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Is your New Year’s blogging resolution already in jeopardy?

Here’s how to be a better blogger

If you’re reading this, chances are you have resolved to be more diligent about blogging in the new year as part of your marketing strategy. Or maybe your resolution is to finally throw your hat into the ring as a blogger.

Blogging is a great way to establish your organization as a thought leader, increase organic search traffic to your website, and stay in touch with existing customers. And everyone touts that “blogging is free” so why not do it. Well you and I both know that nothing is free. And if not carefully planned, blogging can be a black hole that sucks up cosmic amounts of time that could be spent on more profitable endeavors.

Tips to build your blog’s success

If new to blogging, you will greatly underestimate the time it takes. Depending on the research required for a blog post topic, it can take 4-6 hours for research and writing. Plus the time to find relevant visuals, populate the content into your blogging platform, create links to other blogs, and promote the post through e-news and social media. Now you’re up to 8-10 hours to effectively launch one blog post.

Set a dollar value for your time to “budget” your blogging into your marketing spend and help find the right frequency. Blogging frequently is great, but it must be balanced with all the other things you juggle.

Tips to building a better blog for beginner inset image

Now that the frequency is set, establish goals and methods to measure your blog’s success, just like any other advertising channel. Otherwise you risk spending tons of time and constantly questioning the ROI for all that time. Relevant benchmarks vary but could include: blog readership (use the most popular topics to drive future content), increased website traffic, signups for white papers or e-newsletters, prospect leads generated, new business attributable to the blog, etc.

Look for opportunities to have others repost your blog. They can be vendors, colleagues or other bloggers. The audience multiplier effect of this is huge. And Google loves it when others link into your site.

Hopefully you develop regular followers along the way. Even if they are not customers at present, the fact that they value what you say and chose to follow your blog makes them warm leads to convert to customers when the time is right. Or maybe they become referral sources and share your blog with others.

Google loves quality links inset imageDon’t blog unless you enjoy it. If your mind is full of great ideas but time or talent makes blogging an obstacle, get someone to ghostwrite for you. It can be a staff colleague or a paid blog writer. They can spend 15 minutes getting your thoughts and then do the rest of the heavy lifting. Take some time on the first few blogs to help the writer understand your way of thinking and how you express things. Then, with the right blogger, there should be little of your time required other than a quick review of their writing. Have them do the photo selection, posting, linking and promotion also. There may be many more valuable things you can do with that time.

Here’s to avoiding the blogger’s black hole with consistent, manageable blogging and a healthy ROI.

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