The objective of our meeting was to discuss ways in which the Centre could drive traffic to its blog, putting its activities, research and expertise in front of new audiences. On the back of this conversation, I thought it might be useful to share some of the ideas we discussed with you all.
- Regular updates are crucial. Its ideal if you can aim for one a week. One a fortnight is probably more achievable for most groups. One a month is the absolute minimum you should post.
- Use keywords regularly in your blog description, post titles and content to help search engines find and index your blog.
- Reciprocate - mention collaborators and partners, link to their sites and blogs, and ask them to do the same.
- Welcome guest posts - contributors will share your blog with their contacts, exposing you to new audiences.
Ideas for promotion:
- Share across your social media channels, copy in any collaborators or partners mentioned. They may reshare with their audiences.
- Share quality content from your blog with relevant groups on LinkedIn. We recently helped a researcher identify existing LinkedIn groups focused on supply chain management, with hundreds of thousands of followers in each.
- If there are targeted sector publications relevant to your research, see whether they'd be interested in running a review of your blog.
- Are there any podcasts in your research sector (you can search on SoundCloud or iTunes). You could ask whether they'd run an advert or review of your blog in return for you posting a review of their podcast.
- Start to build a contact list - keep contacts you meet at conferences and events, and those you've collaborated with or helped in the past within your field. Invite these contacts to subscribe to your blog, or send them updates if you feel a post will be of particular interest to them. Have the button to 'subscribe' to updates on your blog.
- Don't spend time reinventing the wheel Look for pre-existing clusters of people who might be interested in your research; is there a relevant Reddit subreddit, an active forum or an interest group on Facebook? Say your research is into black holes, there will be a large number of online communities that already exist focused on amateur astronomy, or space exploration. Target these with your content, rather than trying to create a new community from scratch.
Hopefully you'll find these ideas useful, and if you'd like to chat through any of them with our team then give us a shout!