It’s every content marketer’s dream – to drive viral traffic and ensure new posts see thousands, if not tens of thousands, of unique page views. Though for the average blogger, the amount of times this actually happens is few and far between.
Meg Jerrard of Mapping Megan shares her expertise on How to drive traffic using Flipboard.
But what if I told you there was a way to drive page views in the thousands, with a strategy that only takes ten minutes of management / upkeep per day?
Flipboard is an incredible way to gain viral traffic to your content, and if you’re not already utilizing the platform, you would do well to start using it right away.
Marketing your content here is the easiest way to drive thousands new visitors to your site, and introduce your brand to a potential 90 million new fans. And it’s not just the flavor of the month, this is the surest way to achieving traffic and exposure, and is definitely here to stay.
- 1 What is Flipboard?
What is Flipboard?
Flipboard is a news aggregation platform which launched in 2010; a magazine-style feed reader where users discover new content based on their interests, and ‘flip’ their favorite articles into themed magazines. It’s very similar to Pinterest, where users pin content to themed boards, however in Flipboard’s case the platform is presented in a magazine style format, and content is presented to users based on their interests, whether they follow you or not.
I was vehemently opposed to adding yet another social media platform to my plate. As a one-woman operation, it’s difficult enough as it is managing content across Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, StumbleUpon, Pinterest, Tumblr, YouTube and Google +.
But on the glowing praise of other content creators, I added Flipboard to my marketing strategy, and my site stats started to spike. New posts would see up to 3,000, 4,000, and 8,000 views on a really good day.
Flipboard began outranking search engine traffic, and referrals from all other social media platforms combined. And, unlike other content discovery platforms like StumbleUpon, which may result in a low bounce rate, traffic from Flipboard is likely to stay on the page and digest your content.
How to Get Started with Flipboard
Of all the social media channels, Flipboard is the easiest to get started on, and there is very little learning curve involved. Simply download the mobile app or sign up via the web application on your desktop, and you have access to a traffic generating machine.
Unlike other social media platforms, you don’t need a huge following to start seeing traffic from flipboard, and you can drive thousands of views without many followers at all. As new content is added to the platform, Flipboard assigns a category (ie travel, or politics), and scans for freshly added flips it can feature as the top posts of the category each day. This means you can successfully market your content without having to put time into creating a social presence, and don’t have to worry about getting your number of followers up.
Though it’s important to keep in mind that viral traffic is often traffic which is short lived. On average, Flipboard traffic to a post will die out after 2 days, and for continued traffic you will then have to create another post. For those who are content rich, this won’t be an issue, as you can gain quite steady traffic from continuing to produce content and flipping it regularly.
Step One: Create Your Profile
The first step is downloading the app or signing up via the desktop version online. You’ll then create your profile. Add a short bio with a profile picture (if you log in via Facebook it will pull this profile picture automatically). Be sure to mention your brand name or website in your profile bio for good branding.
Once your profile is created you can select the topics you would like to follow, and there are over 34,000 of them! The topics you choose to follow will dictate which categories and content shows up in your home feed.
Step Two: Create Magazines
Magazines are the essence of getting Flipboard to work for you. The platform is centered on the concept of curated magazines, whether made up of your own content or articles you like in the same niche. So after having created your profile, you need to create a few magazines. If you’re not familiar with the term “content curation”, this means finding the best content from the web and consolidating it in the one place.
Click “create magazine” on your profile page, and enter a title and description for the magazine. Having an interesting magazine title and description with targeted keywords can go a long way. You should narrow down a clear focus for your magazine topic instead of making it an expansive corner.
Your magazines should be relevant to your brand and niche. You may choose to create magazine based on the categories you cover on your blog. Featured magazines drive hoards of traffic each day, so creating a solid magazine is the foundation to success on Flipboard. The more readers who follow your magazine, the better chances you have of being featured in your niche or having your content reflipped into more popular magazines.
Once you hit “create” you can start curating content.
Step Three: Curating Content
The best way to approach content curation on Flipboard is to gather the best content from your niche, and blend your own content into the mix to drive traffic to your own site.
You can and should flip articles into as many of your magazines that make sense. Like other social media sites it’s important to flip other people’s content as well as your own, and the more magazines you flip content into, the better your chance of having them seen.
If you’re using the Flipboard smartphone app, it’s very easy to add content to a magazine you have created. If you’re flipping directly from the app, you can hit the plus sign and you will be asked which of your magazines you’d like to add it to.
If you’re working on a desktop, you can use their bookmarklet to add any webpage to a magazine directly through your web browser. Chrome users can take advantage of their Chrome extension.
Large brands have the option to add multiple users to a board, much like a group board on Pinterest. This is valuable for organizations looking to increase the span of their magazines.
In order to see true value from Flipboard, you need to maintain your momentum and curate content on a regular basis. This shouldn’t take any longer than 10 minutes over your morning coffee, browsing topics that you follow and flipping relevant articles into your magazines. It will take a few weeks to start seeing solid results, however consistency is key, and after having maintained a momentum you will start seeing traffic generate.
Step Four: Flip Your Own Content
Flipboard actively encourages users to flip their own content, and this, after all, is how you generate traffic to your site. From experience, you should add your articles as soon as they have been published; as a news aggregation app, newer articles gain more traction. This doesn’t mean that you won’t get traffic from flipping archived posts however there is a definite benefit in flipping asap.
Leaving a short comment when you flip is crucial to having it rank in categories featured on the home feed. According to Flipboard this adds value to your flip by drawing attention to your post since comments are emphasized in the layouts of the mobile app, bringing more attention to your account. When you go to flip into a magazine there will be a space which says “What’s interesting about this?” Leave your short comment (with targeted keywords) here.
Flipboard scans everything being added to the platform to feature new content in the featured categories on the homepage. You don’t have control over which category your content is placed in, however the comments you leave heavily influence this. The flipboard algorithm is still not understood, so in terms of keywords it’s quite literally a guessing game, however if you want to see your articles categorized under “Travel”, you will generally need to use the word travel a lot as well as other similar keywords like “plane” or “Australia”.
By making it easy for others to share your posts, you increase your opportunity for viral traffic. Some social media share plugins don’t support Flipboard, so make sure you have a version which does.
I personally use the pro version of Social Media Warfare which is a paid plugin at $29 per year, though Flipboard is now an option on the free AddThis, ShareThis, AddtoAny and Shareaholic plugins.
Step 6: Join a Flipboard Tribe
News of Flipboard’s power to generate an avalanche of traffic has spread like wildfire, and many groups have set up Flipboard Tribes. There are many sharing groups on Facebook where users enter a link for the day, and everyone flips each other’s posts. These can be a great way to make your content more visible.
Within the travel niche, Flipboard tribes on Facebook include Flipboard for Travel Bloggers and Travel Bloggers Evergreen Shares (to join this group, contact Meg directly). Type “Flipboard” into the search bar on Facebook to find groups within your specific niche.
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