What is Blog Carnival & how can you get the most out of it?
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So, you’ve launched a blog and you’ve found the time to write some great posts. You’re seeing a trickle of visitor traffic coming through but you want to really step it up. What can you do?
Well, one great way of taking your blog traffic to the next level is to submit your blog posts to Blog Carnival. Successful inclusion of your posts in a blog carnival can drive increased and targeted traffic to your blog, along with securing good quality external referring links back to your blog. Sound good? Great. Ok, so first things first.
What is a Blog Carnival?
A Blog Carnival is a ‘best-of’ list of the current blog posts on a particular topic. These posts are published on the blog of the carnival host who selects those posts which include the most exceptional content on the chosen carnival topic.
The amount of traffic that Blog Carnival actually drives to your blog can sometimes be fairly modest, however if your post is selected as an Editor’s Pick (the top five posts listed in a blog carnival) then this can really increase your blog traffic. Successful inclusion of one of your blog posts in a carnival also increases the number of external referring links back to your blog. This is great for a number of reasons, not least of which is on-going Search Engine Optimisation.
So with this in mind, how can you get the most out of Blog Carnival? Here is my top five list of what to do to secure inclusion of your blog posts in a carnival and hopefully (fingers and toes crossed) secure them as an Editor’s Pick.
1. Ensure that there is a thriving Blog Carnival in your niche
Firstly, check out Blog Carnival to make sure that there are live carnivals that match your blog topic. For example if you write a fashion blog, try searching for varying terms around the phrase fashion, such as ‘style’ and ‘clothes’ as well as ‘fashion.’ This makes it much easier to highlight the carnivals that are most suited to you and your blog and means that you will get the most of Blog Carnival.
2. Only submit posts that are in line with the Blog Carnival topic
When submitting a post to a blog carnival, it is crucial that the post is suitable for and in line with the carnival topic. Spamming blog carnivals with posts that are unrelated to the topic of the carnival simply means that your post will not be chosen for inclusion.
Here at Tinderbox Media we submit blog posts to blog carnivals for a number of our (very different) clients and always ensure the carnivals are suitable to the topic of our client’s posts. There would be no point in submitting articles from client A’s blog to carnivals suitable for client B, primarily because the focus of the two blogs is completely different, as is the intended audience and the posts would not be included.
3. When submitting a post, comment
Another way to improve your chances of success in a blog carnival is to leave a concise and informative comment about your blog post when you are submitting it. A short and interesting description of your post creates intrigue and encourages people to click through to the post. Alternatively, copying and pasting a particularly interesting paragraph from the blog post can work very well too.
4. Make sure your post titles (and content!) are fresh and interesting
Always make sure that your blog post titles and content are appealing to those who will be visiting the blog carnival. For example, if you are submitting a post to a SciFi carnival, try and think about the target audience of that carnival and what would interest those that visit the carnival. Short, snappy and intriguing titles along with fresh, topical content always encourage interest.
Similarly, just as it is important to update your blog regularly, it is also a good idea to submit suitable and interesting new posts to blog carnivals on a regular basis, to encourage loyal readership and raise awareness about your blog. It also means that you can create and maintain strong and positive relationships with carnival hosts in the hope of encouraging them to include your posts in future carnivals.
5. Link back to the Carnival
If your post is successful in a blog carnival, it is considered good n’etiquette to link back to the carnival in order to spread the word about that particular blog carnival. In order to do so, simply add “This post was selected for XXX Carnival (and a link to the carnival), hosted by XXX (and a link to the host)” at the end of your selected post. This again encourages strong relationships with carnival hosts; great for improving your chances of success in future carnivals.
So that’s my top five list of tips to bear in mind when writing posts for and submitting to Blog Carnival.
Always remember the two intended outcomes of submitting your posts to Blog Carnival: good quality referring links and increased traffic from interested parties, and you will soon be basking in your own Blog Carnival success!
I hope that my list of tips work for you too and if you find or know of any others, I would love to hear them!
Image: Paul Scicluna