EPP 094: How To Create Viral And Profitable Blog Posts

In this week’s episode of the Extra Paycheck Podcast we are talking about creating amazing content that ranks well, that brings in traffic and that creates income for you.

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write great content

Today we’re talking about the creation of great content for your blog. About a year ago I published one of my most popular blog posts here on the Extra Paycheck Blog and in this episode I’d like to break it down so you could replicate my strategy.

The article for this case study: 30 Books Every Entrepreneur Should Read in 2016.

This article brought thousands of new visitors to the blog. I ranked on the first page of Google for the keyword phrases such as “best entrepreneur books” [note: I just switched my site to SSL and while Google is re-indexing my site many of my article might temporarily not show up in the search results]. It got over 900 shares on social media platforms and it also brought in hundreds of dollars in affiliate commissions. Considering that an average commission on a book is less than $1 – it isn’t too bad. So let’s look in-depth  why this specific article became so popular and how you can replicate this success.

how to rank google first page

Don’t want to read? Scroll up and press the PLAY button to listen to this episode.

Writing the Blog Post

If you haven’t clicked on the link above to check out the actual article – please do so now. There are certain things that you must see in order to fully understand my explanation.

First of all I’d like to say that size matters, when it comes to the length of an article. This specific blog post is over 4,000 words long. I have serious doubts it would get the same results if it was the typical 500 words article. When I started writing in I knew that I had to give more details than all the other articles that were ranking on the first page of Google (Entrepreneur.com, BusinessInsider.com. Inc.com). These website hold very high authority and the only chance I could ever rank on the first page would be by providing better and more detailed content (along with many other things). This is why I spent 2 full days writing that blog post.

Formatting matters as well. That article feels very easy to look through. Each book in that list has a picture on the left side and a short description on the right side. Each book is clearly separated from the other. All in all I am very happy with the formatting of that blog post.

So the article is written, formatted and I finally published. It doesn’t end there though, it’s just the beginning.


Promoting the Blog Post

This next part is probably even more important than the creation of the actual article. I know you can’t spend days or even weeks promoting every single article from your blog post (unless you’re Brian Dean from Backlinko) but you should do it for your most important articles.

Several years ago people used to create very mediocre content. With some keyword stuffing and backlink manipulation you could potentially get the article ranking in Google’s top 10 and rack-in the profits. Times have changed. Google really appreciates and promotes great content. This algorithm change forced many marketers to actually start producing great-quality content. This means that most articles that rank well are pretty awesome and now your awesome article is not that easy to rank anymore. You need more than just an awesome article, you need people talking about it.

Besides sharing my newly published article on my own social media accounts such as Google+, Facebook and Twitter, I knew I needed to do more if I wanted to see results.

reaching people on facebook

1. Sharing on relevant Facebook groups.

Posting your links in Facebook groups could bring in a lot of traffic – or it could get you banned from that group. The secret here is HOW you do it. First of all you need to be an active member of the group if you want to post links in it, especially links to your own stuff.

Find groups relevant to your niche and start interacting with members. Start genuinely helping people and answering their questions. Eventually you’ll be able to post your links in there. If the group has a very strict NO LINKS policy, you might want to contact the admin and ask them why your link would be of value to other members.

I haven’t mentioned it in the podcast but in some cases I even asked the admin to post my link (instead of me posting it) because I knew that whenever an admin posts, most members get notified. Whatever you do, don’t spam because you’ll get kicked out and your post will be deleted within seconds.


2. Posting on Reddit

I have a love/hate relationship with Reddit. Sometimes you post an image and you get downvoted to hell. The next day another member posts the same image and gets 1000’s of upvotes. However when it comes to posting your own links, there is a very high chance they’ll hate you for it.

Just like with Facebook groups though, if you are very active on a subreddit and the subreddit is highly relevant to your article then you just might get lucky. Don’t just post your link there, first explain why you’re posting it and how other members can benefit from it. If possible, you might also want to contact an admin and ask them if they think your link would be beneficial for the subreddit. Mix all of that with a little luck and proper timing and your post just might get a lot of upvotes and a huge number of new blog readers and subscribers.


3. Reaching out to influences

In this specific examples the influencers are the authors of the books that made my top 30 list. If you are writing an amazing blog post, try to mention some influencers in it, maybe some companies or maybe even your competitors.

Once it’s published, reach out to those people and let them know they made your list or that you’re simply talking about them in your article. Many will ignore you but others will share it on their social media channels and some might even link to you from their own website. You’ve got nothing to lose.

I hope you enjoyed this article. I certainly missed a lot of details so once again, scroll up and press the PLAY button to listen to the whole episode where I share a few extra ideas, strategies and explanations. If you liked this episode please do share it with others 😉

You can subscribe to the Extra Paycheck podcast and review it on iTunes.

If you have any comments, questions or suggestions please use the comment box below.

– Alex

2 thoughts on “EPP 094: How To Create Viral And Profitable Blog Posts”

  1. I found this extremely instructive! Well done! I’m with WA for nearly 2 years but apart from earning a few hundred dollars from website building I have earned nothing from affiliate sales! I really believe my content and articles are good. I pay a lot of attention to keyword SEO research – but on a good day my website has about 20 visitors. I’m sure if I could get on page one = things would change radically. Thank you again.

    1. Glad you liked it Marcus.

      As I mentioned in the episode, proper promotion of your content is extremely important. Your income is directly related to your traffic. By saying that you get 20 visitors a day you’ve kind of figured out EXACTLY why you aren’t making money. You need more targeted traffic 😉


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