It's frustrating, isn't it?
How you've given your best, done everything you know, implemented all the tips and tricks involved in building a popular blog…
Yes, you've got a slick, beautiful and responsive theme.
You invested money and time on a memorable domain and reliable host hoping to build a blog you can call an asset.
No traffic, no comments, no subscribers, and no shares. Zip. Zero.
Your blog has not taken off on the wings of fame.
And it's terribly annoying.
And sure, sometimes you get traffic spike (of 30, 50 or 70 visitors). Among those are 3 of your friends, your family, including your lovely mom and maybe some friends from Facebook.
But deep down, you know those sketchy numbers aren't enough to justify your calling. They aren't enough to support your motivation. And they definitely aren't enough to make any money.
They worst part?
It happens only once in a while.
So what's the point? What's the rationale behind building a blog nobody cares about?
It is actually painful.
Because it boils down to the reason we do what we DO, which is noble (to create value, bless lives and leave something for the next generation) but no one gives a darn!
No one is ready to come by and say hello.
And the conventional advice?
Write more pillar content.
But honestly, if that's the only advice the gurus throw at you, then they are not telling you the whole truth.
Yes, because, I was told the same. To write more, link to power users, publish and post to social media. I was told blogs are good for search engine rankings and all I needed to do was to constantly publish and traffic would flow to my blog.
You've also heard this phrase “Content is king”, haven't you?
But after following this advice for six months, I came to discover that it's one of the most stupid ideas anybody would want to embrace.
Maybe you are still following this advice… that means, you never stand a chance of being noticed. You'll never succeed with blogging, you'll never sail pass the noise; you'll keep struggling and wondering why nothing is happening.
And that's the painful part of blogging.
In this post, I'll lay it bare. You'll discover how to drive massive traffic to your blog even if you are a nobody with no track record.
Ready? Let's begin.
The Real Truth About Blogging Popularity
You've heard this advice a million times, right? To gain traffic, submit your blog to Google, build quality keywords and rank for them, publish your post on social media platforms, boost your post with Facebook ads and so on.
On the surface, they make it sound as though that's all you need to succeed online.
But no, it's not. I stumbled around aimlessly in the dark implementing all those advice. But nothing So the question is, isn't there a smarter way?
Yes, there is a way. A way to smart blogging, a way to bid mediocrity blogging efforts farewell.
And it all comes down to this:
Build Meaningful Relationships with Influencers
Chances are you've not thought of this or maybe you believe you could someday roll in the dough with what you already know.
The bad news?
You'll never succeed alone. We all need people who have gone ahead of us to help and point us in the right direction.
I mean the experts, the big dogs, and power users. We need their attention to succeed and this post will show you how…
The Big Benefits of Relationship Building
To be frank, it's not about sharing and retweeting to get exposure. It's not back-links. It's not even shares or guest posting opportunities. So, what do you stand to gain by connecting with power users?
Instant authority: For instance, your connection with Brain Dean could rub some respect on you.
A photograph of you and Brain would give you that perceived value and yourself would be regarded as an authority.
Friendships that pay: You build a team of friends who are willing to support your every move.
You have a cocktail party slated a month from now.
Who the heck do you want to invite?
Or friends, right?
Blogging is the same.
You write mouth-watering articles, then you want to invite friends to come and dine with you. Those same people share your interests, and so they'll subscribe to whatever you have to say. They would share and promote every article you write.
And your influencers can be your true friends.
Traffic on autopilot: What do you think would happen if all your influencers friends share your post?
Imagine you have at least 10 prominent bloggers as friends, I mean those in the rank of Brian Clark, Brain Dean, Darren Rowse, Neil Patel, Pat Flynn, Jon Morrow, Henneke Dustermaat, Yaro Starak and others.
And each of them has 50,000 followers. A mention of you would put you in front half a million people.
You have them doing this for you over and over.
Gain more followers: You get to have thousands of followers because of those influencers mentioning you.
Chances are, their followers would also perceive you as an expert and follow you.
You rake in some fans and if they like what you publish, they'll stick to you for the rest of their lives.
You get to be favored: Every of your guest post pitches would be accepted, Even if those influencers don't necessarily accept guest post, yours would go through. You'll get good traffic and high paying clients.
And that means you have an unfair advantage over your peers.
That looks like cheating right?
But no, it's not.
The relationship did the magic. And it's sad, that only a few smart bloggers understand this.
You can easily get endorsements, interviews, introductions, joint ventures and even get introduced to their mastermind groups.
So what the heck are you waiting for?
Prominent bloggers are expert relationship builders.
In the beginning of their blogging journey, they built relationship channels.
They wrote guest posts. They commented like their lives depended on it.
They are not fools.
They know that relationship building is key to the search engines. They know that the single most viable way to fail is to try to run alone.
You're a nobody and nobody gives a hoot about you.
And there in every niche, there are those in the glass house of authority and fame.
If they like you? You succeed and become famous as they.
If they hate you? You're doomed.
And the only way out is to stop blogging and get yourself another job.
Because the truth is:
If they thumb you down, you run alone and never have a chance of going past the glass ceiling of the blogosphere.
This is the bitter truth every blogger must embrace.
The good news:
In six easy steps, I'll help you scale through every hurdle to building positive relationships so you're never left high and dry.
How to Build Meaningful Relationships (Even If It Scares You)
Step #1 Create An Unbeatable List of Influencers in Your Niche
Here's the deal:
We want to get the most authoritative guys in our space, bloggers with influence and whose name rings a bell.
First, you need to create a spreadsheet to add them up.
We want to add at least 50 influencers, even though we wouldn't work with all of them at once.
So we'll rank the 50 influencers base on their sphere of influence and then add the best 10 in position 1-10 on the sheet.
I must warn you, though, this isn't going to be an easy task, like in the real world; it's not easy to connect, right?
I really wish to tell you it's as easy as hooking up with the sweet chick down the street. But I won't.
And here's why.
Expert bloggers are busy, too busy with family, businesses and, of course, premium money paying clients. Maybe the easiest way is to join their mastermind group, right?
Well, wrong. Most mastermind groups are of people of the same sphere of influence. Bloggers of the same rank.
The worst part? You don't choose them. They decide who joins the team.
Don't worry. In this post, we deconstruct and help you step by step on initiating and building a band of barons who'll promote you for free.
The bottom line:
It's not easy to build a relationship with those guys and please don't be tempted to work with more than 10 bloggers at once.
How do you get the influencers?
Alltop.com: enter your keyword in the search box and all the blogs in your niche would be displayed.
I just searched for the keyword blogging and a bunch of blogs showed up.
The good thing about Alltop is that you can search by categories
Add up the potential blogs in your list.
I recommend that you create a spreadsheet and put in your results as you'll find in the steps below. A point to note, though, is that you don't need to get a list of 100 bloggers to build relationships with them. In fact, I recommend you try to work with at least 5-10 bloggers at a time.
Google search: enter the keyword in the search bar and you'll get a list of top 10-20 results you could add up to your list.
Your curated list: a collection of guest posting sites really good potentials, see the following
Memory base: remember any bloggers who made a real and positive impact on you. For me, Darren Rowse, Brian Clark, and Jon Morrow always come to mind.
Add them to your list
Step #2. Group them by influence
You know those influencers are not equal or at the same level of influence right? Yes.
So, how do you measure and rank them?
Use wonk and Klout to check out their social authority and delete blogs below 25 points
What you should look out for on their blogs:
1. Average engagement and comments (this can be calculated by adding up 10 latest post comments & dividing it by 10)
2. Subscriber count if it's displayed on the blog
3. Twitter and Facebook followers count.
Dig deeper using this tool to check PR, daily visits, and other useful details.
The idea here is to find blogs with at least a page rank of 2 and domain authority of 30 and daily visit of 1000+. Have those blogs at the top ten on your list.
Hard work, huh?
Yes. But this is the way to know the real barons, the way to win the game to fame.
And that means having core data and facts about who you want to befriend.
Step #3. Stalk them like a virtual detective
Hey, I don't mean following them on their every move.
Follow them on social media.
The goal here is so that they'll notice you, at least for the first time.
The first thing you should do.
Open the door to your inbox by subscribing to their newsletter
- Read the welcome email and download any free product they offer for download.
- If they ask you to reply the email with a question or whatever, go ahead and do it.
And it starts right here…
Here is part of a welcome email I received from Pat Flynn of smart passive income requiring an action…
Which of the following best describes your online business activity? Click on the ONE answer that best describes you:
- I don't have an online business yet.
- I have an online business, but I'm stuck between $0-$500 per month.
- I have an online business that is generating more than $500 per month.
Click on one of the above, and you'll be taken to a landing page with more information about that particular segment and what you can look forward to. Also, there's a question for you to answer there as well if you choose to.
From then on, I'll happily send you more emails that best suit you.
Thanks so much, and if you've read this far…go back up and let me know which answer best fits you! 🙂
Ms. Ileane Smith's welcome email is action-packed with instructions on what to do, so let's check it out:
NOTE: make sure you read and study whatever resource they offer you. It is important because you don't want to follow them blindly. Get their tone, style and how they write…
Here they might ask you to connect with them on social media, share a personal story or ask you to send a personalized email.
They might want to take you through a series of courses all reloaded into their autoresponder.
It is ideal.
The point is, follow and do what they ask and they'll notice you.
Step #4. Hang out with them:
- On social media platforms. Follow them on Facebook, twitter, Google+ and LinkedIn.
- Fall in love with them, share and retweet their posts, drop valuable and insightful comments. Take it a step further by replying to other readers comments on their blogs.
- Send them an honest compliment like this:
I did this for Adam Connell and he replied immediately.
You can use this email to send a compliment to your influencers.
Subject: I'm in love with (TARGET'S BLOG NAME)
Just wanted to reach out to say thanks for all the stuff you've been publishing lately at (BLOG'S NAME).
(I actually used the STRATEGY you recommend in (THE MOST POPULAR OR LATEST POST) and I got (STATE THE BENEFITS) I want to say thank you.
Keep up the awesome work!
Subtly win their hearts by commending their efforts. State how their advice helped you. This opened the door for my interview with Oyedepo John.
The bottom line:
Follow up, add them as friends on social media and follow-up on their personal pages and compliment them.
Step #5. Shamelessly Get Involved In Their Interests
Use Hootsuite to follow-up on all your influencers social media interactions.
- Sign up for HootSuite for free
- Add up your social media
- Add a stream With any name. I prefer to name it “Influencers” or “experts”
- After your stream is added, click on the tiny radio button at the top
- Click on preferences
Add your influencers Twitter handle.
From now on, you don't need to go to Twitter to see what your influencers are saying.
You can easily retweet their shares and keep up with their conversation all in one place.
They'll notice you.
Use Feedly to follow on their blogs and post in one place. Feedly displays all your influencers posts with the time and number of comments.
The best part?
Feedly is free.
How To Setup And Use Feedly
Sign-up here and log in.
Create a folder and add them up
Search for your influencer's blog and click “add”
From now on, you don't need to visit those 10 blogs individually; you can simply go to Feedly and get all details in one place.
The bottom line:
Be involved in their interests and stay up to date with what they are saying. It might really look like nothing is going on but this is one of the most important phases of building a real connection with expert.
Step #6: How to win anyone's attention
I consider this as one of the greatest principles of life:
Give and you shall receive
And this is what separate smart bloggers from those lazy fools.
You know why?
Smart bloggers are not in a hurry, they plan strategically ahead of time.
How To Fearlessly Appear On An Influencer's Radar
Drop them valuable comments.
I did a comment for Nairalearn's Oyedepo John. It is valuable and interesting and that puts me on his radar and that helps to get each of my post promoted by him.
And I got a nice response from John.
How to write such a comment?
I use four simple steps:
- I started with salutation, “Hi John”
- I lead with a compliment
- Add value to the conversation
- Give a promise that I'll share this
And to stand out of the crowd, I make every comment a hundred+ words and if I don't get to be among the first 10 commenters, I reply to comments in the top 10.
Even though the comment was meant for the author, you can go ahead and answer them. (Thanks to Jeff Bullas for this tip.)
Share and tweet their post to your social media platforms
Step #7. Get the influencer's email address
Here, we'll need their email address to send them some promotional emails.
- Most don't make their email address public
- Others give out generic emails which end up not been opened
- Others have a virtual assistant that may not see your email
It is actually not easy but with some advanced research, you can get anyone's email address, even the president's. Oh, yeah.
Use the following tools:
- Rapportive for Gmail
- Get email permutation here
- You can also use other online tools like hunter
- Google can also help you too. Enter in the string (domain name or Name of Blogger) plus email address.
- Use the direct contact us form on their blogs
If all fails, get their Twitter handle and DM them using this script.
Hey, NAME OF BLOGGER, I have a quick question I want to ask, mind DM-ing me your email? Thanks.
Step #8 Do your influencers a favor:
- Point out broken links on their blog using this chrome add-on
- Offer to upgrade a resource page using this script.
- Mention them in your round up post
- Review their product for free
- Introduce yourself to the blogger
Step #9: The Big Ask
You've done the hard work. Now it's time to ask for a favor.
You don't have to be scared. Do you know why? You've done your part, so you totally deserve it.
So, shamelessly go ahead:
- Ask for shares on your post
- Guest post for them
- Interview them
- Ask for joint ventures
- Get introductions to other experts
- Get blog post reviews
- And get endorsements
Always make sure your pitches are short and direct.
The Painful Truth About Life
You can't succeed all by yourself.
We all need people in our lives, people to cheer us up, people to appreciate what we do, People to help us succeed.
Because let us face it, your blog is a community of your own words. And in a community, people get supported. Friendships are developed and everyone feels belonged and cherished.
What are you waiting for?
You can do it.
Get up and win the game.
Charles Emmanuel is an Accountant-turned-blogger. He's on a mission to help you build traffic and make passive income blogging. Want to build a popular blog from scratch? Get the guide you need to make it happen right here (it's free).