Social networking sites can have a significant impact on the traffic to your blog posts. Sharing your posts on Facebook, Twitter, or Pinterest helps new readers find your content and it boost external traffic to your blog or social writing site. So when you publish a post, be sure that you’ve optimized the post for social sharing!
What do I mean by “optimize”? I mean that your post should be created so it will look good when it’s Tweeted, pinned, or shared on sites like Facebook and G+. That means you need to pay attention to three key features: 1) your title; 2) the images in your post; 3) the excerpt and opening paragraph of your post.< /p>
Optimizing Your Title for Social Media
Your post’s title will be picked up on social networks and search engines, so you want to include a few keywords and some good emotional content in every title you compose. Titles are especially important when it comes to sharing on Twitter, because they are often the only part of your post that will show up in the Tweet. So you should think of Twitter when you optimize a blog title. Be sure that your title sounds like natural speech, and that it says something of substance.
Titles that ask a question can do very well on Twitter. It’s fine if the title leaves the prospective reader wondering what the post will be about – that just entices him to click the link! But don’t confuse the reader completely. Titles that are too generic and vague are a turn-off. And if you’re going to ask a question, be sure your wording is grammatically correct. Word order for questions in English is different from that of other languages. So if English isn’t your mother tongue, you may want to ask a native speaker to help you with the question format. Be sure you get it right so your titles make sense to your readers!
Optimizing Images for Sharing
Images in your post are now second in importance, only to your title. Internet experts tell us that if your post includes relevant images, it’s 94% more likely to get read. Posts with images get shared 40x more on social media. So it’s crucial that you include relevant images in every post you write!
Optimize your images by selecting some that are horizontal and some that are vertical. Give your images descriptive titles when you save them to your computer. A title with keywords in it performs better than that bunch of letters and numbers your camera generates! Remember to include keyword-rich alt tags and descriptions whenever you can. This information will show up when your post is shared on social networks like Pinterest. You want your pin to be called something like, “How to optimize your posts for social media sharing,” and not “pic01.” That would definitely not be good!
On sites like BlogBourne, where the featured image is often a banner-style graphic that’s much longer than it is tall, it’s especially important to add an extra image or two to your posts. Pinterest, G+, and other social media sites may not pick up your image if it’s too wide and not tall enough. Social media management apps like Buffer may also have trouble picking up these banners. So always add at least one other graphic to your posts!
Writing an Excerpt
When you have the chance to write an excerpt or summary for your blog post, do it! The excerpt is what provides the text for search engine listings and social media shares on sites like Facebook and Google+. If there isn’t an excerpt, the text displayed will usually be the first few words of the first paragraph.
Be sure to include keywords in both your excerpt and your opening paragraph. Don’t waste space talking about the weather or greeting your readers. This may seem like a friendly way to begin a post, but it hurts your chances for potential readers to click through from a search engine or social media share. Just don’t do it! This kind of content is more suitable for a personal email than a public post.
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Original content © 2016 Kyla Matton Osborne
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