There are various ways you can let people know that you have made a new post to your blog. Two of these include an RSS feed and social bookmarking. A third one I want to talk about in this article is known as blog and ping.
This is an online marketing term applied to a system that utilizes blogs and pings to deliver content and/or sites for indexing in search engines with the ultimate aim of profit.
When you blog you are writing your thoughts about something and posting it in a hosted blogging platform somewhere. The act of pinging is to let various blog directories know that you have just posted an article and that people can come and read it.
In the early days getting a website noticed by a search engine was very difficult. You could buy a listing with Yahoo in their directory for $299 a year and it still didn’t guarantee your website would be accepted.
Most people have heard of the Google sandbox, and it has always been rumored that new websites were buried for as long as six months or more before Google would even notice them. This basically forced a new website owner to go out and use paid advertising to drive traffic to their site.
Today blogging and pinging has changed all that. Search engines are constantly on the prowl looking for fresh content that is relevant to the keywords that their visitors are searching for. For that reason blogging allows new website owners and blog owners to be noticed much quicker.
The act of pinging a blog directory and letting them know that you have made a new post is a quick way for a search engine to go from the blog directory back to your blog to see what it is that you have to offer.
Most hosting platforms such as Blogger.com and WordPress.com will ping a set of directories automatically. If you want to vary that list in WordPress for example, you can go and manually add names to it for additional directories that you want to ping.
Obviously the more directories that you are letting know about your updated content the more potential traffic you will have.
If you are unsure whether you are hitting all the directories you can use a service such as Ping-O-Matic and compare it to the list of directories that you are presently pinging. Ping-O-Matic is one way to ping blog directories by posting either the URL for your blog or the URL for a specific blog post.
Equally as important as pinging various blog directories is to socially bookmark your posts to relevant social directories as well. You may well be familiar with the more popular ones including Digg, Propeller, Google Bookmarks, Reddit, and Delicious.
Social bookmarking a post is similar to pinging in that you are letting various social directories know you have added content that they may want to share with their readers.
These bookmarks really become search engine bait as the major search engines are constantly spidering the top social directories looking for new content as well.
Every time they find a link to your blog posted in a social directory they follow it back to its origin, where they can then crawl the content looking for fresh information for their readers.
You really limit your ability to attract new visitors if you just blog and ping without social bookmarking.
The key to the whole process is to have a strategy, be consistent, and add thoughtful relative content as often as possible.