Today, I want to talk about some words and their meanings.
There are words we hear often in online marketing that have a tendency to make our eyes glaze over. They get used so often and so repetitively that they become catchwords and lose their actual meaning.
Here are a few examples:
Let’s talk about these, what they really mean, and how they all connect. Yes, they do tie together, and I’ll show you how. Read on…
Choose Your Words
I emailed my subscribers yesterday about a new web traffic course just for authors, 30 Days to Sizzling Author Website Traffic by Diana Heuser (it’s very good, by the way.) The interest in the guide was fair but not great. I got to thinking about it and decided it was because of the words I used.
I talked about getting traffic to a website. And even though I mentioned how the course was specific to authors, and how it was about getting the right kind of readers to your site, traffic is one of those words that just isn’t personal to people.
I also talked about how you need traffic to build your list. List is a VERY impersonal word, and one I rarely use, at least not the way most people do. Although to be honest, I think I did say list of readers, and not just “list.” Still though, I probably left my people wondering: What is traffic? What is a list?
Pay attention here, this is the important part:
Traffic is PEOPLE! A list is made up of PEOPLE!
That’s more interesting, isn’t it? People are fun. People are interesting. People are exciting.
I love my “List.” Not because they are an asset (although having a list can be an asset.) I love them because they are PEOPLE.
I write letters to them almost every day. I think about them while I write. Many of them I’ve met personally and I picture their faces when I write my emails. They answer my emails with encouragement, with feedback, with questions, and yes with criticism sometimes. It’s all good. We have a relationship that works that way.
My list of people is my network of friends, my community… my tribe.
So where did that list of people come from?
A List Comes From Traffic
At some point, those people found their way to something of mine that was published on the internet. Whether it was a free download, a sales page, a blog post, a forum post… you get the picture.
I wrote something, put it somewhere and made sure that somehow, PEOPLE saw it. That’s all that traffic is.
Your traffic is your future list. The people who don’t know you yet, but would like to. The people who already know you but want to know more.
Are you getting more excited about traffic yet? I hope so, because it’s very exciting stuff.
Where Does Traffic Come From?
Traffic comes from people finding things you write, as I mentioned above, but it can also come from things you share.
As you know, I recently participated in a Content Curation Challenge on this blog. Curation is another one of those buzzwords, but a lot of people really have no idea what it really means. First, I’ll tell you what it doesn’t mean: it does NOT mean copying someone else’s content and pasting it onto your blog. That’s stealing. Curation means sharing.
There’s another people word for you.
Curation is the act of collecting and sorting content. It’s where you see something awesome or important and you make sure your people get to see it too. Not by stealing from the original copyright owner, but by pointing your people to the original; telling them where they can find the good stuff. You’re helping your tribe, you’re helping the originator of the content by introducing your tribe to them, and you’re helping yourself, because when you help other people, they come back to you again and again. They become loyal and trusting friends.
I’ve curated content for a long time in my emails, but this challenge required me to share it on my blog.
What where the results of the challenge? More traffic! Here you can see the stats (click on the image to enlarge it):
I have more users (visitors,) more page views, and my bounce rate (how quickly visitors leave my site) is down by almost 20%. While they were visiting, the people were leaving comments, reading more about me and, in some cases, signing up for my mailing list (to hear more from me.) All from just one 21-day challenge, where I shared some of my favorite content from around the internet.
When you share in emails, you still help people, but you don’t get to see the results so much on your website or blog, and you don’t get to grow your tribe, because NEW people aren’t finding you.
The best part is, the challenge wasn’t hard. Yes, it took me a little bit of getting used to, because I hadn’t been posting here regularly. But once I did, it got much easier.
But What About Posting Your Own Content?
You can make a blog that is all curated content, but I don’t advise it. I have lots of my own things to say to people, and I know people want to hear what I have to say. They’ve told me so. 🙂
To that end, I have another challenge I’ll be participating in next month, called the Stretch Yourself Challenge.
It’s all about creating and repurposing content. Oh yeah, there’s that other word. Repurpose. You hear that one thrown about a lot too. That one just means making the most of the things you write. Sharing them in multiple ways and places. It’s probably the simplest one of all, and one of your most powerful tools.
It’s good for you because you get to work once and make it count, over and over again. It’s good for your current list (people,) because if they missed something the first time around, they get another chance. It’s good for traffic (people who may not know you yet,) because it means they get to find you and become part of your tribe.
So write your best stuff. Share it everywhere. Find other good stuff. Share it on your blog.
Get traffic. Build a list.
But remember, it’s all about the PEOPLE!
Much Happiness and Success!