Blogging can be very time consuming can’t it? I mean there are so many different aspects of blogging that you find you simply don’t have enough hours in the day to get everything done.
As a blogger, you should be spending most of your time writing amazing blog posts for your readers and creating your own information products to sell. But you also need to market your blog so you can fill-up your email list and have a friendly community of blog readers.
The great news is that there’s such a thing as marketing automation (or automated marketing) which can dramatically decrease some of your marketing tasks.
Marketing your blog is one task which you should really be doing on a daily basis in order to bring in a constant supply of new visitors to your blog. But marketing can soon become a tedious chore, so automating at least some of your marketing is a much smarter way to go.
What Is Marketing Automation?
Marketing automation can be many things to different small business owners and large companies because it depends on what type of business and what they need to achieve in their marketing efforts. But today in respect to you as a blogger, I’m talking about blog marketing automation.
There are many wonderful tools which can help bloggers ease some of their mundane and routine marketing tasks. Whilst you can never, and should never, fully automate your marketing, there’s nothing wrong in using a few carefully chosen automation tools to do the leg work for you.
Social Media Scheduling Tools
Social media automation is the most used (and let’s face it, needed) type of automation which bloggers search for and are in need of. It’s a well known fact that social media is the most time-consuming type of marketing, especially if you use more than three social media accounts.
But the good news for social media marketers is that software developers have responded by creating some brilliant automated tools to help ease the workload of social media marketing.
Here are three of the most popular social media scheduling tools.
Buffer shares your content over all your social profiles at days and times specified by you. You can schedule photo’s, videos, links and blog posts.
I haven’t personally used Buffer, but it has over 2 million marketers using it so they must be doing something right! Also, I only hear great things about buffer so I don’t have any hesitation when it comes to recommending it as an automation tool.
Buffer currently schedules content to these social media platforms:
Cost: $10 per month | www.buffer.com
I’ve used Hootsuite in the past to help manage my Twitter and Facebook profiles and I actually liked it very much.
I don’t use it now as I’m just focusing on Pinterest, but once I get my Pinterest account to a nice healthy number of followers, I’ll start focusing on my Twitter and Facebook platforms again and I’m going to use Hootsuite to manage them.
What I like about Hootsuite is that you can put the feeds of your social platforms onto one screen. This means you can see what’s going on with your social profiles within one window.
Hootsuite currently schedules content to these social media platforms:
Cost: $9.99 per month | www.hootsuite.com
BoardBooster for Pinterest
I personally use BoardBooster to manage all of my Pinterest marketing and I absolutely LOVE it!
If you really look into and use all of the features, you can literally spend NO time doing your Pinterest marketing. This is absolutely marketing automation at it’s best!
At the most, you only need to spend about 30 minutes per week on Pinterest and let BoardBooster take care of the rest for you.
Features of BoardBooster:
- Schedule pins
- Search for pins
- Group Boards campaign management
- Pinterest maintenance
Cost: $5 – $50 per month depending how many pins you want to schedule.
Tip: I use the $30 per month plan so I can pin/repin 100 pins per day.
Email marketing is a must for bloggers in my mind, and I think that you’ll find 99.9% of other bloggers will agree with me.
I use Aweber as my email marketing platform which seems to be the most popular at the moment. However there are many other popular ones such as Mail Chimp, GetResponse and Infusion.
What I like about Aweber though is that you can set up as many automated email campaigns as you like and once set-up, you don’t have to do anything again. These autoresponder email campaigns are also known as ‘Sales Funnels’ which sounds a bit cheesy but they certainly don’t have to be.
So for example, you could set up an automated email series of a free 5 day course then at the end of the course you could promote a related product. Once you have this all set up, you don’t have to worry about sending your visitors emails because they are already pre-written and stored in your autoresponder campaign.
You would simply drive traffic to your 5 day free course sign-up page.
Cost: Aweber $19.00 per month | www.aweber.com
Note: Mail Chimp is free for your first 2,000 email subscribers, but you will have to sign-up to a paid plan in order to get the autoresponder features.
Paid advertising is a great way to automate your marketing and drive traffic to your automated email ‘sales funnel’ campaigns. See how you can use each of these automation tools together to streamline and automate your marketing to the fullest?
At one time, there were only paid advertising on the search engines such as Google Adwords, Yahoo and Bing. So when a searcher typed a keyword into Google, for example, then a list of paid ads would show up at the top. The advertiser (you) will only pay for the ad when someone clicks on it.
This is known as Pay Per Click (PPC) advertising.
However, most of the social media platforms now run advertising solutions which I feel are more tailored and suited to bloggers. The main objective is to know which social platform most of your audience is on the most.
I personally dabble in Facebook ads from time to time and so far have been quite successful in it. I would love to do a spot of Pinterest advertising, but I live in the UK and it’s only available in the US at the time of writing this post, so I’ll just have to wait (and use BoardBooster to help me grow my Pinterest followers).
Have you ever wondered when you’re on Facebook and ads start showing up in your feed or side bar which are showing products or services which you have previously been searching for Online?
The same thing happens in Amazon, products show up in your Amazon pages of products you have previously been searching for on Amazon.
Do you think that this is just a big coincidence? It’s not.
This is known as ‘re-targeting’.
This is quite a complex subject which I know a little about but have yet to use it to its maximum efficiency. I’ve used re-targeting within my Facebook ads campaigns, and again its all automated.
It’s purpose is to follow and target the people who landed on your site who didn’t buy or sign up to your email list. You can then automatically display further ads to this group of people (non-converters) to try and get them back to your site to buy your product or sign-up to your email list.
It does sound a bit pushy, but it doesn’t have to be. You could offer these people discount coupon codes, or some other freebie to entice them back to your site.
Well my friend, we’ve come to the end of this article on blog marketing automation. I hope you’ve gained a little insight into some of the automation tools you can use in your own blogging business to help ease the workload of your blog marketing.