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building authority online

How to Use 5 Types of Content to Grow Your Online Authority (Recap of My Live Talk for #SocialMediaBootcamp in Austin, Texas)

Last week on Friday, I had the honor of speaking at Jessica Campos’ event, a Social Media Bootcamp right here in Austin, Texas.

It was exciting for two reasons: for one, it was at The Capital Factory, a dream speaking venue in downtown Austin. For another, I had a fantastic host: Jessica is the founder of Marketing for Greatness and a well-known local marketer here in Austin, Texas. She worked hard at putting together a memorable event, and invited me to come and speak personally. Jessica hosts many networking events locally, and is a great person in real life just as much as she is in marketing. I love being around her.

I said yes to Jessica’s invitation, and the rest is history! This amazing lady worked her network marketing magic and sold out the room – we had 50 seats, and more than 50 in attendance! It was my largest live audience yet.

We had a packed room for #socialmediabootcamp!

I’ve had the idea for a session on how to build authority online using the five foundational types of content for a while, and I decided to explore that for Jessica’s bootcamp. It was the perfect complement session to her opening talk on holistic social media marketing practices.

This talk was born: Building Authority Online & Where it Begins: 5 Types of Content You Should Be Publishing to Grow Your Brand.

julia mccoy speaking

After my talk, it was exciting to hear terrific real-time feedback from attendees.

Two senior-level marketing executives that worked in Austin came and found me to tell me how much my talk resonated with them.

“Everything you were saying about content made SO MUCH SENSE! Our ads aren’t working, nothing has been working, and we know we’ve needed a new channel for a while.”

It was clear they were excited to find a way out from old practices that weren’t working. That was a thrill to me to hear! I loved knowing I’d been able to make a difference for someone.

In today’s blog, I’m recapping the talk I gave, including the most important takeaways and lessons. Buckle in!

Check out @JuliaEMcCoy's recap of her talk on building #authority online through #content, live at @capitalfactory in #ATX for @jessicamcampos' #socialmediabootcamp 🔥 Click To Tweet

Social Media Bootcamp LIVE in Austin, Texas (Hosted by Jessica Campos)

Here’s a look at our fun day in Austin at Jessica’s bootcamp, put together by my designer in a collage. Keep scrolling for top takeaways, a recap of Jessica’s and my session, and some special shoutouts!

social media bootcamp

Jessica Campos: Social Media Practices That Bring Real Results in Your Business

Jessica Campos started off Friday’s Social Media Bootcamp with a fantastic, action-packed session.

She talked about the reality of “marketing” on social media, and how it’s not okay to just “turn to the person next to you, and ask, Would you like to lose ten pounds?” — and she had the whole room nodding and laughing. If it’s not okay to do in a waiting room, why do it on social media? She shared with us the typical journey of one of her warm leads: the person left her website open in their tab for days, closed it, came back through a Facebook ad and then clicked over to the blog, left the site again and came back to the contact page in another few days. And repeat.

I relate! We cannot predict our buyer’s journey. Jessica shared how the marketing funnel is dead, and what’s replaced it: the loyalty loop. (As most of you already know by now, I completely agree that the funnel is dead. I’ve written about that here.)

Jessica also shared how to discover your audience using tools like Facebook Insights and Google Analytics’ user behavior, two great tools for finding out real information about your audience.

jessica campos

Using the whiteboard to write out the frameworks she shared, Jessica covered several areas that made up a “sandwich,” or “burger” to help us remember how to build a solid social media marketing strategy:

  • The importance of data and knowing what your leads and ideal audience is actually doing and thinking of
  • Building avatars to represent and get to know your ideal audience
  • Creating a culture to attract your tribe and people
  • Writing a manifesto to represent who you are with a brand voice to differentiate yourself from the masses
  • Focusing on growing your influence online to attract people to you and your brand

jessica campos marketing for greatness

Jessica also did a real-life marketing analysis with one of the attendees, Lori Stinson, an agent and owner for logistics and supply chain company DSV. It was awesome!

With Lori next to her, Jessica built avatars to represent Lori’s ideal audience, an experienced, established company out in California. One method I loved was when Jessica told Lori that LinkedIn was going to be her best bet to earn social media leads from. Several members of the audience also shared terrific ways Lori could create fun marketing campaigns to pull in the eyes and ears of her ideal people.

lori stinson Agent at DSV Road

Around noon, Jessica wrapped up her session, and we all had a lunch break. Then, it was time for my session.

Special Shoutout to Jeff at Chubby Diaries & @YoungMommy (Christine Young) on Twitter

I want to take a quick moment to give some well-deserved shoutouts.

Jessica asked Jeffrey Jenkins, a local entrepreneur, travel influencer, speaker, and the founder of ChubbyDiaries.com, to attend and record media for us (as content creators, Jessica and I are all about maximizing our event presence). He took our photos and the raw video (coming soon to my YouTube channel!). Special shoutout to Jeff, who was a fantastic help!

Another shoutout to Christine Young, supermom to 7 and blogger at FromDatestoDiapers.com, for live-tweeting during our event! She captured some fantastic takeaways live during our bootcamp.

Building Authority Online & Where it Begins: 5 Types of Content to Grow Your Brand (Recap of My Live Talk)

I started my session with these important facts about today’s buyer:

  • 81% of U.S. consumers trust information and advice from blogs. (BlogHer)
  • Email remains an incredibly effective channel at driving purchases. In 2018, 17.75% of clicked-through emails resulted in a purchase. This stat has been increasing every year. (Barilliance.com study)
  • 47% of buyers viewed 3-5 pieces of content before engaging with a sales rep. (DemandGen)
  • Good content is becoming the foundation of good marketing.

I also shared the astounding results from Amanda Bond’s recent Facebook ads study, which I’ve blogged about before.

Bond studied the results from over $10,000,000+ in Facebook ad spend across seven and eight-figure brands for months, and discovered that from 2016 to late 2018, the ROA (return on advertising) for a traditional ad funnel plummeted from 11.8x all the way to .6x. On average, marketers are now losing money on ads. Crazy!

Then, I went into the five types of content to build to see real results online, starting with the important foundational overview:

Build consistent content on your website (your online house), AND: start list-building, getting visible on social media, and be intimately familiar with the what and how of creating content that works.

5 Types of Content to Build

The five types of content I recommended to attendees for a strong online presence are these:

  1. Blogs
  2. Site Content (Web Pages)
  3. Email
  4. Social Media
  5. List-Builders (Downloadables: Lead Magnets, Free Ebooks)

I talked about these two goal areas for your blogs (which I explain more in this blog):

  • Goal of SEO rankings in Google, inbound traffic, and list-building: Create long-form (1000w-3000w) blogs
  • Goal of brand awareness, event sharing, news/launch: Short-form (500-800w) blogs

I also shared the importance of scannable content over readable content. Scannable content goes a step further. It’s when you focus on crafting content that contains zero fluff. When you format properly, with H2s, H3s, and strong sectioned-out content. I shared the structure of a good blog, taking inspiration from one of the world’s best bloggers: Jon Morrow of Smart Blogger.

Specifically, I shared one of his top-shared blogs, which is also top #10 in Google for ‘how to become a freelance writer.’ This is an example of a terrific blog for these reasons:

  • It starts with a story that ‘hooks’ the ideal reader into a situation they dream of or wish to be in one day.
  • Then, Jon tells them the story can come true with statistical proof as to how big the industry is, and how much freelance writers are needed.
  • Then, he adds tons and tons of value to the reader’s life, in a 3,000-word monster blog.

jon morrow example

I also shared a few methods on how to create great headlines. A study by BuzzSumo spanning over 50,000 pieces of content found that these top headline phrases worked the best:buzzsumo headline starters

I also “spilled the secrets” about one of my all-time favorite headline tools, the Emotional Marketing Value Headline Analyzer. This tool is amazing — and it’s free!

Emotional Marketing Value Headline Analyzer

Next, I covered the three stages of how to craft great blog content.

Blogging is best done in stages:

  • Ideation
  • Creation
  • Publishing

Great ideas are the key to great blogs, and that’s why leaving time and space just for ideas and research. I spend a day JUST for ideation, called Brainstorming Day, and validate each idea by researching with the right tools (BuzzSumo, KWFinder, SEMrush are some go-tos). I teach the how of content ideation in my Content Strategy & Marketing Course.

'I spend a day just for content ideation, and I call it Brainstorming Day.' More on #contentcreation methods that build your #authority online from @JuliaEMcCoy's live talk in #ATX Click To Tweet

Next, I covered web pages, email content, and list-builders. (Blogs are very often the meat of your consistent online presence, so I spent the most time there.)

Good web pages are:

  • Focused: Created around one clear keyword or page topic to focus around (one topic per page).
  • Word Count: The majority of clear, well-crafted web pages are 400-1200w, depending on topic & product features.
  • Clear Formatting: Well-formatted with clear headline, body introduction, H2s, H3s.

I shared a few critical “must-dos” for web page copy:

  • Clarity over cleverness in the copy. Be CLEAR on what the page is about.
  • YOU/YOUR vs. WE/OUR: Less “our”, more “you!” Be customer-focused.

Next, for email content, I talked about sending consistent campaigns. Marketers, send emails for almost every new thing you do or publish on your site. Here are a few reasons to send an email to your list:

  • New content (blogs) that you post on your site
  • Events (online or in-person) you’re hosting or guesting at
  • Product/service launches or updates
  • Less often: sales emails (courses, services)

The rule of thumb to not tick anyone off accidentally in your free vs. pitch-focused content is this:

For every pitch, send a minimum of three value-focused emails.

3:1 -- For every one pitch, send a minimum of three value-focused emails. More on #contentcreation methods via @JuliaEMcCoy's recap of her live talk in #ATX Click To Tweet

I also talked about email headlines and how important it is to optimize them without click-baiting. Clarity and specific statements work best in email headlines.

Then, I merged into social media, and kept my tips focused to copywriting, with a few other relatable key takeaways.

A few important reminders I shared when writing social media copy:

  • Brevity in copy
  • Be visual-heavy, copy-light
  • Use emojis in your copy
  • Use hashtags (don’t overload – less can be more esp. on Twitter/LinkedIn)
  • Go live or upload short videos on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn

I also shared that authenticity matters in social media. Your audience WANTS you to speak what you think on social media, and share the REAL YOU. It’s true — we have examples from leading marketers of patterns of virility from posting real, original thoughts that focus on an audience pain point that everyone in that audience can relate to. For example, this tweet from Chris Kubby that turned into another viral Instagram post:


I talked about the importance of giving yourself time, space, and knowledge (getting to know your real audience) to have these original, genuine thoughts. Without time and space, you aren’t giving your mind permission to come up with these thoughts; and without knowledge, you won’t know what kind of pain points your audience actually has that you need to speak and relate to.

julia mccoy speaking

Finally, I wrapped up with a segment on list-building, and covered how to write and put together these three types of list-builders:

  1. Case Studies/Whitepapers
  2. Lead Magnets & Ebooks
  3. Cheat Sheets (Content Upgrades, Templates)

One of our most popular case studies is this one, where we partnered with our client at Nfusion Solutions to uncover SEO keywords and craft SEO content that built their presence online. They were a fantastic client to work with, and we were able to build a great case study based on their story and what we were able to do together.case study example

I also shared another authority-building “secret:” content upgrades, a term first coined by Brian Dean of Backlinko back in 2016.

brian dean content upgrade

A content upgrade is when you create a blog and a PDF summary or cheat-sheet, and combine the two. The PDF you’re giving away inside your blog offers that extra tidbit of value for your list, and they’re already going to be interested in downloading it because it’s 100% relevant to the blog they’re reading. HUGE opportunity for list building!

I shared an example of how we’ve done this in a blog on How to Write SEO Content: The Essential Guide.

content upgrade example

For the past few years, we’ve been growing by 9-12 subscribers on average daily, autopilot, just through all the content upgrades I’ve built over the years. It is a ton of work to set up, but completely worth it!

Special Announcement! Content Hacker Coming Soon

social media bootcamp

Towards the end of the bootcamp, I shared a fun announcement. (This will be new for many of you Write Blog readers, too, unless you frequent Twitter or Facebook – the cat is out of the bag on most of my social media platforms!)

Everyone attending and watching my presentation had been getting a sneak peek of the new branding for my all-new brand launching in June, Content Hacker. The colors, style, everything was a sneak peek into the branding that will be a part of my new site and brand when it launches. I think I had the biggest smile on my face when I was talking about this. I’m so excited to reveal Content Hacker! Content Hacker will be a #1 resource for every growth-focused content marketer on the planet: a tribe, a community, a resource hub, a place where I interview Content Hackers making a difference, a blog for productivity and life improvements alongside best content practices, bespoke content marketing consulting, and more.

Join me when we launch – sign up to the launch list to get notified (and when you sign up, you’ll get a special letter from me explaining part of the mission behind the launch!). Click below to go to Content Hacker and sign up to learn about my new brand launching in June. 

content hacker

Wrapping Up #SocialMediaBootcamp With a Panel

To wrap up our bootcamp at The Capital Factory, Jessica had a great idea: invite former newscaster Kim Zook Barnes, award-winning newscaster and the brains behind Barnes Team Media, an on-camera and media/video training consulting agency, to a panel with both of us afterwards.

Together, the three of us took Q&As that the audience was asked to write down during our session. It was a fantastic idea on Jessica’s part and turned out well! We were able to answer some great questions live. Kim added some great insights from her experience in on-camera communications. See Jessica’s recap for the full Q&A list.

Video Recap of My Session

That’s a Wrap: How to Use 5 Types of Content to Grow Your Authority Online for Jessica’s #SocialMediaBootcamp in Austin, Texas

Thanks for hanging for my recap of Friday’s live talk!

It was an amazing event by Jessica Campos, and I was truly honored to be a part of it. Anything Jessica does is fabulous, so it was a no-brainer “yes.”

capital factory social media bootcamp austin texas

I hope you enjoyed it — in some way, either being there live or reading this recap — and were able to take away a new idea or two to use in your business.

Psst… If you don’t have them yet, don’t forget to grab your copy of my (93+!) slides:

Have questions? Anything to add to the conversation? Were you there? I’d love to hear from you in the comments!

Happy content marketing,

Julia

The Recipe for a Perfect Blog Post (Infographic)

If little boys are made of snakes, and snails, and puppy dog tails, and little girls are sugar and spice, and everything nice, what is the perfect blog post made of?

Luckily, it’s a selection of ingredients you probably already have in your content “pantry.”

While throwing together the perfect blog post can feel intimidating, it’s as simple as memorizing a straightforward ingredient list, assembling it all with love, and giving it the time, space, and attention it needs to develop into something extraordinary…

Like a pastry chef creating a beautiful cake. Don’t forget to share if you enjoyed our infographic! Full transcript below.

perfect blog post

Feel free to share this infographic, credit to Express Writers: www.expresswriters.com/recipe-for-a-perfect-blog-post-infographic

What Goes Into the Perfect Blog Post?

Before you start assembling the perfect blog post, be sure you have the following ingredients on hand:

  • 1 stellar title
  • 5-10 sentences of compelling introduction
  • 1 heaping spoonful creativity
  • Several outstanding and informative subheaders
  • 2 cups succinct body copy
  • Four handfuls research
  • Six parts formatting
  • 1 part conclusion
  • A sprinkling of enthusiasm
  • Love (for garnish)

Once you’ve gathered all your ingredients, follow these steps:

Assemble the Title

The title sets the stage for the rest of the blog post, so it’s important to get it right. If you don’t spend enough time on it, or if you throw it together hastily, the whole post will fall when you pull it out of the oven. With this in mind, be sure to mix the right amount of information, intrigue, and length into the title. Remember titles with numbers taste better to readers, so you may consider sprinkling some in. For best results, be sure to keep your title under 160 characters, so it doesn’t get cut off.

Lay Out Your Introduction

Next comes the introduction. Since the intro supports the title, you’ll need it to be nice and firm. Take your time laying it out and be sure to keep it short, sweet, and to-the-point. Don’t stretch it too thin. Otherwise, it won’t be able to support your nice, hefty title. You should also be careful not to make it too dense since this will drive your readers away.

Once your introduction is the right consistency, let it rise for 4-6 hours before revisiting it again.

Structure Your Subheaders

Your subheaders are the pieces of your perfect blog post that help guide readers through, so you’ll want to ensure they’re well-spaced and informative. For best results, add a subheader every 300-350 words, so your content doesn’t get too dense. Be sure to use numbers throughout, and keep your subheaders impactful and informative, for best taste.

Mix Together Body Copy

For your body copy, you’ll need to assemble your creativity, research, and formatting in a large bowl and stir until well combined. If necessary, add more research to reach the right consistency. Citations are critical to great blog posts, so be liberal with yours. Be sure that the content on your site is fresh and high-quality since this will improve the taste of the entire blog post.

Once you’ve secured your citations, turn your attention to the formatting. Half of the fun of creating a perfect blog post is making it look beautiful. With this in mind, use bolded subheaders, H1, H2, and H3 tags, bulleted and numbered lists, and plenty of images. The images are extra important since they make your blog post unique and unforgettable. Be sure to sprinkle them in to taste.

Arrange Your Conclusion

Your conclusion is the last part of your blog post, so you’ll want to pay particular attention to this. As you write your conclusion, be sure it sums up the main points of your blog post and gives your reader a tasty little morsel with which to end the post.

Just like you did with your introduction and body copy, keep it short, succinct, and to-the-point. Any “fluff” should be cut out so as to preserve the taste and you should always use the most high-quality writing possible.

Keep in mind that conclusions read better if they’re allowed to rest before publication, so you’d be smart to let yours sit for 4-6 hours before finishing.

Finish the Post

Once your post has cooled for 4-6 hours, run back through it one more time. Cut out any fluff that has risen to the top, tighten up language, remove unnecessary words, and re-shape the post into a narrative arc the reader would want to interact with.

Edit 2-3 times before publication and consider asking someone else to read the post as well, for posterity’s sake. Once the post is finished, sprinkle it with your enthusiasm and love, for garnish, and publish across your blog channel and favorite social media platforms.

Serve hot with a side of engagement and responsiveness to everyone who reaches out about the post.

The Perfect Blog Post Made Simple

Congratulations! You’ve just assembled your perfect blog post! That wasn’t as hard as you thought, was it? Keep in mind that blog posts are very flexible, so you can repeat this recipe, trying out various lengths, topics, methods, and writing styles.

To keep your posts high-quality, be sure never to rush the recipe, and always allow time for them to rise and cool before you publish them.

Also, don’t forget to decorate liberally with the love and enthusiasm, as this is what sets one blog post apart from another and puts the final beautiful touches on your blog “cake.”

Happy writing, and enjoy that delicious content!

art of copy express writers

#ContentWritingChat Recap: Blogging for ROI in 2017: Where to Blog, SEO, and Writing Strategies with Julia McCoy

Are you curious about blogging for ROI in 2017? That’s what we covered in our latest round of #ContentWritingChat! And if you missed out, you’re in luck because we’ve created a recap for you and it’s filled with awesome tips. Keep reading to check it out!

Blogging for ROI in 2017: Where to Blog, SEO, and Writing Strategies with Julia McCoy

For this week’s chat, our very own CEO stepped in to guest host. Julia McCoy shared her expertise on blogging for ROI in 2017 and offered some amazing tips for writing, SEO, and where you should be blogging this year. We covered some of the key topics to help you succeed as a blogger this year, so make sure you read through them and start implementing this advice for yourself!

Q1: For those that aren’t convinced, why is blogging still so important for brands?

The reality is, many brands still aren’t convinced that blogging is worth their time. They don’t realize the value that it can provide to their audience and their brand overall. So, let’s convince them why they should be blogging! Here are just some reasons blogging is important for brands:

Julia knows that blogging is a must for brands! She even shared some pretty impressive data that backs it up. The graph above shows Express Writers outranking major competitors solely from blogging. She also shared some stats that are sure to convince you of the importance of starting your own blog this year.

As Annaliese said, blogging is a lead generation opportunity. So many people will stumble upon your blog and want to do business with you because of the content you share. She also said blogging helps you build influence, which is key to drawing in your audience.

Jason knows that blogging is a powerful way to establish an authentic, authoritative voice. Your blog is your place to share your thoughts with your audience.

Blogging is an opportunity to show off your expertise to your industry, but also to your audience. It’s a great way to connect with your audience and to start building a relationship with them.

To put it simply, blogging is an opportunity to expand your audience, share quality information with readers, and can help you establish your voice as a brand.

Cheval’s advice is important to keep in mind. Social media is like rented property when you think about it. You don’t own the platform, nor can you count on it to always be around. If a social media platform shuts down, you’re going to lose your followers and everything you’ve worked so hard to build (unless you’ve successfully converted them to readers, subscribers, and customers). Your blog, however, is one place that you truly own and are in control of.

Q2: Where should you blog this year besides your own website? Discuss how to find the right platforms.

While blogging on your own website is great, blogging on other sites can provide major results. There are a lot of benefits to guest blogging, but it’s all about choosing the right places to post if you want to make it work for your brand. Keep these tips in mind:

Julia recommends creating a target persona for your audience so you know what they’re like. You can figure out their demographics and also what sites they’re reading on the web. That’s where you should be sharing your content! Check out the blog post she linked for more information on creating your own target persona.

The key to choosing the sites to guest blog on is figuring out where your audience spends their time online. You want to post on the sites that your target audiences reads so they’ll discover you and head over to your website.

Jason also knows the importance of finding the popular blogs in your wheelhouse and guest posting there. It’s the best way for you to reach your target audience and hopefully make them a fan of your brand.

Varun recommends posting on forums that are specific to your industry, guest blogging on authority websites, and also using platforms like Quora, Reddit, and LinkedIn.

Another great option is to create content for Medium. Trying posting there a few times and see if you notice any results. Blogging for ROI is going to take some trial and error and you have to figure out what works for your brand.

Q3: What are a few SEO strategies all bloggers need to know if they want to get their content noticed?

It’s no secret that if you want to get your content noticed, SEO is very important. And we can’t talk blogging for ROI without mentioning some SEO tactics, can we? Of course not! So, in order to make sure your content gets noticed and attracts viewers, these are the optimization basics you need to know:

Julia knows how important it is to be able to conduct keyword research. She also said you need to know how to use H2s, H3s, alt tags, and how to write a meta description. It may sound overwhelming for beginners, but it’s all easy to figure out.

Sarah from ThinkSEM said you need to know your audience and what is going to resonate with them. Before you start thinking about SEO tactics, this is the first thing you need to consider.

As Sara said, it’s important to have a keyword tool handy so you can research which focus keyword is ideal for your content.

Once you have the right keyword, you can plug that into your content. You’ll want to use your keyword in the title of your blog post, the URL, the meta description, and throughout the post itself. As Mallie said though, it’s important that you don’t go overboard. Keyword stuffing is a huge turn-off for your readers and Google doesn’t like it either. They should be incorporated in a way that feels natural.

Yoast is a great SEO plugin to use if your site is running on WordPress. It’s very simple to use and it makes optimization easy for beginners and those who are more experienced. We use it here at Express Writers and highly recommend it!

Jeff knows that Google Analytics is another great tool to use as part of your keyword strategy in order to optimize your content.

Q4: How can you figure out what content your audience most wants to see on your blog?

In order to attract people to your blog in the first place, you need to create the content they want to see. Once they know you’re a source of great information, they’re going to keep coming back for more. But how do you figure out what kind of content you need to create for your audience? Check out these tips:

Julia recommends figuring out what your audience’s biggest questions are and answering them. You can use tools like Answer the Public and others to figure out what they need help with.

Not sure what your audience wants? Ask them! It really is that simple. You can create a survey and share it for readers to leave their feedback and you’ll easily see what they’re interested in. You can also post on social media to get suggestions.

Jeff also agrees that asking your audience what they want is a pretty powerful strategy. Not only does it provide you with great feedback, but it gives your audience the chance to have their voice heard. They’ll appreciate that.

Besides flat out asking them, you can also conduct a little research of your own. Figure out what they’re talking about, what they’re liking and sharing. Listening is key to understand your audience. Check out their conversations on social media and pay attention to the comments they leave and the emails they send.

It’s also worthwhile to see what your competitors are doing. Check out businesses that are similar to yours and find out what’s been working for them and what’s not. You obviously don’t want to copy their strategy, but it can give you plenty of ideas for what you can create.

Sending out a yearly survey is a great way to question your audience about their interests. Getting into the habit of doing it every year ensures you’re always updated on what your audience is looking for. It’s also wise to check your analytics to see which posts are more popular since it gives you an idea of what to create more of.

Kristen also knows your analytics can be helpful when it comes to content creation. See which posts get the most traffic and which posts your readers spend the most time on to see what works best.

And as James said, it all goes back to understanding your audience.

Q5: How important is it to include a call to action in your blog posts? Describe an effective CTA.

A call to action essentially tells your reader what the next step is. What do you want them to do after reading your blog post? Do you want them to leave your site without engaging with you, possibly to never return again? Definitely not! That’s where a call to action comes in. Check out these tips for crafting an effective CTA:

Forgetting a CTA could cause you to lose out on leads. Not good! Check out our post on crafting a CTA for more in-depth tips.

Check out a few of our CTAs above!

If you’re blogging for ROI, then it’s essential that you prompt your readers to take action. A clear CTA will tell them exactly what to do and will encourage them to follow through.

As Jeff pointed out, you also can’t assume your readers are just going to take the action you want them to take. You need to make it clear and empower them to follow through.

Zala said you shouldn’t make your readers guest what they need to do next. Make it clear what you want them to do with a CTA.

Your content should serve a purpose and it’s important to let your audience know what’s next. Sarah recommends that all CTAs should be visible, understandable, and well-placed and in order to be effective.

Without a CTA, there isn’t much of a purpose to your post, is there? Make sure it’s well-written, compelling, and concise in order to inspire action.

Q6: What are the secrets to making blog customers convert into real customers and clients?

Once you have people visiting your blog, you want them to take that next step with your brand. You want them to ultimately become customers and clients. How do you make that happen? We’ve got some great advice for you:

Julia’s advice is to choose targeted reader topics and provide thorough answers. Don’t forget to also optimize your content and to add a CTA.

Annaliese said you need to create high-quality, targeted content that leads readers through your funnel. This is key to seeing them finally convert.

Value and CTAs are two keys to success when it comes to blogging for ROI.

Focus on solving the common problems your audience is facing. They’ll appreciate you for it and you’ll be able to establish yourself as an authority in the process.

Don’t forget to engage with your audience as well. This helps to build a trusting relationship with them, which is key to ultimately making a sale.

Great advice from Michael: helping sells. Commit to helping your audience and you’ll start seeing results.

Q7: Do you rely on any tools to create amazing content for your blog? Share your favorites!

With so many tools available to us today, there are plenty to choose from that can help in content creation. Here are some suggestions to check out:

Be sure to check out Julia’s three favorite tools!

Mallie is all about her editorial calendar and so are we. No matter how you create your calendar, what’s important is that you actually use it.

WordPress, Google Analytics, Twitter, and Yoast are all great tools to use! Don’t forget how important that creative brain of yours is and time.

Quora, Reddit, Canva, and Bitly are all helpful tools.

Hemingway and Moz are two popular tools for content creators. Do you use them?

Maria is a fan of Trello for keeping things organized.

These are great suggestions from Sabjan!

Taking pen to paper is always so satisfying! Sometimes it’s just a lot nicer to do things the old school way as opposed to typing or punching out laters on our phone’s keyboard.

Q8: Which blogs do you read on a consistent basis? Tag them and let them know!

To wrap up our chat on blogging for ROI, we wanted to know which blogs our audience loves to read. Here’s what some of them had to say:

Julia likes to read content from Content Marketing Institute, Steve Rayson’s BuzzSumo posts, and Neil Patel’s blog.

Much like Zachary, we’re big fans of Gary Vaynerchuk here at Express Writers.

Annaliese enjoys reading Hootsuite’s blog.

These are all great suggestions from Rebecca!

You’ll want to add these sites to your reading list!

Don’t get so caught up in consuming content that you forget to embrace the world around you. As Shannon said, you need to pay attention and you’ll surely find some ideas for your content.

We look forward to seeing you at the next #ContentWritingChat! Mark your calendars weekly for Tuesday at 10 AM Central Time for great chats centered around content writing and marketing. Follow @ExpWriters to stay updated on our new topics and guests!

10 New Year Blogging Centric Resolutions for the Content Marketer (Infographic)

With blogging as a source of 97% more inbound website backlinks, 126% more business lead growth, and much more (stats below), it’s a major, major foundation of content marketing you don’t want to miss out on in 2017.

To start January off with a bang, we decided to help share some inspiration for our fellow content marketers and create a list of 10 top resolutions to help you blog this year (better than you’ve ever blogged before)!

Print the following infographic below out, and hang it up to inspire your blogging and content progress all year. 😉 Here’s the PDF version, resolutions only, to download. Enjoy – written and designed by our team at Express Writers!

Blogging and Content Marketing Resolutions infographic

Why Make Blogging Resolutions for 2017?

Here’s some (serious) inspiration.

  • More than 200 million people (and a whopping 16% of the U.S. population) use ad blockers – so organic content (blogging is best!) is the only way to reach them.
  • Companies that blog have 97% more inbound links.
  • Small businesses that blog get 126% more lead growth than small businesses that do not blog.
  • Companies that published 16+ blog posts per month got almost 5X more traffic than companies that published 0-4 monthly posts.
  • Long-form blog posts earn 9x more leads than short-form posts.
  • 70% of B2B marketers plan to create more content in 2017 than they did in 2016.
  • The average length of top-ranking blogs is increasing – sitting at roughly 1,050 words in 2017.
  • 49% of marketers are focusing on aligning their content with the buyer’s journey.
  • Nearly 30% of the most successful marketers routinely repurpose their content. To join the club, though, you must have content to repurpose – and blogs are perfect for that!
  • 45% of all marketers report that writing blogs is the single most important piece of their content strategy.
  • 80% of decision makers would rather get information about a company through an article than they would through an advertisement.

10 Top Blogging Resolutions for the Content Marketer

 To outperform last year’s results and make 2017 one to remember, stick to these ten resolutions:

1. I will get backup in my content creation this year

No more stressing out about deadlines, topics, and writing it all. (Express Writers can help!)

2. I will be authoritative in every content piece I put out this year

If it’s less than authority expert level in my niche, it might not be worth my time.

3. I will never put quantity over quality

I should publish more blogs this year to increase my inbound leads, but if I’m rushing and the content is low quality, I shouldn’t publish. Quantity comes second to quality.

4. I will give my audience what they want

I will be relevant, use tools like BuzzSumo to research and find out what my audience wants in topics. This will help me gain more loyal customers.

5. I will increase my rankings by finding and writing around long-tail keywords

This is one of the top ways to gain blog spots in Google’s rankings.

6. I will promote and create

Creating isn’t enough: I also need a promotion plan. I will have social media management and an active social account connected to my blog.

7. I will be creative with topics and approaches

Content burn-out will only hurt me and my readers. This year, I’ll dig deeper to come up with more creative topics and new ways to approach topics and news.

8. I will take notes from my competitors

I will monitor my competitors to learn things like which keywords they’re targeting, which social platforms they’re using (and how), and what I can do to enhance my content efforts accordingly.

9. I will try new content forms

Interactive content, newsletters, infographics, and live-streaming can all boost my content strategy in 2017. I will expand into these new content forms to grow my business and expand my audience.

10. I will repurpose my content to get more traction

Repurposed content can help my content strategy stretch further. I will find creative ways to repurpose and re-use content of all types.

Ten 2017 Blogging Resolutions for the Content Marketer (Infographic) Sources:

New Year CTA express writers

ContentWritingChat April 19 2016 Recap: Strategies for Successful Guest Blogging From an Editor

Did you miss this week’s #ContentWritingChat? Well, there’s no need to worry because you can catch up with our full recap of the chat. Tuesday’s chat was all about guest blogging. If you’re looking to introduce guest blogging into your growth strategy or want to take your guest posts to the next level, you’ll want to read through these amazing tweets!

#ContentWritingChat April 19 2016 Recap: Strategies for Successful Guest Blogging From an Editor


Our guest host for the week was Kathleen Garvin. Kathleen is the Editor over at The Penny Hoarder and previously worked at SEMrush. She’s experienced in SEO, blogging and digital marketing, as well as guest blogging. We enjoyed having her expertise over on our Twitter chat at #ContentWritingChat.

Q1: Why is guest blogging essential to brands and writers with a presence online?

Why is guest blogging a must and how can help build your online presence? Check out what some of the participants from Tuesday’s chat had to say:

As Kathleen said, guest blogging helps to give you a voice and also gets you more exposure for your brand. When you guest post on another site, your content gets featured in front of a whole new audience. It doesn’t get much better than that!

Tara mentioned that guest blogging could establish you as an authority figure within your niche. She and Sarah from Think SEM both agreed that you also gain credibility when other publications feature your work. That’s huge!

As Ryan said, guest blogging exposes your brand to a new audience who hasn’t heard of you before. Both he and Eliza agreed it’s also a great way to build relationships. When you guest post, you not only start forming a relationship with the website, but also their readers.

Our CEO, Julia, said guest blogging could gain you a ton of exposure for your brand without having to spend a dime.

As Brittany said, guest blogging gives you exposure, strengthens your voice, and can be an extension of your brand story.

Q2: How do you pinpoint great sites to pitch guest posts to?

Now that you know why guest blogging is beneficial, you need to think about which sites you should be pitching. Here’s what you need to know:

Kathleen said to look to the high-quality blogs in your field. Don’t forget to consider your goals. What are you trying to achieve with your guest post? Are you trying to grow your traffic, generate awareness for your brand, gain more sales? This could play a factor in choosing which sites to guest post on.

As Andrew said, make sure you’re choosing sites that are relevant to your brand. Also, does the site receive a lot of engagement from their audience? That’s key!

Varun said to make sure you can add value to the sites you’re pitching to. Your focus should always be on providing great content for their audience.

Ryan recommends looking to high-traffic and authoritative sources. This can help maximize your reach.

Julia likes to use BuzzSumo to find the top blogs in specific industries. Very helpful!

Like Kristen said, never be afraid to reach out. The worst you could hear is no. If there’s a site you want to post on, send over a pitch. You never know how it could work out!

Q3: How do pick topics guest bloggers can’t resist?

The next step in guest blogging is coming up with an amazing topic. No matter what site you’re writing for or what topic you’re writing on, providing value is always a must. Here are some more tips for choosing topics:

A great tip from Kathleen: do your homework! Don’t blindly pitch a website your ideas. Do some research first by reading their blog to see which topics they’re covering. You want to make sure you choose topics that fit.

Tara and Sarah both agree: be unique! You need to put your own spin on the topics you’re writing about. Don’t write the same thing everyone else is already writing.

Alberto and Village Print & Media know trending topics always make great blog posts. As Alberto said, evergreen topics are great as well!

Peter said to make sure your content is solving a problem people need the answers to. This is a great way to provide value to an audience. When you consistently provide quality content that helps your audience, they’ll want to keep coming back to your site for more.

Pratik said to steer clear of topics that aren’t your forte. It’s best to write what you know. When you have a full understanding of the topic you’re writing about, it shows through in your writing and you’ll be more confident in your work.

Q4: What should you include/not include in a pitch email? When should you follow-up?

When preparing your pitch email, there are a few things you should (and shouldn’t) include. And how do you know when to follow-up? These tips will help:

Kathleen recommends including a personalized greeting, a short intro, then pitching your idea and adding links to previous work. However, if you are linking to some of your past work and you were a ghostwriter, inform the person of that ahead of time!

If there are guidelines published on the website regarding pitches, Andrew suggest looking at them before you send your pitch over. Make sure you follow them if they do! If they don’t, it’s a good idea to pitch a couple topic options just in case your first idea gets rejected. It’s helpful to briefly mention why each piece would be beneficial to their audience.

Kyle says to ditch the templates! Personalize your pitch email instead. He said it helps to reference something specific about the site you’re pitching to or say how you found the site.

Ryan recommends pitching your idea with a brief synopsis and explanation of how it will add value. When they can see the value your post will bring, it could increase the likelihood it might be published.

As Kristen said, don’t write a novel! Keep your pitch email short and sweet.

As Laura said, make sure your pitch email shows off your writing skills. Double-check for any grammar or spelling mistakes.

You don’t even have to email them! You could do a more informal pitch through social media. It worked for Julia!

If you haven’t gotten a response and you feel like you should follow-up, remember this: Give them time to respond. Don’t wait one day and start sending follow-up emails. Editors are busy and need time to respond to your email. Following up one week later is a great idea. Remember to be polite, too!

Q5: What makes up a great guest post author bio? What links should you include?

What should you include when writing your author bio for your guest posts? Here are some tips from Tuesday’s chat:

You just might want to steal Kathleen’s format for author bios! She includes her current position and company, her past role, any related passion projects, and social media links.

Make sure your bio explains who you are to this new audience. What do you want them to know about you?

You should also show your personality in your bio. People like to hear a few personal tidbits. It makes you more relatable.

Consider linking to a landing page with an opt-in form for your email list to encourage people to sign-up and boost subscribers. Great tip, Michael!

Q6: Should guest posting be part of your growth strategy? If so, how often should you guest post?

We know the benefits of guest blogging, but should it be part of your growth strategy? And how often should you guest post? Take a look at these tips from the chat:

Kathleen recommends making guest posting a part of your growth strategy. It grows your brand and helps you connect with others. However, make sure you are more focused on quality posts, as opposed to a quantity of posts.

Tara said how often you guest post should depend upon your rate of growth, your niche, and your strategy. If you’re focused on growing your audience, step up your guest posts!

Andrew also agreed that guest posting is fantastic for building authority and gaining exposure, while also helping your build relationships. Much like Tara, he suggested the frequency of guest posting should depend on your goals. Every post should serve a purpose!

Julia is a big fan of guest posting, as shown by these numbers!

If you’re just starting out, Kyle recommends making guest posting more of a priority. It’s a great way to start building your audience when you’re still in the beginning phase.

Dagmar also suggests guest blogging regularly. She said it helps you connect with a new audience, gets you backlinks, and increases your domain authority and your online visibility.

Zala says guest blogging is good way to just put yourself out there. Don’t be afraid to start pitching sites and contributing your content!

As Michael said, if you’re passionate about your niche, you’ll want to write every opportunity you get!

Q7: What are the top actions you should take after your guest post is published?

Now that your guest post is live, what should you do next? Keep these tips in mind:

Kathleen said to make sure you’re sharing and asking others in your network to help spread the word. Don’t forget to engage with the readers, too!

Kyle said to share the guest post on social media, your email newsletter, and even email it to friends. You want to make sure you get the word out about your content.

Scott also recommends sharing your guest posts with your email list. Your subscribers will surely want to check it out!

As Kavita said, make sure you respond to the comments people leave on the post. It shows you’re listening and that you’re interested in what they have to say. Starting a conversation with them makes a huge difference!

You may want to consider writing some related posts for further reading on your own website. It’ll be great for when people visit your site via the guest post. Great tip, Pratik!

Build excitement around your guest post, like Michael suggests. Make sure you’re promoting it!

Share, share, and share some more!

And of course, don’t forget to say thanks!

Q8: How can you track the results of your guest post?

You want to make sure you have a goal you’re trying to achieve with your guest posts, whether it’s growing your audience, makes sales, building relationships, etc. How can you measure that goal after the post goes live?

Kathleen says to keep an eye on referral traffic in Google Analytics, email newsletter sign-ups, and social media follows. If you didn’t get the results you wanted in relation to your goals, make changes and try again!

A great tip from Dagmar: set up Intelligence Events in Google Analytics for tracking.

Analytics are huge, but as Kavita mentioned, engagement is important as well. Is your post generating conversations?

Don’t forget that people may forget to tag you when sharing on social media. As Jeff said, a quick search of the URL on Twitter will show you who has been sharing your post.

Track how many pageviews you received as a result of the guest post. Did you gain more followers, more likes, etc.?

We look forward to seeing you at the next #ContentWritingChat! Mark your calendars weekly for Tuesday at 10 AM CDT for great chats centered around content writing and marketing.

Everything You Need to Know About Online Content Word Count (Infographic)

Have you ever stopped in the middle of creating your online content, whether it be a social media post, blog, or other piece of online content, not sure what the proper word count should be? We’ve studied, analyzed, and researched–and put an infographic together to guide you. Here’s every correct content length for any piece of online content on the web. Feel we missed anything, or do you have something to add? Let us know in the comments! Full infographic transcription below.


Online Content Length infographic

An Infographic Guide to Online Content Length

Curious how long your content should be? You’re not alone. With dozens of conflicting opinions about word count flying around the web, it can be difficult to determine how much is enough on various platforms like blogs and social media. Fortunately, we have the answers.

Let’s explore the word count question here.

The Rise of Social Media: Why Your Content Matters

Social media is booming and one of the best ways to engage with the huge numbers on each platform is to ensure that the content you share there is as user-friendly as possible. Take a look at the user numbers for some of today’s hottest platforms:

  • There are currently more than 2 billion active social media users in the world
  • Content on Facebook earns 5 billion likes each day
  • Twitter has more than 284 million users and the platform sees 500 million tweets daily
  • Google+ has more than 363 million users

Online Content Lengths for All Web Platforms

Now that you know how big social media truly is, let’s take a look at what the ideal content length for all distribution channels really is.

Twitter

Is Twitter really increasing its character limit from 140 to 10,000? The CEO of Twitter, Jack Dorsey, started the rumor:

But, best practices currently state that it’s more fruitful to keep Tweets limited to 100 characters. Here’s why:

  • Tweets that are 100 characters or shorter enjoy 17% more engagement than longer Tweets
  • So-called “medium length” tweets (between 71-100 characters) are re-tweeted more often than large (101-characters or longer) or small (41-70 character) tweets
  • Twitter is built on brevity, and 100-character tweets are easy for users to consume

Facebook

While Facebook is often thought of a long-form content platform in comparison to Twitter, it may surprise you to know that the ideal character limit for a Facebook post is actually shorter than a tweet. Here’s what you need to know:

  • The ideal Facebook post is 40-characters or fewer
  • Facebook posts with 40-characters earn 86% more engagement than longer posts
  • According to Facebook best practices, the second-best length of a Facebook post is 80 characters or less. These posts receive 66% more engagement than longer posts

Google+

Google+ is all about readability and accessibility of content, so it’s important to keep content easily digestible. Here’s what you need to know about Google+ headlines and content:

  • The highest-performing Google+ headlines are 60 characters or less
  • Readers only absorb the first and last three words of a headline, so headlines that are 6 words or less have the most impact
  • The ideal length of Google+ body content is 200-440 characters

LinkedIn

LinkedIn posts are designed to be short and sweet. According to BufferApp, the ideal length for a post on the platform is 25 words.

  • LinkedIn posts that are around 25 words encourage the highest number of click-throughs.
  • For B2B companies, the ideal word length for a LinkedIn post can vary between 16-25 words.
  • For B2C companies on LinkedIn, the ideal word length for a post is between 21-25 words.

Instagram 

Since Instagram isn’t focused on text-based content, but rather great visuals: there are currently no solid “best practices” for word count. You can, however, follow these tips for best results from your Instagram posts.

  • Use creative #hashtags to promote interaction with your established network. Consider using the Instagram Explorer page to learn more about trending hashtags that can enhance your brand. Up to 15 hashtags per post is an average amount. Always be relatable with your hashtags to what your visual topic is about.
  • If you’re sharing an Instagram photo on Twitter or Facebook, be sure to lessen and streamline your hashtags. Photos with too many hashtags will look out of place on these networks. Some brands drop the hashtags in an Instagram follow-up comment if they’re streamlining.
  • Tell your brand story through captions. This offers context for your image and helps followers connect with your content.

Pinterest

When it comes to Pinterest descriptions, keeping them within the correct character-count range can enhance their performance hugely.

  • 200-character descriptions earn the most re-pins
  • Pins that feature CTAs earn 80% more engagement than those that don’t
  • Research has found that pins with an image height 800 pixels or greater earn significantly more re-pins than those with smaller images

Blog Posts

Rule of thumb: blog posts are the place where informative, guide-style, long-form content can shine.

  • Buffer found that the ideal reading length of a blog post is 7 minutes. This translates to roughly 1,600 words
  • As a general rule, longer blogs are more likely to provide quality markers for search engines, which allows them to rank higher
  • Blog posts that are longer than 1,500 words receive an average of 68% more tweets and 23% more Facebook likes than shorter posts.
  • Most web pages that sit in the top 10 SERP positions for any given keyword have at least 2,000 words
  • Eight-word or longer search queries have risen by 34,000%, which means that content targeting long-tail keywords will perform better today.

5 Key Best Practices for Social Media Posts

No matter where you’re posting content, there are several rules you should always follow:

1. Be helpful. Readers want helpful content. It matters less if your content is 80 or 800 characters and much, much more that it’s helpful and well-written.

2. Don’t blab. As a general rule, concise is better. If you can get a point across in 1,000 words, you shouldn’t be stuffing a 2,000-word post with empty fillers just to meet word count. This will cost you readers and damage the quality of your content.

3. Add visuals. Posts with visuals earn 94% more views than text-only posts. By including high-quality infographics, memes, stock photos, or screenshots in your content, you can increase engagement hugely.

4. Craft compelling CTAs. Something as simple as adding CTAs to your social media content can create a huge shift in your conversions and rankings. By telling your readers exactly what you want them to do, you stand a better chance of them actually doing it.

5. Engage. A social media post is only as valuable as the level to which you engage with it. This means responding to comments, speaking directly with followers, and posting additional content as needed to keep the conversation going.

Reference List

QuickSprout: http://buff.ly/23IRoP8

Buffer: http://buff.ly/1SsSpHv

Qunitly: http://buff.ly/23ISYQX

Dan Zarella: http://buff.ly/1QcuTIq

Buffer: http://buff.ly/2096rgo

HubSpot: http://buff.ly/1PhhDlV

Jeff Bullas: http://buff.ly/1PhigvY

 

How to Syndicate Without Being Duplicate: The 101 On Content Syndication

For those who don’t know, “content syndication” is the act of publishing a piece of writing multiple times in multiple locations. Keep in mind, however, that good content syndication does not mean copying and pasting the same article for use over and over again without any attribution or precautions. Google recognizes the latter as duplicate content and will happily ding your site for this.

Instead, syndicating your own work is essentially the same as creating re-runs of your greatest hits and, for writers who publish a lot of blog posts or articles, it can be a great way to get the most bang for your metaphorical buck. Additionally, good syndication practices have the potential to earn you more shares and afford your content a much wider reach. When syndication is done well, it allows a variety of online sources to find and feature your original work, which is a win-win for everyone involved.

“But how,” you might ask, “do I syndicate correctly?”

While there are many myths about syndicated content flying around, making sure that you are syndicating correctly is an important piece of the syndication process because, as we mentioned earlier, duplicate content is a big no-no in the world of SEO. Let’s find out more about this.

 

What is Content Syndication?

As we’ve established, content syndication is when a publisher or writer re-purposes an already-published piece of writing for use on a different platform. It’s a tricky business though, because Google hates duplicate content (as it has made explicitly clear with its recent updates) and will happily ding sites that copy a blog from one platform to another.

The reason Google is so tough on duplicate content is easy to understand: the Internet is an information-delivering machine and nobody wants to encounter the same post on every site they visit. Duplicate content doesn’t benefit readers nearly as much as high-quality, original content and, when Google users enter search queries, they expect to see a few million similar but different results pop up, which is impossible in a world of copy-and-paste content.

Syndicating content without ticking off Google is a difficult ball game and it is important that writers and publishers take it very seriously.

5 Ways to Syndicate Content Safely

Although it’s not fair to say that content syndication is so risky and ill-advised that it shouldn’t be attempted at all, it is fair to say that it should be undertaken cautiously and with a broad knowledge of how to syndicate safely. These tactics will keep you in Google’s good graces while also allowing you to reap the benefits of re-purposed content:

1. Write a Recap

One of the easiest ways to syndicate content correctly is to write a recap. Start a blog post by introducing the post you’ve already written as well as the platform on which it was published. Add a few more words, a nice image, a compelling call-to action, a link to the piece and you’re done.

This form of syndication is great because it’s simple, amazingly time-efficient, and easy to do. Additionally, linking to the site that features your blog has the potential to boost your SEO ranking and also provides your readers with the opportunity to visit a blog they’re unfamiliar with, thus expanding their horizons as well.

Photo credit seoinc.com

Photo credit seoinc.com

2. Add A rel-canonical Tag

If you’re syndicating your own content to a different portal, consider adding a useful little rel-canonical tag to the page that will feature your new article. Keep in mind that the tag in question should always point back to your site’s original article.

By doing this, you give Google a way to interpret your syndicated content correctly and help search engines realize that the article is a copy and that you are its original publisher. This prevents you from slipping into the dark world of duplicate content and saves your site from costly SEO dings by the Google Gods. Additionally, all of the subsequent links to your syndicated copy will point back to your original copy, which is good for your site and your visibility.

3. Opt for NoIndex

If the rel-canonical tag isn’t up your alley, try the No-Index option. When you syndicate your own content, simply insert a No-Index tag in the article copy. Doing this tells Google that it needs to exclude the syndicated copy from its index but allows linking between the two articles. Keep in mind that this is not the same process as No-Follow, which is an entirely different practice among bloggers.

4. Ensure Balance

Once your content marketing strategy begins to tip heavily toward all syndicated content, all the time, you’re in trouble. When Google’s Panda 4.0 was introduced, many sites that favor syndicated content saw a 60% decrease in their organic traffic. That said, it’s wise to ensure that if you are using syndicated content, you’re balancing it well with high-quality, original content.

Opt for a 60/40 split, with 60% of your content being original pieces that are updated often. Ensure you’re utilizing proper linking techniques and that your content is garnering good shares. This, combined with other preventative syndication measures, should be enough to keep you in Google’s good graces.

5. Beef Up Syndicated Pieces

One of the worst things you can do in pursuit of syndication is copy and paste third-party pieces without adding value to the content. Generally, good writers know that constructing a blog built entirely around third-party pieces that are taken from other sources is a dangerous game. There is, however, a way to do it correctly.

By utilizing third party pieces to quote from or to draw fragments from, writers can build authority and synthesize new content. To do this, ensure that the pieces you choose to syndicate were published by a high-quality site and that they are written with flow and comprehension in mind. Additionally, be sure that you are adding some quality to syndicated third-party pieces. Insert your own commentary or pull pieces of the third-party article to beef up your own content, but whatever you do, do not pull third party pieces from around the web, slap them on your site and call it a blog.

Good Syndication: Ask Yourself The Where, When and Why Questions

With all of those warnings in place, the fact remains that syndication can actually be great for bloggers, providing it’s done properly. According to Google, duplicate content is “substantive blocks of content within or across domains that either completely match other content or are appreciably similar.”

It’s important to note, however, that Google goes on to say that most duplicate content isn’t trying to be sneaky and can be attributed to news publications, product descriptions or discussion forums. That being said, Google doesn’t love syndicated content and it urges writers to be careful when they choose to do it.

In order to avoid getting dinged, it’s important to ensure that any website that features syndicated content offers a hyperlink to the website that features the original article. Additionally, it is generally wise to use No-Index tags on sites that syndicate content in order to avoid appearing as duplicate content.

Where?

We’re going for quality over quantity here and it’s always wise to avoid slapping syndicated content all over the Internet. Instead, focus on correctly syndicating content on a small number platforms and then promoting it well. This will garner you all the benefits of content syndication without the high probability of running into associated risks.

When?

Again, it’s unwise to rely entirely upon syndicated content and you don’t want to syndicate every piece of content you write. That said, it’s important to choose which content to syndicate wisely. A great general rule is to syndicate only those pieces which are of most interest to your audience. Don’t syndicate something that is off-beat or somewhat inconsequential. When it comes time to re-use your own content, it’s wise to pick the very best stuff you write.

Additionally, you’ll want to ensure that, while you are syndicating your highest-quality articles, you’re also not syndicating some of your highest quality articles. Maintaining well-written, high-quality content that is unique to your site will boost your site’s rankings and help you build your reputation of authority, not to mention the positive force it exerts on reader interest. A good deal of when you choose to syndicate content will also depend on your status as a blogger. High-profile bloggers might be a bit pickier about their syndication opportunities than bloggers who are just getting started.

Why?

Letting a third-party website feature your content is one of the best ways to build authority in your domain. Although it sounds counterintuitive, it’s true and this is why content syndication is so popular among writers. Publishers want high-quality, original content are more than willing to take what writers give them and feature it on their sites. This is a win-win for many reasons: first of all, the publisher gets unique, intelligent, interesting writing that they may not have the time or skill to produce in-house; secondly, the writer gets to share their content with a broader audience and gain new readers and followers, which can help boost authority and visibility in the blogging world.

For bloggers that are just getting started, content syndication can be an effective strategy to boost authority, gain new readers and make a name for themselves in the blogging world. More established writers love content syndication for the same reasons. When both writers and publishers syndicate content correctly, every party involved stands to enjoy large benefits.

The Case for Content Syndication

By now, it’s obvious that there is a large and distinct difference between duplicate content and content syndication, although the methods by which that distinction takes place might seem somewhat blurry. Content syndication is a great way for publishers to gain plenty of high-quality content and for writers to enjoy increased visibility, but it must be done carefully.

If you’re going to syndicate content, be sure that you are syndicating correctly. Employ precautions like writing recaps, asking publishers to use No-Index meta tags, implementing rel-canonical tags or simply creating two distinct categories of content, one for your personal site and one for content distribution allies. No matter what you choose to do, it’s obvious that avoiding the dreaded cloud of duplicate content is amazingly important for bloggers everywhere.

Whether you’re syndicating your own content or syndicating content from a third-party site, the risks and the benefits must be weighed equally. When done incorrectly, syndicated content quickly becomes duplicate content and bloggers begin to test the strength of Google’s iron will. Publishers that rely entirely upon syndicated content or fly in the face of duplicate content, creating it anyway and just waiting to be caught, will eventually be caught and the penalties can be huge. It’s not fun to lose organic traffic and, fortunately, it’s avoidable. When you syndicate content correctly, it’s easy to reap the benefits of increased visibility and high-quality content without falling prey to the wrath of the Google’s Panda.

Conclusion

Although there are obviously risks involved with content syndication, it’s up to each individual blogger to determine whether or not content syndication is right for them.

For many bloggers, content syndication’s benefits far outweigh its drawbacks. These bloggers choose to syndicate content carefully and, often, they experience a solid increase in traffic because of it.

For example, I’ve syndicated content to SocialMediaToday (not every blog I write, just some) and the syndicated content has been shared hundreds of times—far more traction on social than I would have received without the syndication.

Once you look (and understand) at the big picture with syndication, you can easily decide if it’s right for you.

And remember, the quality of your content will determine how well it does when it’s syndicated – so always keep your standards high.

good blogger strengths

10 Fundamental Strengths Every Good Blogger Should Have

What makes for an awesome, really good blogger?

I suppose that stems from what you see as a good blog.

In the general scheme of things, a good blog is one that gives its users great content, regularly. Content that enriches those readers’ lives, and gives them something to look forward to for the next time.

A good blog is one that compels the reader to tell all their friends about what they’re reading. It inspires or convicts, informs and directs its users, effectively helping them to better themselves.

good blogger strengths

Do you have what it takes? (You actually might…)

Understanding the Blogger: How They’re Actually Regular People

Who, then, are the people who make these posts? Who are the people behind the content that thrills and excites?

They’re regular people, just like you and me.

No, I’m serious. The people who write blogs are everyday people with insight on key issues within a particular area. Their insight sets them apart, surely. But more than that they display a certain set of skills that regular folks don’t have or make known.

If you don’t believe me, you don’t have to look any further than your favorite blogs. Check the “About Me” pages. You’ll find everyone from a London taxi driver to a woman who enjoys cooking and kittens. There are bloggers in every walk of life. They are the people who can turn the mundane into the extraordinary. How do they do this?

The 10 Major Strengths of Truly Good Bloggers

Let’s take a look at some of the strengths of really good, tantalizingly good bloggers.

1. Consistency

The most popular blogs on the Internet maintain their position by posting regularly. What does this mean in terms of a personality trait for the blogger? Although one would think that a blogger doesn’t have a deadline, the fact of the matter is every single day is a blogger’s deadline. It demonstrates dedication and an ability to set goals and achieve them. According to Shout me Loud writer Harsh Agrawal, bloggers need to be self-motivated in order to get things done. A consistent blogger is one that draws the admiration of his or her followers. An inconsistent blogger frustrates the audience and not updating often enough is like an invitation for your audience to leave.

2. Uniqueness

People love seeing new things. In fact, they tend to be attracted by the odd and the unusual. That’s why circuses used to carry around guys who would bite off the heads of chickens. Although successful bloggers don’t need to go defacing poultry to make their uniqueness known, they have to show it off in other ways. It’s not something you can simulate however. It’s something that resides in all of us and just needs the opportunity to come out. As Darren Rowse says that your blog’s uniqueness stems from your uniqueness as a person. The best bloggers are those that utilize their innate uniqueness and carry it over to their blog. People love a spectacle, and if you provide one to them, they’re happy to keep coming back for more.

3. Eloquence

Author Ron Suskind once said, “Choose your words meticulously and then let them rumble up from some deep furnace of conviction.” It’s as true today as it was when he wrote it. The art of eloquence is something that seems to be lost on many modern bloggers. The successful ones are the light that shines out of the fog to illuminate how important being able to present your ideas well is a good thing for a writer. As writers, our very art, the thing we live for, our passions, boil down to how well we represent ideas through words so that someone reading those words will see what we see. As a blogger, this is a rare and important trait to have. Those that do communicate well reap the spoils.

4. Built on a Niche

Niche bloggers are the ones that develop content within a community that is based around the community’s interests. Bloggers that tackle the pertinent issues and topics within their niche are usually respected by their peers for what they do. A good example of niche blogging is Social Media Explorer, a site dedicated to exploring trends and spreading information about social media and how it can be utilized in the modern world for public relations and marketing. Finding a niche gives you a lot of fuel to drive your blog because in any niche there are hundreds of thousands of possible topics. The great bloggers know how to use this to their advantage.

5. Passionate

Something lots of kids get told today is that they should do what they love for a living. This advice is the truest thing that any kid can get. Bloggers are usually the people who make a job out of something they feel strongly about. Now the downside of this is that sometimes tempers may run high, especially when someone’s point of view is challenged. On the whole, however, people who are truly passionate about a topic tend to be the ones to present it in the best light. They aren’t afraid to criticize the bad moves and to praise the good ones. Having passion is the trademark of a good blogger because it gives you the courage to talk about things and the wisdom to know what you’re talking about.

6. Thought-Provoking

The thing that bloggers should seek to do to be regarded well is to provoke thought in their readers. If someone reads a blog post and at the end of it stops and really considers what they read, that is what sets a good blogger apart from a run-of-the-mill one. The upside is that people who identify with a particular post are more likely to share it, so that usually equates to a wider reach for the blog as a whole. Writers like Seth Godin are good at explaining ideas through illustration and this technique helps to put his ideas into perspective. That’s how to stimulate people to think, you give them something to relate to. It’s an art the best bloggers have managed to figure out completely.

7. Detail-Oriented

The details of any particular situation are what makes that situation interesting. While a lot of blogs out there tend to give you the same reports of news slightly changed from one post to another, the odd one out gives you the report and then does commentary on it. This is what we would consider good content because it gives new insight to the reader and also possibly provokes their thinking. The devil may be in the details, but in the end, so is your salvation. Getting detail-oriented blogging right can be painstaking, but in the end the kind of attention you draw is more than worth the effort you put into it. Detailed analysis requires an informed opinion. Bloggers that go this route usually research both sides of the story before forming an opinion and can discuss why they think what they think. It sets them apart from bloggers that are simply glorified muckrakers.

8. Can Take Criticism 

If you’ve ever found yourself article-hopping through Huffington Post or any other online publishing medium, you will no doubt find yourself reading the comments. Some of those comments can be quite vitriolic. Anonymity that the Internet grants to everyone makes it easy for someone to become a hateful individual online and hide behind the thin veneer of a hastily made-up screen name. The most successful bloggers are able to spot trolls early on and head them off at the pass. They are able to take criticism well, even though that criticism is simply an outpouring of hate. Although some bloggers use their loyal followers to combat trolls, that can be as effective as throwing gasoline on an open fire. Quite often, the best way to deal with these kinds of individuals is to simply ignore them. What they have to say is usually irrelevant to the discussion anyway.

9. Good At Networking

In the earlier, more innocent days of the Internet, there used to be a thing called a blog ring. It’s where blogs of a particular type would come together and share links and resources and sometimes an audience between themselves. Although things like these no longer exist in the same fashion (thanks to the revamping of the code under Google’s hood) you still find a lot of blogs mutually sharing links to each other within a niche. Good bloggers use networking as a way to spread their presence and build their own personal brand. One of the most successful content marketing techniques that exist today is guest blogging. By using your professional network to leverage likes, shares and new visitors, you spread both the popularity of your blog and the attendant traffic that goes with it.

10. Helpful

The most important strength of a great blogger is their ability to be helpful. Good content is all about developing something that helps your readers. A lot of bloggers got started because their aim in blogging was to show off what they knew about this particular topic. When you start from this particular situation, you tend to find a lot of other people following in your footsteps, using your work as a draft for their own success. Bloggers (especially those in the field of self-improvement) are usually the kinds of people that spend their time helping others because it’s the right thing to do. Since niches are usually close knit, especially when there’s something that you can discuss freely and openly, you tend to find even users within a niche are happy to assist in any way. Blogging formed around the idea of community and this idea still exists to this day.

Tying it All Together

What really makes for a tantalizing blogger? All of these things do.

Put them together into a single package and you’ll have yourself a super-blogger.

Probably not every single one of the successful bloggers have every single one of these traits, but the ones they do have from this list, they utilize well.

Being a good blogger is, above all, about providing for your readers. It’s about giving back to your online community. It’s about helping those in need. Being a good blogger online stems from being a good person offline. How good a blogger can you be?

influential online bloggers

15 of the Most Influential Bloggers and What You Can Learn From Them

Work until you will no longer have to introduce yourself!

This is arguably one of the best pieces of advice that you will ever receive while working hard to grow your business.

Next thought: could a blog simplify your efforts and support your boldest ambitions?

The success stories of today’s best-loved influencers in the content industry show that a blog is an invaluable asset that can bring you money and fame in the long run.

Let’s look at how they did just that!

famous bloggers online

15 Bloggers Who Prove That Content Success Is Just Around the Corner

Some of the most influential bloggers of the moment demonstrate that inspiring strings of words can consolidate businesses, change mindsets and turn losses into profits. Here are 15 prominent, brilliant people who master the art of business blogging.

1. Noah Kagan. Noah Kagan of okdork.com is the founder of two multi-million businesses, successful blogger and Tacodeli lover. His blog is an excellent source of inspiration for those who are looking forward to revamping their content strategy and putting their talent and excellent writing skills to good use to supplement their income.

Posts like What I’ve Learned about Email Marketing after Losing $135,000 a Day are educational, information-rich and tailored to the needs of readers who wish to reduce their losses and boost their productivity in the content industry. Whether you want to learn how to grow your email list or improve your writing, Kagan’s expert advice will guide you in the right direction.

2. Darren Rowse. As a former minister with a plethora of interests, including food, reading, movies, wine and photography, Darren Rowse has what it takes to fit the profile of a successful blogger. Rowse is the founder of multiple blog networks and blogs, including ProBlogger.net and b5media.

3. Pat Flynn. Pat Flynn from www.smartpassiveincome.com can teach you everything you need to know about foolproof ways of making passive income. If you also want to hear the ka-ching sound effect while resting on your couch with your laptop on your lap, follow Flynn and find out how he managed to make 3 million dollars over the course of six years by creating websites that target different niches. An interview published by Forbes reveals some of his well-kept secrets: he surprises his audience with well-written informative materials that answer their daily questions. By providing digital books and other freebies, Flynn keeps his readers coming back for more time after time.

4. Neil Patel. Neil Patel is a Seattle-based angel investor, entrepreneur and analytics specialist. As the founder of Crazy Egg and KISSmetrics, Patel gives SEO/blogging tips meant to help small business owners succeed where others have failed. Patel takes his relationship with his readers/potential clients to a whole new level by introducing a new option: Reserve Neil Online. At a touch of a button, you can schedule a confidential discussion with Neil Patel and discover the secrets of the entrepreneur who has turned multiple blogs into a successful online business.

5. Seth Godin. Godin is an overall genius: author, entrepreneur, marketer, and public speaker.The sky is the limit when it comes to inventorying the number of things that you could learn from this extraordinary multitasker. Land on his website, check out his blog, fall in love with his newest bestseller entitled What to Do When It’s Your Turn, and don’t forget to take a glance at the section entitled “Free Stuff.” In this corner, you’ll be able to download and analyze manifestos, PDFs and ebooks for free. For instance, The Bootstrapper’s Bible is available for free for a limited period of time and teaches you for to start a business when you have no money in your pockets. Download, read and apply.

6. Matt Marshall. Matt Marshall is the Founder and CEO of VentureBeat. For almost a decade now, VentureBeat has made a name for itself as a leading source of information delivering fresh news that can help tech enthusiasts, entrepreneurs and executives make smarter decisions. Basically, this premium resource that attracts around 7.5 million unique visitors each month gives you the chance to discover and understand all the novelty factors associated with various technology trends, ranging from games and health tech to mobile and social media. Marshall signs a series of interesting must-read articles that will automatically catch your eye, especially if you’re interested in the tech innovation and entrepreneurial field.

7. Rand Fishkin. Fishkin is the Founder of Moz and Co-Founder of Inbound.org. His blog gets thousands of views and shares, besides all the traction his amazing company Moz has had. He’s also a celebrated speaker at events like PubCon, and a well-read author.

His Whiteboard Fridays are some of the best visually done weekly vlog-casts on the web.

8. Matt Cutts. Everybody knows Cutts as the voice of Google. He isn’t the most awesome blogger (sporadic posts, all over the board on topics) but he is definitely highly followed and read. Maybe because he works at Google—just a guess.

9. Gina Trapani. Gina Marie Trapani is the CEO and Founder of Lifehacker. She is also a reputable web developer, writer and tech blogger and the author of several bestselling books that deserve a spot on your nightstand, including Lifehacker: 88 Tech Tricks to Turbocharge Your Day and Upgrade Your Life. She is constantly active on social media platforms and spends most of her day podcasting and coding. Trapani is also the proud co-founder of ThinkUp, a brilliant app allowing you to picture your online self by offering you daily insights that you wouldn’t be able to find anywhere else. In case you’re interested, note that this handy tool comes with a 14-day free trial.

10. Pauline Cabrera. Pauline Cabrera is the founder of www.twelveskip.com, a popular blog on all things Internet Marketing. TwelveSkip is a top-rated resource whose purpose is to address the problems and concerns experienced by small business owners striving to boost their online visibility. Delivering a mix of quality information on content marketing, blogging, affiliate marketing and visual marketing, this blog also provides countless practical tips, educational information and step-by-step tutorials.

11. Timothy Sykes. Sykes is a wildly successful blogger who knows more than a thing or two about stock investment. He writes one of the highest earning Internet blogs in the entire world! He makes about $180,000 a month just from his blog, proving that turning a website into a profitable business is far from being a mission impossible. Born in 1981, Sykes is a highly esteemed educator, financial activist, entrepreneur and stock trader. He is currently sharing his wisdom with no less than 2,000 students from 60 countries. His blog comprises a collection of interesting posts that will help you rethink your moneymaking strategies. Most importantly, remember that you could always signup to start or improve your trading education by getting Sykes’ free 7 video lessons.

12. Amit Agarwal. This influent Indian blogger is the founder of Digital Inspiration. As a bold promoter of freedom of speech in his country, Amit made the first steps towards becoming the first Professional Blogger in India. Digital Inspirations, one of his most ambitious projects, is the go-to resource that users land on when they need expert advice on the efficient utilization of web-based technologies, services and tools.

13. Ileane Smith. Ileane Smith is not your average Social Media Diva. As an active blogger, YouTuber and podcaster, she provides free expert guidance allowing her followers to improve their relationships with their audiences and maximize their earnings the easy way. Her website lets you uncover the secrets of the digital media, craft better content, find your own voice and keep your audiences engaged and entertained.

14. Enstine Muki. Why do most companies blog? Because they want to sell faster and better, reach their audiences and stay one step ahead of their competitor. EnstineMuki, the founder of www.enstinemuki.com understands this basic need and shows people how to make money online the easy way. Informative posts such as How I Turned Rejection into $230+ in Affiliate Commissions do raise your curiosity as a reader and convince you to click on his links. At the end of the day, the tips and success stories that he shares with you let you solve problems that may be impacting the visibility and effectiveness of your blog/website. All in all, this resource proves once again that quality content can make you richer and wiser at the same time.

15. Jon Morrow. Morrow’s Twitter account counts 28 photos/videos, 7960 tweets and 33.4K followers. You may be wondering: what lies behind his smashing success? Morrow is the former editor of Copyblogger, one of the most reputable resources offering fresh tips on how to master SEO copywriting and explore your full potential as an online marketer.

As the CEO of Smart Blogger, Morrow signs a series of bold, attention-grabbing posts with shockingly on-point headlines, such as:

How to Be Smart in a World of Dumb Bloggers, How to Be Unforgettable or Make Money Blogging: 20 Lessons Going from 0 to $100,000 per Month

Does he have your attention now? We bet he does! However, if you need one more reason to follow his blog religiously and stalk him on Twitter, you should know that all his tips are absolutely free and help you unlock a whole world of new opportunities.

16. BONUS: Daniel Scocco. As a reputable programmer and entrepreneur born in Brazil, Scocco manages to answer different types of questions that you may also have on your mind at this point, as a newbie trying to conquer an overly competitive digital market. Posts such as Should You Really Move Your Startup to San Francisco, Why Startups Fail and There Are 3 Ways to Deal with Rejection. Only 1 Works are an invaluable source of knowledge and let you step up your game in today’s blogosphere. As the founder of Kubic Technology, a company specializing in mobile apps, and the provider of premium consulting services, Scocco is the influential blogger who can satisfy your appetitive for quality information on various web content-related topics of interest.

5 Strategies to Consider When Turning a Blog into a Business

Let’s face it: it’s hard to make a name for yourself in a sea of more or less remarkable blogs, especially when you’re sailing without a compass. As a new blogger, you need more than a few standard tips to enhance your level of influence and increase your number of followers. Here are five key aspects that you should factor in to facilitate your transition from rookie to worshipped blogging superstar.

1. Team up with Fellow Bloggers

Are you intimidated by your main competitors? If your answer is affirmative, then you should know that this is the main difference between people like you and successful bloggers. Influencers know how to turn foes into friends and competitors into collaborators. Guests posting is only one relevant example backing this theory. Therefore, if you truly want to boost your popularity and target a broader audience, choose to abandon your comfort zone and establish beneficial relationships with industry experts who could become a part of your content strategy.

2. Invest in the Tools That Contribute to Your Success

In 2015, all categories of content creators get the chance to test and use a great variety of free and almost free tools available online, designed to help them stay relevant and competitive on their niche. From indispensable tools and apps such asPocket, BlogJet or ScribeFire to an awesome-looking, user-friendly blog and website, all these assets supports your growth and maximize your productivity.

3. Stay Active on Social Media Platforms

These days, influential bloggers know how to explore the tremendous power of social networking websites to their best advantage. They tweet, share stuff on Facebook and Google+,post edited pictures and original captures on Instagram and add pins on Pinterest to save the best creative ideas that could inspire their future masterpieces. Blogging is a full-time job and these people work around the clock to promote their content on social media platforms. If you want to witness similar positive results, you should start by employing the same tactics.

4. Find the Perfect Combination of Tactics, Mindset and Vision

Novices can get free blogging tips online, with just a few clicks. But in order to become successful, you need more than a few patterns. According to entrepreneurs-journey.com, the ones who get excellent results in this field count on a mix of personalized strategies, a unique vision and a productive mindset.

5. Become the Best Version of Yourself to Achieve Recognition

Above anything else, stay real and use your originality as the most powerful weapon of seduction that is a part of your current arsenal. Perfect your writing style and make it recognizable. Neil Patel’s approach is completely different than the one embraced by Jon Morrow, despite the fact that they both operate in the blogging/SEO sector. Both are exceptionally gifted experts offering you a constant flow of words of wisdom that you can rely on to optimize and promote your blog in an effective manner; and still their styles are unique and easy to recognize by readers who are familiar with their work. Bottom line: raise your own voice and be yourself, simply because everybody else is already taken.

So, Why Blog?

Now let’s go back to the first question that we’ve launched: Why Blog?

As Hubspot points out, the list of benefits associated with blogging for business is virtually endless and includes a simpler method to generate traffic, a great opportunity to establish authority and the chance to witness long-term positive results, in terms of site traffic and new leads. The success stories revolving around strategies that you are now familiar with prove that you can turn a blog into a thriving business. So what now?

Create, innovate and contribute to a flawless user experience through your best content. It’s the only way!

[clickToTweet tweet=”If your ship doesn’t come in, you should swim out to meet it. – @ExpWriters on blogging” quote=”If your ship doesn’t come in, you should swim out to meet it. – @ExpWriters on blogging”]

Need great content? Request well-written, engaging blogs today through our Content Shop!

blog writing dos and donts

Blog Writing Frequency: Do This, Don't Do That!

Starting a blog and maintaining blog writing these days often stems from the need to generate income. You CAN earn a living using a blog. Whether you’re using a blog to attract visitors to your business website or you’re writing a blog just to gain income off advertisements, getting real traffic is the first and most important thing for success. After all, if you don’t have readers, your blog won’t serve you much of a purpose.

 

Blog Writing By Volume

A lot of blog owners ask how frequently they should blog because either they want to know what the bare minimum is for success or because they want to know what threshold they must meet to have a successful blog and maintain blog writing. Whatever the reasons are for you reading this post today, it’s important to know that there’s not a one-size-fits-all answer to how frequently you should post.

 

First Things First

Before we jump into your frequency for blog writing, we must cover an important rule for blogging: don’t write poor content just to increase your traffic — it won’t work. Your content is judged by readers and search engines, so even if you’re posting twice a day, crappy content could put you at the bottom of the ranks, especially after the release of Google Hummingbird. Learn more about how that can impact you in this article by Forbes. Good content is something that:

  • Engages the audience
  • Meets the expectations of your audience
  • Teaches your audience something
  • Encourages your audience to come back for more

 

Content is Key

Your blog is all about the content — literally. The content you publish on your blog ultimately determines what type of reader you’ll get, if they’ll follow and whether or not they’ll share your content. What makes your blog writing unique stems from a combination of your opinion, expertise, your personal style, and your blog’s overall freshness. The frequency with which you post is also tied into your content.

 

So How Often Should I Post?

The amount of blogs you post and how frequently you post them will ultimately determine your traffic volumes. According to a recent study published by HubSpot, organizations who blog 15 times or more per on a monthly basis get up to five times more traffic than organizations that don’t. Companies that increase their blogging frequency have been shown to double their leads too. For a decent amount of traffic, experts recommend at least three to four 500-word blog posts per week.  By just blogging one 500-word blog per day 50 to 80 percent of your SEO rankings could be because of that blogging routine.

Bottom line, if you want a high-ranking blog using quality blog writing, you’re going to have to post more than once a month or even once a week. Posting frequency is important and how much you should post is based on your ultimate goals. Some good guidelines to follow, according to About.com are:

  • Blog a few times per day for maximum growth.
  • Blog at least once a day for steady growth.
  • Blog two to three times per week for slower growth.
  • Blog once a week for very slow or limited growth.

 

Does Blog Writing More Frequently Attract More Visitors?

 

Absolutely. Blogging on a frequent basis attracts visitors in two ways:

 

  1. Frequent content encourages readers to visit your blog on a daily basis to see what you’re offering.
  2. Frequent posting encourages search engines to rank your website higher, which results in higher visitor counts.

 

Every new post is another opportunity for people to stumble across your blog when they input a new search query.

 

How Else Can Posting Frequently Help Me?

Posting your blogs and maintaining blog writing on a frequent basis will attract more visitors and encourage people to subscribe to your blog. Also, every time you post a new blog, subscribers will receive a copy of that blog in their email or in their feed reader — giving you more opportunities to encourage them to click and look for more.

 

How Do Images Help?

Original subscription and stock photo images can significantly help a blog in two ways: adding visual elements, and another SEO element. If you tag the purchased stock image with your keyword, that’s an original image that can be organically crawled in Google Image Search. If you use blog writing management services, make sure they are optimizing and using an original image with your blog along with writing and posting it.

 

So What Should I Not Do?

We’ve covered what you should do with your blog in terms of frequency and we’ve left the door open for you to decide how often you want to blog (based on your blogging goals). But, now it is time to discuss what you should never do when blogging.

Once you establish a blogging frequency, stick to it. There is nothing more detrimental to your search engine rank than blogging consistently and then dropping off the radar for a few weeks or months. Google penalizes you for infrequent content and taking a hiatus from your blog might actually force you to start all over in terms of gaining readers, attracting readers and increasing your rank.

So, whatever you do, pick a frequency and stick to it. If you’re blogging once a week, do once a week. Got a vacation coming up? Prewrite and schedule your blogs so they still post while you’re on the beach in Tahiti (or wherever you go). If you don’t have the time, consider hiring a professional to do the blog writing and posting for you. You can have your blogs written in batches or submitted daily. In some cases you can even have a company write and submit them for you — so your blog is 100 percent maintained while you focus on operating the core of your business.