That’s a way over-the-top headline just to get your attention. I doubt we’ll rule any galaxies in the near future, but we can dream. I’ve learned what I needed to learn about Twitter and drawn a blueprint for other bloggers to follow. I am now turning my keen analytical mind to StumbleUpon. Today I’ll give you a little history, my theory about how it works, and some accounts to check out and follow if you like them.
A Little History
- My friend and regular contributor Jeremy has gotten us tons of views from StumbleUpon in the last six months. If we look at the total views he’s generated for all the blogs by sharing links on StumbleUpon, it’s not hundreds of views. It’s thousands.
- This started six months ago when Jeremy stumbled some of our posts on a whim. We were so impressed by the results that we did experiments for awhile, asking bloggers to look at their stats and stumbling their links and whatnot.
- We hit a brick wall in March and I decided I needed to crack Twitter completely before I worried much more about StumbleUpon. I’ve cracked Twitter now, so I am turning my attention back to StumbleUpon. It’s the most time-efficient way of getting views for a blog that I’ve seen so far. It takes less than 5 minutes to share a link on StumbleUpon, and we’ve gotten thousands of page views in the last few months from Jeremy doing just that.
My Theory About How It Works
This is exactly what it says – theoretical. I’ve read a lot of articles about StumbleUpon, but I’ve yet to talk to an actual person with real experience there. So doing the best I can.
- Content quality counts. People have the ability to dislike things on StumbleUpon. Likes and dislikes affect feed rankings, so only share the best stuff. People can bury you with dislikes if you share the wrong thing.
- Don’t share too many things from the same domain. StumbleUpon reads that as self-promotion. Just for example, if you are an Onion fan, and you share nothing but things from The Onion, StumbleUpon will assume you are a promoter for The Onion. The price for too much self-promotion on StumbleUpon is pretty steep. Four links to other sites for every one of your own, is my suggestion.
- Activity matters. I’m almost certain that the reason Jeremy has had such success is because he spends time on StumbleUpon every week, and because he’s liked so many things on StumbleUpon. Activity takes time to accrue. Jeremy started being active six months ago, with an account that he’d established years before. The big payoffs have only come in the last month or two.
- Photos and videos rule. You want a good image or a great video featured in any post you share there. That increases the chance that it will appeal to people and get likes.
- What you really want, I think, is for people who are only tangentially connected to you — people you don’t share much of a following with, and who are in different geographical areas — to share your links on StumbleUpon. Which brings me to the third part.
Check Out These Accounts and Follow the Ones You Like
Interaction on multiple social media networks is powerful. If you find people who are cool enough to interact with you on three or more networks, you should make friends. The links below give you links to StumbleUpon accounts, WordPress blogs, and Twitter handles, in that order. I suggest you follow the ones you like on all three networks if you’re hoping to build the same sort of network I am hoping to build.
Some of these are bloggers I have been following from the very beginning. Some are people I’ve met recently. Some are offline friends. I’m not saying which are which.
I’ll crack StumbleUpon. It might take me months, but I’m doing it. It’s decided.
I don’t ask people to do things unless they are very close to me, but data-sharing is welcome. Once I figure out how StumbleUpon works, I’ll share it with the world just like I did with the Twitter. The more information I have to work with about what’s happening on other peoples’ blogs and StumbleUpon accounts, the more quickly I’ll be able to figure it out.
Batman is unavoidably delayed this week, but we’ll have a Wordless Wednesday this afternoon.