In this day and age of internet marketing/SEO/SEM and whatever else falls in between, there are a few standard tools of the trade that can help give you a boost across many of these different business related facets of the internet. As we scoot through 2008 and beyond, social bookmarking sites are coming and going, however, there are some that are as standard in my house as salt and pepper. The sites I’ll talk about below are sites that every internet marketer should be using for many reasons, including but not limited to:
- Traffic, traffic, traffic
- Social gratification
…and of course, the above can lead to what every internet marketer is really after – money.
Using social media (in this case, the social bookmarking aspect of social media), can really help you turbo kick start a new site, and/or give a nice jolt of life to an existing one. If you’re reading this article, chances are pretty good that you’re familiar with a few of them, if not all. However, for those that are new to internet marketing, and/or to social bookmarking (where have you been for the last few years!?), this will be a nice refresher that will give you a general overview of 5 social bookmarking sites you should be using.
Image courtesy of: Telezenet
1. StumbleUpon – I would bet quite a bit of coin that SU is at the top of a majority of people’s lists. Started way back in 2001, StumbleUpon has came a long, long way, and has nearly mastered the art of rating websites based on user feedback. SU basically lets users (who are fiercely loyal) “stumble” across various websites based on their interests, and more importantly, the user can vote (or in SU speak, “thumb”) a website up or down. Obviously, the more thumbs up a website receives, the more times that site is presented to “stumblers”, so what that means for the marketer is that the more people that like your site, the more traffic you’ll receive from the domino effect of people “thumbing” up your site. Let’s put it this way – if you have a blog (or even a regular static site), and you’re not submitting your pages to StumbleUpon, then you’ve lost A LOT of potential traffic.
Of course, marketers of the black hat ways have found many ways to exploit SU, just like they have with pretty much any other web 2.0 social media site, which prompted SU to implement a more strict routine, but still, any honest marketer can reap the rewards of possibly landing a highly voted page/site on SU, and it should be in every internet marketers arsenal.
2. Digg - Hitting the front page of Digg.com is just about every internet marketers dream. Why? Well, simply put, if you submit an article or a site to Digg, the community is able to “Digg” (or in other words, vote) for your article, and the more people that Digg it, the more popular it gets. Once it reaches a certain threshold within a certain time frame (say, 100 diggs in 2 hours) it will hit the front page, and when it does, be prepared to have a server crash, because a TON of traffic is coming your way! Most people don’t mind a little temporary downtime (and that’s not always the case of course, depending on your hosting account), because landing a story on the front page can sometimes be the one boost you need to rocket your site to the next level. Famous bloggers (namely John Chow, who now makes upwards of 30k+ per month from his blog), talked about Digg being their first big leap into A-List blogging, due to the extreme exposure they received from some quirky article they submitted.
The Digg community is a strange bunch. I’m mainly talking about the long term, hardcore members that have a lot of voting juice. If they don’t like you, your site, or your article, you’ll know it. But if you submit high quality, unique, and creative material, you have a very good chance at doing well there. In my personal opinion and experiences, I submit every good article I can, because you just never know. Even if it doesn’t hit the front page, it can often get listed on top of particular categories and such, and will still bring you some pretty nice (and free!) traffic. Every marketer should be using Digg, hands down.
3. Reddit – Reddit holds the same principle as any other great social bookmarking site. Users of Reddit can “vote” an article up or down, and obviously, the more positive votes that an article gets, the more popular it will become, and although Reddit isn’t quite as big as some others, don’t let that fool you, because by using Reddit, you stand a chance at getting a massive amount of traffic from them. Again, the more popular your submission becomes, the more people will vote, which makes it more popular…and so on. Submitting good articles to Reddit is another thing I check off my list when blogging on my personal blog. I’ve seen huge traffic spikes from Reddit, which is enough to keep me coming back!
4. Del.icio.us – Usually referred to as one of the pioneers of social bookmarking, Del.icio.us (yes, it’s difficult typing that everytime) is a massive and highly trusted site where users can bookmark sites that they’ve found entertaining, helpful, or for whatever reason they wanted to save it. Like other social bookmarking platforms, users can vote on submissions, and obviously, the more votes a submission receives, the more popular it gets, and if you’re lucky, it will land on the front page which could deliver some unbelievable spikes of traffic to your site. Anytime I write something, or see something I like, I delicious it right away. It’s another definite staple of social bookmarking that every internet marketer should be using on a regular basis.
5. Mixx – Newer on the scene, Mixx is my underdog pick for the #5 slot. With recent news of a 200 percent increase in traffic, Mixx is up and coming in the social bookmarking scene. I find it pretty easy to use, and there are several categories you can submit your material to. I’ve been using Mixx pretty steadily, and I must say, it’s a pretty good return on traffic – enough to keep me coming back. As with any other SB site, users vote on submissions, and the more votes your submission sees, the more traffic you’ll receive. Hitting the front page is very nice, but obviously due to its “newness”, you’re not going to see the amount of traffic from something like a Digg frontpage. But that’s changing. Mixx is getting plenty of love from major websites, and it’ll be interesting to see if they can move up to the next level in the near future.
In conclusion, the above sites are wildly popular, and should be part of your daily routine (especially if you’re a blogger), because the benefits from submitting articles and having the chance of them getting front paged will do absolutle miracles for your website.
I’m sure not everyone will share the same opinions as me on the top 5 – so if you disagree, let me know below! What social bookmarking sites do you use? Which are the best? I would love to hear your thoughts on the subject, as it will be helpful for everyone.