The number one blogging metric that most people like to focus on is traffic, but it isn’t actually the most important metric. The most important blogging metric is subscribers. When you convert more of your traffic into subscribers, you will generate more revenue as email is one of the best channels for acquiring new customers.
If you want to get the most out of your blog this year, you should turn your attention towards generating more subscribers instead of solely focusing on increasing blog traffic.
So, here are my top tips to get more blog subscribers in 2020…
Create lead magnets:
The first thing you must do to get more subscribers is to create lead magnet(s). A lead magnet is something you give away for free in exchange for a signup.
When trying to capture subscribers most people just ask them to sign up for a newsletter. So, when you provide a bribe like a lead magnet you will stand out from them and attract more subscribers.
The lead magnets you create should provide solutions to your target audience’s most pressing concerns. So, put yourself in your audience’s shoes and brainstorm topic ideas. If necessary, you can conduct a survey to find out what their problems are right now.
Then create the lead magnets. The lead magnets you create can be in the form of ebooks, white papers, videos, reports, infographics, etc. The type of lead magnet you create should depend on the type of content your audience prefers consuming.
You can even give away free software in exchange for a sign up like the people at Social Bakers do. They are primarily a social media analytics tool, so they create software like the Instagram Report Tool. But in order to get your report, you need to provide your contact details (this includes your email address).
This is a very powerful and effective way to generate leads.
Creating a lead magnet like this can take a lot of time (and money), but very few people give away software for free, hence, it will help you stand out.
Optimize your blog for conversion:
The next step you need to take is to optimize your blog for conversion. Here is how you do this…
Promote the lead magnet in multiple places:
To get people to sign up for the lead magnet you need to promote it as much as you can all over your blog by using several optin forms. So, add different types of optin forms to your blog. This should include a dedicated landing page, a header form, a footer form, a sidebar form and a popup. You can also embed forms right within the blog posts. For some ideas, you can check out The Social Ms blog.
They offer so many ways to sign up to their blog. And they promote different lead magnets on different forms. This will help them segment their subscribers early on.
You could also create a content library for your blog where all your lead magnets can be found in one place.
Ensure your site loads quickly:
If you want to get more of your blog visitors to sign up, you need to make sure your site loads quickly. Loading time and conversion rate and correlated. The faster your site loads, the more number of people will remain on your site and eventually convert.
To generate maximum conversions, your blog should load within 4 seconds as found by this study. So, use a speed check tool like Pingdom to see how quickly your site loads.
If your site is taking too long to load here are a couple of things you can do boost your speed.
Change your website host:
I know it might seem like a drastic move, but a bad hosting service is usually the number one reason for a slow loading website. So, switch to a more reliable service if you want to speed up your site. To quickly find the best host you can check out WhoIsHostingThis.
They list reviews of the top hosting services here, so that you don’t have to go out there and spend too much time researching. You can even search for reviews of hosts you like here.
If your site runs on WordPress, a good managed WordPress hosting service would be the best option for you.
Reduce the number of plugins:
The number of plugins on your site can also affect your site’s loading time. As too many plugins can slow down your website. For optimal loading speeds, you should only use the best and most reliable WordPress plugins and limit the number of plugins to 20.
Offer social sign up:
Another way to boost conversions is by making it easy for people to sign up with social login. With social login, you give people the option to sign up via social networks like Facebook, Linkedin and Twitter with the click of a button or two.
Many people will take up this option as it makes things easier for them. You will actually enjoy another benefit with this option which is that you will get their best email address (the same one they are using for their social networks).
A good example can be seen in the above screenshot of the optin form for Social Bakers. They have the ‘Autofill with Linkedin’ option.
Another site that offers the social login option is TradePub.
On their landing pages, they provide the option to sign up and ‘Download with LinkedIn’.
The above methods will help you generate a good amount of leads organically. But if you want to take things to the next level I recommend that you use ads. Using ads you can promote your lead magnet to your perfect target audience and get them to sign up.
The best recipe that works for bloggers is retargeting. This is where you serve relevant ads to people who visit your website. For example, if you run a fitness blog and someone visited a page on gaining muscle, you should serve them with an ad that leads to a landing page for a lead magnet on ‘How to Clean Bulk’ or ‘How to Gain Muscle Quickly’.
As they are interested in the topic, more people will sign up to your lead magnet.
Personally reach out to your perfect subscribers:
Another method you can use to reach your perfect subscribers is personal email outreach. This is a time-consuming process, but it will help you attract the perfect audience, the ones who will buy your products and/or hire you.
Here’s how you go about doing this. After you create your lead magnet and place it on a landing page, you should think about the ideal customer/subscriber that would be interested in reading this lead magnet. They should not only want to consume the lead magnet, but should also want to hire you for your services or buy your products afterwards.
Next, scour the internet looking for these people and make a list of them on a spreadsheet along with their contact details. After that, you should execute a personal email outreach strategy and get in touch with them. In your email ask them to check out your new ebook, video, white paper, etc.
If you write a well-structured highly personal email, many of these people will sign up for the lead magnet. And if you have created a quality lead magnet, it will complete the job of converting subscribers to customers/clients.
To get best results track the email you send using an outreach tool like Mixmax.
It will let you know if a receiver opened the email, clicked on a link, downloaded an attachment, etc. so that you can follow up with better emails.
Try getting other types of subscribers:
Gaining email subscribers is the tried and tested way to boost your blog’s presence. But this doesn’t mean that these are the only types of subscribers who you should aim to capture. There are other types of subscribers such as RSS feed subscribers, Facebook Messenger subscribers, Push Notification subscribers, mobile subscribers, etc. Some of your readers will prefer subscribing via these channels over email. So, provide these subscription options as well.
But make sure you track these subscribers’ activity to see if they convert as well as email subscribers.
If it works, you can continue generating these types of subscribers, but if it doesn’t you can turn your attention back to solely focusing on email subscribers.
This is the process you should be using to get more blog subscribers in 2020. You can then build the latter part of the funnel with autoresponder series, webinars, case studies, etc. to convert more of your subscribers to sales.
This will take a bit of work, but the results you see will be worth it. So, begin implementing them today.
What tactics and strategies do you use to get more blog subscribers? What are your top tips? Please leave your comments below.
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