It amazes me how even experienced bloggers can sometimes forget the basics. Blogs that go on for years can lose focus of their objective and even the core audience. Don’t let that happen to you.
Here are five key questions that, by answering, can turn around your blog in a heartbeat.
You’d be surprised at how many people don’t know what the ultimate goal is for their blog. Is it a search engine optimization play? Direct business? Retention goal? Lead generation? Public Relations? Make sure you have a tangible primary goal for your blog and a way that you can measure it. Work to accomplish your goal with meaningful data (analytics, email addresses, SEO ranking, etc.).
2. Who is your audience?
At most, you should have two, possibly three buyer personas that you will target with compelling storytelling. Better yet, you should have one description in front of you at all times about whom your core reader is. For example, my description for my content marketing blog is ”a marketing professional responsible for the corporate content production process in some way.” That keeps my content focused and on target. Before I write an article, I always ask whether that person would get significant value from what I’m writing.
3. Do you have a headline editor?
Bar none, the most important aspect of your blog content is the headline. The headline is like the cover of a magazine…its only purpose is to be opened. Well, the only purpose for a blog headline is to be clicked on. I’ve seen the greatest content in the world go silent because the headline was horrible. Do this: for your blog editorial calendar, include a space right next to the headline for your main keyword. That main keyword (i.e., blog creation strategies) should be part of the answer your reader is looking for in the content AND be the main keyword someone would type into Google. Keeping that top of mind will make all the difference.
4. Is your blog a lone wolf or a team player?
Blogs work the best when they integrate with all your content marketing activities…eNewsletters, social media, white papers…even eBooks and traditional books. Remember that editorial calendar from point #3? Well, include a ”Blog to…?” category to get you thinking of the different ways you can ”reimagine” your content. For example, your blog post could be part of a white paper series, but if that’s the case, you need to plan for it in advance. When I started my blog, the first six months of posts became a core part of my first book, Get Content Get Customers. The only reason that worked is that it was the plan from the beginning.
5. Does every blog post have an image?
If someone said you could easily double your traffic, would you listen? Of course you would. Well, by adding an image, you can double your traffic. We are in the era of visual sharing, which means the more visual the content the more likely it will be shared. Facebook, and now Pinterest, has shown this to be true. Visually stunning content is now more important than ever. With Google’s latest algorithm change, search and social now go hand in hand. Social is now key to getting found in search engines.