7 Easy Ideas to Improve Your Blog

7 Easy Ideas to Improve Your Blog

If you are not blogging for your business, you are missing out.

By publishing fresh, new content on a consistent basis, you are giving people a reason to come back to visit your site. The more people to your site means more traffic, which means more opportunity to convert them into loyal fans and one day, customers.

Of course some blogs have all the bells and whistles they install while some are very plain and simple. You need to go with what fits your business’ personality and branding. No matter what you do, you need to always be working to improve your blog. Here are 7 quick and easy ideas you can implement now…

 

Idea #1: Add Click to Tweet.

Click to Tweet is this great site (and plug-in) that you can use to make lines or points you want to make tweetable. This gives your readers an easy way to share your blog post along with a snippet from it. See below.

Click to Tweet is just 1 of 7 ideas you can use to improve your #blog. Click To Tweet

 

Idea #2: Display your social shares.

Social proof is a valuable measure in content marketing. People want to see how many times your content is being shared to validate that it’s something worth sharing. Companies and influencers look at the number of social shares when determining what content to share or who to work with. If I get approached to guest post on a website, I look at their social share numbers before deciding if I’m going to do it. Content worth sharing gets shared. Period. (Hint: it’s all about the quality)

 

Idea #3: Add a Call to Action (CTA).

Including a call to action at the end of your post is a great way to encourage your readers to respond and engage. This could be a question or a prompt to sign-up for an email. Not matter what you choose, you need to prompt your readers to give a response.

 

Idea #4: Use lists and infographics.

Lists make longer posts easier to read. Infographics are a great way to display a lot of information and data in an easy-to-understand format. Most readers will leave a post before they reach the end if it’s nothing but long paragraph after paragraph. Breaking it up into listed bullet points keeps them there. Creating a list post such as “Top 10 Ways…” or even a post that ranks something will see more traffic than others (trust me, I’ve seen it first-hand).

 

Idea #5: Include a pinnable image.

You (should) already know to have a visual in every post you publish. Having an image that is pinnable to Pinterest helps as well. The recommended size for these image types is 735px x 1102px. You can easily make these in programs such as Canva or PicMonkey or you can get more custom with Adobe InDesign or Photoshop.

Here is an example (image has been sized down for display purposes, but was created to the specs above):

7 Easy Ideas to Improve Your Blog

Idea #6: Link to influencers.

We all have people who influence us. And occasionally we like to mention them or talk about their work. When you do, make sure to link back to them. That will usually bring it to their attention you’ve mentioned them. You won’t always get a response from them, but sometimes you do. Also, when sharing that post on social media, make sure to tag them on the platform you’re sharing on.

 

Last but not least…

 

Idea #7: Make sure your content is something people want to share.

Maybe this isn’t so much an idea as it should be a rule of thumb. Good, quality content gets shared. That’s the type you need to be publishing. In the age of content shock, fluff content won’t cut it. I could write a whole post on this, so for time’s sake, I’ll just leave it here.

 

Any writer and incorporate these easy 7 ideas into their blog if they are not already. If you were writing a list of ideas like this, what else would you include? Share with me below!

 

 

The ME Marketing Top Posts - What You Loved in 2016

The ME Marketing Top Posts – What You Loved in 2016

Blogging took a backseat for me in 2016.

 

Now that you’ve picked your jaw up off the ground and recovered from shock that a successful social media professional admitted that she intentionally did not put a priority on blogging, let me explain.

 

Professionally, 2016 was an amazing year. We did a record amount of business, worked with some amazing clients, and did some beautiful work. However personally, 2016 sucked. Royally. The first six months was fine, but it all came to a screeching halt on June 16 when I experienced a deep personal loss that threw the next couple months into a tailspin.

 

Thus, writing on this blog took a backseat to the rest of my business as I prioritized what needed to be done. I love writing and I miss writing consistently. I know I need to get back into doing this (just like I need to get back into the gym – another thing I miss desperately). Life happens and sometimes you have to take a hard look at what truly makes your business tick and go from there.

 

As much as I love my blog and I appreciate each and every one of you that reads this, my blog does not make me money. My blog does not bring me business (that I know of). It’s my work product, work ethic, and word-of-mouth referrals that does. So when push came to shove and I had to make a choice, my beloved blog got pushed to the “when I get to it” list. Thank the good Lord I have my blessed assistant Jenn Hanford who contributes otherwise there wouldn’t be anything new sometimes!

 

Despite everything that has happened this year, we still had more pageviews this year than last and I have you to thank for that! I cannot thank you enough for supporting me and my business and this blog. Every Twitter share, Facebook like, Instagram like…I see them all and I sincerely thank you from the bottom of my heart.

 

That being said, let’s take a look at the 10 top posts published in 2016…

The Case for Social Media Marketing for Small Businesses

case for smm

This article came as a result of a statistic I had read that stated that the majority of small businesses base their social media success on the number of views a post gets. Intrigued, I went down the rabbit hole to find the source and this post was the result.

The 5 Best Resources for an Entrepreneur

The 5 Best Resources for a New Entrepreneur

This post, written by Jenn Hanford, gives any new or newish, entrepreneur five great resources to use when starting their own business.

Quit Being Desperate for Facebook Likes

Quit Being Desperate for Facebook Likes

This was a fun rant to write. It was inspired by a client email I had received where they were frustrated that a competitor was using some not-so-ethical means to gain Facebook likes.

Quality over Quantity a Trend for 2016? Are You Kidding Me?

Quality over Quantity a Trend for 2016- Are you kidding me-

Another rant post. I had read an article that stated a trend for 2016 was “quality over quantity.” Since this is something I have been preaching since day 1 of my business, I took a little offense.

3+ Easy Ways to Create Brand Awareness

3+ Easy Ways to Create Brand Awareness

In another popular post written by Jenn Hanford, she shares with us some easy ways new business owners can create brand awareness. And the best thing is that they’re free!

Social Media Tips from 3 Wise Southern Women Entrepreneurs

Social Media Tips from 3 Wise Southern women Entrepreneurs

One thing I have loved over the past couple years is being involved in The Southern C – a community of Southern women entrepreneurs. The community and camaraderie of these women is something I value and I have made many friendships through this group. We’ve all learned from each other and love watching each other grow. In this post, I interviewed three of these fabulous ladies.

A {Short} Beginners Guide to Instagram Strategy

A {Short} Beginner's Guide to Instagram Strategy

I love Instagram. In this post, I took the time to put together a short primer for those who want the Cliff Notes version.

21 Social Media Facts You Should Know Right Now

21 Social Media Facts You Should Know Right Now

I am a statistic nut. If you follow my business social accounts, you know barring the rare occasion I share one every Friday. In this post, I shared 21 social facts that I thought my fans and followers should know.

Digital Marketing Strategy 101 for Boring Brands

Digital Marketing Strategy

Jenn Hanford wrote this great piece that got a lot of traction in just two months because there are a lot of businesses who think themselves ‘boring’ – financial institutions, insurance, law firms, etc. In her post she gives us some fantastic ideas on how to lighten up your tone online so you can truly be effective.

… and #1

10 Marketing Facts You Need to Know Going into 2016

10 Marketing Facts for Your Business Going Into 2016

Another stat post and this one tops the list for the year. I started off 2016 with this post, sharing marketing facts that we could all use to start off our marketing plans on the right foot.

 

In 2017, I hope to get back to more consistent blogging, bringing valuable content to your inboxes each week. What was your favorite post on the ME Marketing blog this year? Share with us below! We’d love to know!

 

Study- Most People Share Links Without Reading Them

Study: Most People Share Links Without Reading Them

Here is one marketing stat that will may (or may not) surprise you…

 

According to a new study by computer scientists at Columbia University and the French National Institute, 59 percent of links shared on social media have never actually been clicked.”

 

Yep. Cited in the Washington Post this summer, most people share articles without ever reading them. I do it. I know you do it.

 

Did you read this before you shared it? This post is a test to see if anyone is actually reading…

 

Comment below and let me know if you read before you share (it’s okay to admit if you don’t).

 

This itty bitty post was inspired by Mark Schaefer’s post, Why it’s a very good sign that people don’t read your content.

 

 

 

Why Your Content Should Be the Centerpiece of Your Marketing

Lately content strategies seem to be everywhere. I have clients adding them to their social marketing plans and I’m working a project based around content analysis.

 

Let me tell you now – if you are not actively and regularly creating fresh content – and I’m not talking about social media posts – you and your business are missing out. In the age we are in, you have to be constantly creating content. Yes, I know all about content shock, but you still need content to be relevant.

 

Okay, social media posts are content, but that’s not what matters. What I’m talking about is content from your website. Blogs. Infographics. Video. Podcasts. You know, things that will get indexed by Mother Google. If you’re not feeding Mother Google on a regular basis, she’s going to forget about you and you’ll be lost in the Googlesphere while those who are feeding her will get prime spots at the table.

 

Why have a content strategy and distribute regularly?

 

Content drives people to your social networks

How many times have you visited someone’s Facebook page or Pinterest page after reading a blog post or an article? Continually publishing new content gives people something to read and while they are on your website, they’ll stay and look around or click and visit your networks.

Content drives people to your website

Once you write it, you have to get the word out. When you publish fresh content, one of the first things you do is share it all over social media and maybe email it out. People will see it, click on it and go to your website. Having regular fresh content gives people a reason to keep coming back.

Content conveys a message to your audience

Your content is a way to provide value to your audience. This could be through tips, testimonials or helping them solve a problem. No matter what it is, you are sending your audience a message. Hopefully it’s one that shows you care. This is their way to get to know you.

Content sets you apart from your competitor

If you are a small, local business, I can almost guarantee your competitors are not publishing fresh content. If they are, that right there gives you a reason to start. If you’re the first one doing it – great! You’ll have an easier time getting those people’s attention and web traffic. If you aren’t first, don’t worry – provide great content of value and share it and people will come (with a strategy of course).

Content can give you authority

The longer and more regularly you publish content, the more authority you build in the search engines. However, you’ll also build authority in your audience’s eyes because they see someone (or some business) that knows their stuff and is helping them out. Look at the people you consider to be influential and have authority – they’re publishing new content all the time.

 

How do you spread your content?

 

Share on your social networks

Of course this is a no-brainer. When I publish something new, I share it to Google Plus first (for indexing reasons), then Twitter, LinkedIn, Facebook and Pinterest – in that order. You want to share it as many places as you can. You have a similar, yet different audience on each platform you are active on. You can also share content to sites like Flipboard, Scoop.it and Stumbleupon.

Ask your employees to share

Having an employee network that is active and shares is a goldmine for your business. Your employees are vested in your business – ask them if they would share the business’ content on their social networks and sites. Empowering them to take an active role in promoting the business will help ignite your content. I have a client that does this and we see a uptick in traffic when their staff members share.

Syndicate it

Content syndication can be your best friend. This is an easy way to get your articles out in front of more than just your audience. You can take advantage of sites such as Triberr or Business2Community. An example of how this can work – I published an article, 4 Reasons Social Media Marketing May Not Be Working for Your Business. On my site it did okay, but I syndicate my content on Business2Community. They picked up this post and to date it’s been shared 977 times (650 came in the first 48 hours). In the first 48 hours, I saw a dramatic increase in retweets with my Twitter handle and traffic did spike on my site. Syndicating content can work for your content.

Befriend your influencers

Your influencers want to get to know you. Build a relationship with them – tweet them, mention them in an article (and tag them), send them an email. Befriending influencers and sharing their content first will help your content. I befriended one of my influencers and since then this person has shared my content on their social networks, allowed me to guest post twice on their site and now I’m working on a project with them. Building an authentic relationship with those in your industry will pay off – not immediately though. These things take time.

 

Your business’ marketing strategy has to now include a content strategy. You have to know what you are going to publish and where and to whom. The days of ‘just’ posting on Facebook or Twitter are over. You have to have a plan behind it and the right people to execute it.

 

My friend Mark Schaefer shared this awesome Slideshare presentation last year giving you ways to spread (ignite) your content. Scroll through it below and you’ll get some great ideas to use in your content strategy (if you’re not doing some of these already).

 

When you’re done, check out his book based around content, The Content Code. I’ve read it and highly recommend it to anyone wanting to amp up their content strategy.

 

 

 

So, let me ask you – what’s your business’ content strategy?

 

Photo Credit: Flickr.com/proflowers & ProFlowers