How To Promote Your Blog Before Its Launch

How To Promote Your Blog Before Its Launch One of the toughest parts of starting a new blog is getting some visibility.

The problem with doing your initial promotion post-launch is that at that point you have already develop a new series of activities such as content management or front-end interaction. These tasks will considerably reduce your time and resources.

What if you could instead create buzz around your blog even before its launch and before you drop a line of content in it? In this post I’ll share with you a few ways you can build hype about your launch and go live with traffic already coming in your door.

When it comes to planning, this is no different than doing so for your actual blogging in which we’ll assume you have a strategy for content generation, scheduling and stuff like that. In this case, you should also write a little pre-launch strategy.

So here are some of the ideas and hopefully you find them of value:

“Coming Soon” Landing Page

First you need to create a very simple but attractive landing page with the domain name you will be using. Until the day of the launch, this is going to act as your online hub. Don’t think of it as a dead end for your traffic, instead be creative and focus on getting people excited about it.

A plain “Under Construction” page does nothing but annoy people. Give them a little taste of what’s coming.

Start Building Your Email List

Yes, it is possible. Getting people to give you their email address is not easy even having an existing blog with lots of content, doing so for a blog that doesn’t even exist is even harder.

The main element on your “coming soon” landing page will be an email signup box to get updates on the launch of the blog. In order for this to work, it needs to be attractive enough for people to get excited. Focus on great copy and great design.

Guest Blogging

In order to start building up a name for yourself without having your own platform, you should offer to guest post on related blogs. There are a couple of things to consider here:

  • Most bloggers will be happy to get a hand with content so don’t be afraid to ask.
  • Try to guest post for a relevant blog. If the blog gets no decent traffic it will probably not do much for you either.
  • Stay in your field. You don’t want to write for your direct competitor but make sure you find a blogger in your niche, where you know what your talking about and people in your industry can start recognizing your name.

Comment On Other Blogs

I’m not talking about “Hey John, great post” kind of comment, I’m talking about significant contributions to the conversation and obviously staying on topic. Remember that at this point these are the only opportunities you have to express your thoughts.

Also important is to make your comments friendly, create profiles at Disqus and IntenseDebate so you can be compatible with the rest of the planet and make sure you include your future blog address as it will be visible on every comment you make.

Build Some Twitter Muscle

Twitter will be your blog’s best friend but in order to really leverage from this relationship form the beginning is better to start tweeting in advance. Here are the main reasons:

  • Twitter will help you establish relationships, by the time you launch, you will already have a small community to go to.
  • Being resourceful by sharing good content in your industry will build some initial trust.

By the time you announce the launch on Twitter, people will already be listening to you.

Get Some Celebrity Hype

Announce some kick-ass content to start with a big splash, a good way to do this is by getting somebody with rockstar status in your industry to do an interview with you. There are many ways of doing an interview, it can be written or video over Skype (Read: “How To Produce Video Interviews For Your Blog Using Skype“) if there is some distance in between but if you have the chance to do this interview physically present, you can very easily go for a very nice quality product without losing your shirt.

Last year I saw a couple of blogs do this successfully by leveraging from Gary Vaynerchuck’s popularity.

The good thing is that these kind of leaders in your industry usually need the exposure too, see who’s getting a book published for example. Don’t be afraid to ask.

Give Stuff Away

Another way of getting attention is by giving stuff away, nobody cares if you have published any content if you are giving something for free. Don’t think you need to give away an iPad, you can also do other interesting things like a few copies of a good book related to your niche.

Contests are very powerful if you know how to ask for something in exchange. You can ask people to follow you, to subscribe or to simply tweet to participate but the point in this particular case is to get your blog on the map. Read my post “How To Run Successful Contests On Twitter” to get some ideas.

Facebook Ads

I can already see your face now. A lot of people won’t even consider this but let me tell you that Facebook ad campaigns not only can be very affordable but you have full control of daily limits and even when to stop, there are no long-term commitments.

Even if the campaign is a failure, it is good that you become familiar with these kind of things and get some experience under your belt. After all, this is a testing game.

Ask For Help!

Yes, believe or not, getting help is also on the menu. Ask your peeps to help you amplify the message. Everybody can get some additional support. To give you an example, every time I have an interest on promoting something online, even if it’s not myself, I have the @nakedelephant (my wife), my team at the office and a few online relationships ready to spread some love.

Depending on who you got in your corner or how much support, the message can be easily amplified by 10 times or more…

Your Turn Now…

Share some others ideas, other methods you have used in the past or seen other people do successfully. What was your experience launching your blog?

Or… If you are planning on launching your blog soon, ask any questions!



  • Most people/companies don't plan or build a strategy for their blog, and certainly not a pre launch strategy. This is an excellent article with useful suggestions. Thanks!

  • Man, I wish I knew some of them in the very beginning. I started way too late with my relationships. It's all about being active and gaining momentum.
    One thing that works brilliantly: Build your own blog syndicate.
    Finding people on a similar digital crusade and promoting each other throughout the networks. That is crazy-helpful !

  • Believe me, it was my case too. This blog had zero traffic for the first few months…

  • These are all such great points. I feel a little confirmation from it, too, since I just recently helped a company get their blog off the ground and we used (or plan to use) all of these things except the first! We didn't get to the Coming Soon page – that would have been a great way to kick off an email list. That goes on the promotion plan for the next launch, for sure.

    Thanks!
    Tia

  • Solids tips to new bloggers! I wish I'd had some of them before my launch. I want to add to be active in social networks like digg, su, reddit and so on. In that way many people will know you even before the “showtime”. In my case I was very active at stumbleupon several months before the debut.

    Cheers,

    Gera

  • Sorry I've forgot to put my name and not only of my blog. I've struggling a bit if I log in or post a guest and that was the reason why I didn’t put my name Gera in the name field.

  • I'll definitely do that with my second blog. The thing is, the exact concept of my current blog wasn't clear in my mind when I hit the publish button. I could have waited, but launching it forced me to clarify my objectives. It's obviously not best practice, but I learned a lot in the process. Thanks!

  • This is really great practical advice! Great for already existing blogs and those that didn't Launch yet! One thing I am doing for my blog (besides many things mentioned in your article) is to feature other handmade sellers on my blog. This is beneficial for my blog and their product: I promote my blog everywhere, so their items are seen by many people and they tell their friends and family about my blog. I also do interviews, giftguides and giveaways. Although my blog is mainly focused on my art, I always open to other creative promotional ideas.

  • Don't overlook the abundance of free press release newswires available for publicity as well. Submit simple press release is an easy, cost effective way to promote any blog that will also help boost your SEO…

  • I hear you Michael, the learning curve is a long one but nothing like getting all that experience first hand. I don't think waiting was going to change anything if you didn't have a clear objective, that was also my case.

    If you think about it, today even business ideas are tested without going through the painful process of writing business plans…

    Thanks for comment!

  • Great addition Bill, thanks for pointing it out.

  • Squizza

    Great post, very useful for new or old bloggers or bloggers to be.

    Is it possible to do too much prelaunch publicity? I'm slowly increasing online presence and taking part in industry chats. At some stage I need a product to back up the socmed spam!

  • Hey Francisco – you couldn't have sent this out about a month ago! I am working on a new blog for a client and I will take your advise this time. I will let you know how it goes. I agree with you on the Facebook ads – I finally gave in and they are everything you say they are- and they actually can work too. Keep these posts coming!

  • Yes Simon, please do tell me what your experience is, I'd love to know.

  • Create a Facebook event!

  • Yes, of course. Thank you Tony!

  • Cheers to you men! 🙂

    What a great post. Thanks so much.

    I'm gonna share this with my fellow bloggers!

    Howard

  • “Here elaborates the matter new balance shoes not only extensively but also detailly .I support the
    write's unique point.It is useful and benefit to your daily life.You can go those
    sits to know more relate things.They are strongly recommended by friends.Personally

  • “Here elaborates the matter new balance shoes not only extensively but also detailly .I support the
    write's unique point.It is useful and benefit to your daily life.You can go those
    sits to know more relate things.They are strongly recommended by friends.Personally

  • Definitely a post worth sharing. Every new blogger I know will be reading this one!

  • Sounds like you know how to get the job done, right. This is going to help me alot.

  • “Well , the view of the passage is totally correct ,your details is really reasonable and you guy give us valuable informative post, I totally agree the standpoint of upstairs. I often surfing on this forum coach outlet when I m free and I find there are so coach handbags much good information we can learn in this forum! ugg boots

  • Info

    Hi Francisco,
    Thank you. I am looking for ideas like these to begin my blog for my new start up which will help small businesses set up social media tools for marketing. I am more a technical person than a marketing one and am overwhelmed by the amount of information available out there. I will keep looking for post like these for help.
    Any support is greatly appreciated.

  • I'm here to help, thanks for your comment.

  • Great post! I've just launched a blog (http://cultivat.us) so this is a great resource. I think I'm definitely going to go down the route of interview some influencers to find out how they use social media and to “step on the shoulders of giants” so to speak to gain readership.

    Another point to add to your post could be to work hard at gaining a following on sites just as Digg pre-launch. I digg a lot of resources for social media and digital marketing so introducing my blog posts to my digg'ed list was pretty natural. Hopefully my followers on Digg with then digg my posts and i'll find some new readers. That could be a strategy for a new blog owner too.

    Anyway great post, and great website!

  • These are all very helpful tips. I am doing afew of them but, I will try to do the rest. Thanks for this informaion.

  • oligardner

    Great idea for a post – so many people need this exact page on their site and are lost as to how they should present it (as the business plan, website design, copywriting and production of the actual product are see as soo much more important.

    Leaning on your first point -the coming soon landing page is critical. for a coupe of reasons:

    1. if done right you start building interest and brand equity in advance
    2. you can capture leads to marketing to up to, during and after you launch (this should be a big and simple priority
    3. Also agree with giving something away: exclusive entry to a beta is often sufficient – but if you have a short eBook that talks about the pain of the industry segment you are addressing and is of high caliber – you will be seen as a potential thought leader and people will make the effort to sign up for your launch notification

    Unbounce.com has a couple of “coming soon templates” – both with simple lead gen and one with video – that are both very effective. If anyone's interested they can check 'em out here:

    http://unbounce.com/landing-page-templates/

    Look at #4 and #5.

    Also worth considering when you do a pre-launch template, is to put some insight gathering tools on there so you can understand the questions that your curious visitors are asking (they will be). KISSInsights works beautifully for this (i've mentioned them before on this blog – for the record I'm not affiliated with them – but I have just started using it and this answer I'm writing has given me the idea to try it on a coming soon page. Kampyle are also good I believe.

  • helioalves

    Thank you Francisco,

    This is exactly where I am right now. I have been telling myself that I should start my blog and I have always find excuses not to start until lately. But I've been trying to get a strategy on what and when I'll be talking about a subject, I don't want to write a post today and then let the readers with no new content for the next two weeks. I was also wondering how I should promote it and this post helped me a lot.

    Thank you 🙂

  • test comment

  • These are nice tips for the promotion of a new blog. However in addition to that one always need good SEO techniques

  • Thanks for great advices. I think these tips are especially useful for up comming Blog. This is really helpful to me! this is so great! thanks so much!

  • the main problem with doing your initial promotion post-launch is that at that point you have already develop a new series of activities such as content management or front-end interaction.

  • Kittu Jayaraj

    Anna could you post your Blog’s URL?

  • I am looking for tips to make money and found your article , thanks .

  • Rebecca Smith

    Thanks for sharing, really useful tips. I also looked through the information related to the blog promotion and figured out the most effective advices here: http://www.oddmag.com/blogging-tips/five-considered-ways-to-promote-the-blog/ Hope, they’ll be helpful in your work too. Just have a look 🙂 

  • These tasks will considerably reduce your time and resources.

  • Hi there! I’m launching my blog on March 1, but I’m uncertain when to start promoting it. I don’t want to start too early and have people forget about it, but I’m excited and want to start gaining a following! Do you have any advice? Thank you!