The world of social media is an ever changing entity! There’s always new platforms, new algorithms, new ways of doing things, etc. This post will quickly walk you through how to set up social media for a successful blog.
How to Set Up Social Media for a Successful Blog
Have you been following along with the How to Build a Successful Blog series?
I’m at a point now where I feel like Serendipity and Spice officially qualifies as a successful blog. I started this cute little blog about 3 years ago as an outlet for becoming a new stay at home mom. Although I LOVED being able to stay at home and spending all of my time with Little Man I was beginning to go a bit stir crazy not having anything else to focus on….so Serendipity and Spice was born. I had no idea what I was doing in the beginning….I just started writing and clicking publish. In 2012 I went from having about 100 page views a month (probably all spam bots) to averaging ONE MILLION PAGE VIEWS A MONTH by the end of 2014. I also went from making nothing to averaging about $2000 a month in blog income and steadily increasing.
Over the past few months I’ve been asked over and over again from friends, family, and readers “how do I start a blog?”. Well, over the next few weeks I’m going to show you how to build a successful blog.
What you’ll learn-
- How to start a successful blog.
- How to design a successful blog.
- Making Sure Your Blog is Legal.
- How to Write a Guest Post.
- Understanding & Optimizing SEO
- How to set up your social media.
- How to make graphics for your blog.
- How to improve your blog photos.
- How to Make a Custom Watermark.
- How to monetize your blog.
- Recommended WordPress Plugins and Widgets.
- And so much more…..
Now that I’m 3 years into blogging, there’s a few things that I wish I had done differently in the beginning….social media being one of those!
When I started out all of my social media sites had a variation of usernames and it was difficult to find me across multiple platforms. SerendipityandSpice was too long of a name for some accounts but fine for other accounts. This past year I went back and streamlined my social media sites and now I’m gaining followers at a steady rate. Please, come follow me on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest, and Google+…..always, always, always self promote! 😉
1. Use YOUR Name for Social Media (except your Facebook Page)
So, rule #1 is to use your name. Some people feel funny using their real name because they feel too exposed to the world….don’t worry, I felt this way too…in the beginning. But here’s the deal, when you start blogging for profit you want to brand YOU. Right now you may be thinking that you just want to have this little blog as an outlet and that’s all you want to do. But what happens when you decide that you LOVE blogging and want to make it your full time career (yes, it can be done….my goal is SIX figures by next year 😉 )? What happens when you decide you want another blog in a totally different niche? You definitely don’t want to be keeping up with several different social media accounts on all platforms….social media is enough of a time trap with just one account!
My advice is to brand yourself. You can find me as @MelissaLlado on almost all of my platforms now….this way I can share stuff from Serendipity and Spice along with Raising Jetsetters (my family travel blog) and any other blogs I start in the future. By branding yourself you can add on to what you do without having to build a whole new social following.
Now, your Facebook fan page should be your blog name because it’s intended to be for fans of just that one blog. The same goes for your Google+ page….but not your profile. And PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE use pages…do not try to make a profile as your blog….they will find you and they will delete it and you will be crying because all of your hard work is gone in a snap.
2. Stay Consistent!
Make sure that all of your usernames are relatively consistent across all social media platforms. Make it easy for people to find you anywhere. When I first started blogging I had some variation of my blog name across all platforms and it was CONFUSING! I had @SerendipityandSpice, @SerendipitySp, @SerendipitynSp, @SerendipitySpic, etc. Each platform allows you a different amount of character spaces so I got creative….BAD IDEA. Now you can find me at @MelissaLlado, @MelissaLlado, @MelissaLlado1— see that one variation? That’s because when I started Pinterest I started out as @MelissaLlado then I switched to @SerendipitySpic and when I tried to switch back to @MelissaLlado Pinterest wouldn’t let me…so I had to add the 1 at the end. 🙁 So now that username is not the same but it’s close enough that someone should easily be able to find me on that platform.
3. Don’t Overdo It!
Social media is a time suck! If you try to do all the social media channels out there then you’re going to spend so much time on social media that you won’t have time for blogging! Keep it to 5 social media channels or less. I stick with the main ones: Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest, and Google+. If I do YouTube it’s for a blog post and nothing more. Even with just those 5 I spend way too much time on social media!
4. Schedule, Schedule, Schedule!
Get a good scheduler and take 1 day a week to schedule out your social media shares! Now, that’s not to say you can’t do any live social media….but having a couple of things scheduled a day will help your sanity. With two kids I just don’t have the time to be on social media throughout the day but I don’t want my followers to think I’ve fallen off the face of the earth….I want them to expect some kind of consistency from me….so I schedule. It’s quite funny…there’s many days my mom will call me and say “Oh, I saw your post on Facebook…is that for real?” and I’ll have to ask her “Mom, what post? You have to be more specific, I told you I schedule those and I don’t remember what I had scheduled for today…I can barely remember what I had for breakfast this morning!”. Scheduling gives me one less thing to worry about during the day when I’m with the kids.
My favorite social media scheduler is CoSchedule. It’s $10 a month and saves me a TON of time! Basically it’s a WordPress Plugin that shows up at the bottom of your post. When you’re done writing your post you can automatically write your social media shares that will publish when your post publishes. Plus, you can schedule future social media shares as well….I always fill up each slot for Next Day, Next Week, Next Month, and then if it’s a seasonal post I’ll go ahead and write a few posts and schedule them for next year. It may only be February but I have several Thanksgiving and Christmas posts already scheduled for November and December.
I also LOVE the free plugin Tweetily for WordPress. It will auto-tweet your old posts in any time interval that you want. Since Twitter flies by so quickly you don’t have to worry about bombarding your followers with the same posts because chances are only a few are going to see each post anyway. This is great for getting new content out on Twitter where it can be re-tweeted and shared.
5. Learn About Each Platform
Take the time to delve in and really LEARN about each social media platform that you use! There’s so many best practices for each platform that I could literally write one post on each and still not tell you everything! I suggest doing it one at a time though. For me, Pinterest is my #1 traffic driver so it’s #1 on my priority list for learning about any changes and best practices. Since Pinterest just went through a pretty extensive algorithm change they are my main focus right now….you’ll probably see a post in the near future once I get the changes all figured out!
Well, those are my suggestions for how to set up social media for a successful blog. Next week we’ll talk about how to monetize your blog….the FUN stuff!! Until then, make sure you read Starting a Successful Blog, How to Design a Successful Blog, Is Your Blog Legal, and Improving Blog Photos.