Hello, SOTGC community,
By now you probably know that you need an online presence for your business. You’ve seen the infographics, glanced through the articles, and half-heartedly listened while your professional peers detail their approach to re-tweeting.
You get it. Businesses do better when they’re active online.
But there are so many moving parts! How to blog, when to blog, how to promote those blog posts, and through which channels. It can feel incredibly overwhelming.
For the next few months, I’ll break down the different aspects of life online into small, doable steps. I’ll share my best practices (or link to other people’s). Consider this a mini-boot camp for your online space.
- Brainstorm ideas for blog posts.
And what, pray tell, should you actually write about? Successful, effective blog posts solve your readers’ problems or speak to a concern they have. Your blog should feel like a calming oasis of knowledge and support, answering your readers’ questions and helping them navigate the things they’re struggling with.
Some questions to ask yourself while you’re brainstorming:
When I’m at a dinner party and people find out what I do, what are the most common questions they ask?
What does a beginner need help with?
What common problems can I solve?
Is there anything happening this time of year that’s really important to my readers – do they care about tax season, The National Writers’ Conference, summer vacation?
Have there been any big changes to our industry that we should talk about?
What books/tools/apps/platforms do I use that other people should know about?
What do I wish someone had told me when I was just starting out?
And if you’re still stuck, you can just ask people what they’d like you to write! Ask your social media followers, your clients, or make these questions part of your newsletter sign up.
- Decide how frequently you’ll post.
The more frequently you post, the higher your SEO rankings and the more findable you are in search. That said, it’s better to establish a sane, sustainable posting schedule than burn yourself out with daily posts. Quality over quantity wins every time.
My professional suggestion is that you start by posting one helpful, thoughtful, high-quality post each week. If you find that you have the energy and inspiration to post more frequently – wonderful! Do so. Keep in mind, however, if you post TOO much, it can start to feel spammy for your readers–and you don’t want that!
So keep it manageable for yourself and remember, it’s better to start with a lighter editorial calendar and work up rather than vice versa.
If you find that once a week is too much for you, intersperse lighter, “easier” posts with your longer pieces. Interviews, guest posts, and link roundups require less work from you but still bring in a tidy little traffic spike.
- Create a posting schedule (and then stick to it).
When you’re a service provider or consultant, it’s particularly important that your readers see you as hardworking and trustworthy. And it’s hard to feel that way about someone who posts three times a week … and then once a month … and then never.
- Write your posts and schedule them!
My friend Sarah swears by DIY writing retreats to bulk write months of posts in just a few days. If that’s not quite your style, head somewhere without wi-fi and write for a few uninterrupted hours or just get up before the family.
Once you’ve written your blog posts, proof them (I love Grammarly for this), add images, write social media updates, and schedule them in your blog’s dashboard.
And that’s it! In no time, you’ll have a blog full of traffic-driving, sales-making posts.
Examples of people who are doing amazing things with their blogs:
Author Gretchen Rubin
The bestselling author of The Happiness Project and now Better Than Before, Gretchen blogs tirelessly. She posts almost every day, sharing videos, interviews, tips that relate to her books and new findings. In almost every post she links to a sales page for one of her books, driving sales every time she publishes.
Wellness Coach Jina Schaefer
Jina has helped over 2,000 people lose weight and feel happier and healthier; she found most of these clients through her blog The Happy Healthy Truth. Jina posts once a week, sharing recipes, videos, and easy tutorials.
Marketing Expert Gini Dietrick
Gini founded and built the online marketing juggernaut Spin Sucks. Combining her own work with that of contributors, Spin Sucks publishes posts multiple times a day, driving traffic towards her books, webinars, and huge mailing list (33,000+ subscribers!)
Are you ready to fill your blog with useful posts? Are you struggling to come up with ideas? If you need help, leave your questions in the comments!
P.S. Before you do any of this, you’ve made sure your website is mobile responsive, right?
P.S.S. This post first appeared on my blog a while back, but I fluffed it up and made sure to freshen it up just for you!
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