Blogging got me started on a journey I did not think was possible. The year was 2006 and I was a brand new online entrepreneur. After twenty years as a classroom teacher, and few more than that as a real estate broker and residential appraiser, I was ready for a life change, a do over, a reinvention. Blogging was the vehicle I took advantage of to find my voice, and with that I also found an audience and a calling.
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These days I work with new online entrepreneurs from around the world, and blogging continues to be the thing they do not want to do. Why? I believe it’s because they want immediate feedback and results and blogging doesn’t work that way.
Your Blog is Your “Home on the Internet”
In my popular course, Really Simple Authority Blogging I teach that blogging is the beginning of your “body of work” and the path to greater accomplishments in your business, both online and offline. Being able to write on your topic at will and in a specific way to get your point across has great value and will increase your income over time.
Sometimes I am asked if blogging is making a comeback. I have to chuckle at that because blogging never left or took a break from the world of cyberspace. I had my first blog while I was still in the classroom. It was in 2004 and its purpose was to teach my fifth and sixth grade students how to write in different styles and to better communicate their thoughts and ideas with others. It was one of those free blogs and one day I clicked the wrong button and the entire site was deleted. We had translated it from English into German and did not recognize the phrase “lösche diese website für immer” (delete this website forever) before we clicked. Several lessons learned that day.
So what happened to blogging? I believe that most people, or at least most of the ones I come in contact with through my courses, programs, and within my community saw blogging as simply a temporary strategy in terms of building their businesses. Instead of embracing their blogs as a regular part of their writing, marketing, and communicating with their target audience, they let them go by the wayside and move on to other platforms. Social media was seen as a replacement for blogging. This is far from what actually works. Email was hailed as a way to stay in touch with people instead of blogging. Not true either. Nothing replaces blogging regularly. Nothing.
What do you need to succeed in blogging today? Just four little things:
A clear message, based on your core values and beliefs.
A powerful platform, where people know they can always find you.
A committed tribe, comprised of people who come to know, like, and trust you.
A product to sell, based on what your community most wants/needs from you.
Your blog can do so much for you and for your business. However, to achieve those goals, keep the following proven strategies in mind:
Stay creative with your blogging – Making the commitment to every day write a seven hundred fifty word blog post can be tedious and a real creativity killer over a short time. Instead, vary your content by creating video posts, audio posts, and lists/tips posts. See what your readers respond to and make some adjustments. Finally, delegate and leverage your assets. Keep in mind that you don’t have to be the sole content creator for your blog. You can use guest bloggers, ghost writers, PLR (private label rights) content and curated content to add additional value and perspective to your blog.
Choose a goal for every blog post you publish – Know what you want to achieve from your blog post. For example, are you driving traffic to your opt-in offer, building credibility, recommending an affiliate offer, or something else? Each post needs to have a goal that fits into your overall content marketing goals. And allow your search engine optimization (SEO) to flow naturally rather than forcing it to work for you. Please trust me on this.
Find your voice – You have a unique voice, a brand (you are the brand, at least in the beginning), and a message. Embrace that in your blog posts. Remember that your blog posts are an opportunity to connect with your audience. By leveraging your unique voice and message, you will build a better rapport with your readers? We all prefer to buy from people we like and trust, so leverage that to your advantage.
Blog regularly and consistently – Create a blog content plan that supports you to blog consistently. This may be once a week, or it may be once a day; you decide what you can accomplish and then stick to it. Consistency creates results (and it gives you something to measure). I recommend posting twice a week, at least for your first year of blogging.
Include a call to action at the end of each post. Tell readers exactly what you would like for them to do next, after reading your post. Scroll down to the bottom of this post to see mine. Maybe you want them to read a related post, so tell them about that post and link to it. Maybe you want them to share the post on social media. So ask them to and give them the social share buttons to make it easy to follow through. Or perhaps you want them to go to a different site altogether and download a report, like I’m doing here.
Blogging makes a difference to your ability to move forward more quickly in your business. Follow what I’m suggesting here and you will achieve results. Be patient and stick with it. Remember that your blog can…
- Drive traffic and sales through reposts and organic traffic.
- Establish you as a credible authority in your niche.
- Build relationships and help you connect with your audience.
Another Perspective on Finding Your Voice
Bestselling author Jerry Jenkins shares an exercise in finding your voice you may appreciate and use to enhance your skills and abilities. In his post Voice in Writing: How to Find Yours Jerry shares his insight on this topic:
Based on what I hear wherever I speak, it’s clear that beginning writers agonize as much over find their writing voice as over any other issue.
Trust me, while it’s crucial you find your unique writing voice, it really isn’t all that complicated.
You wouldn’t be able to tell that from the plethora of blogs, articles, and books on the subject.
So let me make this simple.
It’s your distinct:
It’s the lens through which you see yourself and the world.
Your voice sets the tone and conveys your message in your own unique way.
Jerry goes on to share a personal example of finding your voice in your writing, as well as some from works you may be familiar with.
I would enjoy reading your latest post and sharing it with my audience. Please leave the details in a comment here, or email me directly by hitting “reply” to any of my messages when you join my community.
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I’m author and online marketing strategist Connie Ragen Green. I work with entrepreneurs to create multiple streams of online income and would love to connect with you. Pick up my Online Entrepreneur’s Blueprint and get started right away.