I was surprised to discover through Google Analytics that one of my most popular blog posts is a very short item about how Bill O’Reilly managed to promote his Killing Lincoln book while a guest on “Saturday Night Live.” (Let’s be honest — SNL’s “What’s Up with That?” fake talk show is not on any book publicist’s list of media options.)
Why has that post generated more traffic to my site than just about any other post? Because it’s about Bill O’Reilly and his enormously popular book. When people search for O’Reilly or his book title, my post shows up in the search engine results.
Ah . . . the power of SEO.
So, when my friend with a new nonfiction Kindle Single grumbled that Stephen King’s new Kindle Single, Guns, bumped his book down a notch on the bestseller list on Amazon, I urged him to blog about it. (Kindle Singles are books that are longer than a long magazine article but much shorter than a book.)
Blog about trending topics
If there’s a development in your book’s topic or your publishing genre, I encourage you to blog about it immediately, too. Here’s why:
- It will drive traffic to your site. Your blog post on a news story will be found in search engines if you’ve written the post so that the words people will be searching for are in your title and/or the first one or two sentences of your post. (This is how SEO — search engine optimization — works.)
- Your post could generate publicity. If you’ve offered a counter-intuitive perspective or expressed your opinion on a breaking story particularly well, your blog could be quoted in the press or you could be interviewed by the media.
- You will look like hot stuff. For example, if Stephen King has written a Kindle Single, that says a lot about other nonfiction Kindle Single titles and authors, doesn’t it? A little bit of his star power is rubbing off on them. In addition, if you’re writing about a publishing development that’s breaking news, you look like you’re plugged into your genre. That’s reassuring to readers (and publishers).
- You will boost your platform. People who discover your blog after finding you when searching for the trending story could become fans. What author doesn’t welcome the opportunity to acquire more fans?
If you have a reaction to a trending news story and can contribute to the conversation, blog about it. Compare the traffic to that post with others and see if it made a difference. If it did — and it probably will — do more of it.
What has been your most popular blog post, and why?
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