Many of us have been busy posting our articles and photos on IMPress or on the IPA website and I wanted to thank you all for doing so. This article should explain how you can increase the readership on your articles and do it by spending a few moments once you hit the publish button on our site to take your article live. Consider this as part of the publishing process at IPA and a must for all of us.
On a side note, I took my iPad to the recent National Association of Broadcasters Show in Las Vegas in April. I was able to pull up the IMPress site there on my iPad and show some of our work to the many companies I had met at the show. It was invaluable to show them exactly who IPA is and what we do. They were all impressed. I would urge all members that can afford an IPad or similar tablet to get one and take it with you when you attend shows and events. It is the best way to introduce yourself and your published works to those you will meet.
If you can’t afford or don’t need an iPad, then do what I did and create a portfolio of your work that has been published on our sites and take some screen shots of our Home page and put it in a nice binder and take it with you. You now have the ability to easily print any page or pages from our site by clicking on the link on the bottom of each page. Print in color if you can, they will have more impact that way. Remember to print your portfolio too on our main site to show people who you are and some of your work.
New IPA Sponsoring Companies
We are lining up new companies to support IPA, unfortunately not financial support, but having their names and recommendations behind us will help us grow and gain even more credibility and exposure. They will also supply products I can review for IMPress which helps our members and attract readers and visitors to our sites. We will be using some of these product as prizes in upcoming contests and promotions which we want to run on our Facebook Fan pages, so watch for them.
What we offer these companies, for their support, is inclusion of a video interview I shoot in the trade show reviews and articles I do. We also publish some of their select press releases and if we are excited about their products, will write a review for our IMPress site. Previously these product and show reviews appeared on our main web site, but all reviews will now appear on IMPress.
We will also continue to support these companies in other ways. Branding is important to corporations and getting their names and logos seen is vital. We will help brand their lines by publishing their logos in these articles and reviews, including links to their sites. We will also acknowlede them on every video and review where we have used their products. So our support is meaningful and ongoing to these companies and they understand the value.
You will begin to see similar banners to this one at the end of some of my reviews and articles. This is another way we can support our sponsors.
I wanted to share some stats with you as well. Since the IMPress launch in November 2010, our monthly unique visits to our site have grown 20% each month. Although the numbers may not be as impressive yet, as some major sites, it is encouraging that this month we project that 19,000+ unique visitors are now finding us and reading your articles on our site. Now understand we have not done any marketing or heavy promotions and people are either fining us from our postings on Facebook or from search engines. You can also see the the number of pages viewed, hits and bandwidth are substantial as well. Important to remember that the bulk of those that see our postings on Facebook in the groups and on my personal Friend list are photographers and videographers. So it is safe to say that we have a very select group of photographers that visit our site and read these articles. This is especially important to companies that want to target this audience.
Unique Visitors Through May 5, 2012
Inbound Linking Sites
Now lets look at where the traffic is coming from. As you can see from the chart below, approximately 46% of our traffic is coming into our site from Facebook, so you can understand why I have written this article and ask for your support.
This is a partial screen shot from our web stat page showing the top sites that are sending traffic to IMPress.
Stats – Pages-URL’s – Promoting Your Articles
This chart will show what articles the visitors are reading. If your articles are not shown in the top of this list, it means you aren’t promoting your work properly. You can see that my articles are viewed on this short list most. The reasons of course is they are the most recent articles posted this week and because I have promoted them on Facebook as well. Finally, the subject or content of these articles are what our readers are interested in. Now if we looked at last months total stats, these would be different of course and another author would take the lead, but since I publish more articles then most, and try to select subjects that I know all of our photographers will be interested in, I will push to the top.
So when you think of an article you want to write, take this into consideration. Readers are interested in travel, sports, photography, How-To, new products and many other subjects, but since we have so many photographers in our groups on Facebook and Facebook sends us almost half of our readers, you may want to either design your articles to appeal to our audience or get on Facebook and promote your articles. If for example you specialize in covering concerts, you might join all the Facebook Groups that deal with music, or even the groups from the performers you cover in your articles. Obviously if I wrote about Beyonce, I would run, not walk, to her group or Fan page on Facebook and post my article link there. I can assure you the traffic will follow your link and read the article.
Promoting Your Article On Facebook Or Other Social Networking Sites.
Each time I publish a new article on our site, I write a small line or two about the article and then copy the link and paste it into my FB page and then go to many of the major photo groups and paste it onto their walls, where you will see a box that says “Write Something”. If I can’t paste it on their wall, I will paste it into a comment box on one of their posts.
See what it looks like on this groups page the National Press Photographers Assoc. You will see they have over 5,000 photographer members, what a great way to reach many of them. You can already see on these two articles, I have already received some Thumbs Up, so we know these people have visited our site and read the articles.
Now I know many of you are on Facebook and some don’t do Facebook, but it is a great way to gain free exposure and that means credibility and people coming in to see your work. Building a strong base is important for any website and the more inbound sites pointing to our site the more relevance it has with the search engines. So if we had 200 sites pointing to us, we would be on the top of a search on, lets say Google.
I would ask each and every one of you to not only do as I do, but also post to other social networking sites as well. If you tweet, then go and tweet about IMPress or your articles, if you are on LinkedIn, then by all means get the information to the groups there. If you are on other sites like Digg, StumbleUpon, Hubpages, MySpace or you post to forums, then by all means let them know what you are doing at IPA. Add a line to your online signature file when you do post to any sites, maybe something like this one: Your Name, next line, International Press Assoc. Member, See My Articles on IPAIMpress.com.
If you sign your name on postings, be sure to include the fact you are a member of IPA. If each one of us takes only a few minutes to go in and post to these sites, we will see a dramatic jump in visitors to our site and that means good things for all of us.
Be Kind Post Other Authors Articles Too
Below are some posts I did on the two articles just published on IMPress, one is mine the other is from Lisa Burrows one of our IMPress authors. You can see my little lead in to the story and then the link. Facebook will actually complete the rest including the photo because it will go to that page and grab the info there.
I usually open my note pad on my computer and type in what I want to say about my article, then I copy and paste the articles URL. I may do it for a few articles and not just mine. Then I go back to Facebook and begin to copy and paste these into various groups that I have joined or Liked and also all of the IPA Groups and IMPress Fan pages we have.
Want to be nice, if you see an article from another fellow author you like, by all means do as I do and help them by posting their article on Facebook too. They will do the same for you.
Here are some direct links to these Fan pages and groups. If you are currently not a member, please join us on all of them.
So I am going to count on all of you guys and gals to do your part in promoting IPA and IMPress and your work on our sites. Right now new memberships are going through a seasonal slow down and we can use your help recruiting qualified members. Please let others you meet or know, that may find membership beneficial, know about us and the great work we are all doing.
Word of mouth is the most important method of advertising, so lets keep IPA strong and help promote each others works and talk to those we meet about the many benefits of membership at IPA
Other Benefits Of Membership
If you are doing the work and you have followed our directions on how to gain media access and now want to enjoy some of the perks of your membership and hard work, be sure to identify yourself as a member of IPA when you travel. Very often I will email a resort, hotel or cruise line that I plan to go to before I leave and send them links to my travel articles. I let them know that I am coming and the dates and would like to write an article or review of their facility. On arrival I ask to see the person I wrote to or their general manager and have either my iPad or a book I have prepared that shows some of my work on our sites. Every single time I follow this procedure I am upgraded to a suite or given VIP status and that means thousands of dollars in benefits each year.
Now showing your press card at the registration desk might also help as it did on our recent trip to Las Vegas. We booked a $140 per night room at the Mirage Hotel for the two nights we would be there and were upgraded to their superior private floor suite. Here is a photo of only a portion of that suite.
If you take a moment and view some of my many travel articles, you will see I book my trips in the economy or lowest class and then enjoy my VIP upgrades. You can see that I do the work I have promised them and review their properties. See our Corporate Testimonials page to see what they think of my work. It is all about doing the work and building my reputation and credibility. This then opens so many new opportunities and doors to me and it can do the same for you. You may have joined IPA just for the fun of it, but if you decide to take your membership seriously, you will enjoy the fruits of your labor.