Blogs – do you need to blog at all?
You may remember the blog about Networking and whether face-to-face networking was right for you? Well, now we’re going to talk about blogging and whether that is right for you too, and more to the point, whether you should diarize them over a period of time, also.
Do you have anything to say?
What you first need to think about is that blogging is about telling your audience what you have to say.
- Do you have something to say?
- What will your Blogging Calendar do for you?
- Will your audience want to hear it?
- Do you have something to promote?
- Will you have any themes?
- Is it of interest?
- Is it topical?
And so on…
This all comes down to your niche audience, of course, your client or your customer and more to the point, your ideal customer.
We are all advised to home in on our ‘ideal customer’ so that you can focus on promoting our ideal wares to that one person so that when – you – the reader, pick up on this blog, it is just for you! Yes, you, so, hopefully, I’ve got your attention, or at least I hope I have.
Scheduling your Blogs
If you’re not organised in what you’re going to say, how do you know what you are going to say? I know, it’s a bit of an obvious statement or question, isn’t it? But there it is. You need to plan, really. You can’t just begin to write something in the hope that it will just be effective. You really need a marketing strategy to ensure that it is a) effective for your business and b) is in keeping with the remainder of your branding/social media and c) I’m sure there are a whole lot more reasons too!
I know I have things that pop into my head at obscure moments of the day (and night) and I need to write them down (into an app, actually), that both clients and colleagues say to me, that I think would be appropriate to write into a blog. But it would be no good scheduling all that information and sending it out to my website and social media accounts all at the same time. It needs some sort of organised structure and meaning. Then there is information that may only be relevant at certain times of the year, like Halloween for instance, or at Thanksgiving and so on.
Your consistency is important, both for your business, your analytical stats and ranking in Google and for your audience, as mentioned above. It is no good saying to your clients that you will be sending out blogs every week, only to find that you can’t commit to them, then you lose your following and possibly potential further clients too. Start out with a lesser frequency and build up to it and see how you go on. You can always try blogging schedulers that take snippets of your blog content and drip-feed them out over time to assist you if this is of interest to you.
Arrange Guest Bloggers
Depending on your business and your service and/or products, you can arrange to have guest bloggers on your site. This can enhance your credibility and authority too! If you have a blog calendar you can see who is guest blogging in which month and schedule your guests accordingly.
You can then also see which theme is running in which month, or what content is happening at what time of year too and assign your appropriate guest at the right time to coincide accordingly. It all works well when you have a plan!
Getting Down to It
Once you have created your Blogging Calendar, you then you need to use it. It’s no good just looking at it, is it? Have you listened to your clients, asked them questions about which social media platform is good for them? Where do they ‘hang out’ the most? Did you do your research from your social media’s own analytical built-in tools? Did you ask polls, or undertake any questions at your networking meetings? This is all good valid information that you need to obtain and will have put into your calendar prior to writing your blogs.
Once you know which ideal client you are writing to, you can focus on them, then you know which platform you are writing to, you can see, it is beginning to narrow down a little now, isn’t it?
Then begins your content strategy: Is it purely going to be text, or will you include images, video or perhaps graphics too? This all needs to be considered to get the maximum out of your blog and to give the most interest to your reader.
Source Document Repository
Once you have started to collate several blog post titles and content and have curated information, images, you may need a Source Document Repository – or a place to list all the multi-media. Are you an organised person? As a Virtual Assistant, I must be, on behalf of my clients, in addition to my own time-management. But it is a good idea to have some form of a table to work out how you want your structure to work for you and your business.
Will you have it worked out for your products, your service, or per month of the year perhaps? Will you work it out on paper, in a Word document or use a Social Media App maybe?
There are content calendar templates available, and there are some apps that may be of interest too, which are:
Developing your Calendar
Once you have decided how you are going to develop your calendar, you will need to decide how to fill it up, what titles you will need, when they will go in, what information needs to be contributed by whom, when you will publish what, what themes they will be, what the SEO keywords will be and what other information you will want to include. It is, after all, your calendar, and you create it to suit you and your business and your blogs.
It will be a fluid document and you will need to keep updating it. You will have new ideas all the time and people will say things to you at any time of the day. This is where I like to use an App that has both a desktop version and an App version, so I can quickly add something when I am out and about quite easily.
If you feel that you like the idea of blogs for your business, but you don’t have the time or the inclination for this at the moment, then please get in touch with me.