A few days ago, I started seeing a post show up in my Facebook feed. The headline was very compelling and when my friends shared it, comments like “amazing!” and “Wow, that’s both incredible and sad!” made me even more curious.
But I didn’t click the link to the post that day.
Or the next.
In fact, it took me about three days of seeing this article in my feed to actually click that darn link. And man if it wasn’t one of the most incredible things I’ve ever seen. (I’ll tell you what the article was at the end of this post!)
Why did it take so long for me to actually click the link? No one reason. One time I was scanning the page when I had a quick second to catch up on friend updates, but didn’t have time to read a post. Once I was supposed to be working so I was trying to stay focused (though, yes, focus and Facebook don’t belong in the same sentence). Stuff like that.
With delay after delay, I became part of the old marketing concept called the Rule of Seven. It goes something like this:
People need to see or hear your message seven times to take action.
Sure many people might click a tweet or a pin right away. But many of us don’t take action the first time we see something. We don’t have time, we feel indifferent to the headline or topic, we’ll think we’ll remember to do it later. And so on.
That number was seven BEFORE social media and our never-ending distractions, too. Whether the number is three or thirty, the message is the same: people need to repeatedly hear your message.
For that reason alone, throw a farewell party for your self-promotion squeamishness. Because as long as you aren’t just promoting yourself, most of your audience will appreciate that you’re repeating your message. It might just the one post/tweet/pin that drives them to actually take action.
So how can you promote bits and pieces of your blog over and over?
Promote a New Post (More than Once)
I know you promote new posts. But how about more than once? Your entire audience isn’t online at the exact same time so when you post something new, spread out the sharing of your posts on social media. Maybe you tweet and G+ your new post in the morning, then put it on Pinterest in the afternoon and Facebook in the evening.
You can also promote on the same platform more than once. On Twitter, I often promote new posts three times on the day it’s published: morning, noon and night. But change it up instead of repeating yourself three times. For example, if I got some great comments, I might tweet, “Wow you guys really have a lot to say about what I wrote today! Add your two cents: LINK.”
Promote an Older Post
Don’t forget to promote evergreen content, like last year’s holiday craft posts or time-saving home organization tips. A reader might have seen your craft last year but never had time to make it or perhaps they’re finally committed to organizing their home. Or maybe they’re a new reader and your old content is brand spankin’ new to them.
Some of my best traffic comes from older posts that I promote on Twitter. (I cheat and use the Tweet Old Post plugin). Heck, I have people REREADING old posts and finally putting my advice or tip to use. So don’t be scared of it.
Remind Your Readers about an Offer or Giveaway
We’re all so rushed and hurried these days. I actually appreciate reminders when I get them from others. Recently, Kohl’s sent me an email that I earned $5 in Rewards. “Ah, I’ll get to that,” I kept saying. It wasn’t until they sent an email saying my $5 off would expire that I actually scooted over to the store to buy something. And I only live one mile away!
If it’s the last day to enter a giveaway, by all means tell people! If 100 people downloaded your e-book at its special price, share it. Continually keep your audience in the loop throughout these special offers.
Ask Readers to Follow You on Another Platform
If you’re on Twitter, ask followers to follow you on Pinterest. On Facebook? Come over to G+ too! But make it worth their while with an enticing call to action.
“Follow me on Pinterest!” doesn’t cut it. Everyone says that.
“Get DIY ideas for your home, easy-to-make weekday recipes, and rainy day craft ideas on my Pinterest boards!” is much better.
Here’s How to Make Self-Promotion a Habit
While it’s easy to nod your head and say “Yes I should do ALL THE SELF-PROMOTING THINGS!,” chances are if you don’t make it a habit, you’ll likely forget I even brought it up. So here’s my tip:
Plan your promotional messages in advance.
Use a content or editorial calendar to map out when you’re going to promote what so that you don’t forget. Don’t get caught up in any number of times you need to promote something. Just remember that repeating a message does work!
A Final Note
Finally, for the love of all things bloggy don’t ONLY promote your content. Share content from others and interact too. But I think you already knew that.
And if you want to know what article I finally clicked on, it’s from Viral Nova and titled I Noticed This Tiny Thing on Google Maps. When I Zoomed In… Well, Nothing Could Prepare Me. The dumb headline got me.