How to get people talking about your design blog

14,297 designers received our email newsletter last week. Click here to sign up for free.

talking-about-your-blog

In today’s world it’s all about sharing. People tweet, digg, stumble, share, sphinn, bump, blend, and more. The key to success of any blog is how well you make sure others are talking about your content. This article contains 20 tips on how to get people talking about your design blog. After you read the list, share your opinion.

Get the sociable plugin

Possibly the most popular way to share content on your design blog (assuming you are using wordpress) is to install the sociable plugin. To quote from the plugin page, “[Sociable] automatically add links to your favorite social bookmarking sites on your posts, pages and in your RSS feed. You can choose from 99 different social bookmarking sites.” This is a simple tool for those who are less confident with coding and implementation of your own social media tools.

Use Tweetmeme to share content via twitter

Screen shot 2009-11-11 at 8.16.08 PM

Another popular tool used to share content is Tweetmeme. To understand a meme, if you care, we have to understand a little about biology. A meme is “an element of a culture … that may be … passed from one individual to another … by imitation.” Tweetmeme does exactly that: it allows for people to share your content on twitter by simply clicking “retweet”. At the left you will see the standard and condensed versions of the Tweetmeme buttons.

Pro Blog DesignBuild your own custom social media menu with these codes from ProBlog Design

For those who are more comfortable with coding your own wordpress theme, these codes offer amazing flexibility and opportunity to use the social media tools you love the most with the page styling you prefer.

Create custom tweet links

This is a simple method of understanding the code that tools like the tweetmeme button use. I recently implemented this technique on a new post here at GDB. With a simple click of the mouse, any visitor to the blog can “quote” you on twitter.

The details of this method will be described in an upcoming article here at GDB. Be sure to subscribe to free updates so that you don’t miss a beat.

Make sharing easy for readers

There are many techniques that make sharing more easy for your readers. Use shorter titles, making them more tweetable. Submit your posts to popular sites like Digg.com, StumbleUpon, etc. This will make your readers more likely to digg or stumble your content.

Use the twitter tools plugin

The twitter tools plugin integrates your posting routine with your twitter account. In other words, your twitter account will automatically be updated each time you create a new post–letting all your followers know about the new content instantly.

Mashable LogoRead “30+ plugins to make your wordpress blog more social” by Mashable

In this article Mashable divides tips by social media site. There are many wonderful tips in this one post. Check it out–enough said.

Use shorter post titles

“What does this have to do with anything?” you might be asking. Think about it. If people are going to share your story on social media sites all over the internet, the title should convey a message rapidly and effectively. In addition, services like Twitter have a limit to the number of characters that can be used when sharing. Shorter, more concise titles make sharing easier.

Write about something controversial

I recently read an article called “Good Designers copy, Great Designers Steal”. I bet 50% of the people reading this article just clicked on that link. Now that’s a good post title–it’s controversial and intriguing. Remember, to write something controversial you don’t necessarily need to offend or attack others personally. Controversy will attract readers and engage them in conversation.

Design your own custom wordpress theme

Recently, WebDesignerDepot.com celebrated one year since it’s inception. I couldn’t believe it! From the looks of it, WDD has been around for a while. What makes the site look so professional? The beautifully obvious custom wordpress theme it utilizes.

Screen shot 2009-11-11 at 9.49.20 PMSubmit your content to design-sharing sites

There are probably hundreds of sites you can submit your content to. While sites like Digg and StumbleUpon are great for sharing content, the following sites are geared specifically toward design. Here are a few that I recommend (add to the list if you like):
Design-Newz.com
DesignBump.com
Designfloat.com
Designmoo.com

Network with other design-bloggers

Recently an acquaintance of mine (dare I say friend of mine), Grace Smith recommended me on Follow Friday on twitter. She has also linked to a couple articles of mine. Each time she does this, I see spikes in twitter followers or blog traffic. I also wrote a guest post at Brian Hoff’s The Design Cubicle which brought a substantial amount of visitors to the blog. As you network with other designers, be confident and respectful. We’re all people and the design community online is a great one to belong to.

Have a good reason for blogging

Don’t blog for blogging’s sake. People won’t care what you say on your blog until you solve a problem they have. Here on GDB, top design-bloggers like Chris Spooner, Jacob Cass and others have shared why they blog.

Be a good writer–not just a good designer

Even though you may be writing about design, people aren’t reading the design–They’re reading the words. Be sure to use good grammar and a clear, understandable writing style. It may be helpful to have a friend read through the content before it gets posted. For more blog-writing tips, visit Copyblogger.com.

Solve problems for people

Let’s take a look at this blog post for example. What does the title say? In essence, it says, “click here if you want to get more people to read and share the content on your blog.” The problem: people aren’t sharing your content online. The solution: this article. Always share a solution.

Document projects and methods

Some of the greatest blog posts are when designers share a recent project or their methodology in achieving a specific technique. By sharing these types of articles, we all learn together and people are more likely to share these techniques with others.

Create a twitter account for your blog

A secondary twitter account devoted solely to updating your readers when you post a new article (see above) is most likely a good idea. This will allow more personal or diverse tweets from your individual account and more blog-related tweets from your blog’s twitter account.

Screen shot 2009-11-11 at 9.53.00 PMDisplay twitter-chatter about your blog

Chris Spooner, at Line25.com, uses a great technique to display the RSS documenting the online discussions concerning his web design blog, Line25. (You can find this info in the lower right-had corner of his blog.

Thank those who talk about your blog

Deep down, we are more likely to do something again if we are thanked the first time. It is the same in the digital world. Thank those that leave comments, share your articles, vote on your posts, etc. This will help you build a relationship with those that matter most–your readers.

Monitor who is talking about your blog

Ensure you frequently check up on all the comments you can find about your blog. Frequently perform google searches, twitter searches, and search other social media sites to ensure all conversation about your blog is positive. If there are negative discussions about your blog, take corrective action quickly.

These are a few of the techniques I have used and observed that have helped design-bloggers be more effective in sharing their content. What else would you add to the list?

Like what you've read?

Subscribe to our M,W,F newsletter packed with awesome content just like this. We'll also throw in a free ebook just for signing up. Enter your email below. Download will begin immediately.

About Preston D Lee

Preston is a web designer, entrepreneur, and the founder of this blog. @prestondlee

Comments

  1. Posting articles containing useful information on your blog is very beneficial for attracting more traffic.

  2. Great article, I loved every word of it, it’s very true. I don’t have a professional blog, only a wordpress.com blog, but when I make one, I’ll be sure to check this article out again.

    Thanks for the time.

  3. Thanks for info and fot the links

  4. Great article, I recently started a blog and if I didn’t submit my posts to design-sharing sites and if I didn’t have social media buttons I wouldn’t be getting any traffic at all

  5. I plan on using these techniques for some non-design-related stuff I am working on. Will also pass along to my clients who are blogging also.

    Good stuff!

  6. Great tips. I can see how each can be useful in getting the word out. I’m already doing some of these for my blog.

  7. Thank those who talk about your blog | Thats the best one on the list, gives it a much more personal feel when a person thanks you.

  8. Wow and thanks for this packed post. I have set a goal to create my own Thesis theme skin for next year and I hope to have it packed with loads of features and then releasing it for free.

    I have to go read more about the social plugins, seem interesting to me.

  9. Social networking is the best way, all the way dude! I would recommend getting your posts high on social networking and bookmarking sites, this will bring in boatloads of traffic and really get people creating a stir about your site

  10. Wow great post and nice tips! Thanks for sharing.

  11. Wow, These type of post really motivate new designers.

  12. Yes, a friend for sure! I love your articles here on GDB Preston and your insightful chat & links on twitter, so I’m always happy to promote the wonderful writing you do. It’s great to see GDB growing daily :-)

  13. Great post Preston, it’s now got me thinking about my own blog. I’ve deliberately avoided adding too many social media icons/buttons etc as they can be a bit confusing and make a site look cluttered. But I can see the benefit they bring, so will have to look at ways to implement some of them in a way I’ll be happy with.

    • @Paul Galbraith,
      I know what you mean, Paul. You’ll notice that here at GDB, I have only implemented a handful of social media buttons. I simply chose the ones I thought would be most beneficial and easy to use for my audience. As certain buttons have been used and others avoided, I have made adjustments.

      Good luck in finding your right social media sharing strategy for your blog.

Trackbacks

  1. […] more: How to get people talking about your design blog Related […]

  2. Social comments and analytics for this post…

    This post was mentioned on Twitter by prestondlee: NEW ARTICLE: How to get people talking about your design blog | GDB http://bit.ly/1WWCV8

  3. […] How To Get People Talking About Your Design Blog […]

  4. […] for a blog. You can either start your own blog or write for someone else’s blog. Either way, knowing that other people will be reading what […]

  5. […] comment-jar and then get on their way. So how can you find your voice in the design community and get people talking about your conversations? It all has to do with genuineness and […]

  6. […] How to Get People Talking About Your Design Blog (by Graphic Design Blender) […]

  7. […] How to get people talking about your design blog Four simple steps to get your design blog off the ground […]

Join the conversation

*