Blogs - What Are They?
Just a quick re-cap of what Blogs are, just in case you missed part 1 of this newsletter - Blogs are simply web logs on a web site. An online journal of postings that is updated on a regular basis, with the most recent posting appearing at the top. Blogs are usually written in a conversational style and can include text, images and links to other content such as podcasts, video files or even other web sites.
In part 1 we learned that blogs can help you keep your web site current and they are an easy way to add new content to your site. They can be used to provide your potential and existing customers with the latest news on your products and services, industry news, updates, tips, or other relevant content. But, as with everything related to your Web site content, you must go back to your objectives and target markets to help you determine if a blog is right for you.
We also learned that there was a lot of buzz created around blogs because they were the first new entries into the 3rd generation of Internet marketing and since then about 82% of blogs have been abandoned.
Avoiding Classic Blog Mistakes
While blogs can be an easy way to communicate with your target audience, there are still many common mistakes that people make when taking on such an endevour.
Under-estimating the time commitment
One of the biggest mistake people make when deciding to start a blog is under-estimating the time commitment. While it's great and convenient to know that blogs can be updated from anywhere, it is more important to know that they have to be updated... and, yes, it can be done anywhere. Blogs should be updated at leat 3 times per week and you need to have the discipline to keep it current. That means at least three times per week you have to research your topic or put your thoughts into words in a way that is interesting to read, both very time-consuminf tasks, and post them online. Most of the time this has to get done during your own personal time.
Over-estimating the marketing impact
The second biggest mistake people make when deciding to start a blog is over-estimating the marketing impact. It takes time and effort to build an audience for a blog - when was the last time you bookmarked a blog and went back on a regular basis?
Irregular or infrequent updating
Users must be able to anticipate when and how often updates to your blog will occur.
People are busy and they do not have the time to keep checking your blog to see if it has been updated. They need to know that every day, or every two days, or what ever the case may be, there is going to be a new post that they can read, oterwise you will lose many of your readers. Pick a posting schedule and stick to it - a blog that isn't updated regularly will simply be ignored.
Writing for the search engines and not for the blog
There is the growing tendency by many bloggers to write for search engines rather than focusing on the needs of their "human" readers.
Putting search engines first rather than putting your readers first will almost certainly lead to bad decisions that will make your blog less usable, even if it is optimized for search spiders.
While blogs can be a great way to "speak to" your target market and keep them up to date on all the latest news on your products and services, you must determine if there is a more effective, time efficient way to communicate.
How to Promote Your Blog
Just like a web site, once you have a blog you want to maximie it's exposure - you want to have as many people from your target market reading or reviewing your blog on a regular basis as possible.
There are many ways to get your blog noticed. The most obvious place to start is your own web site. However, there are so many other ways to promote your blog:
- Generate links to your blog from other related sites
- Promote you rblog in your email signature file
- Submit your blog to all of the major search engines
- Register your blog with all of the major blog directories
- Send out Press releases and media alerts about your blog
Here are a few great places to start promoting your blog:
Want More Information?
If you would like more information on blogs, check out my 1 hour Blogs, Wiki's & RSS Feeds webinar. It's coming up on May 11th , 2007 – 1pm EST. If you don't have time to take it online you can order it on CD and listen to it whenever is convenient for you!
Click here for a full list of webinars available throughout the year!
Also, check out the Resources section on my Web site. I have developed a great library of resources where you can find additional tips, tools and techniques online.
Join me Friday February 23rd, 2007 at 12pm EST for my next webinar on Search Engine Optimization Methodology. In this session
I will identify the most popular search engines and provide information on their formulas for search engine ranking as each one uses their own set of rules. I will also walk you step by step through my methodology for top search engine ranking! Click here to learn more and sign up now!
If you want to get a little more in-depth with your Internet Marketing Strategy sign up for our Secrets of Search Engine Success 6 week Webinar series. This package contains the next Search Engine Optimization Methodology Webinar plus 5 other Webinars plus 2 of my latest books plus 2 extra CD's for only $299! For more information click here or to sign up for the Secrets of Search Engine Success package click here .
Visit my Web site at http://www.susansweeney.com