Blog in Social Sites
Promoting Your Blog
Using Social Networking Sites
There are many social networking sites on the web and many more are cropping up day by day. People are developing and discovering many different ways to interact with each other to share their precious moments of life, pictures, videos, movies, music, files, Blogs, lists and a lot more. Web designers are trying to find more creative ways for people to benefit from these social networking sites. All these networking sites work on the common principle of getting people from all walks of life, different cultures, countries, continents, professions and age groups to interact with each other and develop friendships and some kind of a Common relationship wherein they can share things with each other on a common platform.
Joining any of these social networking sites is very easy and mostly the registration is free. You can create a profile page for yourself in the most commonly and popularly used networking sites like Facebook, Twitter, Orkut, Myspace, LinkedIn, Hi5, etc., and start interacting with people. Most people presume that networking websites are for people who have nothing better to spend their time on, and are essentially a waste of time. So you can be forgiven if you are wondering why you would want to do that. You do not want to waste your time in useless chitchat with people who mean nothing to you, so why should you want to go there?
Well, joining social networking sites that are popular has its many advantages to you and will help you to promote your Blog and its content in a very easy and effective manner. Social networking sites get a large amount of traffic each day and many new visitors are joining these websites everyday. The most popular social networking sites also enjoy a very high Google Page Ranking, which plays a very important role in enhancing your own page ranking on Google search engines when you provide a link to your content on such websites.
In order to feature in the Google search engines it is important for you to have a presence on the web. Here, presence does not mean only having a Blog, presence means visibility on the net. By creating profile pages on these most popular social networking sites using your own name, and linking all your accounts to one another you will be creating a larger network of your own which will present you to the Search engines as a prolific user. The chances of someone finding you or your content on the Internet become that much better if you and your content are available on multiple websites. Anyone who has reached any of your pages by default or through search wi II have the option to explore more of your content and maybe visit your other pages. If you provide a feed or a widget in your Facebook account, chances are that people visiting your profile on Facebook will see it and then want to read more about what you have written, thus discovering your Blog. Therefore, increasing your presence on the web and spreading your name and scope will make it easier for your content to figure on Google Search engines.
The social networking sites have a reach on the Internet that is far and wide, and indirectly will help in getting your name on different sites and search engines. You wi II also generate traffic for your Blog and may find many subscribers for it too. Each and every social networking site has its own unique benefits that are completely different from the others. Let's tackle two of the most popular networking sites, namely Facebook and Twitter. All the other social networking sites like Orkut, Hi5, and Myspace, etc., also work on the same principles.
Promoting Your Blog On Facebook:
Facebook is by far the most popular social networking site that is being used to create a network of friends and family on the Internet. Creating a profile page for yourself on Facebook is very easy and you can upload a photo of yourself so that people can identify you easily.
Step 1. Integrate Your Blog on Facebook,
Facebook allows you to integrate your Blog to your profile page and so, you can get your latest content to feature on Facebook each time you update your Blog. Isn't that great?
The above shows the profile page as it appears on Facebook. A bottom task bar appears on the page with some buttons on them. The last button that is circled in red in the figure above is the "Notes" button. "Click" on this button to open another window as shown.
On the right hand side of the page you will see a grey colour box with "Notes Settings" written in it. Below this is the link to "Edit Import Settings". "Click" on this link. You will be taken to another window that will give you the option to "Import Your Blog". Add your Blog address in the box provided. Check the box next to the statement that you actually own the content. Then click on the "Start Importing" button. You will then see the preview of the page that you have imported with all your latest content in it. Now go to the bottom of the page and click on the "Confirm" button and your notes are ready to feature in your profile page.
People can read your Blog posts without leaving Facebook and also subscribe to its feed by the "subscribe to these notes" button provided below, as can be seen.
If you do not want to have your Blog being imported to Facebook, the other way to add content is to provide links to your posts in your "Status" updates.
Go to the home page and write the title in the box provided above that says, "What's on your mind". Below that box you will find some icons, click on the icon that says "Link" (icon with two pages with a pin) to add the link to the page in question, then click on the "Share" button to publish the link. See the figure above. All your latest updates will feature on your friends' home page as a live feed. So everyone is informed each time you update your status on Facebook and hence every time you provide a link to your new post on the Blog your friends will come to know the moment they visit Facebook.
By submitting links from your Blog you will be able to attract people to visit your Blog and generate traffic for your Blog. Also another advantage of adding links is that it creates a "backlink" to your Blog. The importance of creating backlinks will be explained in greater detail further on in this chapter.
Facebook is a great place to showcase your talents and your true identity to the people that you network with. If you feel that you have sufficient following, you can also create a "Fan Page" for yourself where your readers can become your fans and follow your progress not only with respect to your Blog, but also your life.
For creating a fan page, Facebook has a button marked "f' that is the first icon after the "f applications" icon in the bottom task bar. This button is for ads and pages. "Click" on this button to open another window. Here you will find a navigation bar on top of the page with the following options: Ads Manager, Pages and Help. Click on the Pages button. In a new window you will find the link to "Create a Page". Click on this link to open another window to create your page.
A new page can be created for business organisations, celebrities or personalities (authors, etc.) who want to create a separate page for themselves or their organisation. One can then directly interact with their fans on this page that is separate from your normal profile page on Facebook.
If you are creating a page for a Blog / website, you will need to choose "Brand, Product or Organisation". Then from the drop-down list, select "website".
Enter the name of your site (or whatever you want your page to be called). Then click on "Create Page". Your page is now ready and you can customise it the way you like.
Step 2. Publicise Your Facebook Page
Facebook also provides many promotional features of which some are free to use and for others a fee is charged. For example you can create ads for yourself by paying a fee and use these ads to promote yourself. The ads feature on all Facebook pages across all users.
There are many other free tools that you can use for promoting your Facebook Page, like sending e-mails, invitations, and giving the option for people to become your fans and start following you. They can comment on your page, give reviews of your Blog, give feedback and lots more. This is a great way to publicize yourself and your work on Facebook.
Facebook can be integrated with your mobile phone too as explained earlier in the Facebook chapter. You can keep track of any new notifications or comments and also post anything via the mobile phone.
You can also integrate your Facebook account with any of the other social networking sites too like Twitter, Orkut and Myspace so that whatever you post on one website is automatically sent to the other sites as well. You can also put a Facebook "Like" button on your pages so that if a user who has a Facebook account wants to share the page with his Facebook friends, he just clicks on the "Like" button and the link is automatically posted on his wall.
Your new Facebook page can be promoted on your own Blog by posting a prominent link to your Facebook Page on the top or side bar of your Blog where it is seen by the visitors. You can also write a post about your Facebook page on your Blog and provide a link to that page. Hopefully this would have explained how you could create your own network of sorts by cross-linking all your accounts.
Well, there are many more additional features and utilities being added day by day as this site is expanding and there is lots more to look forward to. Internet is a dynamic world and so nothing remains the same for long as technology keeps advancing, so do the new features and tools and applications in the world of computers. Day by day there are many new web sites and facilities cropping up on the Internet and older sites are being trashed to make place for newer technology, so it is up to you to keep track of what's the latest trend in the community-sharing world and to keep yourself updated on the latest developments on the Internet.
There are many other social networking sites that work on same principle of community sharing as Facebook like; Orkut, Hi5, Bigadda, Myspace, LinkedIn, Windows Live Network, etc. These sites too can be used in the similar manner as described above to promote yourself and your Blogs.
Google has now come out with Google Wave that is a new concept in community sharing that involves sharing documents and files with anyone you wish to do so, in real time. You can read ail. in-depth guide prepared by Mashable (A Social Media Guide) for a complete overview of the Google Wave. The website has also provided a complete list of the terminology that is going to be used at this site for your convenience and ease of understanding. Read it at this link: http://mashable.com/2009/05/28/google-wave- guide/ and be ready for the next generation of Community Sharing Platform.
Google wave is still in its testing phase and it will be some time before the concept is either accepted or junked by the Internet users.
Promoting Your Blog On Twitter
Twitter is by far the most widely used networking site next to Facebook and rapidly gaining more popularity due to its ease of use and far reach on the Internet. One can integrate this website with the mobile phone so that you can tweet directly by SMS. There are many applications that have been developed specifically based on the Twitter model which allow users to take advantage of "spreading the word". One such site is Twitter Feed.
How to Use Twitter Feed:
Promoting your Blog on Twitter is the easiest thing to do, thanks to the twitter feed. The Twitter feed website (http://twitterfeed.com/) allows you to integrate your Blog feeds with Twitter so that your latest post is automatically tweeted for you. You can use this application to feed your Blogs to Facebook too. The site offers a faster, reliable and real time publishing for all the enabled sites. You can even integrate Google Analytics to track your feed stats.
The registration for an account is free and very easy to do. Click on the "Register Now" button and sign up for a free account. Once you have signed in successfully, you will be asked to make a new feed. This is Step 1. Send Feed To: Here you are given a few options. You can select Twitter, Facebook, Laconi, Ping and Hello Txt. You can make one selection at a ti me to integrate the feed to that service. So, if you select Twitter as your first choice, you will need to authenticate the site with the user name and password. To do this, Click on the blue button that says "Authenticate Twitter using OAuth". A new window opens where you can sign in to your Twitter account to allow access to Twitter feed. Enter your username and password that you use for the twitter account and Click on the "Allow" button.
You will now be redirected back to your feed site and a message in green appears below that says "You have successfully linked to the twitter account "username" to this feed".
You can now proceed to Step 2. Name Feed & Add Source URL.
On the same page below the Step 1 you will see the Step 2. Under the Feed Name in the empty box enter the name you want your feed to have. Below that add the RSS Feed URL of your Blog as shown.
'" Feed parsed OK" below. That means your feed works and now you can click on the "Create Feed" button. Congratulations, your first feed is ready and set up to be followed and updated every one-hour by Twitter Feed. Your latest post will appear on the Twitter Feed Dashboard as shown. You can now repeat the step to create a new feed for Facebook or any of the other options available. If you have more than one Blog, create a feed for each of them. This will save you a lot of time that you would have otherwise spent in adding your content to other websites.
When you click on Twitter View button you will be able to see your latest post as and when it is updated. Wait for an hour before checking to see if it is working properly . You can .always update your feed later if you have a problem. Once your feeds are up and running, your dashboard will show you stats on how many people have clicked on each post. You'll be able to compare posts and see just how Twitter feed is helping to build your traffic.
Step 3. You can Track Your Feeds Using Google Analytics .
In order to be able to use Google Analytics to track your feeds anywhere, you need to register for a free account with Google, or you can sign in using your Gmail ID that can be used for all your Google Accounts. This topic is a little more complex at this stage and therefore has not been covered here. In the Initial stages, getting your feeds up and running is more important. Once you have set yourself up and become a little more proficient in the world of Blogging, you can always start using the advanced features to track your progress.
Add Twitter Button
There are many websites that offer free "Twitter Buttons" for use in forums, Blogs and websites. Check out this website: http://www.twitterbuttons.com. It’s very simple to create a Twitter Button. You just have to put in your twitter ID in the space provided and then select the button that you would like to use. There are many designs and types to choose from. You can then copy the code provided and paste it in the HTML page of your Blog or website. This button will invite your readers to follow you on twitter. The more followers you have on twitter, the better for you and your popularity on Twitter. This is a very good and effective way to promote your Blog and yourself on Twitter.
How does Twitter Help in Promoting Your Content?
Once you start tweeting on Twitter regularly, you will start collecting followers on the topic that you choose to tweet about. These tweets are then distributed all over the websites that relate to your content by providing them a live tweet. For example if you tweet about your latest post on "Review of Nokia N97" on twitter, your tweet will be reflected on all Cellphone related web sites and maybe other websites that cover gadgets. Not only this, if you have done a good job on the review or are the first one then your followers can re-tweet your tweet, which will be seen by all their respective followers. The growth and the distribution can be exponential in this case. You will be amazed at the far-reaching consequences of tweeting. Your links will also start appearing on Google Search, as many backlinks are created to your tweets and your Blog indirectly. This will also help your Blog in getting a better page rank on Google, depending on the content that you post, of course and how useful it is to the community or world at large.
Whenever you create a profile page on any other website or forum or social networking site don't forget to add a link back to your Blog and vice versa also add the link to the profile pages on your Blog, wherever you have a presence. Google and other search engines love backlinks and so the more you create, the better. Although you need to remember that the quality of the links also matters, that is, the quality of the websites or pages that you are linking to.
For example, if you tweet about shopping sites on the Internet or cheap deals and bargains, your tweets will appear in the websites that promote such deals and bargains to customers or in shopping directories where all the links to shopping deals are found. One such helpful site is Tweet Meme: http://tweetmeme.com/, which is similar to Digg. Here you will find the collection of all the hottest links on Twitter. You may be surprised to find your link featuring on this site.
Another advantage of Twitter is that it is enabled for mobile, i.e. you can tweet with the help of your mobile phone too.
Once you have posted an article on your Blog, you need to start getting traffic to it. This will not happen overnight. It takes a lot of effort and hard work to make a mark on your readers. When you write something, ask yourself if this is interesting enough to attract readers to it. Then start promoting your Blog and its content on the web, using the different ways that have already been mentioned. So far we have seen how you can use the RSS Feed of your Blog and the FeedBurner to promote your Blog and its content effectively. The FeedBurner can be added to any web page that can carry HTML code. You can use it in your signatures in each every e-mail that you send to friends, family or other contacts. Also add your Blog URL to your letterhead or visiting cards, if you have any. shows what your FeedBurner feed will look like and illustrates how it has been incorporated into a comment box.
We have also covered how you can use the community sharing or social networking sites to promote your Blog and your content by integrating its feed into them and also by interacting with your family and friends and keeping them updated on all your recent activities. Facebook and Twitter are by far the most effective ways to get traffic to your Blog and make it prominent. These two sites are gaining a lot of popularity and also boast of getting the maximum traffic in a day. These sites are also relatively new and so are still in the expanding stage where many new features are being introduced each day to make things easier, faster and much more effective.
It helps to create profile pages on all these social networking sites as it will increase your visibility on the web and also help you to create good back links to your Blog and its contents. Back links play an important role in increasing your page ranking on the search engines. More about links and search engine optimization of your Blog has already been covered in the chapter Search Engine Optimisation. Now we will learn how to promote your content using various "bookmarking sites".