When I started blogging, most people didn’t even know what a blog was. There was a kind of pioneer spirit; of breaking new ground. As blogging came into its own and the mainstream media began to buzz about it, blogging became a household word. Soon it seemed as if everyone either had a blog, was starting a blog, or at the very least, was reading several blogs. Those that started early found it easier to rise to the top; they had the new thing and the momentum when the trend came.
Then there was social media. Sites like Facebook, Twitter, and Digg became great places to promote your newly started blog or to find other blogs and bloggers. Now it seems as if everyone is using these sites to promote their blogs. It can be a difficult task to rise to the top with the well known sites. You have to put in some tremendous work upfront to see results. Not that you shouldn’t utilize these sites, you definitely should. But you also need to consider other avenues that, while not as popular now, could be in the future. These sites can help you build traffic and momentum to get your blog noticed.
Squidoo allows you to write pages called “lenses” on squidoo.com. You can publish these pages free.
Lenses are pages, kind of like flyers or signposts or overview articles, that gather everything you know about your topic of interest–and snap it all into focus. Like the lens of a camera, your perspective on something. (You’re looking at a lens right now).
Using Squidoo gives you exposure as an expert on a given topic. But not only can you get exposure (and possibly traffic to your blog), but you can earn money as well. Squidoo gives you a share of the ad revenue generated by your lens(es). If you are cool, you can give your revenue to charity.
Much like Squidoo, Hubpages allows you to publish “hubs” in areas you are knowledgeable. Gain exposure as an expert, generate traffic and an audience, earn a revenue split.
Anyone can be a part of the HubPages community, a leading source of answers and expert content on the web, where even new authors can enjoy hundreds or even thousands of readers. Authors can even earn money through online ads displayed on their hubs.
Plurk is a micro-blogging platform like Twitter. But unlike Twitter, Plurk uses a timeline for “plurks” and threads the responses within each plurk. While Plurk is a little behind Twitter in terms of popularity, this shouldn’t be overlooked as an opportunity for social networking.
You may have heard of Reddit, but do you use it? Reddit is similar to Digg and StumbleUpon, providing users an opportunity to rate sites and links either up or down. A great place to find interesting links and participate in community.
Tagfoot combines social bookmarking ala delicious, tagging like Technorati, rating like Digg, and sharing like Stumbleupon. This Squidoo lens describes Tagfoot like this:
I’m not sure if it’s the bastard child of Digg and HubPages or the lovechild of Del.icio.us and Squidoo. But it’s hot, it’s happening and it’s HERE.
A bonus with Tagfoot is that if you use AdSense, you can get 50% of the impressions for your own ads.