If you’re reading this post, you’ve probably spent enough time sweating over content, branding and strategies that will “really work this time,” and you know it’s time to try something else.
In an ideal situation, your content sparks users' curiosity enough for them to "opt in" or click on your post links, and stick around. But it's important to avoid asking them to click. Presenting your brand as a solution to their problems, a source of entertainment, or a resource for information is a great way to attract more users and raise conversion.
The excuse of "making sure they know where the link is" isn't real. We all use the internet enough to recognize a link and its purpose in our sleep. You want to guide users, without being eager. With a few things in place, they'll keep coming back to their new supplier. And it's not complicated.
The best customers are often the ones who are not easy to convince, unless it's easy for them to see your value.
1. Make sure your website is easy to navigate, and your content is easy to share.
In this day and age, users' first discovery of your brand is often online. A modernized, welcoming and engaging page is vital. Make sure the things you want them to find (like your new releases or posts) are easy to find and understand. Use your brand voice with a personal touch in your website copy to guide them.
Keep opt-ins on the most engaging pages of your site. Like your blog post that has that infographic with key information, or an announcement about new exciting features for subscribers.
Post about these updates on social media, linking back to the page to entice users. Pleased site visitors won't mind the pop up net.
But how do you know if your brand is appealing enough? Ask people you trust. Tell them what you want the user to ultimately do (subscribe, buy, ect.) and ask them if they would do this after seeing your website and content. If there's room for improvement, research similar brands for inspiration, and be sure your website design reflects modern trends.
2. Build your audience online with real-time engagement and targeted follows.
Think about your typical user. What interests them? What would they say? Who they would follow? Probably your competition. Consider using a social account management platform such as Socialbro or Bufferapp to make growth tracking and posting interesting updates easier for you.
It usually takes a few weeks (2-3 max) to build up your fan base noticeably, if you're consistent. Determine which channels are best for your brand's story. Twitter works for just about everyone. Keep your posts compelling, and the clicks will continue.
3. Define your industry influencers and reach out to them.
Retweet and comment on posts you like from them on their Facebook / Instagram / Twitter. They appreciate this, and it shows you're not just trying to sell, which is a big turn off for many users.
Take time to think about this so that you sound prepared and competent when you speak to them about collaborating. You may be invited to have a conversation from social media engagement alone (such as an influencer giving you their email, ect.) or you can email them personally. Keep the intro personalized and about them and why you're interested. The rest of the email should briefly but clearly explain who you are and what you'd like to do as a brand. This can be identical in all emails and won't appear fake; you've taken some time to see who they are and that's how you began your email.
In your message, avoid thirsty words such as "please help me grow my brand" - try "It seems that we have similar values so I'd like to spread the word about (the mission you have in common) with you". Keep subject lines simple but enticing.
When someone replies with interest in collaborating, you'll be able to raise your brand awareness online. If you ask them nicely and send free sample(s) of your product or help them out in some other way (if you're not selling a product but you want more views on your website, ect.) they'll be happy to write about you and get their fans clicking...
Before you go, I want to tell you that spending this fraction of your time on organic outreach, optimized content, and audience growth is worth the conversion rate it produces when done correctly.
Spend two hours during one weekday to find more people. Focus on brands and bloggers who provide clear contact emails and info; they are usually more interested in collaborations. Plan one or two days per week where you reach out to these people. Aim for 10-20 emails per week, or more if you've got confident employees in charge of digital marketing. Don't forget to keep growing your social accounts and making new content.
If you have questions about anything mentioned here, you're welcome to ask me firstname.lastname@example.org.