Having a PR is expensive as hell. And with what is going on in the economy and how unemployment benefits will be running out this month no one is stupid enough to hire one anyway. (No disrespect to PR people they gotta feed their family too) Thankfully with the wonderful internet, becoming your own PR is much easier and funner (if that’s even a word).
Last post I talked about things you need to do even before you create a blog and with this post I will go into what it takes to market yourself. You are a brand. You know that saying – you don’t get a second chance to make a first impression? That applies here. You are a walking advertisement, whether you like it or not. So get your ish together because you have to be on you’re A game at all times.
So lets incorporate this into the virtual world. You have this great idea for a new writing blog. How will you get the word out without breaking your bank?
1. Social networking. People get really intimidated when someone mentions social networking. They assume that they are for young ‘whipper snappers’ and that is so far from the truth. Also there is more than just Facebook however Facebook is obviously the most popular way to connect to people right now. You can’t watch a tv commercial, advertisement on a bus or in the mall or talk to someone without them showing you that they have a Facebook page. Social sites allows you to connect with more people than you ever could imagine, I’m talking about other continents kind of exposure. Plan accordingly. Start with a Facebook page then incorporate what your blog is about on that page, separate your personal page with your professional page. After starting a blog you have the ability to have your posts linked right on your profile page. Try LinkdIn. This site is geared toward entrepreneurs, business people, etc. Roaming around these sites at least 2 months before you launch your blog on a regular basis can give you quite a few potential visitors to your own blog. Oh but don’t just create these accounts and type some b.s. and think that it will suffice. No. You have to come up with new stuff. Think of it as a practice for when you have your blog up and running. One thing I will say about using social networking is that you have to go to people. Meaning that you have to do a search for people that may be into the same things that you are interested in and request them to be your friend or for them to follow you on Twitter. Just because you have an account does not mean that everyone will see you, you have to give people a reason to want to be your friend and to keep in contact with you.
2. Talk is cheap! No I mean it, it is. Mentioning to your fam, friends, strangers especially about your up and coming blog is genius in a free box. You never know who you will run into on the bus, train, store, church or library. That person may be your connect to a bigger network or become a mentor to guide you in every step of your blogging endeavors and business ventures. Hey, it could happen.
3. Newspapers. (Yeah they still exist!) Go to the newspapers in your area. You will be able to advertise for an affordable price. Now granted this route may be a lil’ extreme for a blog again it goes back to what you plan to do with your blog.
4. Email. Everybody pretty much have an email account along with contacts lists longer than a telephone book. Every move you make email it to everyone on that list. Make sure the words you put in the subject line is catchy and to the point. People have a short attention span, if you don’t come with it in 2 seconds guess what? You’re thrown in with the spam. Word of advice don’t make a generalized email; people can smell impersonalized a mile away. Say you have a past co-worker who you still keep in contact with every once in awhile and you know that he/she is interested in thrillers. Well since your blog is about thrillers when you email them remind them that you remembered having a conversation with them and that you think they would get a kick out of your blog. Sell to your list of friends what they would gain reading your blog that’s what all of this marketing advice boils down to.
If you start with these few ideas you can increase your chances of getting people to your site. It may not seem like much but small steps and persistence will work itself out. Like I said, don’t expect to become an overnight success. I know that’s hard with all of these so called ‘celebrities’ becoming famous after doing some stupid shit and voila they have their own reality show. Don’t fall in that trap. As fast as you become celebrity status the faster you fizzle out and GMA, Twitter and YouTube will be on to the next one quick! So expect to be in it for the long haul. It may take a year or more to get a decent fan base. Make sure you have tough skin and patience.
Another thing that I realized from someone else’s blog is don’t get so hung up on how many comments you have or don’t have. Many people, like me, will religiously visit specific blogs/websites (i.e. http://www.necolebitchie.com) but not post a comment. Just because no one is putting their two cents on your blog after you get it up and running doesn’t mean anything. Don’t read too much into it. Just keep putting new, informative info to it. I spent months being shitty as hell cause none of my friends were posting comments. I use to read this other blog where the guy who created it was extremely intelligent and had great, great information but every time I read his article, toward the end of it he would just go in hard on everybody because no one really was posting comments like he expected. I mean he apparently goes around to colleges and do speaking engagements and goes overseas to fuck with other countries trying to get his money up and get people up on becoming entrepreneurs but it bothered him I guess to the fullest because no one was commenting like he thought we should. To me, that’s a turnoff. I don’t want you to constantly remind me how I need to post a comment. You remind visitors in that irate way, guess what? They will stop visiting cause you are too negative and sensitive. Write like you have an audience of a thousand. Like the ish that you are putting out is bond and people need to hear what you have to say even if the only person that is visiting and posting is your mama. It will pay off, trust me. With this blog I have it set in my head that what I’m giving to people will help them on their business or writing journey and I’m content with that. I spend more time focusing on writing, starting my publishing company, networking, running this e-newsletter that is coming out in Jan. than who is commenting. Not that I don’t appreciate it, I do but I need to 24/7 be up on my game and so should you.
Peace & Luv!