Best Practices

How to Use Top Content Marketing Sites to Hack Referral Traffic

28 November, 2017
6 min read
Helvijs Smoteks

8-minute read

Apart from writing and publishing content, one of the trickiest things a content marketer must do is get people to read the articles. Of course, you can pay to promote your content but aren’t the best things in life free?!

At Linkody, we’ve tried what seems like hundreds of content promotion platforms. Most of them are free, and most of them didn’t drive much traffic.


1. Don’t treat content promotion sites like your personal soapbox

Of course, not all content promotion sites are created equal. And if you take a strategic approach when using websites I am about to share – traffic awaits you.

Take Quora for example. When I first learned about Quora, it was lauded as an incredibly powerful place to share content.

I literally stopped what I was doing and found questions where to share my articles. Alas, when I checked in a few days, Google Analytics showed me I got precisely ZERO visitors from Quora.

I wasn’t hurt but motivated to learn why and see if I could leverage the site.

A similar thing happened with other content promotion platforms and here’s what I learned.


2. Leverage Quora

After some reflection, I finally understood why I wasn’t driving traffic back to my site. I was spamming the community and not delivering real value to Quora’s users.

I’m happy to report that in just over six months of contributing content, I’ve been featured several times in the Quora digest. And man, does that boost your traffic!

This is true across all content promotion sites. As the revered Leo Burnett said years ago

Make it simple. Make it memorable. Make it inviting to look at. Make it fun to read.

~Leo Burnett

So let’s get to it - how the heck do I get 10,000 plus views on Quora?

Before I reveal my secrets – let’s look at what Quora as a content promotion platform offers.


Quora’s functionality

Quora's functionality

Quora is useful not only for asking (2) and answering (1) questions, but it also allows you to create your Quora blog (4) and write posts (3). This advances this platform as a go-to-site for content promotion.


Quora tips

It’s time - here’s my secret Quora sauce.

Eventually, I realized it’s simple - don’t be like everyone else!

When you find a question that has quite a few followers - contribute to say something different. And keep it valuable, easy to read and entertaining. You’re sure to get more upvotes if you make readers laugh!!

See what I mean:

Question - What are your exciting sites for building backlinks?

Answer –

Quora Answer Example


Results on Quora

As a cherry on a pie – here are few things to consider when promoting content on Quora:

  1. Try to stay away from long-form educational content. It’s hard to read and a bit boring for users.
  2. Use formatting, use bullets and whitespace. Whitespace is your friend—it makes answers easier to read.
  3. If you have a relevant image (say an infographic), those are awesome too!
  4. Above all, keep answers short, fun and a bit provoking — they drive the best views, upvotes and most importantly, traffic to your site!


3. Don’t give up on Reddit

What’s different here from other sites like Quora is that you don’t need to grow your community per say.

No followers needed—just great content. And that’s the best thing about Reddit - anyone can strike gold here!

I’ve experienced both failure and success on Reddit.

Some subreddits like it when you share your own articles and others will straight up ban you from their channels. Take some time to read through rules, posts and conversations.

Lurk before you contribute.


Reddit functionality

Here you can find a list of different subreddits and the most appropriate info you could share over there:

  1. /r/Marketing— For interesting marketing articles and discussions.
  2. /r/Entrepreneur— A text-post only community. Lots of AMAs and question posts.
  3. /r/WebMarketing— Hosts discussions and links to articles about web marketing, including email marketing, online PR, social media, SEO and so forth.
  4. /r/SEO— A subreddit for Search Engine Optimization news, case studies, and speculation.
  5. r/SEO_Infographics – Great subreddit for sharing SEO infographic. It’s not easy to get approval to post.
  6. /r/SocialMedia— Intended for professionals who are actively engaged in social media and community-oriented websites around the world.

These are the essential subreddits you need to know if you are in the digital marketing and SEO space.


Reddit tips

After several months of lurking, testing and optimising, here’s what I’ve observed:

Reddit Tips

  • Comment, comment, comment: Add valuable info by commenting on other threads.
    • Of course, comment something useful, funny, memorable, and unique. See #1 above!
      Reddit Tips on Comments
  • Be helpful! Contribute your best advice and you will get the traffic you deserve.
    • Example: this thread was created 11 months ago, and it is still bringing traffic to the article.
  • For every ten comments I leave - I share one article.
    • Try to keep this 10:1 ratio yourself so that you don’t come off as too spammy.
  • This is important – share your article only once!
    • At first, I liked to “cheat”, and I had to pay. The Reddit community hates when you spam links and if you don't obey this rule - a subreddit ban will follow.


4. Do tap into communities for exponential traffic growth

I’m sure you’ve heard of Reddit but ever heard of the community?

If not, you need to go check this site out!

If you’re a marketer like me, this site is packed with useful knowledge and is a great go-to-place for all things growth hacking. functionality

GrowtHackers Tips

Here’s a summary of all the awesome things you can do at

  1. Posts – You can share your most recent articles and group them into different topics for better visibility,
  2. Q&A – Ask sophisticated marketing questions and get killer answers from the top lads and ladies.
  3. Discussion – Start a discussion about anything growth hacking related. That’s the place where to challenge each other.
  4. AMAs – Once in a while top experts in their field participate in “Ask-me-anything” sessions. That’s where you can ask best-of-the-best all the tricky marketing questions.
  5. Growth Studies – If you have an exciting growth study, publish it there.
  6. Videos – Well, that section is for...videos.

This platform shows Sean Ellis in action and his ability to growth hack a business.

That’s also something you can do for your own site if you follow these hacks.


Growth Hackers tips

Here are my tested knowledge bombs on how to get your content noticed on Posts, Q&A, and Discussion sections.

AMAs, Growth Studies and Videos sections follow a bit different publishing framework & not everyone can share the content there.


“Never-tell-anyone-super-secret” tips:

GrowthHackers Tips

  1. Growth Hackers reviews your content: The very first article you share will go through a review process. It takes a couple of days and after you’re approved, sharing new articles will be a snap!
    • It’s the best to publish the content on Mondays or Tuesdays – so you want to take that into account when adding a post for the first time.
  2. Follow other experts: This platform makes following other experts complicated to favor the “organic” growth.
    • Nevertheless, to grow your following head over to AMAs or Growth Studies sections and follow commentators.
  3. Be authentic and contribute WOW content: On this platform, the “snowball” effect is strong. If you get few of your friends upvote the content and two times the experts will do the same. Worth the shot, huh?

Now, once you have a decent sized network, few followers and a “WOW” article to share – give it a go and let us know how it went.


5. Do get your content discovered

Of course, there is the widely known StumbleUpon.

It works much like Twitter and Instagram – you follow others so others can follow you.

Just with a slight difference – getting followers is extremely difficult.

But the traffic this platform can bring stunned me:

StumbleUpon Tips

The best part is – we got this traffic within three days.


StumbleUpon functionality

StumbleUpon functionality

You can view different articles (1) based on your preferences, follow different influencers and in that way get others to follow you.

To share your article head over to your profile (2) and share your first article.

StumbleUpon Tips - Adding Your Page

All you have to do is Add a Page (1), insert the URL (2) and select if it’s Safe for Work? (3).

Then you need to pick the interest (4) whichever suit your article the best:

  1. Marketing
  2. SEO
  3. Accounting
  4. Banking
  5. Management/HR
  6. Financial planning
  7. Facebook
  8. Hacking
  9. Instant Messaging
  10. Programming
  11. Search
  12. Software
  13. Select a country

And add three tags (5):

  1. Advertising-strategy
  2. Growth-hacks
  3. Marketing-strategy
  4. video

Then your article is set for success.


StumbleUpon tips:

The more followers you have, the more people will see your article – simple as that.

It took me a bit more than a month, but this is what I did to strike more than 2 000 page visits:

  • I followed 235 people,
  • Liked 445 different pages, and
  • Got 44 followers.

To start, you should focus on liking other articles and following stumblers – if the first is easy then the later not so much.

So, here are my top three ways to get followers:

  • Follow people who like similar articles to ones you would like to share:
    StumbleUpon Community Engagement Tips
  • Follow people who follow other people:
    StumbleUpon Followers
  • Or follow the top stumblers who you can find by going to your profile (1) -> click on followers (2) -> click on Add Stumblers (3):
    StumbleUpon Followers

The limit you can follow is 50 per day – so you have to make this your habit, like drinking coffee.

And the traffic to your articles will follow soon enough.


Now it’s your turn!

Starting is hard!

I get it. There is only one Russell Brunson, and only he has several thousand people on his email list.

So how do you start when you have nothing?

You start by sharing your content on these content platforms, following others, building community. Within time you will have several hundreds of people following you and that’s a lot of traffic coming to your blog each time you share an article.

Once you get them on your blog, it’s up to you how you make them come back – grow your email list, collect web push-notification subscribers or invite them to follow you on social media.

Go, try these websites and I am sure you will win big.

Happy content promotion!