As entrepreneurs we BARELY have time make a status update, let alone time to keep our blogs updated. Which is why having a clear strategy in place for your blog posts, make the world of difference! So I want to ask you... When you write your blog posts, do you ever sit there staring at a blank screen trying to think of a topic to write about? If not, well congrats! You are an inspired human being and just keep doing what you're doing until the magics wears off, THEN come back to me ;) BUT if you are one of those people who struggles with maintaining a successful blog, then I have the solution for you!
Why you NEED a blog for your business...
Having a blog as a business owner, is like having a magazine under your own name. It comes with power and prestige - if that's what you want of course! If you're like me though, you'll think of it as a portfolio of what you can offer your potential customers and clients. I use my blog to market my business, share my knowledge, showcase my skills AND provide value in the hopes that I will make a difference in someones business. Your blog can do all those things too, and that is why it is one of the most important things you can have to ensure your brand is seen, heard and valued.
Quick tips on how to plan your blog posts...
1. ASK YOURSELF, HOW DO YOU WANT THIS POST TO BENEFIT YOU AND YOUR AUDIENCE
This is the question you should be asking yourself every single time you post online. If you are going to take the time out of your busy schedule to write something to share with your audience, you should at least make sure that what you are producing is worth it. When I plan my content, I often think back to all the questions I get asked in my FB Group, or in my Instagram comment. I also take into consideration all the things I have researched since starting my business. Then I make sure that by sharing this piece of knowledge for free, I'm not giving away too much. It's a fine-line to draw when it comes to posting online and I often get told I give too much away. But then I think, if my giving away this tiny peice of value, it helps a potential client or customer, or even just a follower, then I don't mind. As long as I know that these people value what I have to share.
2. CHOOSE YOUR TOPIC
I often find that people get stumped on choosing a topic. But then I also find that people get overwhelmed with all the topics they could write about, so they end up with two hours of brainstorming and no writing. (I myself have faced this waaay too many times - but not anymore!) I make sure that I decide on a theme and choose a handful of topics to write about over a few days. That way my head is in the right space and I'm motivated to write more posts. (Note: I am referring to batch work - if you want an insight into what that looks like then head on over to my post about systemising your content creation.)
3. OUTLINE YOUR KEY POINTS
Every time I plan my blog content, I decide on a handful of titles and upload then into my draft blogs. Then in the body section I paste my basic blog outline. I quickly jot down any notes, references and anything relevant that I'd like to include in the post, and place these notes within the structure of my outline. This allows me to plan ahead when inspiration hits, and it means I will always have a back-up post in my drafts folder to use. Then when I go to actually write the post, everything is already outlined for me, I just fill in the gaps! If you don't want to hop into your blog back-end every time, then have a folder in your phone notes or even add your website platform's blog app to your phone.
4. PLAN THE PERSONAL OR CREATIVE TOUCHES
I find that we often start writing and just 'throw in' witty comments, quotes or images. Instead, try planning ahead and source or design these creative touches to really be effective. Before I write a blog post, I like to know what my blog tile is going to look like and how the graphics will sit in the post. Even if you add them in after, it's a good idea to know where everything is going to go so you can write content that compliments it AND references it in some way.
5. IDENTIFY YOUR CTA
ALWAYS have a CTA in your blog posts. For those of you who don't know what that is, a CTA is a 'call to action'. This is where you call out to your audience and encourage an action from them. Often this means asking them to comment below, share to Facebook, download something or join a newsletter. Whichever you choose, it's the best way to build engagement and drive traffic to your other platforms. Also, planning this ahead means you can make sure you have your opt-ins ready or your platforms featuring your latest offer! Need an example, here's mine... ;)
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