Traffic is everything in lead-gen! In fact, TRAFFIC = LEADS! Here are 4 things you can do to 10X blog traffic to attract leads and new customers:
1. Focus on organic search traffic ONLY
It can be tempting to write about hot industry topics Don’t do this! Why? Ask yourself: Will this article send me traffic two years from now? (And how?) If the answer is no... It’s a post with a short shelf‐life, so traffic will likely fade quickly. You could combat this by publishing “hot articles” every day like news blogs. But, this would only give the illusion that your blog is growing. If you focus on something else, traffic would quickly fade, bringing you back to where you started. (Not to mention that doing this as a solo blogger is hard—some might say impossible!) But there’s a solution: Google Search Traffic! If you can write about topics that people are searching for month after month, and push your posts to the top of Google search results, then traffic won’t fade. For as long as your article ranks in Google for relevant search queries, you’ll receive consistent organic search traffic. No need to publish 10–15 new blog posts every month just to stop traffic from dropping. You can publish 10–15 articles IN TOTAL and then take a vacation, leaving your blog traffic to grow passively. That’s the beauty of SEO. ONLY publish posts with organic search traffic potential. IN FACT, YOU SHOULD CONSIDER DELETING ALL ARTICLES THAT AREN'T SENDING YOU ANY ORGANIC SEARCH TRAFFIC. Now, how about some “specific tactics,” that will teach you HOW to do it step by step...
2. Focus on topics with high “business potential”
Traffic hardly means anything for your business without conversions. Here's an example: You’ve probably heard of HubSpot, which is one of the biggest marketing software providers. Like many SaaS companies, they have a blog, which happens to get millions of visitors from Google search every single month. But can you guess which of their articles sends them the most search traffic? It’s this one — “How to Make an Animated GIF in Photoshop [Tutorial]” HubSpot is a company that sells marketing software, but the article that sends the most organic traffic to their blog is a tutorial on creating a GIF image. What are the chances that someone looking to make a GIF needs (rather expensive) marketing software? Not high! In other words, despite bringing them tons of search traffic every single month, traffic from this article is unlikely to convert into paying customers for Hubspot. But this doesn’t stop them from trying. All these people wanted to know was how to make a GIF. Even with the best lead nurturing funnel and the most skilled salespeople, the conversion rates will undoubtedly be pretty low. Try to focus on writing about topics where “our product is an irreplaceable solution.”
3. Focus on the quality, uniqueness and “authority” of your content
It’s crucial that you focus on both the search traffic and business potential of topics. But there’s one final ingredient: Great content. Neglect this, and you won’t see any success whatsoever. But I know what you’re thinking: “Oh, ‘publish great content?’… I’ve never heard that advice before! #sarcasm” I hate this kind of vague general advice as much as you do; it usually leads to more questions than answers. Like, what is “great content,” anyway? Ain’t your content “great” already? And how do you know if it’s not? Well, here are three actionable concepts that I believe all “great content” must embody:
This can be quite subjective. But when people talk about the quality of their content, I’ve found that they’re often referring to the following traits: Is it visually appealing? (i.e., website design, quality images, stylish typography, etc.) Is it well‐written? (i.e., perfect grammar, excellent structure/flow, stories, examples, hooks, etc.) Does it solve the problem? (i.e., how well it articulates the solution, how deep it goes, etc.) I know a lot of people who immediately close a website if it looks bad. I know even more people who lack the patience to read an article until the end. That is, unless the author of the article made a conscious effort to keep them engaged throughout. But most importantly, your article needs to address the search query you’re targeting properly. Neglect this, and the way it looks and reads will make little difference. You need to nail all three of these aspects to ensure that every visitor sees your content as “high‐quality.”
Someone has likely already published an excellent article on the topic that you want to rank for. Hundreds of people probably have. Take “how to increase blog traffic,” for example. There are millions of articles on this topic, some of which are admittedly great. So why does the world need yet another article on that same topic? And how that new article is going to stand out from the hundreds of others? If you don’t have a good answer to this question, you’d better put that topic aside and consider writing about something else. Your first thought might be that you should write a 100% unique article. Good luck with that one. In the grand scheme of things, this is nearly impossible unless you’re at the very forefront of your industry and all you do after waking up is innovate. (Do you fall into that bracket? I know I certainly don’t!) Other than that, the only way to publish something unique is to use your personal experience. I mean everyone can write an article with general advice on how to lose weight. But if you spent the last 2–3 years of your life personally testing all kinds of diets, exercises, and medications, you could surely publish a highly unique article about your weight loss journey. If you’re a company, not an individual — that works too. You can talk about your unique business experience, or your unique conversations with customers, partners, competitors. Take GrooveHQ, for example, who started a blog documenting their journey to $10M/year in revenue. They rarely published anything “new,” but the fact that it was all based on their personal experience made it highly unique. HERE’S A QUICK TIP FOR ANYONE STRUGGLING WITH THIS… In case you struggle to squeeze any good content out of your personal experience (let’s say you’re just a copywriter in a large company), your last resort is to try explaining something better than others. But you don’t always have to go this far. If there’s already a ton of content on some topic, you could try to distill all that information in a single article. That would hammer the point home better than any alternatives.
Let’s go back to the topic of weight loss. Would you prefer to read about weight loss from a shredded person or from an overweight person? The answer is obvious, right? You want to learn things from people with authority on that topic. But how do you become such a person? I mean, the world is full of much more credible people than you when it comes to your chosen topic, right? Well, although you may not be the best practitioner when it comes to a specific topic, you can surely be a great writer, researcher, and storyteller. Malcolm Gladwell didn’t become famous for sitting in a lab and doing some research. He became famous curating the research of other smart people, who supposedly weren’t very good at writing. At Ahrefs, they regularly exploit:
THEY KNOW THAT BY HELPING PEOPLE ACHIEVE ACTUAL RESULTS, THEY ATTRACT NEW PAYING CUSTOMERS. So don’t try to impress people with “smart secret ninja tactics”; focus on creating epic content around strategies that have already been proven.
4. ALWAYS promote your content
You should now have a piece of content that:
has organic search traffic potential;
has high “business potential”;
is high‐quality and unique.
So that’s it, right? Almost. If you’re to stand any hope of ranking for your target search terms (and attracting organic search traffic), you also need to promote your content. This is because more eyeballs = more backlinks. More backlinks = higher rankings. And higher rankings = more passive organic search traffic. Here are a few ways to promote your articles:
Sending a newsletter to email subscribers
Posting on social networks (Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, Pinterest, etc.)
Submitting to Reddit and any other relevant forums/communities
Reaching out to everyone who was mentioned in the article
But while such promotion is certainly worthwhile, there is one BIG problem: It's not scalable. That’s why the primary goal is ALWAYS to rank high in Google, so as to send passive search traffic to your article. You should, therefore, NOT quit promoting your article just because you’re out of items on your content promotion checklist. You should ONLY stop once you reach that goal. So what scalable strategies can you use to promote your articles and build backlinks?
paid promotion (Facebook ads, etc.)
Also perform outreach to those who have previously:
linked to articles on the same topic
published articles on the same topic
REMEMBER, THE QUALITY OF YOUR CONTENT PLAYS A VITAL ROLE IN THE SUCCESS OF SUCH PROMOTION STRATEGIES. When you have AMAZING content, you don’t even need to promote it that hard. It spreads by itself.
Final Thoughts + Further Reading
(Remember, more eyeballs = more traffic, which often leads to more backlinks, which leads to higher rankings and more organic search traffic!)