We all know that websites who produce great content relevant to visitors tend to perform well in search but often, sitting down to write a blog is a daunting task.
Perhaps your business is “boring” or you struggle for inspiration, whatever the case here’s our guide on how to “Blog Without the Slog!”
You’re sat in front of your computer staring at blank screen, what do you write about? The easiest way is to get some inspiration so let’s use an example: You sell chocolate online. There are a number of tools to help get your creative juices flowing and here are a few of my favourites:
We want to write a blog about chocolate that’s going to be of interest to readers, something topical perhaps that will gain traction in Social Media and help the visibility of our masterpiece.
Bottlenose is a very helpful website to achieve this: It allows you to connect your social media accounts and then by entering a keyword of your choice, provides you with trending information related to your search term.
In this example we’ve used the SONAR tool to see what’s trending right now. We can see the Golden Globes (Happening right now) have chocolate gifts at the tables (See the tweets on the right). That’s given me an idea, we often create custom chocolate products for events so lets look into this further!
So we have the subject matter of our blog, we’re going to write about Corporate Chocolate Gifts using the Golden Globes as the subject in someway.
But first, let’s see if there’s any interest online, we know it’s been subject of Social Media discussions but what about in search?
A quick search in Google Trends shows us that “Chocolate Gifts” is receiving more and more search volume over time so it stands to reason whatever blog we write now on the subject should still be relevant hence continue to get traffic later.
We can then repeat the search for similar related terms here and help us shape the blog so it will hopefully rank for relevant terms both now and in the future.
Writing & Sharing Your Blog
So we have the subject of the blog, we know it’s popular now and we know it’s likely to be popular in the future so we need to make sure it’s SEO friendly so it ranks well. Don’t over think this part but do include terms in a natural way that are relevant to the subject matter and also, make sure you have Google Authorship set up. Don’t stuff keywords, just write it naturally whilst consciously thinking about what someone would search for to find the blog.
How to Choose a Title For Your Blog
Titles are incredibly important: try and choose a title that peaks a users interest and tempts them to read the blog. Now most SEOs will tell you to devise a nice keyword rich title to help it rank well and yes that’s an option. However, I’d advise you concentrate on a title that puts a reader first in that it tempts them to read your blog, if you can get a relevant keyword in there then that’s great but don’t “shoehorn” it in.
Here are some examples:
- 5 Tips to Impress Guests at an Event With Chocolate Gifts
- How to Pull off an Event Golden Globes Style With Chocolate!
- Corporate Gifts: How to Impress With Custom Chocolate Creations
Using Social Media With Blogging
We’ve now we’ve got a title, we’ve written our blog and we’re ready to watch the visitors flood in. But, how do we give the blog every chance to succeed?
Firstly we need to make sure we share it to a relevant audience on Social Media and to do that we need to build relationships with relevant influential people:
FollowerWonk gives us loads of cool tools to help us with Social Media but the one we’re interested in right now is the “Search Twitter Bios” tool. We want to connect with people that our blog is relevant too so let’s search for “Event Management” and limit the search to the UK.
We’ve now got a list of Twitter profiles that include the terms “Event Management” so let’s connect with a few and start building relationships. Follow influential users and engage with them on Twitter: don’t just expect them to work for you, share their content, engage with them and build a relationship.
In this example you can see the “Social Authority” of each Twitter user so follow a few of the more influential / active profiles (higher score) as it’s more likely we’re going to be able to engage with them and ultimately share our content.
Remember, this should be a long term strategy, don’t just do it at the time you post your blog.
Share Your Blogs Regularly
Many bloggers make the mistake of sharing their newest creation when it’s first written and then forgetting about it. The problem with this approach is only a tiny fraction of your followers will see a single tweet referring to your blog. Share you’re blog regularly at different times and using Follower Wonk and Buffer you can even share it at times your followers are most active, automatically.
Buffer is one of my all time favourite tools. Basically it automates your tweets and Facebook, G+ and Linkedin posts) at predefined intervals. A word of warning though, don’t just rely on automated posting make sure you engage with your audience too.
The great thing about Buffer is that you can hook it up to FollowerWonk and share your blogs at times when your visitors are most active. Head over to the “Analyze Followers” tabs and enter your Twitter Handle into the search box and select “Analyze their followers”
Here we can see lots of cool information but in this example we’re most interesting in the “Most Active Hours” section. Here we can see when our followers are most active so just whack the “Schedule at Buffer” button and we’re done.
Over to Buffer now and we can see what times we’re set to post at. All that remains is to select our latest blog (and our previous blogs) and get them shared:
The easiest way to do this is to make sure you have the Buffer browser plugin installed (I use Google Chrome) and head over to your blog in your browser. Once you’re looking at a blog post hit that buffer browser plugin, enter a suitably interesting tweet designed to tempt viewers to click and hit Schedule. Repeat as necessary until all blogs are shared.
TIP: I usually share each blog a few times in one go so all of my blogs are scheduled for a month which leaves me time to do other things like engage with other users. If you do this make sure you go to Buffer and shuffle your posts, the last thing you want to do is share the same post 4 times in a row!
Research your blogs and have an objective in mind. Try to understand who your audience is for each blog and craft your blog to be relevant and interesting to them. Also, remember to share your blogs regularly to increase their reach and keep the traffic rolling in.
There are other tools available and the ones I’ve mentioned here offer an array of additional features so give them a go and explore! (All of these tools have both free and paid subscription plans).