How a Blog Alliance Can Help Your Blog: Interview With Michelle Salater of Sumer, LLC

A few months ago I started a blogging alliance for like minded bloggers. Our blogging alliance is a mastermind group where we help and promote each other’s blogs. Instead of talking about my personal experiences with our blogging alliance, I interviewed Michelle Salater, Owner of Sūmèr, LLC.  Sūmèr, LLC, specializes in web copywriting, SEO copywriting, and the promotion and marketing of websites after they launch.  alliance

Here’s the interview:

Q: Michelle, you’ve been blogging for how long now?

I’ve blogged for over 2 years now. I’ve never had a personal blog. Only business.

Q: In the past you told me that you get a lot of business from your blog. Approximately how much of your new business comes from your blog?

In 2009: 1 out of every 4 new clients came from my blog. That’s 25% of our 2009 clients were from my blog.

Q: We started our blogging alliance this September.  Not too long after Darren Rowse of did a post about blogging alliances. What kind of traffic was your blog getting before we started?

As of August, I was averaging about 2,000 views per month. In Sept, that number rose 40%. And in November our traffic doubled from our August numbers. It reached over 4,000 views.

Q: What kind of traffic does your blog get now?

We’ll reach over 4,000 views in December. Each month, the numbers continue to climb.

Q: Why the dramatic jump in traffic?

I attribute the dramatic jump in traffic to a number of things:

  1. I started adding calls to action at the end of my posts; asking people to subscribe to our rss feed, social bookmark, and share. Also, at the end of posts I’ll ask questions and suggest readers comment.
  2. I began posting comments on other blogs. I’ve always commented on blogs I like, but in September, I began an aggressive campaign to comment on 15 blogs a week. I also reached out to these bloggers. I befriended them on Facebook and LinkedIn. I also bookmarked and shared posts I liked.
  3. I began to really think about what I was saying on my blog. I injected more personality into my posts.
  4. The blog alliance really helped. The blog critique from other alliance members helped me get very clear on who my blog is for. And why my target audience wants to read it. What benefits I provide, and the overall purpose of the blog.
  5. I have a lot of interviews on my blog, which have always helped generate new traffic. Since September, I’ve been more strategic about who I interview on my blog and who I ask to be a guest blogger. Before I approach someone to be a guest, I make sure that my target audience will find it helpful, useful, and interesting.
  6. I also monitor topics which get the most traffic and try to cater more posts to fit the interest of my readers.
  7. I promote my blog on Facebook. My key influencers have been promoting it as well. This helps with traffic, general buzz, and comment levels.

Q: Are you getting more e-mail newsletter subscribers? RSS feed subscribers? Are you getting long term readers or fans of your blog from the additional traffic you’re getting?

The number of subscriptions tripled. And the new subscribers are reading the blog. I’ve also had a steady stream of sign-ups for my ezine. I’m asking people to sign-up for my ezine and telling them the benefits of doing so. I ask them on Facebook or I ask them in an email, or at a networking event. It works.

Q: Besides getting more traffic, how has our blog alliance helped you?

The blog alliance has helped me gain clarity about the purpose of my blog. It’s helped me in scheduling post topics.

There’s something powerful in an alliance — when you can bounce ideas off of other people, hear their honest opinion, and make changes accordingly. The alliance has helped keep me accountable. I’m not blogging for blogging sake. I have a mission with my blog and the alliance has helped me strategize the best possible way to fulfill that mission. Hearing what other people are going through and learning from other people’s mistakes has been beneficial as well.

Check out Michelle’s blog at If you’re interested in our blog alliance, contact me, Doug Stewart, on LinkedIn, Facebook or Twitter.

Contest: Win a Spot In The “Influence Your Online Market Bootcamp” Tue, Dec 15 to Sat, Dec 19

Comment, tweet, Facebook, or subscribe for your chance to win a spot on Sumer’s exclusive six-week virtual bootcamp, Influence Your Online Market: Engage, Connect, and Grow Your Business.

This bootcamp, hosted by Sumer, LLC’s president Michelle Salater, is valued at $297.99, and will not be offered again until late 2010.

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  8 comments for “How a Blog Alliance Can Help Your Blog: Interview With Michelle Salater of Sumer, LLC

  1. December 18, 2009 at 10:10 am

    Great interview. It always useful to hear from someone who is successful in a given area, and Michelle sure fits that category when you’re talking blogging alliance. Those reasons for herjump in traffic are helpful hints to follow.

  2. December 18, 2009 at 10:33 am

    Definitely could see doing calls to action here at BB. Have been looking at the post RT factor also; you can look at comments etc. too to get a feel for what people are discussing. And I’ve been doing a bunch of commenting elsewhere. Great interview and we should see if we can get more of these, too. Also, I just got through reading Darren Rowse’s August post on “Blog Alliances”
    Technically, we here at BB could do something similar with our individual blogs.

  3. December 18, 2009 at 12:59 pm

    Between Michelle’s proven tips/techniques and your work Doug, you two seem to be the “go-to” folks for blog success within the industry. I’ll be fowarding this along to all my clients to contact you for future business. Many Thank You’s!! A+ Stuff.

  4. December 18, 2009 at 1:03 pm

    This encouraged me to really start engaging more on other blogs. Michelle is right about really thinking about what your posting. I skim right over boring comments, but people who have something interesting or add a humorous twist to their post catch my attention.
    The interview was great!

  5. December 18, 2009 at 1:27 pm

    Nice interview! Great responses Michelle! Nice pro-active list of definite things I can do to promote my new blog when I start in 2010. I’ve had a personal reflection blog but didn’t want to take the time for a professional one until I met you, read your ezine and seen how it works for others in photography like myself! Thank you!

  6. December 18, 2009 at 3:31 pm

    Although, I see the Blog Alliance a bit far away from my blog -I wish will be closer- Definitely, It will help to enhance my blog in several ways.

    Thanks for sharing


    Israel G

  7. December 18, 2009 at 4:09 pm

    Wow! What a great blog. I constantly feel overwhelmed by what I “should” be doing on my blog. Michelle broke it down so it is really clear and purposeful. Thanks for such a great interview!

  8. February 9, 2010 at 4:59 am

    That was really great, especially the answer for
    Why the dramatic jump in traffic?

    And that you planned your move for achieving targets
    + 15 comments every week (statistics)

    It’s always great to be proactive(approach first) rather than be activated only on triggers (approach one only they hit your way)

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