7 Tips To Keep Your Blog Going For The Long Run

How To Keep Your Blog From Freezing Over

Despite the rush to prepare and hunker down as Winter Storm Nemo blew through the northeast, drivers were stranded and businesses closed. Similarly your blog can be frozen in place by a storm in your environment.

For many businesses, it’s not just bad weather such as snow and hurricanes they need to worry about when it comes to blogging. More often, their biggest problem is finding enough time and resources to keep their blog on track. This is particularly a problem for small businesses and solopreneurs where a big project can suck up all of your resources.

Once you decide to publish a blog and build an audience, you’ve created a media entity with a responsibility to your readers and community to keep a regular publication schedule. If you stop, your blog is at risk of freezing over because it’s easy to tell yourself it’s only another day and no one will notice.

Here are seven tips to keep your blog on track to succeed.

  1. Make your business tradeoffs.  A blog yields measurable benefits in terms of supporting the purchase process, fueling social media and aiding search optimization. If you’re going to have a business blog, understand that it will require resources: people, money and time (which is the most difficult for small businesses.) This translates to finding time to craft your content because your blog is your brand! Remember there’s no government rule that says businesses must have a blog. If you decide a blog is necessary to your business, you must provide sufficient resources to keep it going. Actionable Marketing Tip: Consider using low cost ways to help you develop your blog posts. For example, you can dictate your content while you’re on the treadmill or driving and get it transcribed later. Alternatively, you can get support for research, graphics and copyediting. (Here are thirty-three tips to get blog help without breaking the bank.)
  2. Focus on one topic or product line. Your blog can’t be all things to all people. Concentrate on one aspect of your business. This can happen if you’re providing tailored information on your products and want to build out your executive platform on a broader topic. Actionable Marketing Tip: Create more than one blog if you want to cover two or more distinct topics. Each can have its own content calendar. Further, they can all be integrated into your overall content marketing.
  3. Realize writing is only part of the work involved in blogging. Many blogging newbies believe that once they finish writing a post, they’re done. Sorry to burst your bubble but you’ve got more to do – namely presentation and promotion. Actionable Marketing Tip: Set your post up for success. Add alluring photographs and other content to pull readers in.  Also optimize for search and link to other content, both internal and external. 
  4. Get a blogging buddy. You can’t do blogging alone. This is especially important for solopreneurs. You need to be able to brainstorm blog posts and talk through your content marketing strategy. While your spouse or partner might try to help, it’s a much better idea to get a buddy who understands what blogging is about. The idea is that you help each other and encourage each other to write. Actionable Marketing Tip: At a minimum, join #BlogChat to get support from a group of like-minded people. Other alternatives for getting a blogging buddy include attending blogging conferences. Don’t expect a top blogger to be willing to help you with the nuts and bolts of the trade because they’re very busy people who get lots of email.
  5. Keep your blogging commitment. To this end it’s a good idea to start small. Select a publication schedule you can meet. It’s much better to post on the same day at the same time regularly than killing yourself to publish everyday only to give up when you get overwhelmed with work projects. Actionable Marketing Tip: Think about your editorial calendar on a two-week basis. (I call this the CliffNotes approach to editorial calendars.) If you can only publish one good article in two weeks, then don’t try to write two bad articles instead! Consistency is more important.
  6. Build a community around your blog. You need to think beyond the next blog post. A blog takes a community. It’s not about the comments and social shares. (For more on this topic, check out Marcus Sheridan’s post.) It’s about getting people to read and spread the word about your content. Actionable Marketing Tip: Pay it forward before you ask for any help from your readers and other bloggers.
  7. Plan for the long term. A blog takes time to gain traction and yield results. It’s not a form of marketing that you execute and move on. In fact, the benefits of blogging don’t kick in until you’ve got at least fifty posts, based on research from HubspotActionable Marketing Tip: Give some thought to the future. If you succeed at blogging, what do you see yourself doing a year or two from now? Where do you see your blog going? Note: This is different from having blog goals.

With blogging, as in life, real commitment is needed even when Mother Nature sends you a snowstorm or a hurricane. You need to be willing to weather the bad times and the good times and keep on blogging (as long as you have power and an Internet connection!)

What else would you add to this list of blog tips?

Happy Marketing,
Heidi Cohen

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Photo Credit: http://www.flickr.com/photos/christinawelsh/8459539654/


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