The benefits of consistent blogging are not always obvious
It’s no secret blogging is good for your business. It boosts your organic reach on the search engines and drives traffic to your website. But after years and years of blogging, I’ve discovered that’s not the main reason I do it.
The ‘why’ behind my blog
Don’t get me wrong, I do get “walk-in business” from Google searches from time to time, but not enough to maintain my pipeline. I can think of two main reasons I like to keep my blog fresh with monthly content. First, it’s a great way to build content to market my business. In fact, my blogs are the capstone of my monthly newsletter (sign-up here). Second, it saves me time. Let me explain.
I recently wrote about the Best Choices for Online Printers. I doubt many random web searchers are finding my blog because of this topic. But, my clients often want my recommendations for online printers, so I put together a list of favorites. Now when people ask me about this topic, instead of wasting a bunch of time re-typing the same answer (and probably forgetting bits and pieces), I simply copy/paste the blog post link along with a note and email it to the inquirer. Time saved.
So this topic was a winner because it answered a client FAQ and it answered a question people might regularly type into Google (hello, search engine traffic!). In short, it’s truly useful information. In fact, thinking about my clients’ FAQs is one of my favorite ways to come up with a blog topic. If you start blogging regularly, this is a great method to bust up any writer’s block that creeps in.
Making my blog pop
Assuming my content and writing (more on that later) is solid, now it’s time to add a little eye candy to the mix. Why? Because people are busy, and I’ve got to earn people’s attention. There is so much good free, visually entertaining content out there that bloggers need eye-catching graphics to illustrate words and keep the reader’s attention. For better or worse, I do something graphically different every time. It’s fun to challenge myself and mix it up. Also, I like to keep the readers on their toes! Here are a couple of my methods.
- I draw the graphics by hand and then digitize and color them. Like so.
- I grab pre-made stock graphics that I can tweak and edit to make them my own. For example, every doodle on this page came from depositphotos.com (captions are mine).
The direction I choose depends on the topic, how much time I have, and what I ate for breakfast.
One more benefit: Tracking progress
Blogging forces me to stop and think about my business, my clients’ perspective, and how I spend work time. In that sense, my blog doubles as a journal for my business. Each post is an entry that helps me look back and see my progress. And because blog posts typically highlight the good things, it’s (mostly) a morale boost to see how far I’ve journeyed.
My secret weapon
Here’s a hard truth: blogging every month is a real pain. For my business, it’s non-billable and it can be time-consuming. I’m much less confident in my writing ability than my design abilities, which means it takes a long time. Here’s the key for me and you – hire a professional. My secret weapon is the amazing Holly Fisher of Fisher Creative. Together, we brainstorm the idea, and then I give Holly a few notes or bullet points. She works her magic and, ta-da, we have a blog post for me to build on.
This process has really allowed me to be much more consistent with my blog, and I’m very grateful to Holly for her services. Plus, there’s the accountability factor. It’s much easier to break a deadline with yourself than with someone else.
That’s it. Go write a blog post or hire Holly to do it for you.
Have a great week,