6 Ways to Boost Blog Traffic When You Hit a Traffic Plateau
Recently, our clients, Essential Life Aromatherapy, approached us with a problem they were seeing with the traffic to their website. Despite regular blogging and a healthy online following, Essential Life Aromatherapy's website was no longer experiencing growth in the amount of traffic that was headed to their website. ELA had hit a traffic plateau and they wanted our advice on how to reignite growth.
To solve the problem, we focused on content. We were sure that with a renewed focus, and a refreshed look at content creation, we could boost traffic to ELA's website. To do this, we came up with six tactics to boost traffic and grow ELA's online audience to push them beyond their traffic plateau.
How to Boost Traffic When you Hit a Plateau
Focus on Shareable Content: Sharable content is the content marketing paradigm. In all of your content creation efforts, you should be striving to create content that resonates so deeply with your audience they are compelled to share it. When it came to reinvigorating Essential Life Aromatherapy's content, we wanted to renew our focus on shareability.
To create shareable content, our first port of call is to find out what content worked well for Essential Life Aromatherapy in the past. BuzzSumo is an excellent place to start this endeavour. Using BuzzSumo, we were able to analyse Essential Life Aromatherapy's most shared content.Their most shared post was this article about how to use coconut oil in your beauty routine this summer.
Analysing this blog gives us an idea of what their audience is looking for. A few of the things we noticed immediately were that: this was an article created around trending topics (summer in Australia and coconut oil); this is a lifestyle piece; this is an article that focuses on wellness rather than essential oils; and it's a "tip article".
Armed with this information, we had a few directions we wanted to head in with ELA's content. We decided to: tackle the same topic in another post with fresh perspective; repurpose the content into a video to reach an even larger audience; create a SlideShare; and to create serial content surrounding the topic of natural skin care and beauty products.
Create Informative Posts: When looking at the type of content Essential Life Aromatherapy had been posting, we noticed that a lot of their content was very short, and covered topics that were more "surface scratching" than in depth. While these posts are great, the next thing we wanted to do was to start creating long-form content which covered topics of high value to the reader.
In speaking to the new owners of Essential Life Aromatherapy, they expressed a desire to move the blog in a new direction away from exclusively essential oil and aromatherapy posts, and to concentrate more on wellness and wellbeing. To this end, we started covering broader topics and our copywriting manager created this long-form post about self-love for Valentine's Day.
Not only does long-form content add a great deal value to the lives of online audiences, this type of content also gets shared more than shorter posts.
Long-form content also opens the door to asking for email subscribers. We used the long-form content we created for Essential Life Aromatherapy to gain email subscribers by offering to send our readers a downloadable copy of the blog so they could print it off or read it in their own time. All they had to do was provide us with their email and we would send them a PDF.
Challenge Your Readers: The next thing we did was look at creating a "challenge" that ELA's readers could participate in. Given how passionately ELA's owners felt about the idea of self love and learning to love yourself, we decided to challenge our readers to indulge in 14 days of self care. The 14 days of self care challenge required ELA's online audience to take "me time" every day for two weeks straight and to share their indulgence in self care with ELA via Twitter and Instagram.
To start the 14-day self care challenge, we created a number of branded assets for ELA to post on their Twitter and Instagram accounts leading up to the commencement of the two week challenge. Included in each Social Media post about the event, we added the hashtag #LiveTheEssentialLife and invited those participating in the challenge to include the hashtag in their posts so that we could track all posts in the challenge. We also sent out an e-blast the day before the challenge started and invited all of ELA's email subscribers to participate.
To coincide with the self care challenge, we really amped up the amount of content we were producing for ELA. We focused the content on topics surrounding self care and included a call-to-action at the end of each blog post inviting readers to take part in the self care challenge which we dubbed the "Live The Essential Life Challenge".
Leverage Guest Blogging: One of the tactics we used to help Essential Life Aromatherapy get over their traffic plateau was to invite a series of guest bloggers to create posts for ELA's website. We added a link to ELA's website inviting readers to become a contributor to ELA'a blog. We also reached out to ELA's readers via Social Media and asked them to contact info@TheEssentialLife.org if they wanted to learn more about writing guest posts.
In addition, We sent Essential Life Aromatherapy out on a mission to create guest content. This didn't mean that we wrote guest posts on other blogs, but instead, ELA began joining groups on Facebook, LinkedIn and Reddit. Within these groups, we comments on various topics and added valuable input on a variety of topics the participants in these groups were talking about. We gained a number of connections for ELA with this approach.
It's important to note that, if your brand or business is going to insert itself into existing discussions online, your input needs to be of value to the conversation. If you try to just drop in links to your website, at best, you're likely to get banned from the group or forum. At worst you will appear spammy and turn off potential audiences.
Reach Out and Touch Somebody: Sometimes, when businesses experience a traffic plateau, or even a traffic recession, it's because they've let their connection with their audience grow cold. This might mean that their voice on Social Media has become less engaging and personal, or maybe the tone of the emails they send to their subscribers has become cold.
In the case of Essential Life Aromatherapy, we discovered that, since being sold to new owners, they had not sent out a single email to their subscribers. This was a huge missed opportunity for a business with more than 9,000 email subscribers.
To remedy this, we wanted to reintroduce ELA to their subscribers. To warm things up, we sent out an initial email letting subscribers know about the changes to the website and the new direction that Essential Life Aromatherapy was heading in. We followed this e-blast up one week later with an e-blast about the upcoming self care challenge. We also worked with ELA to develop a plan to connect with email subscribers on a more consistent basis with a bi-weekly newsletter which you can subscribe to here.
Take Up a Cause: In SoBu's experience a way to engage your audience and to set yourself apart from your competition in order to gain followers and promote traffic to your website, is to take up a cause. Letting your audience know that you stand for something is a great way to engage a larger audience.
In working with ELA, the owners impressed upon us how passionately they felt about self care and taking time out to care for yourself in order to be in your best shape to care for others. With this in mind, we created content around self care and taking of oneself in order to take care of others.
To this end, we decided to launch a broader content marketing initiative in addition to the self care challenge. In the coming months, Essential Life Aromatherapy will be launching a large-scale, content initiative aimed at promoting self care. Stayed tuned to ELA's Twitter and Instagram to see how this content initiative plays out.
To learn more about breaking through a traffic plateau, or to find out about SoBu Social Media Marketing's content creation services, contact us here. One of our account managers will be happy to answer any questions you might have. If you are interest in guest blogging opportunities available with Essential Life Aromatherapy, please contact info@TheEssentialLife.org.