The Internet is littered with blogs home to a single post or a ‘recent update’ that’s been gathering dust for years. It is a daunting wasteland. For those of you tackling the digital dust, remember that a blog is one of the best ways to increase traffic to your site and a key part of an overall SEO strategy.
You can bring your blog back to life by setting a plan and making the blogging process easy on yourself. You don’t need to take a masterclass on content, load up on the fanciest WordPress theme, or viral success with every post. Just give yourself the time that you need.
Here’s are my favorite tips to bring out your inner Mad Max, and it’s easier than you think.
Make It Easy to Write
An important part of sticking with content creation is giving yourself adequate time to write, review and post. Set a schedule you can easily stick to so you’re more inclined to meet those self-imposed deadlines.
Writing is the tricky part, so provide ample, dedicated time. Start with something easy, like setting aside an hour each month.
Turn each post into a conversation with someone you like. I know a few highly successful bloggers who treat each post like a way to catch up with an old friend and share what’s going on in their life. It doesn’t matter how long you have to take or when you plan it, but giving your blog the importance that you’d give to a friend helps you stick with it.
The big reason you need a flexible schedule that you can realistically stick to: it’s good business.
When someone lands on your company or personal blog through search or social, they’re engaging with a piece of content they already like. That’s your win. Unfortunately, it can become a lost lead if they scour the rest of your blog and realize posts are infrequent or notice all the advice is from two years ago. Fresh posts show that you care about your customers and your brand.
Write What You Want to See
Unless you’re strictly a news or politics service, you’ve got space to plan your blog posts ahead of time. Plan to write what you’d like to read.
In particular, what interests you and what kind of takeaway can you give your readers? Thinking about your interests and your audience over the course of the day or week can improve the quality of your blog. You’ll create a cleaner message by the time you put pen to paper.
And if it’s floating around your brain while you browse the Web, you’ve got a great chance to find related content, filling up your blog with helpful links and stats.
You’re also giving yourself time to make a fun post. If you like lists, you’ll have the space to grab the best examples around. Are you a fan of metaphors? You never know what will movie, TV show or song will provide the perfect story to tell. I’ve seen it work for The Wizard of Oz, 80s hair metal, and Buster Bluth, all with amazing results.
Post When It’s Best for You
Social media has changed the way we interact with content all over the Internet. It has become one of the biggest resources for driving traffic to websites and content. For major companies - such as About.com, Forbes, and Inc. – social media is becoming as important as Google searches for driving traffic.
And this is wonderful news for you and your content.
It means that whatever time is the easiest for you to squirrel away to post is the perfect time. Whether that’s immediately after you write or several days later, the perfect schedule is simply one that is convenient because you can link to your blog on social media at any time.
This feels like it cuts against conventional wisdom that some days – Thursday is often cited – are the best to post to reach your audience. Now, most blogs can ignore that advice.
Does that mean that timing doesn’t matter at all? No, just that the time-sensitive element has become when to post links to new blog content on social media.
The good news is that social media posts can be planned in advance. Try a scheduling service such as Hootsuite or Buffer to write your social posts ahead of time and set them to hit your social accounts at the right time for your audience and industry. (Be sure to follow the same principles of easy and convenient writing.) Simply put, scheduling services allow you to blog whenever is best for you and still capitalize on the traffic that social can deliver.
By giving yourself time in these three areas, you’ll start the branding and blogging journey with a content schedule that’s easy to stick to and doesn’t stress you out.
One Extra Easy:
My personal favorite in the “Write What You Want to See” is that final added bonus. The lagniappe:
You’ve probably done keyword research for your business. Those are the keywords for your blog posts and your social media links! The world of marketing will never stop changing, but the future still seems focused on social and search. Keywords are the bridge across social and SEO, so capitalize by keeping your branding specific.
This was cross posted on LinkedIn here.