7 Years of Blogging: Lessons Learned

I have been writing blog posts for various customers for over 7 years–weekly or bimonthly–and I’ve learned several important lessons about regular blogging.

Three Important Facts about Blogging

First, regular blog posts gather dedicated readers over time. They prompt comments, requests for contributions from industry organizations, and discussions on LinkedIn.

Second, blogging and the reactions to it often clarify customer expectations and what a company should be doing. It may lead to a shift in the company’s entire marketing plan or become the basis for an insight or white paper that confirms the company’s expertise.

Third, writing a great blog post is a matter of following a few basic rules:

  1. Focus on one idea at a time–there’s always an opportunity to write another post.
  2. Aim to educate, not sell.
  3. Keep the post short; but concentrate first on quality content, then size.
  4. Write with a recognizable and consistent voice.
  5. Deliver details (e.g., 10 steps to…), not vague generalities.
  6. Make sure blog posts appear regularly, whether once a week or twice a month.
  7. Recognize your blog is one tool in a marketing toolbox–not the entire box.
  8. Obey the rules of all great marketing content: concise, clear, concrete, and passionate.
  9. Take time to find an interesting title.
  10. End with a next step for readers.

How to Rescue a Faltering Blog

Are you hesitating to write a blog, are you running out of ideas, or has your blog languished, untouched, for over a month? Consider asking a professional freelance writer to take over.

One of the advantages of having a professional writer handle your blog posts–besides the savings in time and energy–is that you may be too close to your business to understand what customers find interesting and informative. What seems to you to be a boring detail or information that “everyone” knows may actually be fascinating to customers.

A professional freelance writer adapts to your comfort level: submitting ideas for approval, researching content, interviewing customers and employees, tracking the competition–whatever you need. You can review individual ideas before a post is ever written and/or approve the completed post before it appears online..

Conclusion

For a professional writer, blogs posts are interesting and fun to write, and I have written them for many businesses in fields as varied as home construction, clinical trials, executive consulting, and marketing.

Contact me if you need help setting up and maintaining your blog content; that’s what I’m here for.

Blog Posts: Blah Versus Woohoo!

If you visit LinkedIn, you have probably seen many blah, generic blog posts automatically generated by agencies. And you’ve seen Woohoo! blog posts you can’t wait to read. What makes the difference?

  • Headline: The title of a Woohoo! post grabs you in a few short words.
  • Personality: When you talk to a bore, your whole attention is on escape. When you read a bore, the only difference is that escape is a lot easier. Woohoo! blogs connect you to the person and the team behind the company.
  • Uniqueness: If you search the internet for a blah post, you will find its exact twin (or triplet or quadruplet) at many sites. Blah posts are often massed produced by generic agencies for any company in that field. Wahoo! posts have company-specific content, including client testimonials and photos of actual projects.
  • Excitement: Even generic posts recognize a client problem and solve it. But “Woohoo!” blogs show that a company cares about the problem.

Why do people hire me to write their blog posts? Because I can deliver that “Woohoo!” According to one of my clients, posts for his company “have recently been noted as a ‘best practice’ in the…industry and are now being used as an example for others to follow.”

Yes, those blah, generic blog posts will pack your website with the keywords that search engines love (for the moment, anyway, until the next algorithm change). But when real people are searching for real solutions to real problems, they require headlines that grab, personalities with interest, uniqueness of content and the excitement of a meaningful connection.

Or do you want your clients to look for you? You need blog posts that make them shout “Woohoo!”

Sharon writes blog posts, success stories, website content that delivers the Woohoo! for small- to medium-sized companies across the nation. Contact her through LinkedIn or her website.