Are you a reliable blogger?
“I only write a blog post when I’ve got something to say.”
That was a comment I read recently on LinkedIn. And it got me thinking – if you only write on your business blog when you feel inspired, then how do you get a following? The truth is, you don’t.
Imagine you are browsing through the TV, and you come across a great new series. It looks amazing – you’re excited to start watching. You watch the first episode, and you’re hooked! You can’t wait until the next episode is out.
But the next week, the second episode isn’t there. Maybe it’s a day late? But no, it’s not there the next day either. In fact, when it finally appears, it’s almost another week.
Episode three is a few days later, and then episode four you have to wait a whole month for!
Do you carry on watching, I wonder? I wouldn’t. And it’s the same with your blog. Because in order for people to come back and follow you, you have to be reliable.
When to blog, and how much?
I’m not convinced that ‘when’ is a relevant question – in my experience, once you’ve got a bank of blog posts up on your website, people are able to search for it today, tomorrow, or next year. What is more important is the frequency. Thinking about what I said before, people like predictability. If you can manage to write around the same day/date, then people who like your content will at least have an idea when they can see your next published post.
Disclaimer: I’ve been pretty bad at this in the past. I’m not claiming to be perfect, and I doubt you are either. But the more consistent you can be, the better.
I’ve read a lot of different opinions about how often you should blog. Some people say that you really should be posting once a week or more, while others say monthly is plenty. I can see both sides – the more often you can create content, the more you’ll have to share. If you have a lot of blog posts on your website, then naturally there will be more content for people to search on – it’s great for SEO. But it is much harder to be consistent when you’ve put that pressure on yourself – it takes a lot of time to produce something new every single week.
Be realistic – figure out what works for you, and commit to that. Maybe you can quite easily do a 500-word post once a week – great! Or perhaps you’d rather do longer articles of 1200 words or more, in which case posting monthly would be better.
The point is, don’t overcommit and then have to let your audience down.
Frequency and community
You might think that blogging and community don’t really go together. Surely if your posts are getting found on Google, then that’s all that matters, right?
OK, but do you know how hard it is to get your blog ranking on the first page of Google? Man, it takes a heck of a lot of work – and who’d to say that those people who happen to read one of your blog posts is ever going to convert into a paying customer? The odds aren’t great.
But if you can get people returning to your blog page time and time again, they’ll get to know you, get to like you, get to trust you…. see where I’m going with this?
Know, like and trust is the backbone to content marketing. And gathering a good community around you means that more people will get to see your website, and learn about what you do. Your community will be the first people to spend money with you, because they know all about you.
Planning your blog posts
It’s really useful to set up some form of plan for posting your blogs – some people simply put the dates into a calendar and then write their posts on those days. I prefer to batch mine when I can, so I’ll write 2 or 3 posts at a time and then schedule them to go out automatically (you can read more about that here).
Experiment, and see what kind of schedule works for you.
I hope this article helps you in your blogging journey. If you need someone to write consistent content for your business, give me a shout!
Tereasa Hedges, freelance copywriter for creatives, designers and makers.
I’m a freelance copywriter who specialises in writing content for creative people, helping you to reach larger audiences through blogging, web content, email marketing, and a little bit of social media for good measure.
Want to work with me? Contact me for a chat via firstname.lastname@example.org