Tuesday, May 24, 2011

5 Lessons Learned from Blogging

The more I read about social media marketing from those many pundits out there, the more I see the following types of content:

  • blog posts that cover blogging
  • tweets that talk about using twitter
  • blog posts that share tips for using twitter
  • tweets with pointers about blogging

Goodness knows this B-to-B blog you are reading right now takes this well-worn approach with several recent posts about managing Twitter for business-to-business marketing.   It’s clear to see that Twitter has captured my attention over the last year, in fact I’ve several more Twitter related posts in the hopper.

And in much the same spirit, let’s turn our attention to blogging.

Yes it’s a blog post that covers blogging!

Through work with my own blog, and client work for other corporate blogs, presented here are….

 5 Lessons Learned from Blogging

Lesson 1: It Pays to Be Consistent
The beast needs to be fed.  That means starting a blog is the easy part, keeping current by creating updated posts is much more difficult.  Case in point:  this blog has the goal of 4 new posts per month.  Take a look on the left side index and you’ll see I’m averaging less than 4 posts per month.  It’s effective to “post when you have something to say” so be sure that the main thrust, focus of the blog sufficiently engages and inspires you to “keep on talking” and posting.

Stuck for ideas?  Those smarty pants at Hubspot give some great pointers on keeping business-related content fresh and “feeding the beast”. (warning, lots of food analogies so best to read on a full stomach)

Lesson 2: Take Time to Engage
No matter what the blog post topic, asking pointed questions, soliciting feedback and engaging readers is powerful.  A recent client project involved inserting an online survey into a blog post, which was an effective way to turn a passive reader into a participator.   There are many great tools out there but Zoomerang is an especially easy and powerful one.

Lesson 3: Consider SEO
Folks write about this topic in much more detail so it’s worth a look at their insight.  For our purposes, be sure to make yourself familiar with SEO best practices like using keywords.  Within a post, be sure to embed links to your website, other blog posts, or other key websites. In the world of b-to-b marketing, a blog is a powerful way to improve search results. Post titles and content should contain the keywords that your customers and prospects search. For instance, this is a blog about marketing, business-to-business marketing communications, and marketing strategy.  Those are words that should be tagged and used as much as possible.  It is worth it to take the time to know which keywords are more relevant to you or your clients.

 SearchEngineLand.com is the premiere source to check for other tips.

 Lesson 4: Remember Nobody Reads
Web users are overloaded with content – and social media posts are getting shorter and shorter.  The Twitter 140 character limit has trained web users to scan, and take short “information snacks” instead of digesting lengthy, complex content.

Keep this in mind when creating blog content.  Chunk out information in easily digestible segments.   Develop information-carrying subheads.   Break out titles into lists, top lessons learned, etc. to make it easy for your blog readers to digest your information.

Lesson 5:  Share  and Share Alike
Blogging is a powerful way to elevate you or your client’s brand, showcase industry leadership, and raise overall visibility of products and services.  Don’t just post, though.  Share!  

Use Twitter to link back to the post.  Showcase the blog post content on the home page of your website.  LinkedIn offers several ways to share links to blog posts by topic, either on your profile or within LinkedIn groups. Add your blog post to directories like technorati for maximum exposure.

What are the lessons you've learned from blogging?

1 comment:

  1. Great information Julie! I was going to pick out my favorite tips but all 5 are good. My clients who have been consistent and use their blog to reinforce their brand philosophy have been getting the most results.