Blogging, the topic that comes up in many client meetings I have. Whether it’s because they want to do it, but don’t have the time. They don’t get why it could help their business development strategy. They have no idea what to talk about. They claim that they have no-one to blog.
In any event, I often find that their perceptions of what a blog is and how to write them can be a little off kilter, so I thought I’d share 5 thoughts about blogging (I have more, but need to stick to a vital rule of a blog… don’t go on for too long!)
The ideas below are my own, but if my husband asks, they are facts (I am always right…)
- Get your content strategy right (posh speak for what are you going to blog about?). Editors of newspapers don’t just wait for news stories to happen. Yes, they leave space for bulletins, but they have regular sessions with their staff about what is “newsworthy”. Even if you are a team of one you can have a meeting in your head and plan your content. NLP alert: imagine reading your blogs in 6 months time, what would they be about?
- If you can’t write a blog in 15 mins, what are you doing? A blog is not a newsletter article; it’s a less formal text, in a much less formal setting where you are allowed to have opinions and be yourself. Relax, think about if you were in a client meeting and they started a debate on a given topic – how would you react? You’d be magnificent! Get your keyboard out and get typing! It’s a lot easier than you think. I have a good friend who now works to the 15 minute rule and she is a lot happier. Once you know how long something should take, you can often take that long!
- Readers are fickle and fidgety. Keep your blogs concise and engaging. The online world is very distracting (flashing buttons, emails popping up, boxes of differing content designed to attract attention). Cut your readers a bit of slack and make sure that your blog is something that they can digest quickly (3-4mins?). And remember that the % of mobile users is increasing every day; this will affect their ability to digest your lengthy content too!
- Who is going to write your blog? Trust me, you don’t need to hire a Marketing Manager to do this, neither do you need to outsource it. If you can attend a client meeting and hold a conversation, you can blog.
- Are you having a conversation or delivering a speech? If you want people to leave comments, the best way to get them to do it is to ask. But don’t forget to leave space in your “argument” for them to do it. I often see blogs that are merely statements, and therefore don’t welcome conversation. That’s fine, but less likely to generate debate (but maybe you don’t want debate?).
More to come, but I am writing this on the train to London with zero wifi and need to stick to my ultimate aim – to get a blog written in less than 15 mins that hopefully adds some perspective – tick!
Do you blog? Have you got any tips for how to blog well and get more readers / comments? How do you use it as part of your marketing mix? Comments welcome (see what I did there?)