Bloggers are always screaming that unless you have great content, nobody will care about your site. This is very true, but most bloggers miss the point of content. Sure, it’s nice to write things that help or entertain people, but your articles probably aren’t doing either of those things right now. And if they are, they’re not doing it at their full potential.
I would be willing to bet that most of your content is helping and entertaining a small percentage of the people that it applies to. If you write an article about installing some kind of software that millions will purchase, and it’s a great article, you want every one of those millions of people to read it. Does that happen?
No. If it does, you’re a freak of nature and probably don’t need any more advice.
The Quality of Your Content Is Not Limiting You
Why doesn’t it get out to millions of people? Is it because your content isn’t as good as you think it is? To be honest, the quality of your content is not the limiting factor on its performance.
People are not avoiding your content. Readers aren’t thinking, “wow this guy’s a moron – why would I ever learn how to install software from him?” The truth is that if millions of people thought this about you, it would be a great thing. That means that tons of people have read your article and that you’re getting some serious media attention.
Your potential readers don’t know who you are. They don’t even know who you exist! Don’t tell me, “I get 50,000 readers per month and I am just working to impress those readers with solid content and hope that they share it with their friends.”
Let me tell you a secret: they’re not going to.
You might get a few more readers than the ones who happen to stumble upon your blog because of some random search on Google, but, chances are, they’re not going to go out of their way to throw your content in the faces of their friends.
If Improving My Content Won’t Help, How Do I Get More Readers?
So, how can you solve this problem? You can’t make your content any better, since it’s already awesome, but how can you get more readers if you can’t improve your content? It’s called promotion, and you should get familiar with it.
I used to think that content creation was everything. People who subscribe to this mantra are basically saying, “if you build it, they will come.” I read a story recently about a mall that was built in China. It was the biggest mall in the world, had hundreds of stores, and went bankrupt. Why? THEY DIDN’T PROMOTE THEIR PRODUCT, SO NOBODY CAME.
You need to spend more of your time promoting your product than creating your product. In the case of a blogger, this product is content. Don’t believe me? What about your local mall, or some mall in your state. Isn’t it thriving? Aren’t their so many people driving around in the parking lot that you can’t find a space? (If the answer to that is no, it’s just because of the recession.) Is your mall better than that one they built in China? No, but people know about it, and they go there as a result.
Now you need to take that in. Creating content isn’t how you get readers, it’s how you keep readers. Getting readers is a whole different topic, and it involves a few things.
Reaching out to bigger entities via email
Connecting on social media
Guest writing and promoting on other sites
I will try to write a followup article talking about how to promote your content, and if you would like to see that article come to fruition, let me know in the comments!