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Blogging Basics

Blogging hints and tipsWhys and why nots:

Starting a blog has so many benefits for a small business. First up, it opens up a whole new forum for interaction – with your customers and your online communities. It also helps establish you as an industry authority (when done right).

It is also another way to generate traffic to your site, which may turn into potential leads.

Connecting people to your brand.

However, if you are blogging because you think you have to, then don’t. You should only be blogging if you have something useful to share. Otherwise your blog will end up as a wasteland.

Another reason not to blog is for SEO. Granted, a blog can help you improve your rankings in the long run, but a blog written for a search engine won’t get you very far with your customers.

Whos, whats and whens: 

Who are you writing your blog for? Is it your existing and potential customers, is it others like yourself, or maybe a bit of both?

What are you going to write about?

In my experience, most will only have the time to post once a week. This is fine. It also means you have the chance to think about what you are writing, and you won’t bombard your audience with posts that don’t mean anything, or offer up any useful information.

No more than twice a week.

If at first you don’t have enough to say for a weekly blog, then twice a month is fine. As long as you keep it regular, and your blog doesn’t become a wasteland.

How:

Keep it short, no longer than 600 words please! Your average reader will probably give up at 500.

Use subheadings to break up text, and include at least one image in every blog (crediting the source of course).

If your blog looks unappealing, no one will want to read it.

Now what?:

Share – no one will read your blog if you don’t share it! Use your social media channels to get it out there. Rather than just absently sharing it, use it as a discussion point. If you have pinterest create a special board for your blogs.

The more you share, the more likely others will as well. If you want to get it out there, you have to work for it.

Analytics – Use your analytics software to see what is working and what isn’t. You can also use it to check who your audience are, which will help you tailor blogs in future.

Tips:

  • Wait a day before you go though and check spelling and grammar etc, and then publish
  • If you think it may be too long, read it on your mobile. If it’s too long to read on a mobile, it’s too long.
  • Make sure your formatting is consistent throughout
  • Be human! Celebrate the fact that you are a small business
  • Find inspiration from your daily routine
  • Use multiple bloggers
  • If you want to keep it professional, then hire a professional blogger
  • Whatever you do, don’t turn it into a sales piece.

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