earn money for their courses. Udemy allows you to set your own price for your course, but often runs specials that you can opt in or out of. When a student enrolls in your course, you would receive a percentage of that enrollment that varies depending on how the student came to your course (i.e., directly through you, from Udemy, etc.)
Skillshare, on the other hand, pays teachers monthly based on the number of minutes students spend watching their course. You can also earn money for referring students to the Premium Membership.
With both of these platforms, you can create a teacher profile and feature a link to your site. While you may want to eventually move your courses “in house” to your own site, the potential audience exposure and earning potential that Udemy and Skillshare offer make them worthwhile platforms to start with.
Marketing your new blog doesn’t have to be difficult or costly. Find the platforms that work best for you, and leverage those to build your audience and online presence.
What You Should Be Doing As A New Blogger
The First Year of Blogging – What Worked, What Didn’t, What’s Next