Tag Archives: blogging

Have You Checked These 5 Things On Your Blog Post Before Publishing?

I love blogging concept

When it comes to blogging, there is a lot to consider. Writing the post and clicking ‘share’ is only half of it – and it can sometimes be easy to forget the checklist of things to help you optimise the post for reach and purpose.

Therefore we thought we’d round up some the most important things you need to check before you publish your blogs. By spending just a few minutes to look at these things beforehand, you can add more value to your content. These tips are especially useful for those of you who are just starting out with blogging

  • Have You Optimised Your Blog Post With Links?

Having links throughout your blog post not only makes it easier for it to be found in Google search. It’s also a great way to get people looking at other areas of your website and other blog posts you have previously shared – all you have to do is highlight the relevant keywords throughout the blog and add the hyperlinks to them. By doing so, it will help readers to better understand your blog post and help you to verify the points you are making. You will also be driving traffic back to other useful content, it could be your older posts giving them new life – or signposting the reader to explore your services, products or other relevant content. Remember – just because you’ve published a post, doesn’t mean you should forget about it – each post is a valuable asset in which you can give new life to.

Tip 1: Consider including other bloggers in your blog and link back to them – this will draw them into the conversation allowing you to listen and trade ideas with others.

Tip 2: Be sure to keep your links and sign posts going throughout the post. And don’t neglect the fact that many readers only read the first one or two paragraphs to get the gist of the blog to see if they want to continue reading on – so be sure to keep your links up top where they will see them.

  • Have You Proof Read Your Blog?

There’s nothing worse than finding a really good looking blog post that’s full of spelling mistakes! Having a blog full of spelling and punctuation mistakes only makes your business seem as if you are lazy and careless. If you want to be the ‘go to person’ in your sector, then showcasing a poor standard of content is the worst way to go about it.

Tip: Once you’ve completed your blog, start reading it out loud. You can’t know if your sentence structure and word choice are clear and easy to understand until you read the post out loud.

  • Have You Added A Photo or Image?

Not only is it important to add a photo or image to your blog post, but you need to make sure that it is an attention grabbing one. Having a highly engaging image will engage readers and make them want to read your blog post. There’s a lot of buzz about how many more views a social media update gets when there’s an image – and the same goes for your blog post. It needs to be designed as a piece of content compelling enough to share on social and any other channels – so it’ll need a captivating image too!

Tip: Don’t forget to also make the image pinnable. If people are pinning the photo on your blog post to Pinterest, then that will help to grow traffic even more.

  • Do You Have A Strategy In Place To Promote The Blog?

Don’t just assume that Google will find your blog and everyone will be sharing it. You need to make it easy for people to find. Start thinking about whether or not you’ve properly tagged the content – this means to check whether or not you have included keywords that are used often and are relevant to your blog post – and ideally use them in the title of your blog – as well as peppering the content with relevant keywords throughout. Think about what someone might search in Google that relates to your post. It’s also best practice to add categories to your blog; this makes it easier for you to check whether or not you’ve added the relevant tags.

Tip: Make sure that the post is social media friendly too! To encourage readers to share your blog, it’s important to make it easy for them by including sharing links for all social media channels – giving them choice to share as they like.

  • Can You Repurpose The Content?

You don’t just share a blog once do you? In order to make sure you get your blog seen by others, you should be sharing it multiple times throughout the week. Once a day would be fine as long as you put a different spin on it each time! One day you could use the title, one day you could pick out an important tip – just always remember to keep it light, and keep it interesting.

Tip: You could also think about sharing the content in a completely different way – through video perhaps? A short and sweet Vine video could even do the trick!

Don’t think that after doing these 5 things you have done your job. These are key important elements to consider, but blogging is a continuous learning process. Aim to keep learning how to make a successful blog – tune in to other master and smart bloggers, review that they do and follow, helpful / advisory blogs to help you on your blogging journey.

Happy blogging!

Is It Time You Gave Your Social Media Platforms a Spring Clean?

Spring has arrived. The days are longer and it’s finally time to come out of hibernation and organise that once a year spruce up of your home – and your social media platforms.

Below we have highlighted our top 5 tips for a social media spring clean,

1.     Rethink your goals for social media

Businesses are constantly changing and adapting, perhaps your business plan has changed or you may have found a new target audience. If there have been any relevant changes within your business these should be reflected and updated amongst your social media.  Our advice is to evaluate your goals for social media, it may be that you need to change the levels of engagement with your audience, or that you need to refresh your follower activity.

Take the time to evaluate how well your pages are doing and if there’s anything you can improve on

2.     Look into the best ‘Dashboard’ option for your business

Tired of jumping to and from different platforms? It may be that you have two different Twitter pages; one for customer service and another for overall business activity. If you have multiple accounts you may find a social media dashboard really useful. At Carvill Creative we favour HootSuite.

HootSuite is fantastic for organising Twitter feeds; you can have all of your Twitter accounts on one easy platform. This dashboard also lets you create lists, so you can save certain hashtags which may be relevant to your business. Below you will see that we have saved the search term ‘#socialmedia’.  Searching for keywords or hashtags in HootSuite and saving them as conversation streams, enables you to pick up on any conversations which may be relevant to your business and get in touch with potential new followers or customers.

Carvill Blog Image

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Among many fantastic features HootSuite also offers a scheduling option. This allows you to schedule tweets in advance so you are never stuck in back to back meetings worrying about your social media activity.

This is particularly helpful over the bank holiday weekend – HootSuite will send out your tweets whilst you’re laying back in the sun with a Pimms.  Fantastic.

Want to find out how to set up HootSuite?

Do be mindful that there are other social dashboards and scheduling tools you could use such as; Facebook pages manager, Tweetdeck, Sprout Social etc. They’re all pretty good – so it comes down to personal preference.

3.      Refresh and update your content

Without a lot of hard work and elbow grease, your house won’t become magically clean this April. Without good content, your social media platforms won’t do their job properly.  Content needs to be researched, organised and concise.  Unless you are a food blogger then your followers aren’t going to be interested in the cheese sandwich you just had for lunch. Tailor your content to reflect your business values and to what your followers would want to hear.

For more information on content, see our blog.

4.      Take a look at who your following and connecting with

It’s a myth that the more people you follow the more followers your business will gain and your sales will go up. Targeted following is the only way forward when it comes to promoting your business on Twitter. You are who you follow.

In turn, by following too many irrelevant accounts- not only will your social media feed be clogged up by irrelevant cheese sandwich stories, but you will be faced with useless information which your business can’t harness.

Be specific and targeted and connect with people strategically.

5.     Don’t forget to update your website

So, your social media feeds are now looking fantastic and polished, but it’s important to make sure that you update your website too. Remember, you want to refresh and update the whole online brand, not just one part. You could update any recent testimonials, upload photos or even update your services if these have changed.

To ensure that your site it constantly refreshed with relevant and purposeful content, we recommend a business blog. By blogging, you’re updating your website frequently with fresh information for your audience to see and inevitably building your thought leadership and increasing brand awareness on key search engines.

Carvill- big spring clean

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

We hope you like our ‘spring clean tips’ – what are your tips for a social media spring clean? Tweet us @CarvillCreative

This blog post was brought to you by Michelle Carvill, founder of Carvill Creative, the online visibility experts and author of The Business of Being Social – A Practical Guide to Harnessing the Power of Twitter, Facebook, YouTube and LinkedIn for all Businesses.

If you need any help with your social media activity, blogging or creating content or any other digital marketing services, then do get in touch with us.

Why a Blog is a Central Part of your Social Media Marketing Activity

In my view – (and I’m sure there are some exceptions), every business should have a blog.

Blogging enables you to unlock what’s going on within your business – and share it.

  • Case studies
  • FAQs
  • Client wins
  • New team
  • Events you’re creating
  • News items
  • PR announcements
  • New services
  • Changes to services
  • How things work
  • Why you do what you do
  • Who you are
  • Customer service fixes
  • Your expertise, though leadership
  • Your viewpoints
  • Your advice

All of the above provides just a quick list of the types of content you can be sharing about your organisation. And what better place to share them than via a blog, which ideally sits within your website – encouraging traffic and eyeballs back to your site to explore more about your organisation.

Two areas that all businesses should consider when it comes to blogging:

1)      We are now in an age where businesses (and people) have the resources to publish content at the touch of a few buttons. Setting up a blog (via wordpress, blogger or typepad and other blogging platforms) is a relatively simple process and provides businesses with a platform to share diverse, purposeful, educational and entertaining news via one central platform – (via mobile if you wish) enhancing your online visibility in many ways.

2)      People (ie: consumers) are increasingly fed up with ‘push’ marketing – they don’t trust the advertisers, instead they trust themselves and the content they come across and that people are sharing and talking about when they are out there on good old Google searching for the products, services or information they require.  Very simply the more relevant and purposeful content you have out on the net – then you have more chance of being found.

How does your blog tie in with social networks and social media?

Your blog is ‘social media’ – and provided that you enable your blog to be sharable by others – including the share buttons on your content – then you have created media – and that media is socially enabled.

The media you create for your blog – can be a mix of written articles, video, audio, images – it’s over to you.  My advice is to keep the format of your content mixed (a mixture of written word, audio, video, images etc) – just to keep things interesting. However, having said that, your content should be focused on helping you to deliver your business objectives – and therefore, what you create is more important than the format you create it in.

Once you’ve created your ‘media’ – and posted it to your blog – (which is socially enabled allowing anyone who reads or interacts with that content to be able to share it onto their audiences), then you can also start sharing it via your own social networks too.

Take a look at the following video to illustrate sharing and traction process via blog content

We hope this blog and our video help you to better understand why blogging is central to your social media activity.

Any views, questions – do get in touch.  In the meantime, be social and share…

 

Michelle Carvill is author of The Business of Being Social – A Practical Guide to Harnessing the Power of Twitter, Facebook, YouTube and LinkedIn for all Businesses – and is also the Founder of Carvill Creative.   

 

 

STOP – Before you publish on social media – check the following

Whether you are publishing a blog, promoting an event or other marketing activity – be sure that you
make your communications count.  Check these 8 publishing basics before hitting the ‘send’ button.

  1.  Spell Check. The quickest way to lose credibility is to share content peppered with typos. Check your spelling and grammar. There are apps such as Grammarly which can help if you struggle.
  2.  Web Friendly Content. People read differently online to how they read offline text. It’s difficult to read bulky paragraphs of text online so be sure to keep your sentences short and include bullet points and links where possible to highlight key points and steer the reader to where you want them to go / what you want them to do.
  3.  Call to Action. Have you told your audience what you want them to do? Make your intentions clear from the start. If you are inviting people to an event, or need them to do something – get the ‘action’ in right at the beginning of your content. This way they don’t have to read the whole page to understand what’s being offered and what you want them to do.
  4.  Does your Headline / Subject Line explain the proposition?  Check that your Headline/Subject clearly explains what’s on offer. Often audiences don’t read beyond the headline – so be sure you capture attention and sell the proposition from the start.
  5.  Is your content Keyword Optimised? Make sure you are leveraging keywords in your Headline/ Subject Line and where relevant throughout your content. (Work on a 4% content to keyword ratio).
  6.  Are the Links / Processes Working?  If you have included links to other pages – then be sure to check that links are working and active. If you’re including a process, for example, if you are sending readers to a landing page to download a guide – then check that the download, data capture mechanisms work seamlessly. Remember that in Twitter and LinkedIn you are limited to the amount of characters that can be published – so be sure that any links aren’t going to get ‘cut off’ at the end.
  7.  Are you sending communications to a relevant audience?  The most successful marketing activities are those which are targeted effectively. Be sure that you understand your audience and target your communications accordingly.
  8.  Have you included contact details? Whilst the call to action for your audience may be clear – some may have questions. Be sure you provide a ‘contact us’ option – whether it’s an email address or telephone number – somewhere where those with questions can very simply get in touch.
Basic, but often missed. Happy publishing.

@Michelle Carvill is owner and Marketing Director at Carvill Creative – the online visibility experts. A digital marketing and design agency based in Maidenhead, Berkshire.  The agency covers all aspects of marketing strategy and online visibility – covering social media marketing and social media training, user focused website planning and conversion focused website design.

Want to talk to the team at Carvill Creative about your social media activity or training needs? We’re happy to chat, so simply ‘get in touch’.

Finally, why not download our useful Social Media Marketing Planner andMarketing Plan. They’re totally free to download and use.

Blogging Generates New Business – Fact!

Being a regular blogger, blogging for around 5 years now – I’m always surprised to find that a huge proportion of businesses and websites I come across don’t have any blogging presence.

In an age where 76% of consumers search for products and services online via search engines and social media platforms, (just think about your own consumer behaviour and what you do when looking for a new product orsocial media advice consultancy marketing service), then being ‘visible’ online is now business critical.

Having a website presence is one thing. However, in order for you to ensure your website doesn’t become a ‘billboard in the desert’ (as 40% of all UK websites are and received zero, yes, zero, traffic!), then you have to work at driving online visibility.

There are a number of ways to assist your online visibility – here are some of the key ones:

SEO (search engine optimisation) –  I’m not going to get into detail about SEO – however, enough to say that there are two key elements to SEO,  1) ‘on page’ – which relates to the content on your website, meta, site structure, navigation etc and ensuring all that is optimised.  And then, 2) ‘off page’ – which is the far more labour intensive means of growing credible and relevant ‘back links’ to your website.

The overall objective is to ensure that when someone types in those all important keywords when searching for a product or service eg:  ‘forensic accountant London’ – then you are visible on Page 1 of the search results (ideally in the top 3 organic search results – [after all, do you look beyond those or switch to Page 2 of search results?]).

Online advertising – When someone types in those all important keywords eg: ‘social media consultant London’ – you are paying to top the bill. You are bidding on keywords so that you become visible in the sponsored links. Again, ideally you want to dominate the sponsored listings – so that you have more chance of being ‘clicked’ on.  Results show that the top 3 positions receive the most traffic from sponsored activity.

Social Media Networks – Rather than putting all your eggs into one ‘online’ basket and simply having your website presence being the main means for audiences to find out about your business and services – now you can leverage a plethora of social networks to create a broader online presence.

Not only do social networks provide you with more opportunity to grow a presence online – but they also enable you to target specific people, influencers etc – and talk and converse and provide insight into what you and your business are really about.  This fundamentally enables you to showcase what you do for others via case studies, testimonials, track conversations, grow thought leadership by sharing opinion and expertise, grow fans and advocates who spread the word for you (to name but a few of the many uses of social).

Of course – the challenge with ‘Social’ is that you have to put something ‘out’ (share it) in order to attract people ‘in’.

Unlike advertising or optimising – social is the place whereby you ‘earn’ attention by the nature of what you share.

Therefore, you need to have something ‘sharable’ – and a method to consistently and simply share those all important insights into you, your business and your products and services.

This is where ‘blogging’ comes into play.

A blog, in my humble opinion, is a MUST for every website – and yes, I believe EVERY website, even those focusing solely on ‘ecommerce’.

The blog is the ‘mouthpiece’ for the business and brand. This is the place where you can share more than you can say on Twitter or Facebook – and of course,  provides you with unique, purposeful and relevant content to share on those social networks too.

Fundamentally, social isn’t about direct sales, it’s about getting people to ‘know you, like you, trust you, talk about you – and ultimately do business with you’.

In order to grow this relationship and get people to know, like and trust you – you’ve got to provide content that is useful, purposeful, authentic and from the heart of your business – so that you ‘earn’ attention.

Your Blog is your Broadcast Station

Your blog is indeed your broadcast station. Everything the business wants to share, believes in, has done for others, people get excited about etc – can be shared via your blog.  And of course – where does that blog sit? – on your website.

  • When people visit your website they see your blog (particularly if you’re smart and have it visible on the home page). They see that you’re alive and that you have opinions, advice, testimonials, case studies, view points, expertise, authority, a personality etc.
  • When people read your blog, they get pulled back to your website. Where they can explore more blogs or products or services or hit the call to action you included in your blog to encourage them to get more involved with your business by subscribing to your blog or downloading your latest Social Media or Marketing guide etc.

It’s the perfect ‘engagement’ and ‘broadcast’ tool.  It works beautifully for social media – as it gives you something to share – and it’s an authentic view on you and your business.

If a business isn’t blogging – then they don’t have much to say.  And in a world where being ‘vocal’ matters – then blogging assists with your online visibility.

Ok, so if we dedicate time and resource to blogging regularly – what’s the ROI?

At Carvill Creative we keep a track of all enquiries – whether they come via our online ‘Get in touch’ form or via phone or email.

Out of submissions from the last three months – 50% were via Google Search and 50% said:

I can confirm that from those that contacted us via seeing our blog – 60% have so far translated into new business compared to just 18% of those that made queries via Google Search.

Also – a client, Westbury Accountants – grew traffic to their site 386% when they picked up their blogging activity.  You can read their Blogging for Success Case Study here.

My questions to you are:

  • If you’re not blogging – why not?  If it’s a resource thing – then work with a company like Carvill Creative where we either train you and your team to blog internally (as we did with Westbury) or indeed we learn about your organisation and personality and regularly create content for your blogs.
  • If you have a blog how regularly are you blogging and are you measuring its effectiveness? Do you track where leads come from, do you monitor Analytics on your website to review traffic via your blog?

Blogging isn’t a sprint, it’s a marathon. Focus on the end in mind. You’ll find lots of tips and tactics for getting started with blogging here in our Blogging Masterclass in A Blog Post article – and of course, if you want to start a blog and don’t know where to start – get in touch. We’d be delighted to get you blogging.

 

@Michelle Carvill is owner and Marketing Director at Carvill Creative – the online visibility experts. A digital marketing and design agency based in Maidenhead, Berkshire.  The agency covers all aspects of marketing strategy and online visibility – covering social media marketing and social media training, user focused website planning and conversion focused website design.

Want to talk to the team at Carvill Creative about your social media activity or training needs? We’re happy to chat, so simply ‘get in touch’.

Finally, why not download our useful Social Media Marketing Planner and Marketing Plan. They’re totally free to download and use.

Facebook ‘Nearby’ Search Feature: Another Reason for Your Business to Create a Facebook Page.

Whilst it is reported that there are over 1bn Facebook users- there are still many local businesses without a Facebook business page.

A recent Facebook update; ‘Facebook Nearby’ – gives businesses even more of a reason to sign onto the Facebook network and create their very own Facebook Business Page to keep them on the map and aid visibility.

Facebooks’ nearby tab was originally used in personal profiles showing people where their friends’ had ‘checked in.’

Facebook has now built on this app turning it into a business local search engine where you can discover places and local businesses nearby. Searches can be done using either a business name or category – such as coffee shop, restaurants, bars etc.

At the moment this is only available on Facebook mobile phone apps due to Facebook wanting to engage on a deeper level with their fans via mobile as they believe it will offer a ‘word of mouth at scale.’

The update was designed to make the Facebook mobile app a go-to source for finding out local information in each of the selected categories.

This is a new marketing opportunity that you don’t want to miss out on. It enables you to:

 

  1. Put your businesses face onto the map- offering search and discovery of any other local businesses in the area.

 

  1. Lets you know where friends and fans are and the local businesses they have checked into.

 

  1. Offers a places category- where you are able to search for places in different categories such as nearby, restaurants, nightlife, outdoors, shopping etc.

 

  1. Useful marketing resource to motivate other Facebook users- through engagement you can discover what others think of local businesses.

 

  1. Measure and rate a business through a 5 star ranking system where the businesses that have been ranked the highest and have the higher levels of engagement are more likely to appear first in Facebook’s search filters.

 

  1. Users also have the option to like, call and get directions for the business they want to connect with- Straight from their mobile.

 

Facebook’s ‘Nearby’ search engine will deliver results from local Business Page – so remember, if you don’t have a page- You won’t show up!

Get your business noticed and create your Facebook business page now! See our useful guide to help get your Facebook Business Page started.

 

 

 

 

Blogging the Seth Godin way – it’s Eastenders…!

A couple of months ago I wrote a blog piece ‘Blogging the Seth Godin way…’ .  Effectively, it was a post about what I was learning about blogging from Seth Godin – focusing on the range of subjects he included – the different sized posts (some very long, others just a paragraph) and frequency levels – keeping under my nose at least daily!  

Whilst I enjoyed reading Seth’s musings (which came in thick and fast for a period of time) – I have to say that the ‘Seth’ folder in my inbox is now stacked with stuff I need to read.  And being the type of person who likes to keep on top of things and keep my inbox as up to date as possible – I’m afraid I find myself hitting the ‘delete’ button when that folder gets too full.  So all of Seth’s wise and wonderful advice is zapped from my view in a click!

Dosh Dosh.com however, the other blogger I follow, writes a long piece probably once perhaps twice a month.  And I always read it.

So what does this tell me – great advice from both – one coming in thick and fast and the other coming in relatively slowly…

Continue reading Blogging the Seth Godin way – it’s Eastenders…!

Blogging the Seth Godin way…

I subscribe to just a few blogs – one of them is Seth Godin’s – I’ve enjoyed most of Seth’s many books – and whilst I don’t agree with everything he has to say, much of what he says, I concur with.  I’m learning a lot about blogging from Seth – not from the advice he provides, but by observing how he blogs.  Often it’s just short snippets – observational ‘marketing’ advice/lessons/views/thoughts.

Being a ‘marketer’ out there in the field providing practical advice and working directly with a range of clients – it’s difficult to switch the ‘marketing’ channel off.  And, quite frustratingly in many situations of terrible customer service, or poor promotion, difficult websites and such like, I tend to proffer advice – (whether the recipient wants to hear it or not!). And so, I am going to start building these more everyday occurrences into my blog posts.

It’s ok for a post to be just a couple of paragraphs long.  I’ve read that so many times, but it still feels a little light to me.  But hey – I’m all up for mixing things up a bit.

Meanwhile – I particularly liked this recent short snippet from Seth’s blog.  In fact, if you Google my name, Michelle Carvill, you’ll see that I am controlling what comes up top – a Bizzbug profile which clearly promotes who I am, what I do – so I am taking control of the ‘candid camera’ scenario to a degree.  You can too – Bizzbug is free.  Any pointers required, give me a shout.

Personal branding in the age of Google

A friend advertised on Craigslist for a housekeeper.

Three interesting resumes came to the top. She googled each person’s name.

The first search turned up a MySpace page. There was a picture of the applicant, drinking beer from a funnel. Under hobbies, the first entry was, “binge drinking.”

The second search turned up a personal blog (a good one, actually). The most recent entry said something like, “I am applying for some menial jobs that are below me, and I’m annoyed by it. I’ll certainly quit the minute I sell a few paintings.”

And the third? There were only six matches, and the sixth was from the local police department, indicating that the applicant had been arrested for shoplifting two years earlier.

Three for three.

Google never forgets.

Of course, you don’t have to be a drunk, a thief or a bitter failure for this to backfire. Everything you do now ends up in your permanent record. The best plan is to overload Google with a long tail of good stuff and to always act as if you’re on Candid Camera, because you are.

Why not subscribe to my blog and keep up to date with marketing news, view, ideas, ‘observations’ and advice…

Michelle

Michelle Carvill is owner and Marketing Director at Carvill Creative – a graphic design and marketing services agency based in Maidenhead, Berkshire.  The agency covers all aspects of graphic design and marketing – covering social media marketing and website planning and website design.

Social media – add it to your mix! 5 things to do right now…

It’s likely that you are familiar with most of the ‘traditional’ marketing practices; direct mail, email marketing, advertising, telesales, pr etc – however, for a few years now, given the opportunities the internet provides, the term ‘new marketing’ has been bandied around.   If we think of traditional marketing as ‘push’ marketing – mediums we use to push our messages onto others ‘interupting’ them, then the new marketing relates to ‘pull’ marketing – marketing activities we do which ‘attract’, as a magnet would, interested parties, at their own accord, to view our wares.

Pull activities include; blogging, social media networks (think Twitter, Facebook, Linked-In, Bizzbug, Ning, Xing, My Space) actively participating in forums; (http://www.UKbusinessforum.co.uk, socialmediatoday, ukbusinesslabs, womensmarketingforum), making your information more widely available via resources such as Digg, Blogburst and others – effectively, sharing your knowledge, know-how, experiences, advice, contacts, news, views and opinions to build interest in who you are, what your business is about, what you do – with the hope that users grow to follow what you say and  are encouraged to buy and refer – effectively, building ‘positive share of mind’ – in an online and hopefully viral way!

Social Media activity is not a direct sell – it’s a bit of a slow burner – and in just the same way as we practice traditional marketing, it’s not something that you do in isolation.  For maximum impact, it’s wise to work the social media mediums in an integrated way.

Here’s our my 5 tips for getting started and integrating just some of  what’s available:  (Believe me, if you stretch yourself too far, it becomes a full time job just trying to keep on top of it all).

Continue reading Social media – add it to your mix! 5 things to do right now…

20 tips for successful blog writing (from a relatively new blogger!)

I’m a relatively new blogger – having only been blogging for the past 6 months, but my passion for blogging is relentless and my appetite HUGE.  I’ve learned quite a bit about blogging over the past few months – and and keen to continue with this curve.  But meanwhile, I thought I’d share my ‘hands on’ Top 20 tips with you:

1) Keep your posts relatively short. Having researched blogging to a good degree – then 500-800 words seems to be a good benchmark.  Short and concise is ok.

2) Keep your posts varied. Have some posts that are very factual – drawing on information that will help the users. Make some light and humorous so that the user understands that whilst you know your stuff, you’re not taking life too seriously. And they get an insight to your personality. Make some posts a little controversial or challenging the user – to stimulate conversation.

Prior to this post I ran a series of Marketing Plan Template posts – breaking up a plan template I created – not sure this was the best way to do things as I lost a subscriber (ouch) but hey, you live and learn.

3) Always watch your spellings. Poor spelling really does hinder credibility.

4) Use images in a post to break up the text and add some relevant interest. Check out www.flickr.com or www.istockphoto.com or www.fotolia.co.uk for some cheap yet very good quality shots.

5) Create interesting headings. The piece of advice I came across (Hubspot webinar which was pretty useful) advised that you should write the headline imagining that the user won’t even see the article. So the headline has to grab attention and tell the story.

6) Use keywords where you can – in headers and throughout the content of the article.

7) Keep it going. Stick to a tight publishing schedule. Blogging pays off over time – it’s a marathon rather than a sprint and it takes time to build up relevant and optimised content. I set my schedule to publish 3 times a week.  And I’ve posted twice today, which is unusual!

8) Insert a call to action such as Subscribe to Blog on the site so that users can easily subscribe. I use www.feedblitz.com but there are many others www.feedburner.com is popular too.

9) Claim your blog on Technorati – Google Blogsearch and Technorati are the two main ways that people search for blogs. That way others can find your blog.

10) Promote links to your blog on your website and in email footers, businesscards and other off and online relevant marketing materials.

Continue reading 20 tips for successful blog writing (from a relatively new blogger!)