It’s a crowded online world.If you’re ready to cut through the clutter, there’s one surefire way.Build a successful and profitable blog.Your blog is a gateway to potential customers.It’s a virtual bridge, connecting your business to consumers eager to share in the online space.But they’ll never know who you are if you don’t put a strategy in place.A strategy will combine your goals with the content needed to build awareness and brand reputation.I joined Kelly Mitchell on Agent Caffeine, a show committed to fueling your business, where we discussed the steps it takes to build a profitable blog strategy.Below are Kelly's questions and my answers that will work to take you from super-secret to blogger extraordinaire.
Fuel a Profitable Blog Strategy
Q: What Does it Take to Build a Power Blog?
A power blog is run by a power blogger.That person is strategic, focused, totally zeroed in on who their target market is, passionate about their topic, consistent in their efforts and always giving more than they ever expect to get back.Danielle Bernstein who was highlighted in an article in the New York Post is a great example.She’s the founder of WeWoreWhat.com, has 227,000 Instagram followers, 30,000 Twitter followers and has a voice and a brand that is followed intently by a legion of raving fans.She’s also considered one of the elite fashion bloggers in the country.The beauty behind that story is this. She’s making a living doing what she loves. It is possible, but the key is getting focused and building a solid, but powerful foundation.
Q: What are the Building Blocks to a Profitable Blog?
1. Provide Valuable Content
Listen to your readers. Comb through their questions and find ways to solve problems.Offering a substantial amount of value builds trust and will establish you as the industry authority. Remember, trust takes time and will not happen overnight.Give freely and be patient. Consistently offering your insight, wisdom and knowledge will allow readers to see you are in it for them, not just the paycheck.
2. Post Consistently
When was the last time you returned to a blog that hadn't posted in weeks or even months? Probably never.It's difficult to consider them a viable resource when the blogger doesn't take posting seriously.Create consistency within your posting strategy. It lends credibility and will keep you in front of your readers and top-of-mind.Plan on writing at least one content rich post per week. Then add it to your calendar and stick to it like any other appointment.
3. Get Inside Your Target Markets Head
Have a deep understanding of who your market is and what they’re looking for. Don’t assume you have the answers. Do your homework.Breakdown your top three target markets and what problems you solve for each one. For example, if parents are your target market, take a deeper dive into that niche.
Your three target markets might look like this:
- Parents of teens
- Parents of teens with disabilities
- Parents of teen drivers
As you can imagine, the problems you solve for each one will be considerably different. Know exactly what those needs are and find ways to meet them in a very real and specific way.
Q: How Do You Create a Powerful Content Creation Strategy?
My solution is two-fold.My first strategy is a swipe file. This is a file that allows you to easily swipe ideas as you make your way across the web and save it for content inspiration down the road.This could be a blog post, a video, or podcast. Anything that grabs your attention.The second strategy I live and die by is an editorial calendar. I am a checklist girl and what isn’t on the list, doesn’t get done.That holds true in my business and flows through to social media.
Q: How Can Graphics Drive Blog Shares?
Graphics are an incredibly powerful tool.Take the time to create a big, beautiful graphic and post it to Google+, Pinterest and Facebook. Then tweet that graphic.According to a study by Dan Zarralla, tweets with images are 94% more likely to get retweeted than those that don’t. Don't miss that opportunity!The graphic I create for Google+ and Pinterest with a size of 800 x 1200. That takes up a lot of real estate and works extremely well on both platforms.
Q: How Can Bloggers Keep Track of Contacts Eager to Support Their Efforts?
I have three quick tips.Each one can be used in conjunction with the others, but will depend on your overall strategy and the relationships you've built.
- Twitter Lists - This is an excellent way to manage contacts. Add those that actively share your content to a list of blog supporters. Share their content on a consistent basis. This builds awareness and generates reciprocity.
- Google+ Circles – As you post an article, ask who would like to be included in your Google+ shared circle. Then notify that circle each time you write a new article.
- Create an excel file with your top business advocates. Reach out to each one personally and thank them for their continued support. Let them know when you post each week and ask if they would be willing to share.
Q: How Can Google+ Communities Boost Blogger Awareness and Drive Additional Shares?
Google+ communities are a wonderful way to connect with like-minded bloggers.Be very mindful of community guidelines and get to know the community before you begin posting.It’s extremely important to understand what the do’s and don’ts of each community so tread lightly.Most will allow you to share your own content as long as it doesn’t resemble link-litter where you simply drop a link with no context or explanation around it.
How are you building a powerful and profitable blog? I'd love to hear from you!
Watch the show in its entirety here:
About Rebekah Radice
Rebekah Radice, co-founder of BRIL.LA, has traded narcissism for purpose. When not driving growth, you'll find her tricking family into thinking she's Emeril Lagasse - likely covered in marinara. The spotlight was fun, but impact is better. These days she's using 20+ years of brand brilliance for good.