When I first began blogging way back in about 2006, I made every mistake in the book. I had no idea what I was doing. I was just filled with joy at the opportunity to chat with people via a simple blog post.
If I was starting again now I would probably approach blogging differently, but I’m not sure that I would have a better result. In my ignorance, I hit the mark and my blog took off.
I was lucky that the mistakes I made were painless, but along the way I did see other bloggers making mistakes that held them back. They are the same mistakes that I see people making today. These are the ones you need to avoid.
- Keeping posts short
People don’t have a lot of time to read, so yes, a short blog post can be appealing. Length only becomes a problem if you can’t do your topic justice in a short amount of words. Sometimes you need to write longer pieces and go into detail. If you are answering the right questions or sharing relevant pieces of information, your customers will read it no matter how long the blog post is.
- Being someone you are not
You don’t have to be “professional” if it means you’re a cardboard cut-out and not a real person. Take a look at some of the popular blogs in your field. There may be one or two among them that could do with some grammatical help or are a bit irreverent. It isn’t holding them back and that’s probably because they are showing their true personalities. Maintaining an image or persona is really tiring if it’s fake.
- Not telling stories
Part of what is attractive about blogs is that the reader can get to know something about YOU and what makes you tick. If you’re not sharing stories about yourself and your business, how can anyone come to know you? You don’t have to spill the gory details, but a little anecdote every now and then is what gives life to your blog.
- Selling, selling, selling
Please don’t do this. Who wants to read post after post of sales pitches? I know you may be blogging to boost your income but don’t hit your readers over the head with it. Talking about your products or services and painting a picture of how they will solve your client’s problem is more likely to make them want it than a big sales pitch.
- Not marketing their content
They have gone to all the trouble to craft a great blog post and they just leave it sitting there. Who is going to know it’s there? Get out and tell people about it. Send an email to your database and share the post on social media. Bring it to the attention of your ideal client. Make your post work for you.
If you can avoid these 5 mistakes, you will have a much better chance of building a successful and interesting blog.
If you could do with some help to get started, take a look at the “Set Your Direction” blog package which maps out a direction and some blog posts so that you hit the ground running.
If you are already actively blogging, what tips would you give to those just starting out?