Welcome to the Blogger Genius Podcast brought to you by MiloTree. Here’s your host, Jillian Leslie.
Jillian Leslie 0:13
Hi, everybody. Welcome back to the show. Today, my guest is Paula Rollo. She’s back on the show. She is a good friend. She is the Community Manager for MiloTree and she manages our affiliate program. If you’re not an affiliate, scroll down to the bottom of the page at MiloTree.com and sign up.
We do give preference to people who actually use MiloTree and we pay $20 per conversion. Today, we are talking all things traffic, because remember, in order to grow your business, you need traffic to your site.
So we’re going to talk about SEO strategies. We’re going to talk about Pinterest. We’re going to talk about email marketing. And we’re going to talk about MiloTree and how that will also grow your traffic. So without further ado, here is Paula Rollo.
Paula, welcome back to the show.
Paula Rollo 1:09
Thank you for having me back.
Jillian Leslie 1:10
I love this. You know what I love that we sit here, we come up with cool topics that help bloggers who are already established, bloggers who already are getting traffic and making money, but who can take their game to the next level.
Paula Rollo 1:23
Yes, it’s so much fun talking about, like, not how to start a blog but what to do with the blog you already have and the business you’re already creating.
Jillian Leslie 1:32
Exactly, and how to just kind of add a little bit of rocket fuel to it.
Paula Rollo 1:37
Yes. And blasting off.
Jillian Leslie 1:40
Blasting off and putting more intentional strategy behind what you’re doing.
Paula Rollo 1:47
Jillian Leslie 1:48
So today, okay, we’re going to talk about growing traffic. And we’re assuming that you’ve got some traffic and how to continue building on the traffic that you already have.
Paula Rollo 2:02
Exactly. Because we know this isn’t like, I feel like a few years ago, everything was here’s the hacks, here’s the loophole that you can exploit in the newest social media platform to get a lot of page views immediately. And that’s just not how our industry works anymore.
Jillian Leslie 2:18
Right? And I always remember like the Facebook hacks where you would be posting every half hour. And if you posted one, then you were supposed to post two very quickly. Do you remember things like that?
Paula Rollo 2:30
Yes. It makes me tired just thinking about it. That was miserable.
Jillian Leslie 2:34
Right. And you would have your whole schedule set and you’d have other people filling in posts, you know, filling in slots for you. Because there were all these ways that people were trying to game the algorithm.
Paula Rollo 2:47
Yes, and even like not maliciously either. It’s not like, we were creating poor content, and then just gaining everything. We had good content and there were legitimate hacks to get it out there better, so we were doing it. But that’s just not cutting it anymore.
And I feel like all the social media platforms are like really tightening up all the polls and making it more and more difficult for us. Which just means that more than ever before it’s about that quality content and really serving our audience.
And that’s what’s going to get us through the crazy algorithms these days, instead of just finding that little trick.
Jillian Leslie 3:25
Absolutely. In fact, we both took, we went to the AdThrive conference last year. And the one thing I took away from that was how crazy smart Google is today, and how all the platforms are getting smarter and smarter.
So it used to be back in the day, with your blog on WordPress, what you would do is you would keyword stuff, and you would put keywords into like the headings, so they wouldn’t like show up but they would be on the page.
So Google would read those, then you could rank for those keywords. And there are all these ways to game the system for Google. And Google over the years now has really discovered all of these ways that people were manipulating their platform and has built out stop gaps or has corrected these loopholes.
And the truth is, Google is so smart now that they can read your content, they know exactly what it is. And they understand the context of your content. And they will serve up the best content to people searching.
Paula Rollo 4:38
Which to me is such a relief. Honestly, I think listening to Jeff, and Google had a representative at that conference as well. And so pulling back the curtain and knowing the way that they view our sites, and they view the whole internetm, it was like a breath of fresh air because I feel like a lot of the time…
Take Facebook, for example, content creators and Facebook do not have the same goal. Because Facebook wants people to stay on Facebook. They don’t really particularly want people to be visiting our sites. They want people to be saying and having conversations around a mean we created maybe on Facebook.
Or they don’t want to be clicking out to YouTube. They want us to put the video on Facebook itself, and they want people to enjoy it there and never click to us. Whereas Google, their whole goal and their reason for existing is to show people quality content on the internet.
And so if our goal which everyone listening to this podcast has the goal of creating quality content.
Jillian Leslie 5:42
And getting traffic.
Paula Rollo 5:43
And getting traffic. Then that means we’re united in goal with Google, which is why I’m just obsessing over SEO right now and have been for a couple of years now because it’s the only platform that really, the best interest of Google and the best interest of content creators are unified.
Jillian Leslie 6:00
Absolutely. And I would say the same thing with Pinterest, we can talk about that as well.
Although it’s interesting now, Pinterest is wanting video on their platform. And the feedback that I have gotten is that video is getting great engagement on Pinterest, but it’s not getting clicks off of Pinterest. So we’ll have to watch how that evolves.
But I agree with you. Remember, on Facebook, you would do all these things like Facebook would know on your post, if you said hey, click here to get the full recipe or something like that, so then you had to kind of come up with these tricks like you’d say “you’re never going to believe what I have in step four of my recipe.”
Lke you try to find ways to get people to click over to your site without Facebook fully understanding that you were tempting people to click away.
Paula Rollo 6:54
Right. And we just don’t have to do that with Google.
Jillian Leslie 6:58
No, you don’t. And there is something very relieving. But there are certain strategies to get your content found. And I would say that the most important thing is to answer questions people have and be the authority answer.
Paula Rollo 7:17
Yes, I completely agree. But I want you to break down what it means to be an authority, because I think we all would either default to “I’m an authority on everything” or “I’m an authority on nothing.”
So what does that mean to Google when they would say this person is an authority on like Jillian is an authority on parties. What does that look like?
Jillian Leslie 7:44
What I think that looks like is a wheel and spokes. And we’ve talked about this before, but it is really mastering a specific niche domain, something like that. And we talked about this too, which is figuring out what about you is connecting with your audience.
So you can find this in Google Analytics by finding your most popular blog posts and then building posts that are related, that support whatever it is that people already look to you for.
And then it’s all about linking your posts together internally on your blog. So that Google is seeing all these links to related content, and will serve up that content when somebody has a question in your expertise.
Paula Rollo 8:46
So here’s another question then. How do you choose which content linking to which other content?
Especially when you have 1000 posts and especially when you have, like, if you hadn’t created a certain series but it’s not necessarily a step one, step two, step three.
I think for a lot of bloggers who’ve been doing this for a lot of time, it just so happens that every year I’ve written on summer backyard activities, but how do I know which ones to link to one another without putting a list at the bottom of each post and saying here’s 15 more ideas or something like that.
Jillian Leslie 9:27
You could put a list at the bottom, and I wouldn’t probably put 30 different posts, but I might put some of those posts especially in a question, you know, like, are you interested in other backyard activities, or backyard activities with water, or arts and crafts backyard activities.
So I would ask your audience like say, hey, if you want more, here is more and give them different choices. I would also think about creating a page on your site where you have all of these posts organized in a way that could be useful for somebody.
Paula Rollo 10:10
Because then you’re doing one link, or one or two instead of doing 15 and overwhelming people.
Jillian Leslie 10:20
What I would also do though, is in the context of your writing, I would be writing natural language that is helpful. So you’re not just stuffing this in and linking to the natural language in your blog post.
Paula Rollo 10:36
Google loves those natural links.
Jillian Leslie 10:38
And remember, those are those keywords that Google goes, “Ooh, that’s cool. I know what this is, I know what it’s going to link to.” And remember, longer posts do better.
Paula Rollo 10:51
How many words are you doing these days?
Jillian Leslie 10:53
If I could do 2000 a post like a MiloTree post, I’m not going to do that on Catch My Party, because it’s a different animal. But the longer the better.
We used to do like very few words. And we’ve really worked toward building up the actual text. And again, I’m trying to be helpful with the text, not just writing text just to write text.
But we are trying to structure our posts, with headings. Really like digging into those H2’s, H3’s, those different sized headings because people are skimming.
And you want to make your content as easy to understand. And also sometimes, I will put like a directory at the top that it’s going to be a very long blog post. I have a guide on Instagram, how to grow your Instagram.
And I have links at the top of my blog posts where if you click it, it will lead you to that part of the post where you can get that information.
Paula Rollo 11:56
How do you code that to scroll down the page?
Jillian Leslie 12:00
Honestly, I Googled it.
Paula Rollo 12:02
Okay, what do you call it then in that case?
Jillian Leslie 12:04
Okay, I’ll have to think about it and I will put it in the show notes. But I think its internal links. It’s very easy in WordPress to do it in the HTML. Very easy. You just like follow this formula. And then you put those internal links.
But that way, there’s like an index or a table of contents so that people can see your content. But so therefore, back to your idea of the outdoor party, outdoor activities, kids’ activities, I would be writing, one, the quintessential guide to outdoor activities.
I would also have a page on my site with like a directory of outdoor activities. And then in all of those posts at the bottom of them, I would have like the top things that people are interested in.
Like, if you know that people love water activities. I’d be showing that on a variety of those posts at the bottom, like, hey, here, you know, do you want water activities? Because what you want is people to be clicking on those links and getting deeper into your site and reading more stuff.
Paula Rollo 13:11
Jillian Leslie 13:12
So I’d be leveraging the ones that are the most popular, putting those on all of these pages rather than saying, well, this one doesn’t get a lot of traffic so I’ll put that one on the page. No, no, I put the ones that you already know people want.
Paula Rollo 13:28
Because you need those clicks, and you need them to stay.
Jillian Leslie 13:31
Exactly. You want to signal to Google that somebody came to this post. They thought it was useful and not only did they think it was useful, they’re even digging deeper.
Paula Rollo 13:41
Right. Well, and it’s really becoming more in the SEO world, one of the things that’s becoming more and more important is site speed. Because Google is punishing. You could be the actual ultimate authority, wrote 10 books on outdoor activities.
But if it takes too long for your page load, Google’s not going to rank you because people are going to be clicking away. And so they’re measuring how long was this person on the site? If they click away too quickly, Google says this didn’t answer the question.
It told me it was going to answer the question, what are the best outdoor outdoor activities, but clearly, they weren’t great. They weren’t the best because somebody clicked away.
But if you’re clicking deeper, that also signals to Google, this person clicked deeper, they wanted more and more activities, because Jillian is actually answering who has the best outdoor activities and what are the best outdoor activities.
Jillian Leslie 14:34
Absolutely. And in fact, I’m going to be doing a recording with David, my partner and husband, about site speed so that we can really talk about what does it mean. And for example, David is obsessed with site speed.
And that’s why with MiloTree, it will not slow your site down because God forbid it does. So you can trust us on that.
Paula Rollo 14:55
Then we’d cry.
Jillian Leslie 14:56
He was like, always, you know, and I didn’t really understand this, but on Catch My Party, he would be like, I would put up like a huge photo on our site and it wouldn’t be reduced in size. So the file size is huge.
And he would get so upset, like, what are you doing? Because of site speed. Because remember, you want to optimize photos and things so that the experience is really good.
And that’s also one thing that I recommend which we learned from Jeff, people are consuming content on mobile. So let’s say you’re a food blogger, and you take beautiful photos of food and you take beautiful photos of your lemon cake.
You do not need 30 photos that are pretty similar, even though they’re all so beautiful and you couldn’t choose between your own babies.
It’s like no, no, you just need one of those beautiful photos, and maybe some photos of the preparation, but really be mindful of not stuffing your posts with so many photos that are all of the same thing.
Because people, you know, a little slightly different angle, because people are going to have to scroll through that and it’s not a great experience.
So you want to be thinking from the perspective of the visitor on mobile consuming your content. And that’s why, again, you want it to be hierarchical. You want those headings so that people know, “oh, here’s where I’m going to learn about this, I don’t care about that. I want to know about this.”
And you’re serving it up in a way that your audience wants to consume it. And then your audience likes it and signals to Google in a variety of ways, like clicking and all of that. And then Google goes, “ooh, she’s good. Let’s reward her with some traffic.”
Paula Rollo 16:38
And it’s still counterintuitive, I guess, because I feel like, I mean, you and I have both been in this a long time and a few years ago, we were writing content about pages that was very different than the conversation we’re having today.
Because it never would have entered into our minds at the time that site speed had anything to do with page views, or image size, or anything like that. But truly, you could spend all day 24 hours a day on Pinterest, on Facebook running the biggest Facebook ads and all of those things.
And if your site structure is not there, and flawlessly working quickly, you’re not going to get anywhere.
Jillian Leslie 17:18
Absolutely, absolutely. It’s like the nuts and bolts really do matter. And the tricks don’t matter as much.
Paula Rollo 17:28
That’s true magic.
Jillian Leslie 17:29
So it is about kind of playing clean. You know, like being simple. Again, thinking in terms o… like I didn’t think about H2’s. Did you?
Paula Rollo 17:40
No. I didn’t even know what they were, to be honest. I have no idea.
Jillian Leslie 17:43
And I also didn’t think about this, which is I kind of would be like, what sounds like a good post or what am I interested in? Or what what’s a good recipe?
And now, you better believe every decision we make is calculated. And I don’t mean that in an evil way. But I do mean that. So just you and me, we were just talking about MiloTree, right?
MiloTree’s perfect audience, the people who get the most benefit from our pop-up are people who already have traffic, who want to convert that traffic into followers, subscribers, that kind of thing. So remember, that’s who I want to go after because I can help them.
And we were just talking about this, which is, how to be very intentional in the blog posts, and even these podcasts that we’re working on so that those people know MiloTree is for them. Because MiloTree is not for everybody.
And so we’re like, okay, rather than just being like, “Hey, I’m really interested in… I don’t know, some blogging topic.” It’s like, no, no, I want to attract that specific audience, because that specific audience is going to want to read my blog post or want to listen to my podcast, because I can help them.
So I was using the analogy, and I don’t know if it’s right. It’s like, you’re kind of a surgeon. Like you want to be really making these good…
You want to like go after very strategically that audience; the ones who for you, you want people who have kids, who like to be outside in the summertime, who maybe have multiple children, who don’t have a huge budget to be like, hey, let’s go just go to Disneyland.
Intentional mothers who want to find activities for their kids and not just plop them in front of the TV. I know who that audience is for that blog post.
I was just going to say you can then go okay, if I know that this is who my avatar is, what else would they be interested in?
Paula Rollo 19:55
Yes. So I was just going to say because you know who the audience for that post and for your site as a whole — and it’s the same thing.
It’s not like everything that a person who’s interested in backyard parties might be interested in, you’ve picked one person. And it’s not everyone who’s ever considered blogging should be on MiloTree. It’s a specific person at a specific stage in their business journey.
And that’s what makes your sites a lot more powerful than a catch-all for every blogger or every party or every outdoor, you know, extravaganza like we’ve been talking about. But really the site wide authority is looked at by Google, just as much as the individual post authority.
Jillian Leslie 20:43
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And so the other thing that I wanted to talk about was Pinterest. Yes, because I believe today if you want to grow your traffic, you want to be really learning about SEO and you want to be really learning about Pinterest.
Because as you say, those two platforms are aligned with getting people to find the answers to the problems that they have on other people’s sites, you know, on a blog or on a website, that kind of thing.
And it’s not about the experience even though I can definitely enjoy myself on Pinterest, like looking at shoes, or whatever, it really is about, well, I want to click over, you know, I want to see more.
Paula Rollo 24:43
it used to be like Internet hoarding. Like you just pinned a lot of content. And now people are really intentionally using it and coming back to things they pinned previously, which is really interesting progression on the platform.
Jillian Leslie 24:56
I agree. I agree. And they too care about things like keywords. And also because now Pinterest is a very, I would say, populated platform, meaning there’s more competition. Back in the day, you could put it up and get traffic.
Again, Pinterest cares about authority. So because we got on Pinterest early for Catch My Party, we’ve been able to leverage that platform. They know that our content is good, right? They know that it’s helpful, and therefore we get rewarded for that.
But how do we do that? Well, guess why, because we’ve been on it for a long time and we get a lot of engagement. And we are very niched. You want parties, this is where you go.
So somebody is searching for party ideas, they know to serve up pins from Catch My Party, and you want to be that exact same thing. So you want to look at what’s doing well on Pinterest, you want to make content that is similar.
You want to become the authority, let’s say, in gluten-free or but not just kid gluten free, I think I used that example previously. But you want to be that so when somebody searches for that, Pinterest knows, oh, this is where we want this, you know, this is the content.
And again, it is about being aware of keywords in your titles, in your board descriptions, on your pins, using hashtags that are very kind of you want to do a couple so it doesn’t look too spammy. But you want to get that authority.
I think it is all about authority, in terms of getting people to trust you, really getting the platforms to trust you.
Paula Rollo 26:34
Because we used to just be able to arbitrarily do what we want. We were talking about this with Instagram a couple of weeks ago, where it used to be you could just follow anybody you wanted to follow, where you could just comment on anything you wanted to comment on and really use these things as long as you were active on them.
That was really what you needed to be doing. Where now, you have to be a lot more intentional.
I think it’s interesting you mentioned the keywords on board descriptions, because that’s something that I think the entire industry has ignored for a really long time. That as a user, we don’t go to Pinterest and click on someone’s profile, and then scroll through and find a board at the bottom of her list and then go look at it and read those descriptions.
We don’t do that. I’ve never done that in my life. But this is a search engine. It’s like doing a meta description on Google or on your on your WordPress site and then it being pushed out to Google.
It is communicating to Pinterest this is what this board is about. It’s not just every thing that I could think of thrown in one place. It’s not a random board. It’s not arbitrary. This is Disney World parties. And here’s the description about what that means and the characters that you’ll find on this board.
And it’s not because somebody is going to go read that. It’s because you’re communicating with the platform itself. And then all of those pins will then reinforce this is what this is about. And the title will communicate that .
ll of those things will add up to when someone searches Disney World parties, it’s going to go to Jillian’s pan on a Disney World parties board that’s been highly optimized for that keyword.
Jillian Leslie 28:15
Absolutely. It is like clarity, clarity in communication. And I think about that, in everything, you know, again, like you want your blog posts to have that kind of clarity.
And you know, like I noticed on food blogs, you know, there’s a button usually at the top that says like skip to the recipe. And you want that because maybe somebody wants to hear your life story and how this is your grandmother’s recipe.
But really, you want to serve the right information to the right people in the easiest way possible and you want to serve it to the search engines.
Paula Rollo 28:48
It’s almost like you know how we talk to our avatars. And we have like in your head, like I’m talking to Susie right now. It’s like having a robot avatar as well. It is also talking to the SEO avatar on Pinterest, on my site, on everything that I do, I’m talking to that avatar as well even though it’s a robot.
Jillian Leslie 29:06
Totally. A little bit you could also think about it as like talking to your children, which is how, you know when you really want to communicate something and you have to be very, very direct and very specific. And, you know, get them to understand something. It’s like very intentional, you know.
Paula Rollo 29:26
So there’s no room for misinterpretation.
Jillian Leslie 29:28
No room for it. Right, exactly. And I think that that is really how you want to be thinking about this. It’s funny, because some people say, Well, I feel like then I can’t be as creative.
Because like, what if today, I just want to make, I don’t know, like I’m let’s say the Crockpot King, and then I’m like, “I don’t want to do crockpot recipes anymore.”
Well, you can experiment with doing something else. But I would say maybe there’s a new way to be creative with crockpot stuff, you know, you want to be consistent.
And you don’t have the same level of freedom, I have to be honest about this, than you did back in the day.
Paula Rollo 30:08
It’s true. And if you’re wanting this to be a business, if you’re wanting this to just be fun, your creative outlet, then you do have full creative freedom. But if you are an influencer as a business, now, you don’t have any space for that.
Jillian Leslie 30:24
Paula Rollo 30:25
The exception beingm I think, if you get really bored and I do this from time to time, and none of these things ever take off, they’re just for my own entertainment, but I’ll start a little Instagram channel with an idea that I had.
And it’s not going on my any of my sites because I need to protect those. But I will start a little Instagram of my daughter’s fashion or of travel or of whatever topic was interesting to me that day. And I had a fun idea and I want to see if I’ll run with it.
And usually I drop it after a couple of months because that’s just who I am. But my little fun experiment that kept my creative juices going and kept me inspired didn’t mess up the communication that I was having with the Google algorithm and the Pinterest algorithm and all of those things.
Jillian Leslie 31:10
And your audience.
Paula Rollo 31:11
And my audience as well, yeah. And sometimes I’ll say like, Hey, I started this new Instagram, you can go follow it, you know, I’ll put that in an instant story or something. And a few people will. But people know by now that I have a new idea every week.
But that can be a way to kind of explore. If you want to spend an hour a day on something new, feel free to do that. But maybe start it on a different platform. Start on a different Facebook page or an Instagram and just see what happens.
Jillian Leslie 31:37
I really like that. And I think that the idea of the accidental entrepreneur could have existed 10 years ago, because a lot of the people that I talked to have been at this for a long time, don’t even think that they could monetize their blogs.
Today, there’s tremendous sophistication. So if you’re in it, and this is like the audience that I want to attract, are people who are business people. They could be stay-at-home moms, maybe this is their first foray into entrepreneurship.
But that is their first and foremost desire. And again, as you said, you’ve got some creative idea. You’re not necessarily interested in making money, go for it.
Or you have a little side hustle or side project or just a side thing that feeds your soul. So you’re the crockpot king or queen, and you decide I don’t really like this anymore, but it makes you money, you know what you do?
You farm out the crock pot recipe development and you keep it going, and then you go follow your own passion. But I wouldn’t sink your crockpot blog. If you’re the crockpot queen, go figure out a way to make that work as a business.
And we talked about scaling and things like that, outsource it, and then go after your other passion.
Paula Rollo 32:49
Jillian Leslie 32:50
Which again, feels I don’t know, even just saying that it feels like we’re not saying follow your bliss. We’re saying follow your business.
Paula Rollo 33:00
But I think you have to these days. And I think that that’s okay, because we’re still in industry where, what, 75-80% of the things that we do, we love. And that’s really good odds.
It’s not like the only thing I like about my job is my one co-worker who’s there on Monday, Tuesday and Friday. I like most of what I do. I like the people that I interact with.
And there are some parts I really hate. And there are some parts that I hate that I can’t hire somebody to do for me that they have to be done by me. But at the end of the day, this job is still pretty amazing.
Jillian Leslie 33:37
And you suck up the stuff that sucks. Like I always say that. It’s not puppies and rainbows all the time. It is like you are working this. You are looking, you’re digging into your analytics, even if you’re not interested in numbers.
Like there are times, to be honest with you like remember, I’m a person who likes numbers and stuff and there are days where I’m like, I cannot look at my analytics.
It’s just, I have too much emotion tied into it. I don’t want to see if my traffic has dropped. I don’t want to see how much money I’ve made or not made, like I’m just not emotionally prepared for it.
But then I will force myself to do it maybe the next day or the day after. So there is a lot.
I mean it is a job, and it’s a fun job. But as my first boss said to me, he goes, they wouldn’t call it work if it wasn’t… otherwise, they’d call it fun. So again, you want to make your job as fun as possible.
Paula Rollo 34:32
And sometimes for me, like that is why I go after a side thing that I know it’s not going to go anywhere money-wise, just because it allows me to enter that creativity space again in my brain and think about new fresh ideas.
And then when I come back to what I know and what’s safe like crockpots, I may have a new creative spin on it. I may have a fresh outlook or I may just be so sick of whatever side hustle I just tried that was stupid, like do I need to make another crockpot recipe.
Like, okay, good. Like I tried the the, you know, the crafty instagram, I would never craft but whatever it might be, I experimented with something new. I gave my brain that exercise, that workout that I had been craving. And now I’m going to come back and I’m going to do the hard work of my business that I love. I was just having a bad day or week or month.
Jillian Leslie 35:26
I love that. And let’s just talk as our last place of traffic — newsletters. Now this again, newsletters can serve a variety of purposes. But I know a food blogger who does. She I think creates three recipes a week.
And she sends out through an RSS feed those recipes to her list. Her list is really loyal people who love food and they click. And her list is magical for driving traffic
Paula Rollo 36:00
That still amazes me. It amazes me that people are still doing RSS effectively.
Jillian Leslie 36:07
So RSS feed, remember, is where it automatically will take your blog post and just send it as an email. Now, you could also send yours like every week, send a roundup of your blog posts to the people who you know are going to click on your post and drive traffic.
Now at the end of the day, here’s the tricky part, you have to look at it this way. You’re paying for that email service. And email services tend to be expensive.
So you have to balance how much money you are getting from that traffic versus how much you are spending to send those emails. And a lot of times where that will make sense is if you are also sending, putting affiliate links.
And I know there’s certain things like MailChimp, you can’t put affiliate links last I checked in your newsletters, but you’re then sending people to blog posts that have affiliate links where you can monetize it.
If it’s a just a traffic play, it typically doesn’t make sense to spend the money to send the emails to get the traffic because your cost, how much you’re going to make per thousand views probably won’t make up for the cost — the cost you’re spending to send them.
But it is another avenue to think about when building traffic and building that loyal audience.
Paula Rollo 37:33
And if you’re planning to sell a product, then I think the email list is central. It’s not even a maybe. Like you could you could survive on your product without it. I don’t think that’s the case.
I think it’s absolutely essential if you’re going to plan a product and to do a good launch because those are going to be one of the main ways that you’re not cold talking to someone.
Jillian Leslie 37:58
Paula Rollo 37:59
Because even our Facebook followers now, like I probably follow to 3000 pages on Facebook, and I don’t know who most of them are. And I don’t remember. So there’s not a lot of trust built there.
And same on Pinterest, I adore Pinterest, but I don’t trust the people that I follow on Pinterest. And so those Pinterest leads are typically really, really cold leads, even though you can get a lot of clicks that way.
But your newsletter, I remember the people who are in my inbox. I know who all of them are, I wouldn’t let them be there. And so there’s this level of trust that even those clicks, being minimal like you were saying, you’re not going to get as much enough clicks to pay for something.
But those are trustworthy clicks. Those are people clicking over who are like, I am obsessed with Jillian and I want to buy everything she tells me to buy in this blog post.
Jillian Leslie 38:46
Absolutely, and I love you. Yes, absolutely. And so experiment with how to, what happens when you put links in your newsletters that are for your content. One thing you can do is because you don’t just want to, as we know, be salesy, is send people just links to your blog posts.
Like, let’s say you’re a food blogger because people love food. And then sprinkle in either affiliate links or courses or meal plans or whatever in addition, you know, so that you are providing value. You are creating this relationship, you are getting traffic from it.
And then experiment with how your audience responds to that.
Paula Rollo 39:32
Yes. And I think too having a good strategy of how you’re collecting those newsletter clicks, because newsletter subscribers because I think that these days, anybody can hire somebody to make a printable about whatever you want.
Jillian Leslie 39:49
So like a freebie.
Paula Rollo 39:52
You’ll get this for free if you subscribe to my list. Like that’s one of the main ways that people collect newsletters is by offering something for free.
Jillian Leslie 40:03
Paula Rollo 40:03
Yes, sorry. But you have to be strategic from that moment. And having a freebie that is not attracting the type of person who’s going to be long-term interested in what you send in your newsletter, you’re just paying for a useless person.
Jillian Leslie 40:20
Paula Rollo 40:20
Essentially, yeah. Because if like, for example, if I were on one of my sites to do a preschool activity, I could easily hire someone to do a free printable of preschool activities. And I could probably honestly get a lot of subscribers that way.
But my content is not about preschool activities. None of my products that I sell are about preschool activities. And so those subscribers are never going to buy my parenting book, right? They’re never going to buy any of the things that I offer, honestly, because they’re looking for more preschool activities.
And so we have to be careful to even create our newsletter list and communicate well with those people what we’re about out in our freebies, and not just say this is an easy way I have this random product that I purchased or this random product that I created that’s amazing.
And I’m going to get people to sign up for it for free. You really have to think strategically about down the line where is this person headed on my site, and where are they headed in their sales funnel.
Even if you don’t have a product yet, what are you planning to sell them one day or planning to offer them on your list that makes it worthwhile for them to be there because otherwise, you don’t want them?
Jillian Leslie 41:29
Absolutely. So in fact, on MiloTree I put together this huge blog post thing about which has like the table of contents in the post and it’s all about growing your Instagram followers. And I’m really proud of it and I think it’s really useful. And you know, you can get the PDF, if you give me your email address.
However, now as we’ve been talking and as I’ve been strategizing, and I’ve been getting more intentional, more specific, I realized, No, you know what, my next thing that I’m going to be creating is again, not just going after people who want to grow their Instagram followers, but going after more my podcast audience, which is people who already think of this as a business, who already are making money.
Who can find that MiloTree could give them, as we talked in the beginning, that rocket fuel; who already understand the basics of social media and how that can grow their business. That’s the audience that I want to attract.
Paula Rollo 42:33
Because most of us aren’t searching ‘how to start’. We’re searching how to be in the middle. That’s a phrase that’s not on Google. Like I want to be in the middle; how to get to the top from the middle.
Jillian Leslie 42:45
Yes, absolutely. And I want to push people along. They need to already be committed to this as a career, as a journey. And I want to help them get to the next stage.
Paula Rollo 42:57
Yes, at the end of the day I think we just want people browsing our sites. And we don’t want just casual browsers anymore. We want people who are here to stay, who are wanting to eat a virtual meal with us and talk about something important.
And that’s where the industry is now. It’s not just like the drive-by Tumblrs. It’s common while on the site. And enjoy. And I’m going to serve you really, really well. But I want you to be here and be in it for me.
Jillian Leslie 43:26
Right. Absolutely. Well, Paula, I love these conversations, we will be having more.
And what’s nice about it for me is it pushes my thinking in my own business. And by articulating where I am and where we are in a business, I don’t know just something about putting it out there, and speaking it so I don’t know, thousands of people makes it more, I don’t know, come alive, makes me be more intentional in the way that I think about my business.
So hopefully we’ve helped you be more intentional thinking about your business.
Paula Rollo 44:04
I hope so.
Jillian Leslie 44:05
Alright, until next time. Paula, thank you for being on the show.
Paula Rollo 44:08
Thank you for having me.
Jillian Leslie 44:11
I hope you liked this episode. I hope you got some good takeaways for your business. And if you’re liking The Blogger Genius, I have something to ask you. Would you head to iTunes and would you rate the podcast? We’ve been getting some really nice ratings and it helps the show get found. So, until next week.
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