Man, I just love a good old-fashioned light-bulb moment and I got one. The other day I was listening to Louise Brogan, the Founder of the Social Bee Academy (a membership site) and the host of her super cool podcast also called “Social Bee” and she said that as an online entrepreneur you should restrict your social media presence to just two channels. Out of the two channels, you should know how to use one like a regular user and be a master of the second one. Weirdly, this got me thinking about something else. Do you know who is a master of any social media network? Someone who’s part of Gen Z! I had a proper light-bulb moment! Like you see in animations. After this, I didn’t even pay too much attention to what poor Louise was saying, my mind couldn’t shake off this thought: what if these digital natives we see taking selfies all day long are actually free traffic gurus without them even knowing it?

Think about it! Gen Z-ers (this how we call them? LOL) were born in a world where the Internet was already a thing, just a couple of years before Steve Jobs was presenting the first iPhone to the World. Talking to people who fall into the Gen Z demographic cohort makes me realise that no matter how connected to all-things-digital-marketing you are, these “kids” will always have an insight about something you haven’t tried yet.

There are three things youngsters do and use (that are still close to our comfort zone) that we could integrate into our marketing to getting free traffic (and more of it). Here they are:

1) Getting Free Traffic Through Ask.FM

The youngsters’ Quora is Ask.FM. OK, I’m over-simplifying but what you need to know is that it’s a platform where people can ask and answer questions. As a user, you have an ask box in which people can add questions for you to answer and those questions can be anonymous or “signed” by a registered user. While just a few years ago the social platform was seen as one used mostly by kids (because half of its users were under 18 y.o.,) things are starting to change. The company behind it wants to move it into the knowledge economy, attracting more types of consumers, and with over 215 million users worldwide asking over 600 million questions a month they’re surely on the right track.

If you’re signing up for an account, you’ll be able to promote the links to your landing pages, build up your popularity, and even be featured on the homepage getting free traffic. But the benefits of joining aren’t stopping there. You can promote your link in the questions you’re asking other users, even if you submit your question anonymously.

If you decide to join Ask.FM, use both the bio and the web sections in your profile to promote the links to your websites.

Getting Free Traffic

In the interests section, you can list everything that you think it’s relevant to the products and services you’re selling. They’ll appear as tags. And once you click on one – you’ll find other accounts that listed them as their interests – that’s how you find potential buyers and how potential buyers can find you.

By using the Shoutout feature, you can ask people who are nearby a question. It’s a great way to see if there are people nearby who deal with the problem your product/service is solving.

2) Getting Free Traffic Through QR Codes

There was a time when I would roll my eyes every time I saw an URL on a billboard. That time was back when there were no smartphones. If you saw something on a poster or billboard that you were interested in, you’d have to remember the URL and type it into the address bar when you got to a computer connected to the internet. Now, things are different, of course. You can even have a snapcode on a billboard. Or you can just use PPC or display advertising – people won’t have to remember anything. They just have to click or tap.

Enter the QR code. This invention can drive traffic to your landing page. The catch? You need to know where you can place it for free, in a spot where your ideal customers stop for a coffee or to wait for their ride or do whatever. You can add it to a university bulletin board,  on a pole in a train station, on your gym locker door, etc. You just have to be creative and turn the URL you want to promote into a QR code – which you can do on plenty of websites like this or this.

Nowadays most phone cameras can scan the code without the need for installing a QR code scanner app.

3) Putting Your Best Foot Forward in Social Media

Another thing Gen Z are rocking is social media, and there are two key things you should learn from them:

1) Optimise your content for social media traffic

Did you know that a picture on a web page needs to have an aspect ratio of 1.91:1 for Facebook to display it correctly when someone shares the link to that page on the social network? A big beautiful thumbnail will always generate more clicks than a small one that FB won’t like. Getting people to share your links is one thing, getting people to click on the web page previews loaded on Facebook or Twitter or LinkedIn is another. Make sure you’re doing your part.

2) Leverage Free Groups

People are desperate to gain access to other people’s experiences with the issues they too face. If you’re doing your magic in a niche that isn’t offering people too many opportunities to connect, act like a leader and start a social group on Facebook or LinkedIn and people will show up if they’re truly passionate about the topic. You can use them afterwards as your little soldiers in promoting your services and products.

I mean, imagine you’re selling gel nail polish. On Facebook, you could quite easily and rapidly grow a group for DIY gel nail polish aficionados, who would actually be interested in the products you’re selling.

So, what about you?

  • Do you get to talk to teenagers in your job or business?
  • Do you know what new platforms they test out?
  • Could those platforms also be used by online entrepreneurs?

Please let me know in the comments, down below.