Most, if not all, bloggers have been involved in share groups at one time or another – you know what I mean. Those social media groups where you drop a link and then go to other blogs and comment, or share on social media. The idea is that it will increase your visibility and give a boost to your traffic… and hopefully grab Google’s attention in the process. It sounds like a logical step in blogging success, doesn’t it?
While it might sound like a great idea… in practice it might not be so great.
Share Groups Are a Time Suck
You have a to-do list the size of the Yangtze River so you grab your coffee and head to your computer to get your day off to a quick, caffeinated start. You click through to your first share group to drop a link to your newest post and… two hours later you realize that you still have a ton of things to do but you “owe” comments on a couple of posts, “likes” on a handful of other posts, and “shares” on one or two more.
You’re feeling overwhelmed and stressed but you tell yourself it’s worth it because you’re investing your time in growing your blog.
Have you been there?
I sure have! Share groups can take 2 hours a day or more to get through – or maybe you hired a VA to handle it for you – so you’ve got your 2 hours but you’re spending $200 or more a month making sure that you’re active in those share groups.
Let me ask you a question – what is your ROI (return on investment) for share groups? If you average even 5 hours a week (and that’s the low end) in a share group that’s 375.00 a month if you value your time at a meager $15 an hour. You’d need 25,000 page views a month resulting specifically from that share group (at an average of $15 rpm) to cover just your time.
I’ll just grab a cup of coffee while that sinks in.
Share Groups Skew Your Demographic
Do you know that Facebook and other social media sites keep an eye on your demographic, the people that visit your page and interact with you? They do. When they see you getting attention from a certain demographic they show your material to MORE people in that demographic which in turn should bring you more viewers and fans.
BUT if you are using share groups than a percentage of the people coming to your page are bloggers in a similar niche as you are – they’re not your demographic at all!
So when Facebook shows your timeline post to other people in that same demographic it gets you nowhere – they’re not interested in what you’ve written about – they’re only interested in getting more traffic to their own blogs.
You are not reaching and interacting with the people in your sphere of influence – those that want to hear what you have to say the most.
It’s the same for the people from your share group who click through to your blog to leave a comment. They are skewing your demographic and actually hurting your traffic.
Share Groups Don’t Result in Traffic
Most share groups don’t really result in increased traffic for you. Once in awhile a post may go viral and bring in traffic but I find most often that happens when someone shares my post – not from any share group I’m in.
The one exception to that is if you are in a really lively Pinterest group with bloggers who have a large, active Pinterest following then it can be helpful because your pins are seen by more people.
So How Do I Promote My Blog ?
So, if share groups are a waste of time then how do you get your blog posts out in front of people? How do you promote your blog?
Obviously working on your seo so that you rank higher on search engines is primary. Other important techniques are:
- Properly interlinking related posts within your blog
- Optimizing for Pinterest
- Growing your email list and sharing new posts regularly
- Using push notifications
- Having a sharing strategy for your Facebook page
- Updating old posts
Forbes also has some great ideas for promoting your content.
So, Don’t Share Post on Social Media?
That’s not at all what I’m saying. Social media is an important part of getting your posts noticed.
However, using share groups is, at best, a waste of time and, at worst, can actually hurt your traffic. If you are going to use share groups be very conservative in the number of groups you are involved in and be very picky about the quality of what you share.