This guest post is by Brian Lippey of Guitar Shop TV.
Every blogger wants to offer the best content to his or her audience.
With Guitar Shop TV (GSTV), I set out to create an online community for passionate guitar fans and music lovers around the world. My goal was to offer the best guitar-related content to my audience.
To achieve this, the GSTV team has filmed over 200 hours of original online TV content. We update our blog regularly—with everything from live performances and backstage interviews, to commentary on upcoming album releases and the latest guitar gear. We tweet. We post on Facebook. We even have an on-site guitar shop.
But audiences today have a large appetite for content! With over 100 million guitarists and countless guitar music fans in the world, it’s important that our content’s fresh, entertaining and timely. Guitar news happens fast, making it difficult to churn out blog posts on everything out there.
Our audience is also very vocal about guitar-related content, as is evident on our Facebook page.
As creator of GSTV, I was looking for a social news platform that could deliver top guitar content from across the Web directly to our blog and allow users to participate on a social level. We want to engage music enthusiasts, not talk at them.
Our research led us to new social platform, ROCKZi.
A social news platform
ROCKZi is a social news platform that helps us deliver a fun community experience and share relevant content with our users. Unlike other social platforms that draw your readers to their networks, with this one, the traffic is directed to my blog, which gave me increased opportunities to attract more music fans and expand our community.
The platform lets you customize the content so that it really speaks to your blog’s audience. It let us pick a news category that was relevant specifically to our blog. For most websites, a category probably already exists, but if not, you can create one yourself.
Easy to install
We literally embedded the platform on our News page in three easy steps.
I was relived I didn’t need a developer to completely redesign our website—we had it up and running on our blog in about five minutes. The platform allowed us to alter the appearance of the content, so it fit nicely on our news page and matched our web design.
The platform in action
Since embedding the platform in August, we have seen traffic to the site increase by 25%. The average time spent on the page has also increased by four minutes.
Our readers started to come back to our site more often to educate themselves on guitar-related news that had been shared by otehrs in our community. And when they are on our site scanning the headlines, they do more than just read.
The platform comes pre-loaded with social tools that let readers post comments on stories, vote the best stories to the top, or submit their own stories they’ve discovered on the Web about the latest musicians or guitar gear.
So you can see what I mean when I say that this tool gives our site more than just good content.
It’s adding a social experience to the site that is bringing readers back more often to engage with other readers around content our audience cares most about.
We’re getting more traffic than Sturgis in August! And readers can pin, post, Facebook or tweet stories right from the page on our site, allowing them to feel more like a part of the community.
All the interactions between your users and the content that’s shared on your site (votes, shares, comments, etc.) will generate direct links through their social networks that will point directly back to your blog.
Do you use a social news tool on your blog? Have you tried ROCKZi? Share your experiences with us in the comments.
Founder Brian Lippey has a background that combines music and business. In Guitar Shop TV, Brian combines his passion for and knowledge of guitars with his strong business acumen.