14 Ways to Promote Your Content

[FYI: This article was initially published on the Ahrefs Blog. However, it has been subsequently rewritten, and I decided to share the original version here.]

If your newly published article is not read by anyone, then it cannot do its job to persuade, engage, or sell.

Try these tactics to drive more traffic to your content.

1. Target topics with search traffic potential

If your article ranks high on Google, you’ll be able to get traffic continuously over the long term.

But you can’t just create random content and just wait for Google to rank it. To get search traffic, you must target topics people search for.

Here’s how to find topics with search traffic potential:

  1. Go to Ahrefs’ Keywords Explorer
  2. Enter one or a few relevant keywords
  3. Go to the Matching terms report

You can narrow the list by focusing on low-difficulty, high-traffic keywords. Add these filters:

  • Traffic Potential (TP) > 500
  • Keyword Difficulty (KD) < 20

KE - traffic potential - filters

Go through the list and pick out those that are relevant to your site.

Before a K-pop group makes a comeback, it releases teaser images, music video trailers, track lists, and announcements. The same goes before a movie is released—multiple trailers, teaser images, featurettes, and more are published.

You can do the same for your content too. Build hype before you publish. It doesn’t have to be at the level of an entertainment company—it can be as simple as a tweet.

For example, Chenell Basilio pre-launches her latest posts on Twitter and encourages people to join her list:

Doing this generates suspense for her content and keeps people on the lookout.

Whenever your audience discovers something memorable—whether it’s a quote or an image—you’ll want to make it easy for them to share with their friends.

For example, paleo recipe site Nom Nom Paleo has a “Pin” feature on its recipes:

share buttons

Setting this up is easy—just install plugins like Easy Social Share, and you should be ready to go.

Great content is not created in a silo.

You need someone to look through your work and provide feedback. You’ll want them to vet your claims, dissect your clauses, point out grammatical errors, and improve your flow.

This could be a friend, family member, colleague, or someone from the same industry. Even better: What if you created a small, tight-knit group of such people who can provide feedback whenever any of you create something?

Not only will you create higher-quality work, but you’ll also be able to cross-promote each other too.

Every week, we send a newsletter of our best content to 200,000 subscribers:

ahrefs newsletter

We didn’t build that audience overnight. It took us years. But if you want an audience that’s ready and willing to consume your content whenever you publish, you have to start now.

Building an email list doesn’t have to be complicated. You can simply include an opt-in box on every blog post, like what we do:

ahrefs sign up to newslettter box

Just because you’ve shared it once on social doesn’t mean everyone has seen it.

Thanks (or no thanks) to each platform’s algorithm, every tweet, post, or video is ephemeral—your audience has either seen it or not. But even if they did, they might have forgotten about it.

So, don’t be afraid to share your posts multiple times. For example, look at how many times marketer Ross Simmonds has tweeted the same thing:

For best results, spread it out over a period of time (e.g., six months to a year).

If you’ve written an in-depth article, chances are you’ve linked to some useful resources from others. Why not reach out and let them know?

They’ll be delighted to know they’ve been featured. Some may even share on social media and send extra traffic your way.

Even if they don’t, it’s OK. Focus on building a relationship with them. It may lead to something bigger: cross-promotions, partnerships, and more.

Ever read an article on Wikipedia, ended up on Article Z, and wondered where all the time went?

The power behind “Wiki rabbit holes” is internal links. Internal links are links from one page on the same website to another. Adding these links can help readers discover more of your content. Plus, it can help to boost your pages’ performance in Google too.

The easiest way to do this is to sign up for a free Ahrefs Webmaster Tools (AWT) account. Then, run a crawl of your site with Site Audit. Once that’s done, head to the Link opportunities report.

The report will suggest potential internal links you can add.

internal link opportunities in ahrefs webmaster tools

Many companies neglect to do this. Your employees work for you, produce content, and likely use your product. They’re in the best position to promote your content—some of them may have even cultivated an audience of their own.

They should be one of your first ports of call whenever you publish something.

For example, at Ahrefs, we encourage authors to share their work on their socials.

As you can see, it can get a ton of traction.

Our article on SEO for lead generation, for example, was featured in Aleyda Solis’ SEOFOMO newsletter.

Plenty of such niche-specific newsletters exist. Get featured, and you can get plenty of exposure for your content.

While my article was picked up organically, you can actively reach out to these newsletters and introduce your content to them.

Don’t be pushy, and don’t promote every article you publish. These newsletters are sent frequently, so you don’t have to feature them immediately. What’s preferable is to build a relationship with the creator. You may eventually be featured not just once but many times.

Even better: If you run your own newsletter (see #5), you can do a newsletter swap, where you promote each other’s articles.

On May 15, 2023, Ryan Holiday published this post on his blog.

A few days later, he republished it word for word on his Medium:

This tactic is called content syndication when third-party sites republish an exact copy of content that originally appeared elsewhere. You’re killing two birds with one stone—create one piece of content and expose it to different audiences.

The easiest way to begin is to use self-syndication sites, where you can republish content yourself. These are sites like Medium and LinkedIn, where you can import or copy-paste your existing content.

If someone wrote an article that mentioned your topic without further details, then your article might be a perfect fit as an additional resource that they could point to.

How do you find these articles? Here’s how:

  1. Go to Ahrefs’ Content Explorer
  2. Search for your topic (e.g., “mechanical keyboard”)

We’ll see around 558,000 pages we could target. That’s too many, so let’s narrow the results down with these filters:

  • Domain Rating: 30–90
  • Website traffic: 500+
  • Words: 500+
  • Language: English
  • One page per domain: Checked
  • Exclude homepages: Checked
  • Exclude subdomains: Checked
  • Live & Broken: Only live
  • Filter explicit results: On

You now have ~3,800 of the best pages to reach out to. If this number is still too daunting, play around with the filters until you get a number you’re comfortable with.

Once you have a satisfactory list, review each page and see if your article adds value. If yes, reach out to the writer or website owner and see if you can persuade them to link to your article.

I’m not talking about creating expert roundups, where experts are asked to contribute a quote, and the post is published as is.

If you want to feature experts in your content, you need to go the extra mile. Interview them and feature their insights. Or even better: interview multiple experts and combine all their insights.

That’s what we did with our post on marketing ideas—I asked several marketers for the most unconventional marketing campaign they’ve seen and wrote up what I learned:

The most direct way to promote your content is by running ads.

If popular ad platforms like Facebook and Instagram seem prohibitively expensive, remember that niche ad platforms like Quora and Reddit also exist.

The downside is that ads can be very expensive in some niches, so you’ll need to estimate the ROI carefully.

Final thoughts

Even if you have a piece of content that checks all the boxes on the content quality checklist, it can’t do its job of persuading your readers to buy if no one sees it.

That’s why you need to promote your content so that it can reach the right people. Use any or all of the tactics above to give your content a boost in distribution.

Nick is a product marketer and a seasoned SEO specialist at Ahrefs. He is also a regular contributor to the Ahrefs Blog, dedicating his remaining time to enhancing the Ahrefs SEO Toolbar.