‘It’s the BEST way to get your name out there’, they said.
‘You’ll make a ton of sales’, they said.
‘If you want to be taken seriously, you’ll have to start writing’, they said.
So you listened, you took the advice, and you started a blog.
Only now it’s a few months/years later and you’re wondering when the benefits are going to kick in. You’ve even (gasp!) considered packing the whole thing in and trying something else.
Before you do, listen up because in the next couple of minutes I’m going to give you both a virtual kick up the behind and a squishy, comforting bear hug (oh, and a handful of practical tips you can put into action TODAY too).
The tough love part is this: blogging works so if you’re not yet seeing much of a return on your time investment, blogging isn’t the problem. You are. (I’m saying this with so much love, I promise!)
Now for the big, squishy, reassuring hug: you don’t have to give up, start from scratch, or waste ANY of the work you’ve already done. If you’ve been blogging for a while you almost certainly have the foundations of a sales-boosting, reputation-enhancing, expertise-proving blog — we just gotta shine it up a bit, add some bells and whistles, and make it all-round irresistible.
Not sure where to start? I got you covered…
Check your intros.
Have a look at your metrics — if readers are clicking off barely a few seconds after opening your page, your post intros might just be letting you down.
Are you taking too long to get to the point?
Are your intros just a teensy bit dull?
Are you actively trying to hook the reader with the first few sentences?
I have a theory about intros: every post has the right one and it’s not so much a case of creating it, but of uncovering it, of coaxing it out of hiding and allowing it to take centre stage. And when you do — when you find the right intro for your topic — your entire post will become so much easier to write.
So, if you think your introductions are letting you down, go back through your old posts and think about how you could adapt them to capture your reader’s attention. Maybe lead with an unexpected fact that stops them in their tracks. Ask a question that they can’t help but mull over. Or tell a story that’ll be instantly relatable to your target audience.
(And never, ever, EVER resort to a clickbait intro. Pinky swear?)
Tell your reader where to go next.
A great blog will educate, inform, and entertain. But that doesn’t mean that you want your reader to get to the end of the post, take a few notes, and then click off, instantly forgetting both your content and your business.
Instead, you want your reader to get to the end of your post and keep on interacting with you. And the way you get them to do that is to add a call-to-action (CTA) to the end of every single thing you write.
Again, have a look through your old posts and double-check that each and every one of them closes with a strong CTA.
Of course, there are a number of CTA types to choose from and it’s up to you to determine which one is the best fit for each post. It might be that you want the reader to explore a blog topic further, in which case you could add links to related posts. Maybe building your email list is a big goal for you at the moment so it would make sense to add a link any lead magnets you’ve created. If your article relates to a service or a product that you sell, you can absolutely add a link to the relevant sales page.
Remember, the whole point of a blog is to help you form relationships with your readers and make more sales but none of that will happen without a wee nudge or two from you.
Make the most of your other content.
One of the best things you can do to up the effectiveness of your blog is to encourage readers to hang around on your site for longer — not only does it help your SEO efforts (and hey, we could all use a boost there, right?) but it allows your audience to deepen their connection with you and your business.
With every post they read, they know a little more about you, about your skills, and about how you could help improve their lives or their business.
So, how do you encourage them to stick around? Much like the links you post as part of your CTA, it’s also a good idea to pepper your articles with links to other posts you’ve created.
For instance, my upcoming blogging schedule features a post on ‘How to write great introductions’ and another that’s going to look at CTAs in more detail. After I’ve published these posts, I’ll come back to this post and add links to those new articles after the relevant sections. After all, if you’re reading this, you’re probably thinking of making a few changes to your blog and will find extra info on those topics fairly useful too.
Promote, promote, promote.
Of course, it could be that there’s absolutely nothing wrong with your blog. Perhaps it’s positively brimming with well-researched, well-written, SEO-optimised, engaging, strategic posts.
But if that’s the case, and you’re still not enjoying the benefits of blogging, it’s highly likely that the problem isn’t with your blog, it’s with your promotion strategy.
Because if you’re not promoting your blog properly, then no one is going to read it. And if they don’t read it, you’re not going to be able to build that reputation, develop those relationships, or boost your sales.
So, be honest with yourself: are you really making the most of each post?
If not, there are a few things you can do to up your promotion game:
Explore an alternative format: if you usually just rely on posting a link to your blog posts on your social platforms, try adding intriguing snippets from your post to entice people to click the link. Or take it a step further and film a quick promo video to encourage your followers to check out your latest post.
Forget the ‘one-and-done’ approach: social media moves quickly so don’t assume that just because you’ve posted once on each platform it’s a case of job done. To get more eyeballs on your content you’re going to want to post multiple times, over the course of a day, week, or a month depending on the platform. And don’t forget that many blog posts don’t have a shelf-life — your evergreen articles can be posted again 6 months/1 year/3 years from now and still provide value to those reading them.
Find people who need your help: people who need your help are everywhere. They’re asking questions in Facebook groups, on LinkedIn, in membership sites, in topic-specific forums. Use the search boxes to find your people and don’t be shy about sharing a link with them IF your content will genuinely help them out.
(The caveat here: don’t go barrelling into groups purely with the intent of sharing as many of your links as possible — only do so when it’s timely, relevant, and in line with the group rules!)
There are so many reasons why your blog might not be working for you, but truly none of them are terminal. With a few minor adjustments, you’ll find all of your hard work will start to pay off.
If you’d like a second pair of eyeballs on your blog — or you don’t have time to go through your old posts, let me know. I can take your articles and:
- Rewrite them to make sure you’re putting your expertise out there in a way that’s easy-to-digest, engaging, and enjoyable to read.
- Make sure you’re making the most of strong CTAs to encourage sales.
- Find opportunities for cross-posting.
- Create social media captions to help promote your posts.
- Look at your back catalogue and help you come up with a strategy for the future of your blog.
- Or a mix of the above!
- Want to know more about how I can help with your content creation and marketing, drop me an email or check my services page.
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