Blogging has been around for years! In the social media and marketing world, things are always changing… But really good blogging habits are timeless! This is a great post from our 2015 archive that is still relevant today… check it out!!
When it comes to blogging for business, we all want to be successful. Blogging is a great tool to provide your customers with up to date with your industry’s news. It is also a great way to stay connected on social media, and to keep your website fresh! The importance of staying on top of your business’ blog is crucial for establishing authority, ranking in search for keywords/SEO, and being genuinely honest, helpful, educational to our target customers.
But just because we know why to blog, the how-to doesn’t always come easily. We all have days where we have trouble deciding what to write about/dealing with writer’s block and establishing a consistent blogging habit. The good news is that there’s lot of tools, tips, and advice to help you overcome these challenges. I just participated in a recent Twitter chat addressing these very issues, and here are some extremely helpful takeaways.
One of the biggest challenges for bloggers is making blogging a priority. That is your first tip:
- Commit to making blogging for your business a priority.
- Schedule your time to blog just as you would any other appointment or meeting.
- Set up a distraction-free writing environment.
- Have a backlog of ideas that you want to write about.
- Write what you know and what inspires you (as long as you know it is also helpful to your target audience).
- Use a content calendar to keep you on track.
- Set up deadlines or accountability for your blog posts.
- Establish a writing frequency for which you have the support resources (time, writing staff, publishing, sharing, monitoring)—blog once a week, twice a week, bi-weekly, monthly, etc.
- Read a lot—books, print media, blogs—to keep you informed and inspired.
- Reward yourself as an incentive to sticking to your goals.
- Know what times of the day you are most energized and effective—morning, noon, night, after a workout, etc.
Whatever your challenge is, there’s probably a tool to help you manage it. The same holds true for blogging. There a plenty of tools and applications that will help you manage your writing routine from capturing ideas and inspiration, to drafting, to promotion. These are a list of tools mentioned in the chat. Don’t assume that you have to use these tools, per se. These are a suggestion; a jumping-off point. Feel free to use (or not use) what works for you personally.
- Blog-hosting sites: Wordpress, Blogger, Tumblr
- Plain old pen and paper for writing down ideas, inspiration or drafting (nothing wrong with keeping it old-school if it helps you!)
- Google Analytics for monitoring blog traffic
- Google Docs for drafting and editing
- Excel for keeping a calendar of ideas and publication dates
- Trello for managing idea lists and workflow
- Mailchimp, Feedburner for distribution
- Feedly for content curation and inspiration
- Evernote for blog post ideas
- A content calendar (online or on paper)
- Canva, Creative Commons for images
- Buffer, Hootsuite for social sharing/automation
- Your staff and clients for asking questions and getting content ideas
- Dropbox for sharing files
- Music for creating a “writing mood”
- Moleskine for writing
- Social media networks for promotion
Writer’s block happens to even the most experienced writers, so don’t feel badly when this happens to you. Here’s how my fellow bloggers dealt with their moments of writer’s block:
- Having a content calendar to rely on (the content calendar—a common theme!)
- Write out of order. If writing the end of your post first helps to get things moving, there’s nothing wrong with that.
- Blocks can be mental and physical for some people. Stand up, move around, take a break.
- Exercise—running, walking, yoga, meditation—is a way to refresh, recharge, and reawaken your body and mind.
- Turn to a community of bloggers (Facebook groups, Copyblogger, Medium, NaNoWriMo, BlogHer) who can help you or chat out the block with a co-worker or blogging buddy.
- If something else is on your mind and causing the writer’s block, deal with that first.
- Ironically, checking out Twitter chats are great fodder for content ideas!
These are just a few of the tips I gleaned from the Twitter chat. You can review all the insights and takeaways if you’d like even more tips.
For more blogging advice, check out these previous posts: