It’s a little difficult to outline how to grow an audience for posts that didn’t start out with that intention. Majority of the posts we’ve collected via A8CDesignFlow (& voice) has not be crafted for general consumption, most skew towards internal reflections or broad statements about the design process—which is great—but less relevant as marketing material for growth.
Start with Why
Generally, marketing and growth follows the same principles as finding a PMF (product market fit), it requires understanding your market, user, and needs. With marketing, you need to understand the inherent problem the target “customer” is facing, and craft a solution/content that addresses that need/gap in the market.
If I was to select a post from the body of work we currently have available within the Automattic Design posts for use as a marketing tool for page view growth, it’d be “Balance the Scales of Influence with Design Sprints”.
Reason for selection: There’s a current need in the market for better understanding around the sprint methodology, and how to effectively run them. There are also multiple books out in the wild covering best practices (Lean Startup, Design Sprint by Google’s Jake Knapp, e.t.c) it’s a validate path, so we’d just need to steal a very small amount of attention/market share (1k).
- We’d need to change the name of the blog post. The title is too abstract, and doesn’t provide context as to why the post is an important read. The only valuable keywords are “Design” “Sprints”. Changing to something along the lines of “A New Design Sprint, Improve Your Process for 10x Results.” might potential lead to more click-through, though it’s a little “click baity”. We’d overall need to amplify the solution we believe the post is providing viewers, and what we believe the viewers want to read in order to get people to click.
- There are two ways to get traffic: easy or hard. Easy is you pay for it, hard is you scale organically–sans money. Both are doable, but one is instant and less time intensive(cash) the other is the opposite (organic). For this scenario, we’re going to use $20 to gain the end outcome of >1k page views.
- Google adwords, and long tail keywords. Doing a quick search for “design sprint” on Google’s keyword planner pulls up a good amount of potential keywords (unfiltered) that have a range of 10-10k monthly searches with a starting bid cost of 1 cent (screenshot below). Generally most people aim for high performing keywords—which generally costs more—but there’s a saying in marketing “the riches are in the niches”, same applies to keywords. Aiming for long tails is the best method for keeping costs low, and clicks high (hopefully).
With a limited budget of $20, and the goal of increasing post views, I bet that by using google adwords, changing the blog post title, and aiming for very low cost keywords we can improve clickthrough and grow the audience for the existing blog post “Balance the Scales of Influence with Design Sprints”.
Google adwords is just one of multiple traffic sources, and we can get the same or better results from facebook, twitter, e.t.c, but with the intent of saving time (constraint), Google adwords (search, not display campaigns) is the fastest way to spin up an ad, and start to see some traffic—though unfiltered—come in.