I’ve done a lot of blog coaching over the past few years to help marketers, executives and business owners reach their goals with best-practice blogging. Blogging goals vary and can include a range of objectives from positioning one as a thought leader to increasing leads.
Now, I have received much advice over the years for my various joebs, speaking engagements and even acting in community theater, where my favorite role was Uncle Barnaby in Babes in Toyland. Almost everyone had provided great advice along the way … do your best and just don’t suck! As intimidating as that sounds, I found is very inspirational. I just needed to execute on my plan to do a great job and not blow the opportunity. So, here is the advice that I can give you so your blogging efforts are the best and most of all … set you up not to suck!
1. Don’t forget to blog to a target audience’s needs, pain points or interests. Yes, your blogging goal is to first secure your readers’ attention by solving … and then work on selling
2. Don’t blog during the weekend or mid-afternoon, when you can avoid it, so you can set yourself up for the most sharing. Shareaholic research indicates that Monday through Thursday blogs posted between 8AM to 12PM get shared the most. If you have a world-wide audience, then perhaps a time like 4:30AM might work for you to make sure you are leveraging your readers in Europe.
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3. Don’t keep it to yourself, look to syndicate your blog. Especially when you start blogging, look to external and established blogs to syndicate your work. It’s amazing the extra bump in readership and shares that you will receive from a highly read blog.
4. Don’t be promotional; just focus on issues that solve your readers’ problems. The role of blogging is to tell and solve readers’s problem and connect the dots for them (i.e., the call to action) for them to reach out with further questions with comments and direct contact. A blog that contains a collection of how-tos and big answers to big questions will be widely adopted over a promotional site.
5. Don’t make it all about you, get guest bloggers. Remember, it’s a team effort and the other members on the team have different audiences that they attract!
6. Don’t avoid using Google AdWords to help you find the best key words, so your blog gets found by Google. Using key words will help you get found by readers whose native behavior is to search on key words!
7. Don’t forget to integrate links (i.e., back links) to your blog’s other posts and tabs on your blog, so you rank with Google. Back links are one way to help you organic search ranking, so use it to your advantage by listing other related blog posts, your URL and your contact page.
8. Don’t forget to put in a call to action, so your readers know what you want them to do. Yes, you need to just address the big issues and conversation and not be promotional, however, you can have a call to action at the end of your posts to help your readers connect the dots to connect with you!
9. Don’t forget to promote your blog and posts so you are found! Thinking about tweeting twice a day for two weeks about a different fact or observation in your blog post, listing blog URL on your LinkedIn profile (i.e., Publications and Summary areas, Twitter profile and your email signature.
10. Don’t forget to link your Google+ profile to your blog, so you can create a better search experience. By linking your Google+ profile you will help to verify your blog’s authorship and generate a great visual search experience, that even includes your photo!
Lastly, don’t forget to blog once a week, so you can become a better blogger. Hey, when Stephen King, the world-famous writer and author of my favorite book, The Stand, was asked about becoming a better writer, he answered “One word at a time and write 1,000 words every day.” By working on your blogging you will move your skill set from the bottom rating to being closer to a 10! I know I have become a better blogger by blogging more.