Finding Readers for your Blog – Darren Rowse
After the keynote address, I went into a couple different sessions and walked out. It seems as if today is mostly about social media as opposed to creating content. Both sessions were pretty weak.
HOWEVER, I eventually ended up in the Problogger series that Darren Rowse is taking the lead in. His content has been fantastic.
He stated early on that a successful blog basically tends to find the sweet spot between four areas – Content, Finding Readers, Building Community, and Monetization.
Here are some quick notes from the session on FINDING READERS…
Take the time to identify who your target audience is. Create a reader profile with picture and include demographics, needs/challenges, how they use the web, motivations for reading, experience level, dreams, and financial situation. Improve these profiles (personnas) by surveying your new subscribers. Set an auto-responder that will ask subscribers three months after subscribing “what have you not found that you wanted”?
Give your readers a reason to subscribe. Anticipation works very well. One of the best things he has done is letting people know that a series of posts is coming. They should subscribe to not miss any.
Darren encourages creating a page that links to the deeper content on your site. He calls this a “sneeze” page. He then puts this page as an option in the primary navigation.
Regarding increasing readership, Darren also discussed some of the primary drivers, including controversy, social proof, and event-based content.
Lastly, he encourages linking to specific posts in your email signature and even your link in your twitter profile. Speak specifically to those that came from there.