While you are at school, running a blog can be a great hobby, a fantastic way to learn new skills such as design, writing, and digital marketing, but also a wonderful way to meet new people and share ideas. If you are studying a degree such as an online masters in public relations from George Washington University, it can also be an exceptionally good way to practice what you are learning on your course and gain valuable experience. If you enjoy blogging and manage to build a large following, you could even turn it into a highly profitable career once you graduate. Social media is an incredibly important tool when it comes to growing a blog. It’s free, has fast results, and anyone can do it. Here are some great tips to help you get started on the main platforms.


Facebook is a good place to start when it comes to blog promotion as most people today use it. Start by setting up a Facebook page for your blog. You could link this page to your personal account to give yourself a head start but don’t if your blog is anonymous. When using Facebook, it’s important to use pictures as often as possible and to make these pictures as big as you can. While it’s ok to post text updates, try to keep them short. Posts with less text and more pictures generally get the most engagement. Lifestyle type posts such as great ideas for student meals or nights out tend to be the most successful with a Facebook audience.  Facebook also has the largest demographic of all social networks.


Pinterest is a brilliant tool if your blog shares any kind of tips, guides, recipes, or help pages. To be successful on Pinterest make sure your posts contain tall, thin images your readers can pin for later. You should also apply for rich pins and include metadata in your posts to make sure your pins stand out.  Pinterest is especially ideal for blogs that are photo rich.  Think of blogs in the recipe, fashion and product review niches for an idea on what suits.  It is predominantly used by older women, too, so it’s an especially good choice if this is your target demographic.


Instagram can be a surprisingly effective tool when it comes to driving traffic to your blog. Make sure there is a link to your blog in your bio, but avoid writing “link in bio” on every post. Try to keep your images relevant to your blog and use the same filter to keep things neat and easily recognizable.  Again, Instagram is ideal for blogs that contain a lot of photos.  Food pictures do especially well on the site, but so do blogs that cover popular culture.  The audience on Instagram tends to be younger, too, so may be a better option than Pinterest depending on your demographic.


Twitter is also great for increasing blog traffic. Post your own links and content but also retweet other peoples. But more than this chat to and get to know them. Twitter moves incredibly fast so to get noticed and be remembered you need to make a connection with your audience by genuine engagement and conversation.  Twitter is a fantastic place to network with people.  If you include links inside your blog posts to other blogs, let the blog owners know – most will be happy to tweet about it to their audience.  This is one of the easiest ways of getting noticed.


If you are running a business blog, you have to have a presence on LinkedIn.  LinkedIn gives you access to business people in numerous industries, many of whom will be very interested in what you have to say.   As well as posting links on your own profile, you can also join industry specific groups on LinkedIn and share links to your blog posts there.  If you get any comments or queries about your topic, make sure you reply to them.  Engagement is key on the site, and the unique userbase can really help to take your blog to the next level.


Google + is another social network that is more geared to businesses.  Although it isn’t as popular as sites like Facebook and Twitter, it is still worth setting up a profile and sharing your page.  A lot of people who don’t use Facebook have profiles on Google +, so you are again furthering your blog post’s reach.  The significant thing about Google + is who it’s owned by – that’s right, Google.  Although we’re not totally convinced that Google give more weight to blog posts shared on its own social network, it definitely doesn’t hurt to use it, just in case.


Tumblr is a microblogging platform that is currently owned by Yahoo!.  Users can share blog posts and other forms of multimedia.  Other users can then decide to follow you to stay up to date with your blog.  If you are running a WordPress blog, it’s worth installing a Tumblr plugin so that your posts are shared on the site automatically.  The site has a relatively young audience, but many are more than happy to engage with the content they view.  This makes it a great place to build up a loyal following.

With all of the social media platforms discussed above, being an active user is one of the main keys to success. You can’t just share your own updates and expect to get a lot of blog traffic in return. You need to comment, share and engage with others. You also need to make sure you are creating an instantly recognizable brand by using the same logo and color scheme where you can. If you are studying a degree in media or an online SPR degree put your skills to good use here. Remember, social media can be exceptionally good fun to use as well, so enjoy it.

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