By Brian Feinblum, Chief Marketing Officer of MEDIA CONNECT
I have posted nearly 2,500 times on my blog since its inception six years ago. Please allow me to share some useful insights to those considering blogging or looking to increase their blog traffic, especially for authors, book marketers, publishers, and book publicists.
1. Blogging Is Time-Consuming
No matter how quickly I write — and my ability to generate many ideas quickly is an asset – I still find that that the blogging consumes a certain time-chunk that needs to be accounted for. Writing a blog, then editing and proofreading can take 20-30 minutes a day. Posting, sharing it, and responding to those who comment on a post can take another 20-30 minutes per day.
2. Blogging Has A Pay-Off
Like anything, you want to know the ROI when it comes to blogging. I see the benefits as follows:
• It furthers your brand.
• You may find it enjoyable to pen my thoughts on a regular basis.
• It serves as a writing resume when you contact the media seeking freelance contributions to their publication or site.
• It helps people and that’s a rewarding feeling.
• Some of these posts can be re-purposed for other media outlets.
• Several blog posts are serving as the formation for a future book.
• There’s something psychologically gratifying in seeing a post get a certain number of clicks – all writers have egos that need servicing.
3. Blogging Can Be Addictive
I initially thought I’d blog a few times per week. Then it became five days a week – off on weekends – and now it’s a daily habit: Sometimes I’ll post more than once in a day. To be truly effective, one must blog regularly and consistently. It doesn’t have to be daily, and quality is more important than quantity, but it can’t be once every so often or just three times a month.
4. Blogging Helps Develop A Voice Or Persona
The blog represents my views, industry insights, advice, personal experiences, and professional analysis on matters pertaining to book marketing and publicity. I am my blog — and — it represents me. My readers know what I stand for and where I’m coming from. Make sure you do specialize in writing about a specific genre or perspective – you can’t be all over the place on all kinds of things, unless the focus of the blog is to be unfocused.
5. Blog With Your Goals In Mind
Why do you blog? Make sure your blog serves your goals and desires. If the blog is to support a certain kind of message make sure you repeatedly hammer that message in your posts. If your goal is to get more traffic to your site, keep including relevant links to it. If you want book sales, post content that invites people to buy and gives them a showcase for your writing style. Blog with a purpose.
6. Blog In A Unique Way
If you post something that you admit doesn’t have your fingerprints on it, don’t bother doing so. Everyone can distinguish my blog posts, given the content, style, and persona behind it. If you put out a generic post that could easily have been written by someone else, press delete.
7. Blogging Can’t Be Sloppy
Treat your blog like the book that you are writing. Edit, spell-check, and read it aloud to see if it flows well. A blog represents you, so-make sure you look good.
8. Use Your Blog To Network
Your blog offers a great excuse to introduce yourself to others. Your blog should be listed in your social media profiles, prominently displayed on your web site, included in your e-mail signature and stated on your business card, press kit and marketing materials. When you use Twitter, FB and other social sites, share links to your blog.
9. Invite Others To Contribute
Allow others to contribute to their blog. Let them guest-post or interview fellow experts. Why? First off, that’s one less blog post that you need to write. Second, these contributors become your marketers, as they share the link with their followers and generate extra attention for you.
10. Put Your Blog On An Editorial Calendar
The best way to make sure you blog regularly – and without panic — is to put yourself on a schedule. Think about when you want to post which context and work ahead. Also think about special anniversaries, honorary days, holidays, or special times that may serve you well by typing relevant content to them.
There you have it – my 10 observations about blogging. Perhaps you have others to add to them. Or maybe I just inspired you to not take up blogging. A case can certainly be made that my time invested in the blog could be spent elsewhere. But I’d feel a void without it. Blogging is now a part of my existence, similar to petting my dog, watching the Mets, reading the N.Y. Post, sipping Starbucks java, and walking to work from the train station.
I blog, therefore I am. How about you?