We’ve been conditioned to spend all our time chasing around Facebook and Twitter and LinkedIn, trying to engage new followers, and all this time the answer is right under our noses. You have new visitors turn up on your blog every day. Instead of trying to track them down after they leave, get them to subscribe to your RSS feed while they’re still on your blog. Here are 20 simple ways to gain RSS subscribers.
1. Use a big RSS button – A lot of people have no idea what RSS is so they’re not even looking for that tiny button. Use a big button that they have to trip over and they’re likely to click it just to see what it is.
2. Put the RSS button above the fold – If they have to scroll for it they’re not going to see it.
3. The RSS button should appear on every page – Not just the home page, not just the archive page… put it on every page.
4. Create an anchor text link – Like I said, some people don’t know what RSS is. Use a sidebar text widget to create an anchor text link telling people to follow your RSS feed in their favorite feed reader.
5. Include an email subscription link – Since most people don’t understand RSS it pays to also install a big, bold email subscription icon.
6. Write a blog post about it and tell people why they should subscribe.
7. Now, share that same blog post on Twitter, Facebook and any other social networks you use.
8. Highlight a block of text at the end of every post that says, “If you like this article subscribe to our RSS feed so you don’t miss a single minute of fun!”
9. Publish new content frequently and on a regular basis. Once your readers know you’re publishing every day they’ll want to follow you so they can keep up.
10. It should go without saying – Post content that people want to follow.
11. Use your RSS feed link in resources boxes when you’re using article marketing to promote your blog.
12. Use the link to your RSS feed when you’re commenting on other blogs.
13. Write exceptionally killer content for guest blog posts and use your RSS feed in your author’s bio.
14. Set up a special Subscribe page on your blog and list out all of your various links along with a description of what they are and how they work.
15. Put a counter on your RSS icon and use social proof to boost your subscriptions.
16. You should be replying to all commentors on your blog. When you do, remind the first-timers to subscribe to your feed.
17. Use small RSS icons to show your readers they can subscribe to a particular category.
18. Set up a special category for trendy topics or breaking news.
19. Put a feed icon on your comments for readers who want to follow the conversation.
20. Publish a long series of blog posts. Remind readers at the end of each post that this is an ongoing series so they should consider subscribing so they don’t miss anything.
What do you think? Let me know in the comments below!