Get Your Blog In the Halloween Spirit
Who can’t use some new blog tricks?
Before you answer, do you know the key to your blog’s success?
This isn’t a trick question!
BUT, if you don’t know this answer, none of these blog tricks will necessarily help you.
Answer: You need to know your blog’s goals.
Even better your blog goals should be aligned with your business and marketing goals. Then integrated into your blog mission statement. Also, they should be stated in terms that enable you to measure results.
Halloween: 31 Blog tricks
Use these 31 blog tricks to get your blog in the Halloween mood.
Determine your blog goals
Lay the plans for your blog.
- Decorate your blog for Halloween. Determine your blog design. It sets standards for you’re your content will appear to visitors. Halloween special: Trim your blog for the holiday. Change the look and feel to coordinate with special events.
- Carve your pumpkin. Brand your blog. Document your blog brand guidelines. Think beyond your logo. Include voice, tone, and other design elements like images and non-text content.
- Keep a wooden stake available for unfriendly vampires. Use the right tools. Select your theme and plug-ins
- Write your Halloween tombstone. For your blog that’s your About Page. Show your personality. Tell visitors about your organization and the people behind your blog.
- Expose your neck for Dracula. Be yourself on blog. Like other social media formats, be transparent.
- Don’t let Halloween visitors get lost in the graveyard. Include a site map and other forms of blog navigation. Guide new visitors to a page of in-depth articles. Also, promote your most popular articles. (Everyone loves bestsellers!)
Know your blog audience
Even though it’s Halloween, knowing your readers isn’t about sucking their blood and, more importantly, their attention!
- Get in contact with the appropriate spirits. Know your audience: your customers, employees and promoters. Even better create a marketing persona for each of your top 3 to 4 target audiences.
- Encourage your co-workers to get into the Halloween fun. Don’t blog by yourself. Even if they don’t write blog posts, get their input on prospects and customers. Solicit their ideas for blog posts.
- Invite your favorite witches and warlocks. Follow influencers related to your core topics. Engage with them. Share their content on other social media platforms. Your objective is to build relationships.
Produce quality blog content
Halloween is a good time to revisit the spirit of blog posts past, improve current blog posts and plan for future blog posts.
- Remember the ghosts of Halloween past. Before you create new content, audit your existing blog posts. Find the content to repromote, update, upgrade and/or consolidate. Then fill in the remaining content holes.
- Keep your blog content from looking haunted. Keep your blog content current and relevant to readers. Update and improve out of date information. (BTW, this helps search results!)
- Don’t wait for a full moon to blog. Develop an editorial calendar. Integrate it into your content and marketing plans. This helps you to efficiently create additional content without redundant effort.
- Don’t be a lone ghost (writer). Tap into other content marketing initiatives within your organization. This extends the life of other content and reduces costs.
- Get your Halloween squad to join you. (Hat tip: Ann Handley!) Let guest bloggers in, not ghost bloggers. (Note: This blog doesn’t accept guest posts!)
- Don’t rely on magic powers to create engaging posts. Develop blogging habits. This helps you continue to write new blog posts on a regular basis.
- Don’t fly in on your broomstick when the spirit moves you to write blog posts. Blogging requires an on-going commitment. Show up on a regular basis.
- Don’t create a Frankenstein monster. Don’t use whatever content is around your company. Your blog isn’t a repository for your organization’s content scraps. Your blog must focus on its core topic and goals. Otherwise, you’ll scare readers away.
- Skip throwing rotten eggs. Don’t use your blog to criticize and call out other people. These are real people with real human feelings behind these blogs. You may hurt them without realizing it.
- Don’t be a zombie. Don’t eat other people’s brains. On blogs, this is their ideas and/or content. Give credit where credit is due and observe creative commons license or ask for permission to use.
Optimize blog content
Everyone wants attention, especially on Halloween.
- Dress up for Halloween. Pimp up your posts to attract attention in terms of formatting your content for easy consumption.
- Take photographs (but skip the vampires!) Photographs enhance your blog’s ability to attract visitors. People are programmed to look at other people.
- Make your blog Halloween-friendly. Add social sharing icons to make it easy for visitors to share your content.
- Exorcise the ghosts out of your blog. Optimize your blog for search and social media.
- Avoid poison apples. Don’t create blog content just to drive search (aka black hat tricks).
- Offer great Halloween treats. Everyone goes to the house with the best treats! Don’t send visitors away empty handed. Even better, get them to join your email list.
- Don’t be the headless horseman. Don’t spam your readers with useless content.
Distribute your blog content
If you don’t get the word out about your content, it’ll stay buried on your blog.
- Invite friends to join you for Halloween. Share your content using your owned media. Go beyond publishing your content. Send it out via email and other internal channels.
- Attend Halloween parties. Go beyond your owned media. Share your blog posts on social media to test what is the best content you have.
- Howl at the moon. Amplify the word about your blog content. Where appropriate, share it on aggregation sites like Reddit. (Of course, it helps to be an active member of the community.)
- Join the Halloween parade. Expand your blog content distribution. Where appropriate, support it with paid advertising (such as Facebook.)
- Count your Halloween loot. Don’t let your little brother steal the best candy. (When I was a kid, it was usually my dad who always took the best candy.) This means measure your blog metrics.
The 31 blog tricks bottom line:
If your blog is a haunted house full of old skeletons and ghosts, you’ll scare readers away.
If this is the case, it’s a waste of time and money!
Take advantage of Halloween blog tricks to attract and engage readers.
Decorate your house to be the best place to visit for Halloween candy.
You don’t need garlic. You don’t have to suck visitors’ blood.
Treat them to quality content in return for their attention.
What’re your favorite Halloween related blog tricks and why?
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Photos: ©2016 Heidi Cohen.
Note: This post was originally published on October 31, 2013. It has been updated with new content.