On January 9 last year I nervously embarked on the challenge of composing a new blog post every week-day for the entire year. I can hear you all now whispering to yourselves saying “was she insane!” and yes I thought that too at the beginning. How the hell was I going to write a blog post every day on top of running my business (and working in another with my husband, yep I essentially work 7 days a week) oh and sleep, eat and live.
Well here I am on the other side of 230 blog posts and whilst I’m not perfect, I certainly learn’t a lot and thought it was fair to share a few hints, tips and tricks from my time in the blogging trenches with you all just in case you want to challenge yourself and I highly recommend you do!
- They're all right, blogging really is great for generating new business. Probably the biggest take-away for me was that people actually read and benefitted from what I had to say. And as it turns out people wanted to know more and started to book mentoring sessions with me off the back of blog posts. I now constantly reference content I have created for my blog with my clients and have shared some of my articles with other fashion networks to further my credentials and expertise in the industry.
- Structure is important. At the very beginning I decided in order to for me to be able manage the sheer volume of posts I was committing to I had to have some kind of structure. So I chose to allocate a topic a day - Monday was for business content, Tuesday for trends, Wednesday for inspirational posts, Thursday for digital marketing content such as video's and Friday was a round up of the week’s most interesting global fashion news. Timing content (just like Instagram posts) was also pivotal, I saved all of the big juicy business advice pieces for the beginning of the week and threw in a dose of inspiration in the middle of the week.
- Save the stress, write when you get those creative bursts. It’s so hard to force yourself to write, I did this to myself a lot until it dawned on me that I should just continue writing posts when I get those creative bursts of energy (it’s happening right now!) If you do write your posts in batches, inevitably there will be days when just can’t get to the computer to scribe anything and you will thank yourself for having a few posts up your sleeve. You can even schedule pre-prepared posts on your site if you know there are days coming up when you’ll be away from the desk.
- It’s okay to put your hand up and ask for help. I’m not a naturally gifted writer, but I’m lucky enough to be married to a bit of a word smith, so had an editor on hand 24-7. Funny thing was though after a couple of months of sending my “Editor” my posts to finesse I quickly got the hang of things and gave him the boot hahah. One resource I did come back a lot throughout the year was this fantastic book on creating content, Everybody Writes - Your Go-to Guide to Creating Ridiculously Good Content by Anne Handley. This book basically takes you by the hand and walks you through how to write really good content for all kinds of purposes - blogs, Linkedin profiles, website landing pages and many more. I literally have over 30 sticky tabs littered across the book, highlighted hundreds of useful snippets and read it cover to cover around 4 times - go get a copy now (and no this isn’t a paid post for Anne).
- One blog post = at least 3 other pieces of content. Once you’ve done the hard yards and published your blog post the magic does not stop there. Re-purpose that article into an Instagram post, you could also take a small excerpt from that same article and turn it into a quote for social media, hey you could even turn it into a Facebook Ad! I’m even thinking of taking it to the next level and turning some of my business articles into quick and useful e-books (stay tuned).
My business has benefitted from sharing my thoughts, experiences and knowledge with you over on my blog, so thank you for tuning in and I hope you’ve also taken something away from my blog that has helped you in your own business journey.
If you ever want to pick my brain about blogging or have a topic you would like me to cover, feel free to drop me an email, firstname.lastname@example.org