If blogging was a game of Chess, then a “checkmate” would be when you’ve finally become “successful“—however you personally define that. In the classic game of Chess, there is a tactic commonly known as the “4 Move Checkmate”, where you have a chance to beat your opponent using just four carefully planned moves.
Likewise, in the world of blogging, you can also achieve “checkmate” by applying four moves that can drastically impact not only your level of success, but how quickly you achieve it.
For many people, blogging success is defined by the amount of money you make. For others, it’s having a solid following of readers who are genuine “fans” of your content. Regardless of how YOU personally define success, this post will describe four powerful “moves” you can make to drastically increase your chances of achieving it.
Move #1: Regular, Quality Content
This first move sets the foundation for the other three moves to work. You need to write quality content that is genuinely useful to your niche. You must also do this on a regular, consistent basis.
There is a lot of debate on the “best” posting frequency for your blog. I think it’s not a matter of what “the” best is, but rather, “your” best. What’s do-able for you? Whatever you decide, make sure you’re consistent and you stick with it.
Whether its 3-4 posts per week or per month, keep it that way!
Move #2: Consistent Promotional Efforts
This is another area where there is a lot of debate on what the “best” way to do it is. Once again, I think you need to get into a regular habit of what works for YOU, and just do it on a regular basis.
A simple traffic “tip” is to find blogs in your niche to post comments to on a regular basis. Another technique to build back-links and get even more traffic is to submit short articles to article directories with a link back to your homepage and individual posts (also known as article marketing).
One of my favorite methods of promoting my blog is obvious: guest posting. This involves contacting the owner of a separate blog in your niche and asking if you can submit an article to be published on their blog. If you give them an article of high quality, you have a good chance of being accepted and in-turn, getting even more exposure for your blog.
Move #3: Retaining Your Visitors
This is something that is crucial, but so many bloggers fail to do. If you want to see success anytime soon, you NEED to retain your visitors—which is the act of attracting repeat visitors BACK to your blog.
Repeat traffic is WAY more valuable than your first-time visitors because most people don’t follow through with your intended course of action (such as a purchase) on their very first visit. The problem is, if you don’t make a conscious effort to retain your visitors, most of the people visiting your site will click off and NEVER return (by no fault of your own either).
The best way to retain your visitors is to provide an incentive for your readers to join your mailing list (or subscribe to your feed). You can write a short report (doesn’t matter how long, just make sure it’s useful) and give it away for free in exchange for their subscription. And that takes us to the next and final move…
Move #4: Checkmate (Earning Reader Trust)
Your first step to building trust is writing quality content on a regular basis (see Move #1); however, it goes much further than that. Once you’ve retained your visitors, your focus should be on convincing them to trust you—and for good reason, you’re not going to “con” them in any way.
If you retained your visitors by using a mailing list, then I suggest sending an email every six days. Make two out of three of your emails be a link to a high quality article posted to your blog. Every three to four mailers should be a promotion, such as a product recommendation or a review.
The six-day schedule ensures that you are not annoying your list with too many emails, but you are also not forgotten. When you send two high quality articles to your list before sending a promotion, you are letting them know you are interested in providing them value before you are interested in their wallet.
You can also apply the above strategy if you’re retaining your visitors strictly by RSS subscribers as well. Just follow a similar posting schedule, but make at least 1-2 of your posts per month be a product recommendation or review. Make sure you only recommend high quality products!
Although blogging and chess are two completely different things, there are some significant similarities that can be drawn between the two. They both require a great deal of patience and personal strategy, but if you remain persistent and follow proven techniques such as the “4 Move Checkmate”, success may just be a lot closer than you think.
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