How to Use Social Bookmarking To Promote Your Blog
You can help build an audience for your blog by using a social bookmarking service. There are other social bookmarking tools, but one called Delicious has the biggest user community so it’s probably the best choice for promoting your blog.

Delicious lets you bookmark articles, videos, photos and other content and save the bookmarks on a personal space on the Delicious site. You can make your bookmarks public, which allows others to discover what you’ve bookmarked. By publicly bookmarking your blog entries, you’ll expose them to a big potential audience.

Getting Started

Sign up for a free Delicious account and create a profile. You’ll quickly realize that Delicious is incredibly useful for storing your own research and bookmarking sites of interest generally. But let’s focus on using the service to promote your blog.

  1. Each time you post an entry on your blog, bookmark it on Delicious. [There are tools for the Firefox browser that let you bookmark things to Delicious with one click. This will improve your life immensely.]
  2. In the bookmark box that pops up, add a pithy description that says why the entry is worth reading: “Step-by-step instructions for gathering signatures for a referendum”; “List of the hardiest heirloom tomatoes”; “Review of The Tudors Season 2”; “The link between Asperger’s and musical talent”. Don’t be clever, be clear.
  3. Assign the bookmark a few tags that will bring it to the attention of people interested in the topic of your entry.
  4. Do this with [nearly] every entry, and make sure your tagging is consistent---and corresponds with users’ thinking [i.e., a tag of “salad” isn’t going to get the right people to your heirloom tomato item].

Getting Readers

The bookmarks for your entry will surface on Delicious several ways:

  • Some people “subscribe” to Delicious tags, which means they receive a running list of all bookmarks for (say) “asperger’s” or “tudors” or “gardening”. They will see your bookmarks. Some may visit your blog. Some may become readers.
  • If they like your blog entry, they’ll bookmark it themselves. As more people bookmark your entry, it becomes more visually conspicuous on the Delicious service. So your most popular entries will get exposure to many more people---and remain visible for a long time.
  • Other people use Delicious as a search engine: They may search the word “tudors” and see the bookmark for your blog entry.

Delicious is flexible, rich and always evolving. There are many other ways to use Delicious to promote your blog. But start by bookmarking, tagging and describing your blog entries, it’ll take you about a minute per day. It won’t pay off immediately. But it’s another valuable way to make your blog visible to the people you want to see it.