Blogging is a long-term game
Most importantly, you need to treat your blog like growing tomatoes. What I mean is this , tomatoes need sunlight, water, and fertilizer, but above all care and attention.
The same is true for your blog. Good content, web traffic, and an email list are only a start.
To start reaping the benefits of blogging you need to treat your readers with love by sharing generously, and follow these 8 tips to nurturing your blog from Henneke to make sure you reap the rewards of blogging in years to come
1. Get closer to your readers
- The foundation of good writing is empathy—understanding what your readers are struggling with and how you can help.
- But how can you get closer?
- Mind your inbox—when you’re generous and interact with your readers, you’ll find readers give you plenty of ideas for how you can help them.
- For each post you write, ask yourself:
- Does the title grab my reader’s attention?
- Does my opening paragraph make him crave reading my content?
- Does my content help him?
- Does my final paragraph inspire him to take action?
- It’s easy to fall into the trap of sharing knowledge because we know it.
- Empathy requires discipline.
2. Learn how to slaughter verbosity
- Could it be that a dash of wordiness is sneaking into your blog posts?
- It’s easily done. When we write, we use complicated language. We use too many words. Most blog posts can be cut by 30-50%.
- When editing your posts, cut all flabby content:
- Decide on the essence of your post—“your big idea”
- Cut all paragraphs that don’t contribute to communicating your big idea
- Ensure that each sentence adds meaning
- Practice your editing skills to make your message crystal-clear.
- Be disciplined.
3. Boost your headline writing skills
- Improving your headline writing skills is a quick way to boost your social shares and web traffic.
- And writing good headlines is simpler than you think:
- Study headlines on popular blogs and magazines
- Notice which words grab attention
- See how each headline promises you a “reward” for reading an article
- Would you like to polish your headline writing skills?
- Go for quantity.
- Write at least two dozen headlines for each post you publish.
4. Create a sign-up incentive
- Writing blog posts is only part of creating a successful business blog.
- To turn casual blog readers into loyal fans, friends, and clients, you need to get them on your email list.
- A series of short tips sent by email is one that is a highly recommended reward for joining a list.
- Because it allows you to build a relationship over time.
- This is how to create your own micro ecourse:
- Think about your readers—how can you help them?
- Write down a list of at least 30 simple tips around one topic, and pick the best 20
- Write a short email for each tip—my target is 200 words max
- Boost the value of your e-course by including a couple of free downloadable guides
- Create an enticing name for your e-course
5. Boost your guest blogging activity
- Guest blogging is one way of finding new readers for your blog.
- This is how to start guest blogging:
- Look for blogs that are read by your target audience
- Analyze these blogs to find out which topics are popular
- Connect with editors via social media or comments to build a connection
- Pitch an idea to an editor indicating why your guest post will be popular with their audience—e.g., by pointing to a similar post with a high number of social media shares
- Write your best-ever blog post
- Interact with a blog’s audience in the comment section
- Follow up with the editor after your guest post has gone live to gain feedback and discuss ideas for the next post
- Create a dedicated landing page for readers clicking through from your bio to maximize opt-ins to your email list
- Think about the contacts you already have—can anyone help you publish a guest post on a blog that’s popular with your audience? Or if you’ve be guest posting already, can you plan a guest blogging blitz so readers will think you’re everywhere? Or can you target a bigger and more popular blog?
6. Turn more loyal readers into clients
- You’ve nurtured relationships.
- You’re building your authority.
- And your web traffic is growing.
- Is it time to boost your business, too?
- Review your email footer—how can you remind readers of your service offer?
- Check your auto-responder series and consider including short case studies that show readers how to do something and demonstrate how you could help them at the same time
- Set up dedicated web pages that explain your offer—and link to them occasionally from blog posts
- Develop low priced products to ease readers into a buying relationship—consider a Kindle book, a micro-course, or a starter coaching package.
- Don’t forget … Selling begins with listening to your readers and starting a conversation.
7. Create a content landing page to boost traffic
- A content landing page helps readers find your best content, and it can boost your search engine traffic, too. (Highly recommend Vince Reed’s MITS Landing Pages….ask me for more info)
- A content landing page provides an introduction to one topic and includes links to your best posts about that same topic.
- How to create a content landing page:
- Write a short introduction, because this increases your chances of gaining links and traffic.
- Pick the topic you’re becoming known for.
- Select your best posts about this topic and consider including one or two guest posts, too.
- Include an opt-in form to turn web visitors into email subscribers.
8. Create a stronger visual identity to stand out
- You write with a strong voice.
- Your posts have become authoritative.
- But what visual impression do you make?
- Does your color scheme reflect your personality?
- Does your design promote readability?
- Do your pictures help you stand out?
- Is it time for a professional logo?
- First impressions count.
- And the first impression you make, is often visual.
Ready to start planning your blog growth and start reaping the rewards. Take a few minutes now:
Start with looking back briefly. What new things have you tried in 2014? What have you learned? What have you achieved?
Pick a maximum of three items you want to focus on next year.
Block time in your calendar to implement your priority.
Remember that blogging is a long-term game, so treat your readers with love, share generously and you’ll reap the benefits in the years to come.
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To Your Success,