How I Got 170+ Retweets, a Mention on Copyblogger & 2k Visitors in One Day

65 Intelligent Opinions

running with the seagulls
Creative Commons License photo credit: eschipul

Last week I tried something a bit new. And it worked. In just a few hours I got over 170 retweets, a mention on Copyblogger’s Weekly Wrap and around 2,000 visitors. The strategy I used is new to me, I dreamed it up when I was on my way to a movie. It seemed to have very positive outcomes.

In this post I am going to show you what I did and why I think it was so successful. I hope it gives you some ideas for your own social media marketing strategies.

The results from the madness

I suppose I should start this article by talking about some of the results from this little exercise. Let’s take a look at what happened in less than a 24 hour period.

  • Over 170 retweets
    This first thing that happened was that I got over 170 retweets. This drove a lot of traffic and also caused more retweets to occur. I have a sneaking suspicion that there were more than this but the tweet count thing isn’t registering them.
  • A tweet by Copyblogger
    During all of this Brian Clark himself sent out a tweet mentioning the best about us pages, the article that formed the base of the strategy. This further bolstered the effect. You can see proof of the tweet here.
  • A link on Copyblogger
    Johnny B Truant, that crazy cat, mentioned me in the Copyblogger Weekly Wrap even though he was kind of upset I didn’t mention him on the actual post.
  • Over 90 comments
    The article got 94 comments. To be honest though I thought this was kind of underwhelming.
  • Over 100 email subscribers
    The happiest part of all this, for me, was that all this tweeting and retweeting and linking exposed the website to a brand new wave of subscribers. When Brian sent out his tweet I got about 30 subscribers in the space of about 60 seconds. Quite literally.

This whole thing was proof to me of how powerful social media can be when it is done right. A link from one of the top blogs, massive amounts of traffic and a decent catch of subscribers.

The strategy I used

Google's Master Plan
Creative Commons License photo credit: jurvetson

Now that we have looked at some of the outcomes lets take a look at exactly what I did. If you are subscribed to my email list you might have already put the pieces together. In case you haven’t I will show you the whole process now.

1. I wrote a highly useful, link-bait style article
The first thing I did was write an article that I knew would be highly interesting to people in my niche. As mentioned, it was the 12 Best About Us Pages on the Internet article from last week. Everyone who owns a blog has written an About Us page and as such I thought it would form a universal basis of interest.

Link bait is a term used to describe articles that get shared around a lot. You often find that list posts and articles with huge databases of information are the most effective link-bait posts. Take a look at the front page of Digg or Delicious and most of them are link-bait style articles. I needed something like this to form the ammunition for this strategy.

2. I set the mood with a useful free giveaway
The next thing I did was spend some time creating a very valuable free giveaway – the Blog Tyrant Blog Critiques. The idea had such a good reception with hundreds of people entering on Facebook in the first round, I had the thought that I could use the entries for the second BTBC session to promote the link-bait article above. I set the mood by doing the best job I could with the first video and then telling everyone that I would be doing another one very soon and to stay tuned for details on how to enter.

The entries would be the engine behind the retweeting.

3. I emailed my mailing list
As you know, I love my mailing list. I provide a lot of free information to them. But one of the things about mailing lists that a lot of marketers forget is that they can be harnessed to help you out on certain occasions. So I sent out an email called “How to enter this week’s Blog Critique” and then told them that to enter they had to send out a tweet saying:

12 of the Web’s Best About Us Pages: (RT to win a FREE Blog Critique)

As you can see, the whole idea is that to enter they needed to promote my link-bait article. This means that not only were my “critiques” and About Us article getting promoted, but they were being seen by new people not on my list. One of those people was Brian Clark who, perhaps seeing his own page at number one, decided to tweet about it himself. I only wish he’d used the actual tweet so I could do a critique about his blog!

What do you think?

What are your thoughts on this strategy? Have you ever tried something similar in order to get a few more people to notice you on Twitter? Did it involve your mailing list? I would love to hear if any of you have any ideas how I could have done this better or if you have seen it done better elsewhere.


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65 Comments... Leave yours.

  • Stuart February 21, 2011 at 12:26 pm

    Yeah, works fine with me. I’ve been out of the country for a bit so I didn’t catch on with all the process until now. But I like the process, it’s well thought out and served you well.

    One thing I’ll point out is the use of the term ‘linkbait’. I hate that term, seems dirty and dishonest. Maybe it’s just me, but if I was to create a post which was shared around then I’d consider that a good job, not part of a greater marketing strategy.

    Again, my two cents, and my opinion shouldn’t detract from the fact you’ve done an awesome job :-)

    1. the Blog Tyrant February 21, 2011 at 12:32 pm

      I agree. Link bait sounds dirty. I couldn’t think of another recognizable term though.

  • chris February 21, 2011 at 12:34 pm

    Trying to write viral articles can be like pitching horse shoes. (Goin’ old school on the analogies)

    I’ve tried it before myself. I’d get a great article idea and then it was off to the typewriter (again, goin’ old school).

    How often did those article take off. About half the time. I supposed it’s like musicians who say they thought they wrote a number 1 hit but listeners just weren’t into it.

    I’m saying this for a few reasons;
    1. BT, you seem to have a great track record with your articles. The little nuances you add like the blog critique and your establishment in the community help a lot as well.

    2. For people who try to write that “great article that will bring in subscribers like never before, fore, fore fore” [love that echo]…don’t give up when it fails.

    It’s happened to be before where the article I thought wasn’t anything special ended up getting more comments that anything else I’d written.

    What I’d encourage people (myself included) to learn from BT is that it’s not just about writing that great article…it’s also about what happens when you spend time and energy on your blog AND within the community of your niche topic and your efforts WILL start paying off like never before. BT has great stuff and as his readership and age of the blog increase, so will his rate of success.

    I will add a suggest to people regarding twitter…auto-post. Whenever I publish a new article, a link is auto-posted on my twitter account. This one process has really bumped up my traffic.

    1. the Blog Tyrant February 21, 2011 at 1:22 pm

      Great comment Chris. Really well put.

      1. chris February 21, 2011 at 2:30 pm

        Thanks! And might I add that posting before I drink that first cup of coffee apparently leads to typos on my part. LOL

    2. Simon Duck March 1, 2011 at 4:26 pm

      Very well put Chris, comments like this really make me think about how I am doing on my website and I should act to try and make myself more successful.

      Also great success Tyrant, and a great article, it shows that even with a simple linking article (although I’m sure it took you lots of time and I did enjoy it!) you can build a great amount from it.

      Simon Duck

  • chris February 21, 2011 at 12:38 pm

    Not posting my comment but says “duplicate entry” :(

    1. the Blog Tyrant February 21, 2011 at 1:23 pm

      It posted fine but went to spam for some reason. I always knew you were spammy. ;-)

      1. chris February 21, 2011 at 2:31 pm

        I remember eating spam on camping trips. If the spam key broke, there was no opening that can!

        1. chris February 21, 2011 at 7:30 pm

          I figured out why it went spammy. I was using a different computer and when I typed in my web address, it auto-filled with a link to an inner-page on my site that I had used recently.

          1. the Blog Tyrant February 22, 2011 at 1:19 am

            Ah, okay. I was wondering about that.

  • Heather@Family Friendly Frugality February 21, 2011 at 3:16 pm

    Congrats to you BT. I’ll have to give some thought as to how that technique can be utilized in my niche.

    1. the Blog Tyrant February 22, 2011 at 1:18 am

      Let me know what you come up with Heather.

      1. Heather@Family Friendly Frugality February 26, 2011 at 12:32 am

        Attempt #1. Won’t be as successful as your mega article, but I have to start somewhere ;)

  • liz February 21, 2011 at 3:17 pm

    Hi BT
    Ienjoyed the process and entered the competition when it involved leaving a comment on your FB Page. I decided not to do the Twitter thing because I hardly use Twitter and didn’t want my first tweet in ages to be about something [no matter how well written] other than my direct work.

    I think your offer of a free critique was inspired and I really enjoyed the first one you did. It’s also great to see the whole BT community getting in there and offering suggestions to that woman’s site.

    Congrats on the coverage you’re getting in the big blogs … all down to hard work and very practical and useful hints.

    Thanks as always BT for making me think … even if I was having a quiet Duvet Day Monday.


    1. the Blog Tyrant February 22, 2011 at 1:17 am

      Thanks Liz.

      I think you should get more liberal with Twitter though. Just Tweet anything and everything. They say that the optimum amount of Tweets to grow an account is 15 to 25 per day.

      1. liz February 22, 2011 at 6:17 pm

        yeh … I need to get into the habit of actually opening Twitter and adding to it. For some reason I feel more comfortable in FB … not sure why.

        will try it tomorrow.

  • Edwin February 21, 2011 at 3:35 pm

    Great article BlogTyrant (if thats your real name ;) )

    Anyways this gives me so many ideas on how I can (hopefully) accomplish your same results.

    Also I think this worked so well also is that people love it when people talk about them too. It boosts their egos.

    1. the Blog Tyrant February 22, 2011 at 1:15 am

      Very true Edwin. Good point.

  • Steve@Internet Lifestyle February 21, 2011 at 3:41 pm


    Was also numbers, really impressive. it really is amazing to see the power of a well done link bait article. Mine have had nowhere near the success of yours but my best ones tend to fall into this category.

    I’m a huge advocate of lists and I agree that using your list is another good way to pump up an article you think has a lot of potential.

    adding a useful giveaway something I’ve never tried before, after seeing how well your is work that may have to try it in the future, thanks

    Again, congratulations on some awesome results. You deserve it for great post

    1. the Blog Tyrant February 22, 2011 at 1:13 am

      Thanks Steve.

      I wonder if readers are becoming sick of list posts sometime but they still seem to work.

  • Brandon Yanofsky February 21, 2011 at 5:09 pm


    Congrats on this success. And thanks for laying all this out in pretty much a howto guide. Ive got to go out and give this method a try myself.


    1. the Blog Tyrant February 22, 2011 at 1:10 am

      Do let me know how it goes Brandon.

  • Dorothy Ray February 21, 2011 at 5:27 pm

    Ty, you are one smart cookie. Congratulations on that successful endeavor.

    I immediately tweeted after your email request because, like they say, I have become a faithful follower and so of course I wanted to help you out, regardless of the critique, which I’d really love to win, of course.

    Now, if I could only start thinking like you….sigh.

    1. the Blog Tyrant February 22, 2011 at 1:09 am

      Thanks Dorothy. Really appreciate the kind words.

  • Allan Ward February 21, 2011 at 11:25 pm

    Well done BT. That’s a great strategy to use to get more visitors and subscribers.

    I like the way you use a range of methods – social bookmarking, email list etc – to get things happening.

    Well done.

    1. the Blog Tyrant February 22, 2011 at 1:09 am

      Thanks Allan.

  • Gerry @ YourLawnAndGarden February 22, 2011 at 12:56 am

    I like the way you use your success / experience as a teaching tool. Draws people in, builds trust etc…it has for me anyway. Thanks, Gerry

    PS. Is it true South Australians have a funny accent?

    1. the Blog Tyrant February 22, 2011 at 1:08 am

      If by funny you mean better than everywhere else then yes.


      1. Gerry @ YourLawnAndGarden February 22, 2011 at 1:51 am

        Ty, my forebears (Faehrmann, it’s a German name) are from Hahndorf just outside Adelaide. Must explain my funny accent too.

        1. the Blog Tyrant February 22, 2011 at 1:55 am

          Have you been there? Its a beautiful place.

          1. Gerry @ YourLawnAndGarden February 22, 2011 at 6:12 am

            Just once, 15 years ago. We met relatives there for the first time. Yes, it is a picturesque town. Great little German watering holes, too!

  • Kim February 22, 2011 at 1:10 am

    I had never heard the term link bait but obviously when done correctly it had very impressive results. Congrats! Can’t wait to see what you are doing next, keeps me watching for your next post and that is what it is all about.

    1. the Blog Tyrant February 22, 2011 at 1:58 am

      Thanks Kim! Be sure to tell your friends. Ha ha.

  • Rachelle February 22, 2011 at 5:25 am

    This kind of article just makes me wish there were more bloggers writing about the stuff I write.

    I would link to them if they existed :) and them they would retweet my articles instead of uhmm not even being on Twitter.

    It’s also pretty unlikely that an article geared to landlords would ever make it to the front page of Digg or Reddit or any other social media.

    Sometimes being an innovator has it’s downfalls. I am trying to be the best blogger I can be and there are some interesting results.

    I used the information I learned from a post about better titles to get over 50 responses to a rental ad and rented an apartment on the first viewing.

    1. Rachelle February 22, 2011 at 5:31 am

      Also Blog Tyrant is definitely his real name. Mrs. Tyrant his mom was going to call him Blo (A really common Australian name) but the hospital added a g by mistake. Therefore Blog Tyrant. Why is this so hard for people to believe? Hospitals make mistakes all the time.

    2. Brandon Yanofsky February 22, 2011 at 5:36 am

      You got me interested Rachelle (sadly, I’m not looking for a place right now). My dad owns apartment buildings and I’ve been curious about blogging for him.

      Just subscribed to your blog to see how you do it. And I’ll follow you on Twitter. NEVER GIVE UP!

      1. Rachelle February 22, 2011 at 4:18 pm

        Hey Brandon,

        Blogging has been the best thing ever for my business. I would definitely suggest adding a blog to any business site. For apartment buildings it could be used to communicate with residents, or investors. Of course you’d probably want to target your audience and be careful with your voice.

        When I worked in a building full time, I thought it would be the perfect setting for a sitcom. There are so many stories occurring there every single day. Like the time we had a couple strippers come in to rent an apartment, and the owner saw them and immediately said we would be fired if we rented to them. So we sent the male accountant to show them the unit :)

  • Lisa Chiodo @ Renovating Italy February 22, 2011 at 1:10 pm

    Hey BT,

    I loved watching and following along with the whole strategy! No problem tweeting (took me some time to figure that out) and was happy to do so as I love your site. I am a stay at home mum (with lots of gypsy blood)and although I haven’t sought publicity for our Renovating Italy blog last night I received an email from a reporter at the International Herald Tribune. She is calling tomorrow to interview me… who’d have thought?

    So any tips for interviews??

    Also if anyone is in Brisbane we are having a blog meet up in Paddington on the 12th March. Send me a note on FB and I’ll send you the link.

    By the way I know everyone tells you this but YOU Rock!!

    ciao for now

    1. the Blog Tyrant February 22, 2011 at 10:26 pm

      Congrats Lisa that’s fantastic!

      Tips: mention Blog Tyrant! Ha ha. Kidding.

      1. lisa chiodo February 23, 2011 at 1:26 am

        Goes without saying!!!

        She’s looking at families who renovate o/s and then blog about it!

        Julie and Julia perhaps!!!

        ciao lisa

  • Andrew @ Build Blog February 22, 2011 at 2:02 pm

    Blog Tyrant

    Great results.

    Did you think of writing to the owners of the about pages you mentioned? Simply telling them you wrote about their about page.


    1. the Blog Tyrant February 22, 2011 at 10:29 pm

      Yeah I sent out a few emails. Unfortunately Bentley wouldn’t give me a free car! Bastards.

      1. Andrew @ Build Blog February 23, 2011 at 8:39 am

        What about some trainers? Did you get them?


  • Dean Fitzpatrick February 22, 2011 at 4:04 pm

    Clearly you know what you’re doing. It’s all very logical but the genius is in the execution. Duly noted…

    1. the Blog Tyrant February 22, 2011 at 10:29 pm

      Thanks Dean.

  • Jef Menguin February 22, 2011 at 5:10 pm

    You have a brilliant strategy. That may not be applicable with me and my readers, but you inspired me to think of my own.

    thank you.

    1. the Blog Tyrant February 22, 2011 at 10:30 pm

      Thanks Jef. Good luck.

  • Cristina February 22, 2011 at 7:07 pm

    It seems that the important thing always is to have a strategy. It’s the best way to optimize your blog performance.

    Thank you,

    1. the Blog Tyrant February 22, 2011 at 10:30 pm

      No worries Cristina. Thanks for stopping by.

  • CreativeBlogger February 23, 2011 at 6:50 am

    Hey BT,

    The comment above is spam … I just spent an hour trying to figure out whether or not it was legit or spam … this confirms it :(

    You can expect at least one follow up comment directed toward one of the comments on this post as well.

    I’m deleting the one over at CreativeBlogger immediately … who knows how harmful those sites might be to visitors?

    What do you think?

    1. the Blog Tyrant February 23, 2011 at 6:51 am

      Alright, I deleted it. I couldn’t tell. If it was spam it was very tricky. I get about 15,000 spam comments a week across my sites and he still tricked me!

      1. CreativeBlogger February 23, 2011 at 6:55 am

        Grrr, same here :(

  • Simon February 23, 2011 at 11:47 pm

    Hi BT

    Great post. Highlights two critical things, content and strategy.

    I always find it helpful to be reminded that thinking outside the box can reap good rewards. The key is finding that new blog post that will grab some attention and demand the retweets etc.

    Your thoughts on strategy were good too!! Shows the power of a mailing list.


    1. the Blog Tyrant February 23, 2011 at 11:54 pm

      Thanks Simon. Let us know what you come up with!

  • RandyNose February 24, 2011 at 2:21 pm

    I’m on Twitter a lot, and open the app on my phone, but the problem(s) that I tend to face is if I’m not able to get online, (12 hr days with my job), I’m limited to what I can do with a blog, Reading yours and Darren’s posts, and that would be being able to participate in some contests. I saw your entry, but for me, and what was happening in my world, I found out to late to enter. :(

    There is also the problem with digesting content, and being able to create content. A body can’t always ingest and create content at the same time. IE you can’t create and edit a podcast while simultaneously listening to one. Blog Posts, on the other hand, CAN be created and left in draft mode much easier.

    Part of my frustration has been trying to figure out what kind of Niche is suitable for me. What is it that Randy can do that people would find useful and interesting? What am I going to put in my Aweber list? What am I missing? What I’m I doing wrong, what am doing right? How am I mismanaging my time? Or am I? Is it just life?

    How does one de-suckify their life? lol…

    1. Brandon Yanofsky February 25, 2011 at 3:28 am

      Hey Randy.

      Here’s my advice. Stop thinking, stop trying to plan, and just go do it. There’s nothing that will kill an idea faster than overthinking. Start simple. Write about something you know. As you go along, you can refine and get better.

      But if you ever want to get anywhere, you have to take the first step.

      Take that step right now. Write something after you read this.

      1. RandyNose February 25, 2011 at 4:47 am

        Brandon, I did write some things down after I left that note… They do need to be refined a little. I did “just do it” with another site (blog) that I just put up,, and I would like your input on it. It’s sorta rough right now, and my video skills are needing honing, but I think that I’ve got the right idea for a video blog.

        actually, I was thinking that I’ve been spreading my self a little thin, for a trucker blogger.. (letting that slide for now) (decided to go more local, for a niche) (tutorials for Linux, and my Linux experiences) — But thought that it was a nice idea, but my heart wasn’t into it, at least not as a site to push making money. Plenty of those…

        1. Brandon Yanofsky February 25, 2011 at 4:57 am

          send me an email, brandon at blistmarketing dot com and I can give you some feedback. Don’t want to stuff the comments with it.

  • Dipesh Patel February 25, 2011 at 8:12 am

    Congratulations for your success. Really inspiring.

    1. the Blog Tyrant March 3, 2011 at 11:48 pm

      Thanks Dipesh.

  • Thomas March 3, 2011 at 6:31 pm

    Hi BT
    Very impresive result you got out of it. I don’t even have a mail list yet. Nice whiteboard by the way :-)

    1. the Blog Tyrant March 3, 2011 at 11:48 pm

      Thanks Thomas! That’s not my board though….

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