Steven Aitchison, one of my StumbleUpon friends and the author of Change Your Thoughts has written a good article on attracting more StumbleUpon traffic. Though I’ve never been much interested in the “increase your blog traffic type articles”, I like the honest points that Steven makes in this article.

Steven writes that every StumbleUpon member likes getting reviewed and once you leave a nice review, there are chances that the person you’ve reviewed will review you back. It has happened 4 or 5 times with me that I left a review and earned a nice review in return. The more reviews you get, the better. But, the main question is: Is reviewing others with the sole purpose to promote your self-submitted content an ethical behavior?

Personally, I won’t do that. Neither will I suggest submitting your own blog links unless you feel you’ve written something that others will really, really like and find useful. Even if you have written a quality article, avoid submitting your own pages to StumbleUpon. Self-promotion is liked under a certain limit and it applies everywhere, be it Digg, reddit or StumbleUpon. I used to submit one or two personal links/week back in March when I actively started using StumbleUpon but stopped doing this pretty soon.

If you really want to attract lots of StumbleUpon traffic, here are the 5 points that have been pretty useful for me:

  1. Fresh & Quality Content Discovery
  2. Fair and detailed reviews
  3. Relevancy
  4. Trying to understand what your friends/fans like the most
  5. Promote your friends, get promoted

1). Fresh & Quality Content Discovery — Quality content. Submitting any content won’t help. You’ll also have to focus on the quality of the article that you’re submitting. The rule is simple. Support the community in discovering quality articles, the community will automatically support you. Have you ever noticed why there are a few people who have submitted just a few thousand links but have over 5 thousand fans? Do you ever try to notice why there are a few stumblers who have liked more than 100,000 pages and still have only 5 or 6 hundred fans?

Quality, my friend. It’s the quality that matters. Nobody cares about the numbers. The best way to attract more fans is by concentrating your mind on discovering good articles.

2). Fair and detailed reviews — Just hitting the “I like it” button isn’t going to help. If you’ve time, try to leave a review for the article that you’ve just discovered. Just writing something like ‘good article. I like it.’ isn’t going to help either. I’ve come across thousands of such stumblers who leave these type of reviews. Some profile pages are full of “great links. good stumbler” type of posts.

If you want to attract others, you’ll have to write a review that is unique and insightful at the same time. You should leave a review like you leave a comment on any blog, i.e., if your main aim is to attract traffic. If you follow point #1 and #2, you’ll end up attracting lots of fan. It’s guaranteed. Just try these points for a week and you’ll see if I’m right or wrong.

3). Relevancy — Relevancy is the key point. Always avoid adding irrelevant people in your “mutual friends” list because they are not gonna help you in this generate-traffic mission. Always remember that you can make only 200 mutual friends.

4). Trying to understand what your friends/fans like the most — When you realize that you’ve started attracting new fans, you should visit their profiles and spend sometime trying to understand their likes/dislikes. If your interests match, send some high-quality links their way. I’m assuming you already know how to send links to your friends.

Here your main goal should be to make the link popular that you’ve just sent to your friend, even if the article is not from your own blog. How does it help? Well, if your friends really like the article, they’ll leave reviews for sure. 4 or 5 reviews and there is 70% chance that you’ll gain a few new fans.

5). Promote your friends, get promoted — If you find something interesting on your friend’s profile, don’t hesitate adding a link to his/her profile in your review. Something like ‘[email protected] ABC’s profile‘ will do the job.

If your friend maintains a blog, visit his/her blog, read a few articles and if you find something interesting, submit it to StumbleUpon. Try doing this for a few weeks and you’ll realize that your friend has started doing the same thing for you.

Just try these 5 points for a few weeks if you really want to attract tons of traffic.

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