Recently, I find myself having a very similar conversation with many of our clients surrounding the topic of blogs so I figured, what better place to discuss the how-to’s of blogging, than in a blog!
The most common concern I hear is “what do I write about”, followed quickly by “I’m not a writer” and “what if nobody reads what I write”.I. Picking Your Topic
You are uniquely qualified to write a blog, because at the end of the day, other people may hold the same position, but nobody else has the exact same experiences you do. This is where you start coming up with topics for your blog…it’s just that simple! As I am doing now, when you find yourself addressing the same items with multiple clients, write about it. Having this information on your website and in social media not only helps your existing clients refer back to the great information you provided, but it also provides prospective clients with valuable education during their research.
Another place to start selecting topics is the portfolio of products or services your company provides. Since you work there, you understand the ins and outs of everything, including the jargon. Clients, both existing and prospective, do not, so break it down for them. Take the time to look at your offerings from an outsider’s perspective and help them understand not only why they need your product or service, but more importantly how it helps them meet their needs. Remember, your reader is the audience here, not you!
Finally, some of the best ideas come directly from your existing audience in social media. If you think, “I only have 48 connections on LinkedIn or 20 followers on Twitter”, do not fret as it is not the size of your social network, but the quality. Their comments and questions are the perfect place to find new content for your next blog.
II. Hemingway in the Making
If you’ve ever read the biography of your favorite author, you recall they went through multiple drafts and rewrites before anything was published. Getting comfortable writing takes time…you are not alone in that fact. As basic as it sounds, the best place to start is at the beginning. Spend time creating an outline, which can be as structured or loose as you want…this process has to work for you. Once you have all your ideas jotted down, leverage a tool to help create a blog title. Starting with a title helps frame the rest of your blog and stay on topic. Then, start writing. Refer to your outline and put “pen to paper”. Once you’ve finished your first draft, walk away, do something else on your to-do list, and then come back. Read your blog out loud to make sure it flows correctly, ask a trusted advisor to read it to make sure it makes sense, and then make more updates. Again, you will not be perfect and that’s ok! Your audience values your voice and knowledge so focus on keeping your personality in tact and just keep writing. Practice does indeed lead to improvement.
III. Shout it from the Rooftops
Or at least make sure you do more than simply post your blog to your website. Remember your connections in social media and all those potential clients out there? Share your latest post with them within these platforms, then make sure to stay on top of all the great comments rolling in. Not only will you show your shining customer service through your responsiveness, but you will also discover topics for your next blog!
Did I have you all set to write before I mentioned sharing on social media? Don’t worry; we have a handy checklist to help you execute your own inbound marketing campaign, because even the greats needed help to get started.