The truth and nothing but the truth – so help me God.
Blogging. We are either doing it, have done it or have not tried it yet.
For many of us, writing blog content is about sharing yourself and your knowledge in hopes of attracting like-minded people. Of course, there is also an additional goal of increasing business by attracting people who want to pay for your unique knowledge, a service you offer, a product you create or the messages you share.
There are many reasons why businesses like yours might run a blog. Maybe you like to write, because you’ve been told it’s a great tactic for search engines to find you, or maybe you’re looking to increase your cash flow. Whatever the reason, you want to get it in front of the right eyeballs, have them interested in what you are saying, and hopefully have some new contact with your prospects and clients.
So how do you drive the right traffic to your blog? Let me take you through some foundational steps to help you get discovered.
#1 Have something interesting to say, and make sure you’re saying it well.
Successfully, content isn’t about writing in a way that makes you appear smarter. It’s about writing in a manner in which most resonates and interests your reader.
Boring content, superficial information that the reader can probably Google on their own, isn’t quality or original content. If you’re simply restating information that’s already online by thousands and thousands of others, Google doesn’t see you as more important than the others. Meaning – you don’t stand out because you rank lower in SEO. Your content should be your own.
Also, stay away from lingo and industry specific terminology. People in your same industry will understand the jargon, but your client or customer aren’t likely to be as savvy in such language. You won’t turn your readers into clients because you‘re coming off as an “intellectual”—that’s a sure way to lose them entirely and have them clicking away from your blog.
But what if what you have to say is the same as other competitors?
Scenario: You’re a home inspector. You have to follow code in order for things to pass inspection. The code is the same for any other inspector. If your blog is simply a regurgitation of the code standards, you most likely won’t stand out as a subject matter expert. If you include your experience with it, your stories of clients and their experiences, then you have a blog that is now unique to you. It is YOUR story. Hard for others to lay claim to your content when what you wrote is your story only.
#2 Pay attention to Google
Yah, I know.
I can hear you say “We’re writing for the humans”. Yes. We are. But remember, you’re reading my blog because you’re interested in how to drive high-quality traffic to it. So let’s continue.
Simply writing a bunch of paragraphs with no real reason why you’re sharing it with the world isn’t super effective.
How your structure your blog matters. In tech language, Header 1’s and header 2’s are not simply titles. They serve a purpose. The topic and the content around that topic are essential. If you discuss too many topics in one blog, Google won’t know how to “catalogue” you so you probably won’t get chosen in organic searches. (This is a topic in itself)
Listen. I hear marketers tell you people will only consume what they can read in less than 3 minutes.
Let’s talk about that. Does your reader read fast or slow? Are they simply on your blog for quotes and snippets and parables? What if your client is a thought leader and wants to learn your insights and your subject matter expertise? They are more inclined to read more and prefer longer dialogue.
“Grand sweeping statements can take you off course when they don’t address who you’re targeting”. Keep that in mind.
If you’re paying attention to SEO, it means you’re paying attention to Google. Do your own research.
Ask Google. Or, make a list of reliable sources. I like to refer to Search Engine Land, for example.
If you want your blog to be effective, developing a solid SEO plan should be on your list. If your posts are stuffed with links, they are likely to get lost in the search engine results.
Side note: Did you know that Google now penalizes sites that don’t offer high quality content?
#3 Share your blog on social media
You can share snippets, or teasers, of your blog, with a read more call- to- action on Twitter and do it several times. Change up your teaser text so you don’t appear repetitive.
Share the beginning paragraph, or main points on Instagram and Facebook, with the CTA to “read more click the link in my bio” and add a question or ask for comments.
Rinse and repeat. Don’t just share it once and stop. Plan it out. Your blog , if well written, can have multiple points, insights and teasers to share over and over. In a few months, you can come full circle and reshare (if your topic is relevant for a reshare).
Sharing your blog on social should have you peeking for engagement – people liking, commenting on the topic or asking questions. Remember, social media is about being SOCIAL. It’s not a billboard meant for you to simply post a bunch of stuff of yourself and walk away. If you’re being inauthentic, it will be noticed by your followers, you’ll lose engagement which will lead to a waste of your time and efforts.
#4 Invite people to be a guest on your blog.
Reach out to well-known influencers, or subject matter experts.
And visa versa, write guests blogs. If you’re new in the industry this might be a challenge. However, if you’re a subject matter expert, maybe you came from an employed position, and new to the entrepreneur world, but not the subject, don’t deny yourself the opportunity.
You may be a new business owner, but you’re not new to your topic you want to share.
This next step is new for me.
I was recently on a Facebook live with Eleanor Beaton. She was sharing her insights on how we’re impacted by censoring ourselves. Thanks to Eleanor, I have number five for you.
#5 Write something uncensored.
In order to really stand out from the pack, you need to step up and not be scared someone will disagree, or reject your thought process. I didn’t need Eleanor to explain that this isn’t about curse words. This is about saying something you, with all of who you are, believe in and you want to share it. If you fear rejection, you most likely are watering down your message. If there is something you feel needs to be said , in your industry, then share it. This again will be hard for others to copy and paste your content, as it will be your stand on a topic, along with your experiences.
As Brene Brown says – step into the arena.
If you want to lead, you have to get into that arena. I highly recommend her Netflix special on vulnerability. Her message is powerful.
There you have it.
Write your blogs
Say something interesting.
Remember to think about SEO and Google.
Share and share it on social media.
Invite guests to your blog and be a guest.
Now go. Be fearless.
This post was originally posted on www.smartcatmarketing.ca