It’s hard keeping a blog. Isn’t it?
It really requires your time and your dedication. It requires follow-through and a level of stickwithitness that verges on the obsessive/compulsive. In fact, being obsessive is probably a valuable characteristic in being a blogger.
Of course, there is a difference between those whose sole purpose it is to blog about what they know, what they feel, what’s important to them, and those people who should keep a blog in order to maximize their search engine exposure footprint. So, for clarity’s sake, this is about those businesses and individuals whose job it is to sell door knobs, or art, provide a service or a better can opener.
A blog is not a magic bullet (let us remember that there is no magic bullet in SEO), but it is a big ol’ hammer in your SEO toolbox and can be an essential component of your visibility and exposure. Companies with enough money for a social networking department hire people to do their posting for them in order to keep feeding the blog, but for the sole proprietor, small business owner, the author, the artist – sometimes it’s all you, or it seems like it is.
You manage the business, you talk to the customers, you do the books, you get the coffee, you run the advertising campaigns, and if you can find a minute or two somewhere in there, you post to your blog.
In between disasters today, I’ve been writing this post. (I should qualify “disasters.” To me, if it isn’t done 10 minutes ago, I feel the stress. If it isn’t done 10 minutes ago and there’s a glitch in the code? Well, there’s a disaster I can get behind.) One of those disasters included losing two fabulously written paragraphs into the ether. Now, what I’ve written is a mere pretender to good blog copy because I’m trying to remember on the fly what I wrote before.
So, how do we find the time and gather the will to post? How do we become a better blogger?
Here are my top 10 ways to become a better blogger
– in no particular order:
- Stop thinking about it as an internet fad that will go away (and come back, go away, then come back again) along with platform shoes, flares, and “all your base are belong to us.”
- Start thinking about it as an essential part of the job – as essential as opening the mail.
- Carve out some alone-time with your business to reflect on things to write about – what you find useful, what the general public and the potential customer will find useful, what your current clientele will find useful, or even what you find helpful or amusing about the world in which you live. It’s all about VALUE.
- Write down everything you think of in #3. Trust me. Take notes.
- Now, carve out a time to actually write. It is, after all, an essential part of your business (see #2 above), so build this time into your schedule. I find if I forgo food and bathroom breaks, I can work it in.
- Be firm with yourself about this new addition to your schedule. Don’t blow it off the way you blow off exercising in the morning because you’re late or too busy to get your heart going on the elliptical.
- When you do open up that New Post page, don’t try to write War and Peace; brevity is perfectly acceptable – in fact pith is a fine quality in a blog post.
- Be conscious of the fact that people you do business with as well as potential clients are (hopefully) reading your posts.
- Don’t complain about your customers in your blog. (See #8.)
- And finally, blogging can be fun! Especially for the self-involved. (It’s a great way to make it All About You.) Make it essential, but don’t make it a chore.