in social medias and networks
Useful poker tools. Part II: Social bookmarking
Couple of weeks ago I have started writing a blog about useful poker related widgets to be used by every poker blogger. Useful poker tools. Part I: News widgets described a few news widgets that bring some quality content to one's blog.
One of the main concerns of every blogger is how to make the blog popular and have a lot of readers. Lots of marketing strategies may be applied, but one of the best ways is for your articles to be recommended by the readers themselves. As a Poker blogger I can assure you that the organic traffic is the most valuable one. When you try promoting your blog, people perceive it as spam. When readers promote your blog - it gives the sense of trust. How do you achieve that?
Allow people to put your every blog post to Twitter automatically just by clicking one link "Tweet this" or a nice icon. There is a simple script which gives a link to your blog post. You can also put this script "under" any Twitter image. Just search for them and you will find thousands. If you are using the WordPress platform, there are some nice Twitter plugins to be used. Tweet This plug-in is one of the most popular ones. By the way, please Tweet this article. Wondering what's the link? It is http://twitter.com/home?status=your text to twitter up to 140 characters.
ShareThis is a widget which can be easily customized and added to every one of your blog posts. You can choose which social media sites your link should be added to. Just make sure it is visible enough, otherwise people will not understand what it is for. It is recommended to put it at the upper part of the text (no way to the bottom as it may become unnoticeable). There are more similar widgets, but I found ShareThis most useful and customizable.
If you are using the general sharing widgets like ShareThis, AddThis, AddToAnny, SocialMarker, and tons of others, you do not need to worry about encouraging your readers to add the link to Facebook, MySpace, Propeller, Newsvine, Diigo or hundreds of other social bookmarking sites and social networks.
You may disagree about these kind of widgets, as Digg and StumbleUpon are the biggest traffic generators. Well, it is true, but there are some possible threats. Digg and StumbleUpon are community driven social bookmarking networks. If the community decides that your blog post is not interesting they will vote against you, not only UP. Then your blog gets banned. I've had some bad experience with PokerNews.com. PokerNews is a well know quality content provider, but it is banned in Digg. Recently I have contacted their support and asked to check if there is a possibility to get it unbanned. I have received an answer that if the community decided that this is a spam resource, it cannot be undone. So if all BBC.com fans will vote against CNN.com links, CNN can disappear forever with no chance of getting back? That's just ridiculous. It's the same with StumbleUpon and their random "Stumble This" option in the toolbar. Of course people who are not interested in poker will dislike your blog if it gets randomly opened. It gets some negative votes for a few times and you are doomed - your blog is considered spam and your domain name is banned. However, you need to curse a lot to get your user account banned. Sad, but true, so I would recommend using Reddit and Delicious which are not so keen on listening to community voting. But that's the topic for another article.
In order to avoid this type of confusion, I would recommend using poker-related social bookmarking site widgets for your quality blog. However, there is only one not so popular poker social bookmarking site so far, which has its own widgets for bookmarking.
PokerBlips is a quality poker social bookmarking site which provides few widgets (they call them "badges"). One of them is a voting badge, which allows the reader to vote for the article, comment it and get a direct link. There are some smaller ones, if you do not like this big one. Also PokerBlips provides few news widgets (did not mention it in Part I), blog ranking widgets (not very useful for a blog owner; very useful for them as you link to them for nothing). When PokerBlips will become very popular you may get quite a good traffic.
If you decide to add one of these widgets, you will increase your chances to become a pro poker blogger, I swear! :) If you know other poker widgets, please let me know and I will make updates including them.