Use Drafts to Get Ahead with your Blogging

writing-quillI have a quick tip for you today that will come in handy as you’re working on getting ahead on your blogging. It’s using the draft feature. Yes, it’s handy that WordPress and most other blogging platforms have a way to save your posts as drafts so you can continue to work on it over the course of a few days. It’s even better that they usually auto-save for you – at least it is in my case. But there’s another great way to use the draft feature.

You can use drafts to get ahead of the blogging game in several different ways. Let’s start with the most obvious one.

Use Drafts to Work on Your Next Blog Post (or Two)

The most obvious way to use drafts is of course to work on your current blog post until it is ready to publish. But don’t just stop there. If you know you have a busy day tomorrow or later on in the week, go ahead and give yourself a head start by creating a draft and working on it here and there as you can fit it in your busy day. You’ll be glad you did when it comes time to wrap up that particular post.

Use Drafts to Plan Out Your Week

You can also use drafts to plan out your blogging for the week. Let’s say you want to post 5 times per week. Come up with 5 topics and create a draft for each. Then start working on them, making sure you wrap up and publish at least one of the posts on each of your publishing days.

Not only will this keep you on track and show you at a glance what you’ll be blogging about this week, it also allows you to work on multiple posts throughout the week, giving you options when you get stuck on writing one post.

Use Drafts as A Way of Storing Blog Post Ideas

Let’s wrap this up with my favorite way to use the drafts feature. And that’s to use it as storage container for ideas for future blog posts. Here’s how to do it. When you get an idea for a blog post, go ahead and create a draft. Come up with a working title and make a quick note of what your blog post will be about. If you’re feeling ambitious, go ahead and write a quick outline for the post. Then save it as a draft.

Do this anytime you come up with an idea and save them for later. Then whenever you need something to blog about, browse through your drafts and pick one of these. The idea is there and you may even have done some of the writing already. These drafts make for fast blog posts and are just the thing when you’re suffering from writer’s block.

Get Your Post Read by Crafting Great Blog Post Titles

 

Portrait of cute baby laughing

I’ll let you in on a little secret. The most important part of your blog post is your title. How well you write, how well-researched your content is, or how pretty your images are means nothing if you can’t get readers to click through and start reading your post. And the single most important thing when it comes to getting readers’ attention is your blog post title.

It’s also the most important on-page factor when it comes to SEO. So if you’re hoping for lots of free traffic from Google and all your favorite social media sites, you need to get good at crafting great blog post titles.

Start With Your Keyword

The key with great blog post titles is to strive for a balance between a title the search engines will like and one that your readers will find interesting and engaging enough to make them want to click on it. To get that balance just right, start with a keyword or key phrase that you want to rank for in the search engines.

Open up your favorite keyword research tool – like the Google Keyword Planner for example – and play around with it until you come up with the keyword or key phrase you want to rank for.

For the sake of illustration let’s say our keyword example is “best blog hosts” and the post will be a review of five of the best hosting companies for WordPress blogs. “best blog hosts” is the keyword we want to rank for in this example.

Make It Interesting

Now that we have the keyword, it’s time to make it interesting for our readers. There are plenty of different ways to turn our example keyword into an interesting blog post title. Here are a few ideas:

  • The Three Best Blog Hosts Reviewed – Read This Before You Sign Up
  • Looking For a New Home for Your Blog? The Best Blog Hosts Reviewed
  • My Top 5 Best Blog Hosts Revealed – Here’s Who I Recommend
  • Wondering Who The Best Blog Hosts Are?
  • Is Your Host On The Best of The Best Blog Hosts List?

Do you see how this works? Start with the keyword and then try to think about why your readers would be looking for this information. Focus on what’s in it for them by sharing content that will help them out.

Stay Authentic and Stick With Your Style

Last but not least stay authentic and stick with your own style. This is particularly important if you’re an established blogger. Don’t just copy and paste the blog post titles above. They may not reflect the style and tone of voice of your blog posts. In other words, they may not be you. Balance the need of the search engines to easily find what your content is about and the need to keep things interesting for your readers, with your own voice.

You may find it helpful to write a few different blog post titles down and then chose the one that resonates most with you (and hopefully with your readers).  If you do this, you won’t need to resort to a cute baby smiling to get people to read your post.  Love to see what titles you come up with.

5 Reasons Blogging is Good for Your Business

Blogging for business - internet concept -isolated text in vintage letterpress wood type

No matter what kind of company you have, you need to be blogging. Even if you don’t consider yourself a writer or blogger, it’s essential because your business blog offers another touch point with your customers and It’s easier to do than you think.

Here are 5 reasons why you should blog:

  • To Create a More Personal Connection
  • Establish Your Expertise and Credibility
  • Customize Your Marketing
  • Improve your Search Engine Traffic
  • Increase Visibility for Your Products and Services

Create a More Personal Connection

Like social media, your blog gives you a chance to connect with your current and potential customers on a more personal level. While your website is a static page that simply tells them about your business, your blog is interactive. It’s a way to start a dialog where they can leave comments and get to know you better. Your blog gives your business a human face. Make sure that you use it as a way to humanize your business. In order to connect with your readers, be active and reply to each comment they leave.

Establish Your Expertise and Credibility

One of the best things about a business blog is that it gives you an opportunity to establish your expertise and build your reputation. You can blog about things you know. For example, if you’re a law firm, blog about simple legal questions people have. If you’re a cleaning company, share some easy house cleaning tips. Your blog shows your website visitors what you know and this engenders trust in your business. People like to do business with people they know, like and trust.

Customize Your Marketing

Blogging offers a much more effective and lower cost way to promote your business than other methods. If you want to place advertisements on other sites, this costs a bit of money. Other costly methods don’t make the same kind of impact that a blog written by you does. You also get information on your target market through their reading behavior and comments. Thus you know what problems they are looking to solve and you can offer them the right solution. When you are coming from a place of serving your customers and helping them, they will come back for more information.

Improve Your Search Engine Traffic

Adding a blog to your static website is a great way to attract traffic from search engines. The search engines favor sites that have fresh, updated content. If you write just one blog post per week, you’ll see more searches coming your way, especially if you choose a few good keywords for each post. Write two or three blog posts a week and you’ll really see your traffic climb. If you are making these posts relevant to your audience, you will also see more comments and these also act as fresh content in the eyes of the search engines.

Increase Visibility for Your Products and Services

Through your blog, you can tell your customers about your products and services. Let them know about discounts, special offers, new inventory items and offline events that you’re participating in. You can also add a feed to your social media sites so that every blog post shows up there as well.

Now, if writing gives you a case of the willies, don’t despair. Blogging isn’t like writing the Great American Novel. Focus on the wants, needs, interests and questions of your customers. Write short, conversational posts as if you’re speaking directly to them. Pick something related to your business and share your expertise with them. Your business blog doesn’t need to reinvent the wheel; it just needs to be helpful and engaging.

If you would like help getting started or just need more ideas, you can download my e-book “Blogging Brainstorming” at www.blogadaychallenge.com. This is the first of a 10 article series on Business blogging to help you thrive as a business blogger. Look for my next article, “Where to Start with Your Business Blog” tomorrow.

Welcome to Day 25 of the Blog-A-Day Challenge

Today, I invite you to step into being GREAT.  To connect with people in a bigger way, to live today with just a little more passion.  To pick a goal that you thought was a little too big and take 1 step toward it.

1390-Marden-800x600Everyone is born with innate greatness and when you connect to that AND live into it- WOW!  that is where the juice of life is and when the magic happens.  Try it on for today and then perhaps tomorrow and then….

Enjoy your wonderful fantastic day! 

 

 

Fun day: 23 reasons why 23 is the greatest number

Thought I would do something fun for today, the 23rd of the month.  Here are some reasons why 23 is the greatest number of all time as stated by www.urbandictionary.com  I changed # 8 to It is Tennis Day because that is important to me (see my blog post on “Why I am addicted to Professional Tennis”) and #12 because, come on, we all need to celebrate International Dog Biscuit Appreciation Day.  Enjoy!

dog cooling with a martini refreshment cocktail

Here are 23 Reasons why 23 is the greatest number:   It is…

1. a prime number, as are 2 and 3.
2. Michael Jordan’s number.
3. the NBA record for most consecutive points scored by a single player in a game, done by none other than Michael Jordan.
4. the number of chromosomes in a human sperm or egg.
5. the angle between the earth’s magnetic and rotational axis.
6. the Tropic of Cancer at 23 degrees N Latitude.
7. the Tropic of Capricorn at 23 degrees S Latitude.
8.  Tennis Day
9. the most quoted Psalm in the bible (“The Lord is my  shepherd…”
10. the number of people executed in “A Tale of Two Cities”
11. the smallest number of people for which there is at least a 50% chance that two will share the same birthday.
12. International Dog Biscuit Appreciation Day
13. one of the “Lost” numbers on the television show….also the sum of two of the other numbers (8 & 15)and the solution to 42-15-4=23, all of which are also Lost numbers.
14. the number of times Caesar was stabbed in Shakespeare’s Julius Caesar.
15. has been prominently featured in the following: Serendipity, Futurama, Star Wars A New Hope, Monty Python The Life of Brian, Seinfeld, The Big Lebowski, The Matrix Reloaded, and Die Hard III among MANY MANY other movies.
16. the number of flavors Dr. Pepper claims to be a blend of.
17. the number of distinct orientations of Tetris pieces.
18. the sum of U2, the greatest band ever. U is the 21st letter of the alphabet.
19. the number of letters in the latin alphabet.
20. the number of the Illuminati.
21. the letter W in the english alphabet, a letter with 2 points down and 3 points up.
22. the smallest number of integer sided boxes that tile a box such that no two boxes share a common length.
23. the only US president to serve between nonconsecutive terms of another president (23rd president Benjamin Harrison serving between Grover Cleveland’s terms).

Welcome to Monday and Day 22 of the Blog-A-Day Challenge

Good morning!  Hope you all had a wonderful weekend and are ready to tackle our last week of the Blog-A-Day Challenge.  Time to play with some other mediums as I have seen some of our bloggers doing.  Think also about creating a way to have people connect with you beyond the challenge (special report, a webinar Mondayetc).

 

Wishing you a Magnificent Monday! 

Welcome to the Weekend and Day 20 of the Blog-A-Day Challenge

WAHOO!!! enjoytheweekendWe are entering the last 10 days of the challenge.  Keep up the great work.  Big shout outs to Kim, Karen, Juan, Terry and Cliff for consistently posting AND commenting.  And welcome to our new bloggers who have been sharing some great information.  Look forward to another great week!

Enjoy your weekend!

Welcome to Day 19 of the Blog-A-Day Challenge

If you are familiar with my work, then you know that helping people understand and live into their values is deeply important to me.  It is my mission to support people in living out their passion by creating businesses that support their dreams and desire to serve others.   Having each of you share what is important to you on this forum has made me smile each and every day.  So, I want to express my gratitude and appreciation for each of you.Livingourvalues

Thank You and have a nice weekend!

Welcome to Day 17 of the Blog-A-Day Challenge

 

Collection of colorful speech bubbles and dialog balloons

Wow, the days seem to be flying by in this challenge.

I was on a blab yesterday talking about how to repurpose of your content.  Since leverage is one of my favorite words, here are just a few tips about how to increase the visibility and reach of your blog posts.  I will be writing more about this later today:

  1. When you write a blog post, take the few extra minutes to share it on social media (or have it set up automatically to share as I do)
  2. Look back on comments or on topics that you felt a passion for and repurpose it by creating a short video or you can create a special report that you invite people to download.  By seeing you on video or having someone opt-in to receive information from you, you are creating a stronger relationship.
  3. Share your information with other bloggers or in forums by either offering to guest blog or posting a link back to your blog posts.

If you missed my post yesterday about 5 ways to promote your blog, here it is again:

5 Ways to Promote Your Blog

 

Have a great day!