I collaborated with Act-On for this post but all opinions are entirely my own.
It’s rare that I’ll ever call myself a specialist in any field. Personally, it always drives me nuts when I come across someone’s social profile to read that he/she is a “marketing guru” or a “software ninja” or “relationship expert.” I’d prefer to think of myself more as a Jane-of-all-trades (master of none). I dabble. But when I really practice and work hard at my dabbling? There’s no stopping me.
I was flattered when I was asked about how I have not only branded my blog, but also how I’ve managed to grow my social following over the years. It has certainly not been an easy road, but I definitely have some advice to give in this area. With seven years of blogging, 609 posts under my belt, and 7,474 blog comments to show for it, I don’t feel like a big noob in this space the way I once did.
I think that in order to obtain any level of success, particularly in blogging, it’s imperative to remain authentic. Though I can say that on quite a few occasions I’ve questioned whether or not I should “put something out there,” I have never written or published anything I didn’t mean with every fiber of my being. And I treat my social profiles in exactly the same way. It’s incredibly useful to use social media to promote your work, but you won’t have any meaningful engagement if you don’t get out there and interact with people!
There’s actually a formula to this, and one I try to abide by as much as possible. For every promotional tweet and post, engage three times. That could mean logging on to twitter and responding to three comments a day, or sharing a post one of your blog friends wrote, or tagging people on Instagram.
Every business owner should have a blog. If you aren’t establishing yourself as a leader in your field, someone else will beat you to the punch, especially in a society that thrives on finding the Next.Big.Thing. I don’t think it’s necessary to remain active on every social media platform (I mean, who has that kind of time??) but find a few that you like the most and get out there! You could be answering questions only an insider in your field would know which could lead to a sale if you know where to look. Find relevant hashtags on social media and use them to your advantage.
Another quick tip on branding? Hire a designer and use the same image for all of your social profiles. It will make it easier for people to recognize and follow you.
It’s impossible to do it all, and there are a lot of software companies out there nowadays that can help with marketing automation, like Act-On. Have you ever used one before? What are some ways you brand your blog and how have you managed to grow your social followers? Leave your answers in the comments below!