Last week I published a few blogging statistics and one of the main takeaways was that most bloggers still struggle to find readers and traffic.

This is a real shame because all of that hard work writing articles and building beautiful blogs is wasted unless you get people reading them.

I decided to dedicate a bit of time to this issue and will be doing more posts over the next couple of months

Today I wanted to get us started by looking at one simple but very effective way to get more traffic to your blog regardless of your niche or blog’s authority.

Let’s take a look.

Don’t just think about traffic, think about individuals

Something that I have to remind bloggers (myself included!) is that the numbers that you get only really matter if it is coming from good sources and if it is made up of the right individuals.

If you’ve ever spent any time doing PPC advertising you’ll know this to be true – it’s easy to drive traffic but it’s very hard to get that traffic to take action.

blog reader

What does your ideal blog reader look like? Have you ever sat down and thought about it?

That really comes back to the individual that is visiting your site.

For example, when someone arrives on your WordPress tutorial blog post after typing in “how to start a WordPress Blog” it’s likely that they’ll take some action because they have specifically sought out that information and are in a “buy ready” mentality.

Promote that same post in a Tweet, however, and you have to also educate the audience about what a blog is, why they should start one, why WordPress is a good choice, and why you are a good person for them to trust.

It’s hard. Here’s one example.

imgur traffic example

Someone mentioned a very old Blog Tyrant post in a comment on imgur the other day and it brought around 2,000 unique visitors in a few hours as the post hit the front page.

Guess how many extra email subscribers it lead to? None. The average for the day was exactly the same as the same day last week and the week before.

So, if you opened this article thinking “I need more blog visitors” then I encourage you to take a few moments to ask yourself why. And then ask yourself who.

Here’s a quick exercise that every blogger should do:

  1. Define your blog’s elevator pitch (what your blog is)
    It’s important to be able to explain what your blog does and how it does it uniquely in just a few words. You should be able to verbally explain it in a short elevator ride.
  2. Write down who needs your help (who reads your blog)
    Who are you writing for? Is it a group of people that have one hobby, or could it be any person from a particular population sample?
  3. Literally imagine an individual reader (the real reader)
    Lastly, what does an individual reader from that group look like? Literally think about their age, hobbies, fears, location, etc. and come up with a picture of that person.

When you come up with a specific user profile like this you all of a sudden start to write and plan your blog for that person. This makes your goals clearer, your strategies more defined, and, most importantly, it means that you start targeting blog traffic that actually converts in to some kind of action.

To reiterate: take some time to think about this end-user/end-reader because there is no point in trying to get more visitors to your blog if they are not the right fit for your content.

New content is not always necessary

There is a very common perception among bloggers that more content equals more traffic. But is that really the case?

Well, in some instances the answer is yes. For example, if you are a new blog you actually have to have some articles on your blog in order for Google to index them and to start seeing rankings on search results.

But if your only strategy it to create new content and then hope that visitors will arrive then chances are you will be sorely disappointed. It’s not uncommon for bloggers to write hundreds of articles and still see no real improvements in their traffic levels.

That strategy that I’m going to share today is based on the idea that what you really need to do is get better at promoting the content that you already have on your blog as opposed to creating new stuff. It’ll need a bit of extra content to implement, but it’s not just about writing more and more and more blog posts!

New content is good, but it’s not the full answer when it comes to finding new readers.

A simple way to get more traffic to your blog

Now that we’ve gone over some of the basics, let’s take a look at this simple strategy that will help your to find some more readers.

Quick interruption: Go back and read this guide on how to get 100,000 visitors from Google each month to give you some good background on basic principles of finding more traffic.

This simple strategy is all about finding people or organizations that are already talking about your particular topics. If you know how to do that – and how to access them – it can be a great way to get some quick traffic without needing to create any new blog posts.

Step one — Find the hubs

The first thing you need to do is find online hubs where people are discussing your topics. For example, jump on Reddit and find a relevant subreddit that is not necessarily directly about your topic but that would discuss it regularly.

You can look around and get to know the different subreddits, or you can use their search feature and see if they can point you in the right direction.

Step two – Find the people

The next step is to browse around the relevant hubs and look for people who are talking about your type of content. Depending on your industry, it might be an individual blogger, or it might be a bigger media organization.

For example, if we look at the “Dogs” subreddit we can see that a lot of the threads are people asking for help about training their dogs, affording vet fees, etc. This presents you with an opportunity for finding new readers that are very niche or specialized to your topic.

I’d just like to add here that sometimes this can seem really “off” as a strategy. The idea of talking with people or being nice to them just to get some benefit for yourself is a bit sick. But I also think business can and should be ethical, and so it’s good to remember that these are real people looking for real solutions to real problems. Always do your best for them.

Step three – Find the solutions

This is where the traffic growing comes in to it. What you want to do now is engage with these conversations using your content and/or expertise.

Now, this doesn’t mean just posting links to your stuff as that will likely just get you banned anyway. You need to be a little bit more engaging/creative.

For example, you might be able to post a paragraph, graphic or image of yours if it’s highly relevant and clearly not overly promotional. This is often best done in conjunction with a story where you refer to a few websites as references for further information.

Some people will link to photos on instagram or Facebook or guest posts, which then have links to your blog in the bio or next to the photo. For example, someone might be complaining about crappy dog kennels and you might reply with, “We had the same problem but we found a good solution!” which links to the photo of your unique idea.

As people look for more information they will find your website, and hopefully share the photo or Facebook post around more.

You can even go one step further by editing your existing blog posts to talk about a specific forum thread and how your content or ideas might help solve the problem. You can then share this – as long as it’s within the forum’s rules – and people will use it as a topic for further conversation.

Lastly, you can even try direct messaging other users in the thread and tell them that you saw they were having problems and that you have a solution here. Again, it has to be highly useful, genuinely helpful, and within the forums direct messaging policies.

That leads to the next step.

Step four – Keep amplifying

Once you have looked around (Reddit is just one example) you will start to get a feel for what people are talking about, what problems they are having, and what solutions they are looking for. You can then be a bit more direct with your promotion by creating posts that share your content directly.

OP is (slowly) delivering.

Here’s one example of an amazing human called Katy who got on the front page of imgur (perhaps accidentally?) and has since created a new post showing her fresh batch of hats that she’s making for charity. This is such a cool way to promote her own stuff as well as the charity that she’s trying to help out.

You can post your own content in a similar way. Just take sections of a post or some photos that partially cover the topic, post it to the relevant forum or website, and then tell them there’s more information on your website. You can also create smaller forum posts based on your existing blog posts saying things like, “You wanted help with this topic? Here’s how we solved it.” and see how the results go.

Remember, this is not a strategy where you post any link directly to Reddit or any other website. The goal is to build up to that by using your blog’s existing content in a way that is directly relatable to a thread or topic being discussed.

Enhancing communities in your niche

This strategy works wherever there is a community. You could do it on Twitter (just search for keywords relating to the article you want to promote), a website forum, or even a website where the comments get a lot of traffic and interaction.

By finding places where people are already talking about your content, you can find opportunities to promote existing content without feeling like you’re spamming because you’re introducing part of your content that is well researched and then are encouraging them to look at the whole source for further information.

The bonus of doing this is that you will also build up a profile on those sites that can itself become authoritative meaning that any posts you create yourself have a higher chance of getting seen.

Have you tried this?

I’d love to know if anyone out there has had any luck promoting existing content in some online community setting in a way that was useful or well-received by the community itself. Please leave a comment below and let us know.

Top photo © Daniel Villeneuve


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  1. I’m not struggling to get traffic. I just need to monetize it.

    Getting traffic is easy. All you have to do is post high quality content often and sooner or later google will send you traffic. There are a couple other things but that is the key thing.

    Your tips here are useful though. Getting ranked in social isn’t easy for newbies though. I can get on front page in 1 day easily but most people can’t do that.

    It usually takes a lot of work for newbies and you can’t just promote your content, you need to understand the communities and their audience, and each one is different. But all of them will not like if you are just promoting content, you’ll get a swift ban. Instead you have to really use it (i.e. reddit, imgur, etc.) like you are a regular user and only promote as an afterthought and not directly.

    1. Hi Alaric.

      Hope all is well with you.

      Getting traffic is easy. All you have to do is post high quality content often and sooner or later google will send you traffic. There are a couple other things but that is the key thing.”

      I’ll have to respectfully disagree with you on that one. I have clients and readers who have thousands of excellent articles and don’t get traffic.

      Secondly, as I mentioned in the post, getting lots of traffic is useless unless the traffic takes action, so sources are important.

      Thirdly, even if posting heaps of excellent content DOES result in traffic, it’s not the most effective method because writing that content takes so much time to produce. Therefore, it’s often better to promote one amazing piece and have it bring big results as opposed to creating a hundred pieces that get small results.

      Thanks so much for commenting. I like your take.

      I’ll take a look at your emails when I’m a bit freer.


      1. In my experience anyway.

        You’re right it is not the most effective. Social media, if you become the top, can send way more traffic faster than google. Agree there.

        And email list has an element of guarantee, whereas google can at any time change their algorithm and hurt your traffic.

        But in my experience, at least a reasonable amount of traffic is consistently gained by simply posting frequently, and when I post less frequently I see a direct impact on traffic from google.

        There are some elements, because one one blog which is a super niche, it doesn’t get a whole lot of google traffic. Another which is in more demand does.

        But picking and choosing exactly which posts you want google to like, rank high, and send traffic to takes some finesse (seo, sharing, etc).

        p.s. wish I could create an account on your site so I don’t have to type my name and email every time

        1. Hey man. Thanks for the follow up comment. Appreciate the feedback as well. Unfortunately whenever I have tested comment login services like disqus comments always go way down. You can set your browser to remember them though. Apologies.

          1. I also strongly advise against Disqus and comment services also; but, at least allow wordpress registration so users can have an account even if you are using native wordpress comments which is recommended.

      2. Also I like your note about writing one big and important piece that gets action and better results than just churning out shorter content.

  2. Victor Korir on April 22, 2018

    Hey Ramsey, this is another great read. When I first started reading, I was like, naaah, I wouldn’t do that, that’s creepy 🙂

    There is something called “Word of Mouth” in story telling, and its quite effective in the marketing world.

    Self-ptomotion is no longer working, especially when you are trying to convince people how ‘fabulously useful’ your product is. They want to hear from someone else, someone who has actually had their hands on it,

    I remember one day, I got a message from one of the Facebook group Admins which had 57000 members:

    “Hey Victor, please join this group {Group Name}. People are talking about your website”

    Now I wasn’t even part of this group, but someone, who had landed on my website, went ahead to post a brief post on the group, something that went on the line of,

    “Hey, I never thought that is run by a Kenyan, Victor Korir, I suppose. I thought it was a US company or something”

    Well, I got over 1000 visits in a spun of 2 hours or so, and 259 downloads of my free blogging guide. (259 new enaik subscribers)

    I am also active on Twitter, and as you mentioned, I think its actually one of the best places to find people who night be interested in your content, network and hopefully they will find your website and share with their audience. Participating in particular twitter chats is a plus.

    I haven’t really used hubs or forums per say, but I think this can really work.

    The in thing is the quality of traffic that get channeled to your website.

    I will be giving a go at sites like Reddit and see how it goes

    Thanks again,

    1. That is very interesting. And you’re right, it’s hard to filter through the noise sometimes. My hope is that people who read this strategy will really engage others and try to be as helpful as possible.

    2. I was reading a book (actually listening to the audiobook version) the other day, and they mentioned something similar. They said you have to get people to tell other people about you, because direct from the source is proven that people do not lend credibility to it. But when hearing from a 3rd party, then they believe it much more, and this is statistically proven because they did research about it.

      1. Good tip!

  3. Rick Rouse on April 22, 2018

    Interesting take on getting traffic from Reddit. I’ve tried engaging with the folks in relevant sub-reddits but I’ve never really had much success. Maybe I need to change my approach.

    I’ve found more success on Facebook and StumbleUpon than virtually all the other venues combined (except for Google).

    Thanks for another great post, Ramsay.

    1. Hey Rick.

      What strategies do you use on Stumble?

      1. Rick Rouse on April 23, 2018

        I don’t really use a strategy for that platform, Ramsay. Every time I publish a new post I just click the social sharing button for StumbleUpon for that post.

        In total my blog received over 8,000 visits from Stumble in March. At over 7,000 so far this month. I get far more from Facebook but Stumble is #2 by far and way ahead of Twitter and Pinterest.

        I believe with Stumble it’s just a numbers game. If you have lots of posts in their system you’ll get a lot of Stumbles over to your site.

        I’ve accumulated a pretty decent number of followers and that helps.

        Of course the conversion on the Stumble visits is way less than from Facebook, but a good number of those visitors do end up buying through my affiliate links.

  4. Jim McLaughlin on April 22, 2018


    I have been following your advice for a while. I have a problem.
    At age 88, I don’t enjoy reading from a computer screen. I like to print out what I think is worthwhile, for future reference.
    Question. Why do I lose so many first lines of your email. Are you are trying to protect your information or is there something wrong with my printer? I would really understand what is wrong.

    1. Hi Jim.

      Thanks for dropping me a comment about this.

      I don’t publish the full post in the email, it’s just an intro. Is that what you mean?

  5. Ryan Biddulph on April 22, 2018

    Promoting old posts to the right spots definitely boosts traffic buddy. I am in the process of simply reading as many posts as possible daily, for acquiring rocking information and for publishing genuine comments, to expand my presence. If someone clicks my Blog Tyrant comment they’ve hundreds of eBooks to shop from and courses to buy and hundreds of blog posts to sift through. Even though I publish new content regularly I dig promoting old posts. Nice mix of new and old traffic.

    Rocking idea, rocking reminder.


    1. How much time do you allocate to this? Definite pay offs?

  6. Thanks Ramsay. This post shows me I have been doing Reddit all wrong! Essentially when I have a new post I have been posting it as a new link post to one or two relevant subreddits and perhaps replying to any comments it gets, but leaving it there. Usually this only gets a handful of clicks and upvotes – apart from one time I got to the front page of a major subreddit and got lots of traffic which was awesome, but hasn’t happened since. I will now try scouring the discussions already there to see where my content could be useful. I guess I just don’t want to spend a huge amount of time scrolling through, as social can be such a time suck, but will give it a try!

    1. Hey! Definitely only think of Reddit as an example in this situation. There are probably a lot of other places where it would work better.

  7. Mania Mavridou on April 23, 2018

    Thanks again for this brilliant post, Ramsay!
    You are one of my mentors, I owe you a lot!

    “When you come up with a specific user profile like this you all of a sudden start to write and plan your blog for that person. ”

    This is the secret for me.
    It’s all about our goals – it’s necessary to have clear goals before we start blogging.
    What’s most important is attracting the right audience. Our target group should be those who will take the action we want.

    4 years ago I started my blog about interior design psychology (a very specific and brand new niche), to attract clients to my design studio.
    I’ve made many tests and changes since then, now it’s clear to me what my prospective clients want to read about and I write especially for them.
    I’ve asked my “dream clients” what brought them to me and they showed me the way.
    I’m not interested in just having traffic, I aim to a very specific audience, I even try to avoid certain groups like low budget clients and even men (they will never do the job and they’ll just waste my time, sorry boys!)

    Last year I wrote a post on this subject, which many fresh bloggers found helpful: What 3 years of blogging taught me about business success:

    Because blogging is business.

    1. This. Is. Perfect.

      Well done and thank you for sharing.

  8. JOHN MULINDI on April 23, 2018

    Thanks for the advice, these are few tips that can make that big difference in the traffic.

    1. Thanks John.

  9. Hi Ramsay,

    Thanks for this post. I dipped my toes a bit in Reddit communities and it can be highly beneficial. It’s quite tricky at first until you learn how things work in each subreddit, but once you’re in, you can get significant traffic from it. I need to find other communities too, but the fear of spaming draws me back a bit.

    I really enjoy your writing.

    Keep up,

    1. Hi Diana.

      Definitely try it other places too as Reddit is just one example and often quite fickle!

  10. Kevin Nørgaard on April 23, 2018

    Thanks for a nice post!

    I have a Danish Webbureau – is it okay if I translate some of your post, of course with a canonical tag to you and post them on my site?

    1. Sure thing. Thanks for asking.

  11. Kristen Raney on April 23, 2018

    I do this strategy in Facebook groups. I make sure that I’m involved in some discussions without any mention of my blog, and only post a link to my blog if it answers a direct question. Last year, I compiled a list of everyone’s least favourite plants (I now blog about gardening) and that post went viral for me, plus people were asking for it already this year without me mentioning it!! These groups and threads are awesome even if you never post a single link. It’s the easiest way to research what your ideal reader/client actually wants/needs.

    1. Awesome!

      You have a lovely website! Just had a look around.

      Out of curiosity, have you ever tried putting your photo/bio at the top of your side bar with the email opt-in form just below it as if it’s part of the bio? I reckon that would convert well.

      1. Kristen Raney on April 23, 2018

        Thank you! I’ve been reading your blog for 4 years, so you can take some of the credit 🙂

        I haven’t tried my photo/optin that way (I’ve literally just make my first opt-in two months ago) but I just changed it tonight on your suggestion. It’s April and I’m trying to take advantage of the start of gardening season to maximize my list, so I’ll take all the help I can get!

        1. Awesome! Keep me posted!

  12. Thanks for great article, in this blog I learned nice tips improve blog traffic without content.

    Thank You.

    1. Glad you liked it.

  13. Hi Ramsay
    Thanks once again for another super amazing post.
    I feel like one of those people who keep writing “amazing” content but don’t get the traffic to read that content.
    Going to have to try your tips – thanks for sharing.

    1. Please do let us know how it goes!

  14. I think reddit is the best way to get more traffic. Because millions of people are using reddit.
    Thank you for sharing this article.

  15. Great post, Ramsay.
    Generating traffic is the foundation when it comes to monetizing any blog. And you’ve just given everybody the tool to do that.
    Personally, I don’t think Reddit is a good idea. Redditors can smell self-promotion from miles away, so if anybody wants to get traffic from Reddit, they should be really careful.
    Anyway, this is a great, awesome post. Thank you Ramsay

  16. Cathy Mayhue on May 1, 2018

    Hi Ramsay,

    It always pays to visit your blog from time to time and this time you came up with lots of gems, using social media platform like Reddit is one such brilliant idea and to humanize the potential reader, it becomes easier to write for some body in particular than addressing a potential huge bunch of people.

  17. Sheeroh on May 2, 2018

    I try to visit the Reddit forum twice or thrice a week. I am super cautious about dropping links because I know Redditors frown on that a lot but I’m increasingly becoming wiser.

    I try to help as many people as I can, in a subreddit I am active in, and then drop a link every oooonce in a while. As far as the comments go, people are appreciating that, thankfully 🙂

    On another note, what are your thoughts on Pinterest? Also, I’d love it if you would write a blog post on how blogging has changed since you first started and now.

  18. Jesper Hansen on May 2, 2018

    Reddit can be a monster traffic generator, but you really really have to be careful. The reddit users can spot a commercial link like no other.

  19. My Shirdi Trip on May 5, 2018

    Super blog. I will share this article to my social media account. Thanks for sharing your thoughts. – sameday shirdi flight package, shirdi flight package sameday

  20. stacystone on May 8, 2018

    It is actually a great and helpful piece of information. I am satisfied that you simply shared this helpful information with us. Please stay us informed like this. Thanks for sharing.

  21. Nirodha Abayalath on May 8, 2018

    Hey Ramsay,

    This is an excellent read as always. I always learn something new from your posts.

    I didn’t even think about being active on Reddit and get traffic to my blog. That is the best thing I’ve got from this one.

    Thanks for sharing these fantastic tips with us.

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