Bringing it Back

This site needs new readers badly.

I am not an internet marketer. I’ve never been one, and I don’t plan on ever being one. This is probably a good thing, since I suck so badly at it that if my livelihood depended on driving traffic to some site or other, I would have starved to death a decade ago.

I have done very little to “advertise” this site over the years. I’ve dabbled in banner ads, link building, and a few other things, but for the most part people just showed up on their own. And when I stopped writing, they left.

I guess what I’m saying is that, while I’d love to see the traffic to this site increase by a few orders of magnitude, I have no idea how to make that happen.

No… you don’t get it. I mean ZERO ideas. As in: NONE. As in: Not A Single One. Other than the stuff that I’ve already tried and failed at, I can’t think of a single damn thing to try.

So this is where you folks come in. If you can think of something you can do to help… do it. If there are some new internet marketing tricks out there that you’ve heard about, hand them over. If there’s something obvious that I’m missing, you SUCK for not having told me already. If you have told me already… maybe mention it again?

Seriously, we all want more readers, but I have no clue how to make that happen. Anyone have any ideas?


7 Comments

  1. nate, July 28, 2011:

    I don’t know how web sites work, but if there’s any chance that a log of email addresses is kept when people actually register, I’d say just send a quick note to them all and let them know you’ve returned. Other than that, I hope someone else with much more know-how can give you some really good information.

  2. Caber, July 28, 2011:

    I have no idea how one would drive traffic to a website either, my website sees little to no traffic. I know you can list yourself on a search engine, but that depends on a user actually seeking what you are offering. Facebook/twitter are the big things going now, there must be something you can do to put yourself front and center. Maybe look for some popular message boards for fantasy writing and pimp your site there? Go the Jay and Silent Bob routine and go door to door handing out fliers? (just kidding on that one)

    Obviously keeping your site updated is big on enticing people to return once they have found you and enjoy what you are offering. When your site is centered around writing, it is not always easy to frequently update, especially when you are the sole contributor. Nate mentioned he enjoyed reading stories on the forums, maybe look to breathe more life there? Bring in a few people who can and will help keep it going? I noticed it was plagued with spam the last time I checked.

    Cannot think of anything else to add at the moment.

  3. cuti26, August 3, 2011:

    Do you have a Facebook or Google+ account? How about a Twitter account? I think this would be the first place to start.

  4. DarkIcon, August 3, 2011:

    I’ve had a Facebook page for a while. It’s been neglected until recently.
    http://www.facebook.com/DarkIconDotCom

    I do have a Google+ account, but word is that Google has been revoking accounts that don’t have real names on them, so it may not be long for this world. I haven’t done much with it anyway.
    https://plus.google.com/101368953502526640924

  5. WizardofOz, February 19, 2012:

    Some ideas for you … understand that this (quite literally) is what I do. The stuff I’m going to say is meant to be done “in order”, doing number 5 without doing number 1-3 won’t help nearly as much.

    1) Start including some kind of image with every single post. I know that will probably slow down the schedule, but it needs to be done. Images, graphics, videos, that sort of thing are shared 7.3 times more often than just text.

    2) Come out from behind the DI “personae” that you’ve created and instead just start being you. I know that means you’re “putting yourself out there” but trust me, people will be MUCH more likely to share your stuff you’re actually a real person.

    3) Create a new G+ account under your real name and start giving incentives for people sharing your your stories with others. Use G+ to also tell folks when you post.

    4) Occasionally (start AND end of a new story thread at least) put yourself in front of a web cam and talk a little about the inspiration for the story, possibly where the idea came from. At the end talk about the story itself. You could also just give people other story ideas as well to bring writers. This is an extension of “be a person”. But it goes beyond that. Be a friend to other writers. I know that you have a BILLION ideas, so give them freely. Talk about how you build a story and such.

    5) G+ has something called “hangouts” that will allow you to do a sort of group video chat. As a writer this can be a HUGE thing as it further allows your fans to bond with you. Consider doing one of these twice a month and posting the recording of it here on DI for people that miss it.

    Here’s the thing, your stories already are amazing. You don’t need to do very much more to get people to start sharing your stuff out and talking about you. Also, because you do have SO MANY story ideas, I could even show you a fairly simple way you could even make money from other writers sharing some of your story ideas and teach people about story construction and so on.

    I know you aren’t a “professional paid writer” so it may seem strange to start telling people how to write, giving them story ideas, and so on, but believe me when I tell you that if you set yourself up as a writing expert, anyone that comes to your site and reads your stories will see you as an expert pretty fast and you won’t EVER have to say “I’m an expert”, or “you should listen” or anything like that.

    If you like, we can talk about it tomorrow or something. Shoot me an email (my email addy is in my profile of course, I have changed it because of spam issues with the old one that you know) and we can exchange phone numbers and talk by voice. I’d like to catch up with you anyway! :-)

  6. WizardofOz, February 19, 2012:

    Incidentally, when I gave that number 2) thing above and I said “just start being you” I meant to start doing everything under your actual name. Much of what you write and say is already you being you, but without a name to go with it that doesn’t help.

    If you’re worried about some nut job “coming after you” or what ever I wouldn’t be too concerned about that given how often you talk about your firearms.

  7. WizardofOz, February 19, 2012:

    CRAP!!! I knew there was one more thing I wanted to say.

    Very seriously consider posting to Google+ over facebook. Because Google+ is so much smaller, getting a wide spread sharing distribution is easier. That can make you seem larger, which then helps to attract more people to you. That VERY often then “bleeds over” into the other social networks like Facebook.

    Having said that, you should also be announcing every single post, along with “engaging in any conversation” on that facebook page that you said you had.

    Again, shoot me an email and we can talk about this. It SOUNDS like what I’m saying is a bunch of work and will take up a lot of time, but it won’t actually do that.

    The whole “strategy” I’ve been talking about is meant to allow you to just be you, but in a way that drawn in more people and a larger following.

    Given how much you have here already trust me when I say you could do that VERY quickly. I have a few other ideas that might help as well so shoot me that email and we can chat by voice.

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